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  #21  
Old 05-19-2011, 08:59 PM
steve B steve B is offline
Steve Birmingham
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I wouldn't call his performance over the first 4-6 years "barely good enough to stay in the major leagues" Average season? 9.83HR .238 average. Remove his first year when he played for 4 different teams and did pretty much nothing and 05 when he barely played at all, and those numbers would look slightly better for power, less for average 14.75 HR/year .229 average
Not counting 2010 and 2011 his 162 game average for HR is 16.66
A lot of guys have made a career of numbers like that. And a lot of guys have hung around for 10 years or so doing that or less while teams waited for them to live up to their potential.


I'll even go out on a limb with a guy who has been implicated, but not proven to have used. David Ortiz. 6 years in Minn trying to stay in the majors mostly because of management changes plus not being a guy the team had invested in all that heavily. While there they had him trying to be an opposite field slap hitter. Comes to Boston and gets told to swing away. Yes, like many his numbers for his best years are suspect, but some of the improvement has to be attributed to a difference in expectatons and hitting style.
Bautista has had a couple rough years very early in his career. 4 teams his first year! Kingman played for 4 teams in one year, but in the middle of his career. And Bautista has had one split season since. You'd have to be incredibly confident not to be affected by that.

SteveB
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  #22  
Old 05-20-2011, 01:09 AM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
Larry
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Originally Posted by D. Bergin View Post
I pretty clearly stated the years Foster broke out. What about the 6 years in baseball prior to that?

He had 1 halfway decent season from 69' to 75' prior to his breakout year in '76.

Maybe Bautista is guilty, I don't know, but I'm not going to throw a guy under the bus without any evidence other then "he's doing really well right now".

Ben Oglivie is another guy who didn't develop a power swing until he was around 30 or so.
I think you missed the whole point re Foster, Dave. His "breakout" which might be considered similar to Bautista's Babe Ruth imitation was his 52 homerun year, and the point was that he, unlike our little Jose, didn't go from zero to hero. Instead, my point was that Foster demonstrated substantial talent for two years before that (he was 26, by the way, when he had his first good season, 23 HR, 78 RBI, .300, followed it up with another the next year, 29 HR, 121 RBI, .306), then had a year where obviously everything went right (52 HR, 149 RBI, .320). Bautista did not even remotely demonstrate substantial talent over the course of any full year before the 2010 season, when he came out of nowhere to hit 54 homers. Do you know how many players hit 54 or more homers before the steroid era? The answer is Ruth, Hack Wilson, Foxx, Kiner, Mantle, Maris and Greenberg. Unless this old post-50 brain-faded fan missed one somehow, THAT'S JUST SEVEN PLAYERS. NONE, REPEAT NONE, OF THEM CAME OUT OF NOWHERE TO DO SO. Please don't even think Hack Wilson--he won four homerun titles in five years up to and including his 56 homer campaign, losing out only by one to Hornsby's 40 one year earlier. And Maris had previously hit 28 for the Indians/A's in 1958 during a season he started at only 23 years of age; was on pace for a truly star-level season that went off-track only due to injury for the A's in
1959, causing his average to plummet below the over .300 pace with power he had maintained before the injury (although he and that season did stay intact long enough for him to make the all-star team in '59); and would have hit over 40 homers in 1960 but for injury (rather than the 39 he did hit in only 136 games, winning the MVP with 112 RBI's and a .283 average).

Even Oglivie didn't come out of nowhere when he hit his 41 homers in 1980 (and that's a long way from the 60-70 full-season pace Jose has been on since last May). He hit 15 in only 305 at bats in 1976 (which would have given him 29, had he maintained the same pace and gotten the same number of at bats--592--he had in that 41 HR season); hit 21 homers in 450 at bats (equal to approximately 28, had he had the 592 AB's of his big season) in 1977; hit 18 homeruns in 469 at bats with a .303 average in 1978; and 29 HR's in 514 AB with a .282 average in 1979.

