Sunday, July 13, 2008

Non-Argumentative Beimel vs. Falkenborg List

(All numbers are through Saturday's game.)

1. These two pitchers were born within 9 months of each other.
2. They were decent but indistinguished performers as starters early in their major league career.
3. Their performance from 2006 to present has been at a fairly consistent (for a reliever) rate and has been a notch above their previous history.
4. Since 2006, Beimel has faced 794 hitters at the major league level and 49 in the PCL. Falkenborg has faced 135 hitters at the major league level and 594 in the PCL.
5. Since 2006, major league RHB have hit .228/.299/.354 (.262 BABIP) against Falkenborg and .284/.339/.400 (.300 BABIP) against Beimel.
6. The same numbers for LHB: .302/.348/.488 against Falkenborg (.355 BABIP) and .227/.265/.302 (.283 BABIP) against Beimel.
7. CHONE projects Falkenborg for a 3.95 ERA and 3.96 FIP; Beimel a 4.04 ERA and 4.27 FIP.
8. ZiPs projects Falkenborg for a 4.50 ERA and 4.17 FIP; Beimel 3.95 ERA and 3.97 FIP.
9. In 2006-7, the bulk of the playing time in their respective projections, Falkenborg had the platoon advantage against 65% of batters faced at the major league level and 58% of batters in the PCL in 2006 (I'm not going to try to track down the 2007 xml data right now, sorry); Beimel had it 36% of the time at the major league level and 43% of his 49 PA in the PCL.
10. In 2008, Falkenborg has faced 26 batters at the major league level with the platoon advantage in 65% of them, yielding a .167/.200/.417 line (.118 BABIP, .251 wOBA). In the PCL, he's faced 145 batters with a platoon advantage in 52% of them and an opponents line of .244/.285/.385 (.330 BABIP, .291 wOBA). Beimel has faced 118 batters with the platoon advantage 46% of the time, yielding a .283/.339/.311 (.341 BABIP, .297 wOBA).

So, I just think it's fairly clear that, given the choice between these two pitchers to face one batter, you choose the one with the platoon advantage. When deciding who to put in the game, the most important consideration should be who will get the platoon advantage more often or rather which usage will maximize the player's value in terms of handedness.

That's not to say that, overall, Beimel is not a somewhat better pitcher. We are talking about a couple relievers here; it's unremarkable that the handedness advantage is greater than the difference in overall talent, as one of them has to be considerably better than the other for this not to be the case. To denigrate players like Falkenborg to make a point that is already obvious (that Torre makes many questionable decisions and has made several very irritating decisions) seems like a poor strategy for criticizing the administration.

So yeah, because Baker and Hermida were due up first and fourth in that inning, it would have been acceptable to go to Beimel, but in my initial post I established why going to Falkenborg until you hit Jacobs again is strategically sound. But if the argument is, as Vin's seemed to partially be, that you'd rather have Beimel facing Hanley Ramirez than Falkenborg, I think that's a lousy argument that shows a lack of study and rests on a superficial analysis of the players' respective performances.

1 Comments:

At 11:52 PM, Blogger Paul said...

If the argument is about a single outcome, then then I strongly feel: 1. the result has to be predictable (or the likelihood of the result has to be discernible) and 2. the complaint should be lodged regardless of actual outcome.

I completely agree with your analysis on Biemel and Borg and I also agree that as to facing Ramirez, Borg or Wade are the right choices (and I would rate either as an effective coin flip as to witch would be preferable).

My comment as to Biemel as my choice in the previous post had mostly to do with attempting to get him to two innings. It is a risk, but I think with the options left you needed to count on at least one of the next two relievers to go two innings. I think putting in Biemel there gives you your immediate one inning of likely success, followed by an inning of some risk (a risk you labeled as a sure loss, but I am confident you were being hyperbolic there).

Frankly, with the possible exception of Troncoso, I think any choice Torre made there was supportable. Even Troncoso really is only a quibble.

With that said, I stand by my assertion that Torre is doing harm to the Dodgers this year, I just don't think his choice of Borg in that situation was an example of it.

 

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