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Thread: top WAR seasons for catchers

  1. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by leewileyfan View Post
    Perhaps, specific to catchers, a regressed model of playing time could be developed that constitutes a "season" for catchers only. Just for the sake of an example, if that model came to 140 games then that would constitute a "season" behind the plate. Beyond that amount of playing time, a catcher would have no extra credits. However, the "other" 10, 15, 20 or whatever number of games might be applied at "replacement" formula.

    Just thinking out loud here and trying to be as unbiased as possible.
    I like the idea of an adjusted full season for a catcher. They should get the full value between an average and a replacement player IF they play an average number of games for their position. Though it depends a little on the meaning of the terms average and replacment. If average is actually the league average rates then it would mean that no replacement level player has ever played an inning at the major league level.

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by brett View Post
    The problem here is that an average fielding SS and an average fielding first baseman who both hit the same, (lets say league average) are not equally valuable to a team. The shortstop is giving his team about 10 runs compared to an average SS, and the first baseman is losing his team about 10 runs compared to an average hitting first baseman. While the defensive positions have unique defensive needs, they also have unique offensive needs (you need more offense from first base than SS all else being equal AND one of the reasons SSs don't hit as well may be that they stay a little smaller, and quicker to field their position).
    I have no problem at all in recognizing the higher demands defensively at SS over 1B. However, I have a problem with an evaluation model that starts one position off as a positive value and another with a negative value. Both contribute in a positive way to the defense, although the 1B position has limitations of opportunity, challenge and individual play value in run prevention. It see it a bit like two 1939 Ford sport coupes ... one souped up, the other with a governor on the speed control. One can go 110 mph, while the other is held to a maximum of 60 mph. Both move. Both will get you where you're going. The capacity is different.

    :And I think that an average fielding ss who hits as well as an average fielding first baseman is a better player. If we give the players defensive value for what they do in the field above a LOWER baseline, we could plausibly do what you are saying. An average shortstop would be making say 40 more plays than a low baseline, while an average first baseman might be making 20 more than the low baseline for first base. If we set a below average baseline for each position, we could eliminate the positional adjustment.
    I don't believe you can get much lower than the Replacement Level as a ML concept, unless you take a scrawny kid from the stands [always the last one picked chosing sides] and put him in the field. [Slight exaggeration, that!]

    Since we're talking catchers more specifically, I "get" the concept of Replacement; but as applied as a model it gives a distorted sense of value with a very low standard.

    And by the way, the positional adjustment is generally in line with the OFFENSIVE differences in production by position, but not completely in line (DHs are -14 while first basemen are -10 even though they hit/run better for example.)[/QUOTE]

  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by leewileyfan View Post
    I have no problem at all in recognizing the higher demands defensively at SS over 1B. However, I have a problem with an evaluation model that starts one position off as a positive value and another with a negative value. Both contribute in a positive way to the defense, although the 1B position has limitations of opportunity, challenge and individual play value in run prevention. It see it a bit like two 1939 Ford sport coupes ... one souped up, the other with a governor on the speed control. One can go 110 mph, while the other is held to a maximum of 60 mph. Both move. Both will get you where you're going. The capacity is different.



    I don't believe you can get much lower than the Replacement Level as a ML concept, unless you take a scrawny kid from the stands [always the last one picked chosing sides] and put him in the field. [Slight exaggeration, that!]
    [/QUOTE]

    The most common WAR methodologies only rate defense relative to "average" at a position. They assume that playing an entire team of replacement level players will produce a team with a 32% winning percentage. They assume that putting a replacement level player at any position in the field will cost an average team about 2 wins overall but do not parse it out over offense or defense (a replacement shortstop will lose a lot of runs on defense, but a replacement first baseman is going to lose a ton on offense).

    There are WAR methods that set a replacment level for offense and defense separately so that an average fielder would get a positive score.

    In fact a way to look at it is that a first baseman gets -10 for position, while a shortstop gets +7, but they BOTH get about 22 runs above replacement level with about 25% of the contribution coming from defense and 75% from offense. That would mean theoretically that they BOTH are getting about 5.5 defensive runs above replacement for their positions. Still leaves the first baseman at -4.5 and the shortstop at 12.5 versus a neutral replacement fielder, and it implies that a replacement third baseman or centerfielder is a better fielder than an average fielding first baseman.

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