By the way, the reason why you guys are having trouble coming up with an anywhere near comparable match to the inconceivable progression Bautista has demonstrated over the course of the last year and 40 or so games is because THERE IS NONE! It is amusing to watch, however, and I do think it demonstrates something noble in all of your characters, in that you are willing to believe the best about somebody, when the evidence (given, it is circumstantial in nature) is to the contrary. I've been wrong in the past (heck, I loved McGwire from '92-2000, and believed he was legit), and it is a veritable certainty I will be wrong again, probably often. But there is something very disturbing to me in the record of this player, in that it has never been remotely duplicated during the years between 1920 (the first 50+ homer season) and 1990, by which time a whole lot of nonsense had begun to occur.

Larry

Last edited by ls7plus; 05-20-2011 at 01:19 AM.
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  #23  
Old 05-20-2011, 01:27 AM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
Larry
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Originally Posted by steve B View Post
I wouldn't call his performance over the first 4-6 years "barely good enough to stay in the major leagues" Average season? 9.83HR .238 average. Remove his first year when he played for 4 different teams and did pretty much nothing and 05 when he barely played at all, and those numbers would look slightly better for power, less for average 14.75 HR/year .229 average
Not counting 2010 and 2011 his 162 game average for HR is 16.66
A lot of guys have made a career of numbers like that. And a lot of guys have hung around for 10 years or so doing that or less while teams waited for them to live up to their potential...

SteveB
Guys like that, Steve, have names like Ron Swoboda. He was pretty much exactly like that for the rest of his career, after hitting something like 10 homers in his first 118 at bats as a rookie in 1965. Ron had 2581 career at bats, hit 73 homeruns (or about 14 to 15 per every 500 AB full season), and batted .242 lifetime. Swoboda lasted 9 years, and it was never a given he was going to make the team in any of them. That's why that kind of performance is called "marginal." Take a tour through the Baseball Encyclopedia or Bill James Major League Handbook, presented by Stats Inc., and you'll find that very few such outfielders last ten years.

I love your passion.

Larry

Last edited by ls7plus; 05-20-2011 at 01:29 AM.
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  #24  
Old 05-20-2011, 01:43 AM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
Larry
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Originally Posted by novakjr View Post
...
Anyways, after looking around at a few other players. The closest I would compare Bautista up to this point in his career would probably be Kevin Mitchell. Mitchell put up some inconsistent averages and showed minimal to average power until he was 27 and then hit 47 home runs. Followed by 35, 27,9,19,30 and then pretty much fell completely off the map.
Kevin Mitchell--big, out of context power year in 1989...1989...hmmm. Jose Canseco came up to stay in 1986, and stated in "Juiced" that he didn't believe he would even have made the majors if he hadn't already been taking steroids then. 1989...Kevin Mitchell...hmmm...

Larry
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  #25  
Old 05-20-2011, 02:07 AM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
Larry
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Originally Posted by Robextend View Post
Rico Petrocelli (Never hit more than 18HR before 1968):
1968 406AB 12HR
1969 535AB 40HR

Davey Johnson (Never hit more than 18HR before 1972):
1972 376AB 5HR
1973 559AB 40HR

Jose Bautista
2009 336AB 13HR
2010 569AB 54HR

Please explain the difference...I am sure I can dig up more examples as well. The point is that these things DO happen. And if you want to accuse Bautista, go ahead and accuse Davey Johnson and Rico Petrocelli as well.

Thanks - Rob
OK, Rob, I will explain the difference between what Johnson did and what Bautista has done. Johnson, in contrast to Bautista, was quite a good second baseman for the Orioles, making three all-star teams for them in 1968 through 1970, and batted over .280 three years in a row from 1969 on, when the mound was lowered and the strike zone made much smaller. Now let's see: Did Jose Bautista ever make an all-star team before 2010? Did he ever hit .280 before then? And with regard to Johnson's big homerun surge in 1973--that was the year he was traded to Atlanta, when the Braves still played in Fulton County Stadium, rightfully nicknamed, "the Launching Pad." Bill James had this to say about that stadium's propensity for increasing homerun totals in the context of Hank Aaron:

"...As you can see by the home/road homerun totals, to a considerable
degree Aaron's late-in-life resurgence is a statistical illusion created by
moving from a very poor homerun park, County Stadium in Milwaukee, to a
very good homerun park, Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta. At his peak,
Aaron would have hit 50 homeruns, and probably more than once, had he
been playing in an average homerun park; playing his best years in Atlanta
(or Wrigley Field) he absolutely would have hit more than 60 homeruns in a
season..."

