Wednesday, September 06, 2006

I don't know where to start

I wanted to make this post about Xavier Nady. I will still do that at the end. First off though, I have to point out what a giant freaking lunatic Jeff Manto is. I was first tipped off to his lunacy by his quote at the end of Dejan's notebook column on Nady (the one that made me want to discuss Nady first):

Xavier has power to all fields, which should help him at PNC Park with our short right field. I know this: He hits the ball with a very loud sound.
That tells me the power's in there. Right. Mmhmm. That just makes perfect sense. OK. Then I clicked over to Bucs Dugout and found a discussion of this article. Holy f*$#. There's a reason why I check the PG daily and the Trib not at all. Rob Rossi should be fired for writing an article that fawns over a raving lunatic like Manto.

For starters, Manto is no fan of on-base percentage, partly because he believes its emphasis on walks does not take into account that a base-on-balls is not always a desired or productive result.

While dismissing runs created (if I may interjet, runs created is a very good measure of just how good an offensive player has been) Manto offered his own statistical category: "runs produced" -- measured by adding runs and RBI, subtracting home runs from that total and dividing that number by games played.

"It's as important as on-base percentage," Manto said, "because it is a tremendous evaluator of who is a total offensive player."

POP. Did you hear that? That was my brain exploding. Jeff Manto's method of evaluating offensive players invovles RBIs and runs scored, two categories that players have only marginal control over by themselves, and subtracting home runs, something that is completely under control of the player. So Jason Bay's worth as a baseball player accoring to Jeff Manto at least partially lies on Chris Duffy's ability to get on base and Jeromy Burnitz's ability to drive him in. That's it, I'm sending this article in to Fire Joe Morgan. I don't see any other option.

UPDATE (4:40 PM)- Some more thinking about this (which I don't recommend) even makes this seem more insane. Manto states that in order to be a good run producer, one should have a "Runs Produced" of 1.0 or greater. That means that each player on the team should either drive in or score one run a night. That means that over the course of the season, the team will score 4.5 runs per game. That's 729 runs total, less than the Yankees, Orioles, White Sox, Indians, Mets, and Phillies have scored to this point in the year and nearly the same amount that the Braves, Rangers, and Red Sox (three teams that even close to playoff spots) have right now. I feel the need to punch something. For even more perspective, we've already given up 705.

UPDATE 2 (7:48 PM)- It has been pointed out to me that I'm a little hard on Rob Rossi and I should probably be happy that he's brought this to light for us. This is probably true, it just seems to me that the article is entirely uncritical of the crazy manhe's talking about. Still the fact that he even brings "Runs Created" into the argument probably suggests that he knows Manto is nuts. So I'm sorry, Rob Rossi.

Also, I'm moving the Nady post 'till tomorrow afternoon since I want to add some stuff to it and I feel like X doesn't deserve to be lumped in here. And I'm in charge.