Davey hit 26 of his 43 at Fulton County Stadium in 1973. While he did hit 17 in more neutral parks on the road that year, doubling that to 34 as representing his real, non-park related power surge, is a far, far cry from Bautista's 54 homeruns in 2010, and, as we speak, Bautista's 16 homers in about a fourth of a season or less (given Bautista's games missed to injury this year) and .370 average in 2011. And I don't think anyone would be in danger of confusing even Johnson's '73 stats with Babe Ruth's.

Interesting comparison, though I don't see anything to accuse Johnson of, other than taking advantage of a very favorable homerun park (the Park Factor for Fulton was 115, meaning games played there produced 115% of the runs produced in a neutral park. The infamous Baker Bowl, said to have greatly inflated hall-of-famer Chuch Klein's stats, had a park factor of 113-117 when Klein was in his prime playing half his games there). My assumption would be that Johnson tried to get more loft on the ball after the trade, which, as someone who has played a great deal, I can tell you can be done simply by raising the hitter's back elbow. This puts more loop in the swing, resulting in more flyballs and less line drives. And, as noted in an earlier post, there's nothing to accuse Petrocelli of, other than taking advantage of the obvious difficulty pitchers had in adjusting when he had his big year in '69, the first year they lowered the mound and shrunk the strike zone (you didn't think Bob Gibson's 1.12 ERA the year before was all Bob Gibson, did you? He never had another season with an ERA under 2.18 after 1968, and more that were over 3.00 than under for the rest of his career).

One thing that is interesting to think about with regard to Bautista and Gibson is what the latter would have done to dear old Jose had he had the balls to hang so far out over the plate when Bob was pitching that the outside corner was in effect middle-in, as Bautista does now. This is one of the main reasons that this guy really pisses me off. As far as Bob Gibson was concerned, the outside corner of the plate belonged to him. My bet is that Gibson, who was not really a bad guy, just a fiercesome competitor, would have politely buzzed one in close to his chin first, as fair warning. Then, if dear little Jose had the cajones to hold his ground for the next pitch, he would have been sucking his meals through a straw for the next two months! Where are the Gibsons and Drysdales when you need them? You can probably tell that I REALLY don't like this guy!

Love your activity on this one.

Larry

Last edited by ls7plus; 05-20-2011 at 03:54 AM.
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  #26  
Old 05-20-2011, 02:36 AM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
Larry
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Default Steve B.--Cecil Fielder

Hi, Steve B. Did you know that Cecil Fielder hit 31 homeruns in just 506 at bats playing for Toronto over 4 seasons before his 51 homer season with the Tigers in 1990? Fielder's problem was getting playing time then, not any lack of demonstrated ability. A fellow named Fred McGriff held down the regular first sacker's job when Cecil was with Toronto, and Fred was pretty good. The old crime dog hit 20 homers in just 295 at bats with the Blue Jays in 1987; 34 in 1988, and 36 in 1989. I really don't think Cecil falls into the Bautista mold, or even comes close.

I will give you Darrell Evans as a sporadic homerun hitter, consistently hitting in double figures in homers, though only twice with 40 or more, and twice in the 30's. I hardly think that equates to mimicking Bonds on his best juiced days, however. And Ted Kluzewski (Big Klu) did indeed have a power surge, but was never a marginal player like Bautista prior thereto, as he had seasons of batting .309 four years before his first 40 homer season; 25 homers, 111 RBI and .307 three years before; 16 homeruns, 86 RBI, .320 one year before. He is like Bautista in the limited respect that his first really big year came at age 29, but that's all.

Jack Clark demonstrated pretty consistent power from the time he was in his second season, at 22 years of age, when he hit 25 homeruns and drove in 98 runs. His main problem was staying healthy, as he had only three seasons in which he played 150 games or more in his entire career. No, no Jose Bautista there either. Try as you might, you will find that the Bautista career progression is not one that occurs in nature. As I said earlier, there were only seven guys who had hit 54 homeruns or more prior to 1990, and none of them stumbled around looking like Ron Swoboda's twin brother for years and years before they achieved that status.

Larry

Last edited by ls7plus; 05-20-2011 at 02:56 AM.
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  #27  
Old 05-20-2011, 06:55 AM
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Robextend Robextend is offline
Rob Miller
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Ok, so there are reasons and explanations for everyone else except Bautista...I got it now. I just want to make sure that this is an argument I had no chance at winning. Thanks.
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  #28  
Old 05-20-2011, 06:58 AM
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Robextend Robextend is offline
Rob Miller
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I guess none of these articles matter at all:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/03/sp...3bautista.html

http://www.dominicantoday.com/dr/for...Home-Run-Binge

http://www.aolnews.com/2010/08/24/al...ome-run-binge/
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  #29  
Old 05-20-2011, 11:52 AM
steve B steve B is offline
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I agree about crowding the plate and what a pitcher should do about it. The rules we have now encourage offense by limiting how a pitcher can claim the plate. Hell, I've pitched guys way inside in softball if they were crowding the plate. Mostly because most of them can't hit an inside pitch- lots of grounders off the handle is a good thing. (Note- don't bother trying this against a guy who's played a lot of cricket the bat control for hitting bad pitches is incredible) Once they back off, it's all outside. Get e'm moving around in the box, and very few can hit at all.

Since it seems to be the Ruth comparison lets look at it from a ab/hr angle

Ruth is number 1 at ab/hr among the non-steroid crowd. 8.48 in 1920 and 3 other times under 10
The only others under 10 and not suspect are Thome, Mantle, Maris and Greenberg.
the entire rest of the 20 seasons under 10 are Sosa, McGwire, and Bonds.

Bautista last year was at 10.54 only good enough for 33rd. His previous seasons were all around 25 ab/hr This year he's only at around 20 ab/hr, hardly a Babe Ruth type number. The top 500 ends just a hair above 15.

At #37 there's Carlos Pena. from 01-05 his best hr/ab was around 14 in 05. His only other under 20 was a bit over 17 with most seasons around 20. Batting average .240's,.250s The less said about 06 the better. For the Red Sox he was horrible, and hardly played.
Then in 07 he hits 46hr .282 average - 10.65 ab/hr!
Followed by a return to ab/hr in the high teens the next few years

Babe Ruth had a season at 10.57 - 1930 36th
and one at 10.85 - 1929 46th

So there's your guy. Carlos Pena 6 years of below average to marginal performance followed by a Babe Ruth ish year.
Then followed by a few seasons of very good but not spectacular performance.

This is actually a lot of fun.

And if the Sox had ever signed Kingman Bonds enhanced 73 would be thought of as merely a nice try. A righty that hits almost exclusively gargantuan popups playing in Fenway! That would have been incredible.

Steve B


So there's
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  #30  
Old 05-20-2011, 11:55 AM
Karl Mattson
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Originally Posted by ls7plus View Post
Davey hit 26 of his 43 at Fulton County Stadium in 1973. While he did hit 17 in more neutral parks on the road that year, doubling that to 34 as representing his real, non-park related power surge Larry
So would 46 be Bautista's "real, non-park related" 162-game home run average for the last 1.25 seasons? Bautista has 41 homers in his last 95 home games compared to just 29 in his last 101 road games. His 162-game adjusted totals for the last 1.25 seasons are 70 homers, .295 at home; 46 homers, .263 on the road.
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