From Aunt Ruth to Ichiro

Postby DOUGHBOYS » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:14 am

Sometimes, our real life is similar to fantasy baseball.
Tops on that list, would be injury.
We don't know when our Aunt Ruth will fall down the stairs, but we do know the older she gets, the probability increases.
And if Aunt Ruth has chronic health problems and falls down stairs, we are not even surprised when hearing the news.
Troy Tulowitzki has been and is, an Aunt Ruth.

What we can't know or estimate is missing time from a 'normal' player.
Do we know if Mookie Betts will get hurt this year?
Nope.
All we can do is look at past performance and feel secure in that to date, his injuries have been limited.
We do this with most 'normal' players.
When Betts gets older, we know his chances of injury will increase.
At least that is the case with most players.

I believe that getting hurt or not getting hurt is partly a skill.
Ichiro is the King of modern day players in not getting hurt.
While most celebrate that he is a Rookie of the Year, a Most Valuable Player, and a member of the 3,000 hit club, I marvel at the way he takes care of himself on the field.
He doesn't crash into fences. He seldom goes into seats in pursuit of a ball.
When diving, he uses his knees to prop up his lower body.
He stretches when doing nothing in the outfield.
The guy is the picture of baseball health!
To put this in a statistical way, Ichiro played eight seasons with 160 games or more played.
Only three players have played more. All 'Iron Men'.
Cal Ripken
Pete Rose
Steve Garvey

I write this because there is a player, I feel, who is being over drafted.
He is being drafted highly because of his through the roof skills.
He can hit.
He can hit with power.
And he can run.
The 'Big Three' in filling our five categories.
The problem is that he is young....and exuberant....and thinks he is SuperMan.
At least when it comes to the pursuit of a baseball.
He is Byron Buxton.

Buxton is being drafted in the third or fourth round of most drafts.
His skills encourage that high drafting area.
To emphasize those skills, during the last two months of 2017, Buxton hit close to .300, he hit 11 homers and stole 12 base.
The roto skills are engaging and call to every drafter to pick him as early as possible.
The one skill Buxton lacks, is taking care of himself.
He's never met a fence he did not like.
He'll collide with his own players to get a ball.
He'll dive awkwardly.
Fans enjoy the hustle. Fantasy owners cringe.
Fantasy owners hate defense because it is impossible to add numbers to categories.
It is also a time to worry about our players getting hurt.

Buxton plays the game like a young Brett Gardner.
Willing to do anything to help his team win.
Even putting health before the team.
Youthful exuberance. Stupid youthful exuberance.
Gardner took years. Literally years, before he wised up.
He now shows this unusual statistic...
Before 30 years of age, Gardner averaged under 300 at bats per season.
After 30 years of age, Gardner averaged over 550 at bats per season.

Sometimes, health is a coachable skill.
When Bryce Harper made his way to the Big Leagues, he flew around the field like Buxton.
After two years of this, somebody got in Harper's ear.
Harper became a controlled player.
No longer bending fences and playing a more subtle right field.
Now, if he could just learn how to touch first base without getting hurt.

I won't draft Buxton this year.
I'll probably even Missouri/Missouri him.
Meaning that he'll have to show me he can stay healthy for two years in playing with his style or wait till he is coached to play a more controlled outfield before drafting him.
I figure I won't be missing out on much.
If having a great year, his drafters will have almost paid full price in the third/fourth rounds.
If injured, it will not surprise me and I won't have to find a replacement for the top outfielder on my team.
Or, if Minnesota signs Ichiro, his influence could have an effect.
It sure did wonders for the health of the Miami outfield last year.
On my tombstone-
Wait! I never had the perfect draft!
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Re: From Aunt Ruth to Ichiro

Postby Edwards Kings » Tue Dec 19, 2017 12:36 pm

From a sabre-toothed fat boy perspective, he is a one trick pony to me. Speed. Otherwise, he has not shown the ability to make consistent contact at the major league level (even his 2H "spike" did not make it "good"), will not take a walk (some walks are actually healthy, especially when you have his speed), his second half BA and OBP was fueled by an unsustainable 39% hit ratio, and when he does hit the ball, he does not hit it particularly hard (HR spike based on 20% HR/FB).

I get what you are saying. Taking on fences is a losing proposition long term, but as far as Missouri/Missouri goes, he hasn't made it across the river once yet.
Disillusionment is what little heroes are made of. E. K. Hornbeck - Inherit the Wind (1960)
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Re: From Aunt Ruth to Ichiro

Postby DOUGHBOYS » Tue Dec 19, 2017 2:48 pm

The speed is to die for.
Bill James has him down as the best base runner in baseball last year.
Worst?
Your friend and mine, Joey Votto. :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Wait! I never had the perfect draft!
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Re: From Aunt Ruth to Ichiro

Postby Edwards Kings » Tue Dec 19, 2017 3:30 pm

DOUGHBOYS wrote:The speed is to die for.
Bill James has him down as the best base runner in baseball last year.
Worst?
Your friend and mine, Joey Votto. :lol: :lol: :lol:


No...he can't run...but he sure can WALK!

Image

Magical... :lol:
Disillusionment is what little heroes are made of. E. K. Hornbeck - Inherit the Wind (1960)
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Re: From Aunt Ruth to Ichiro

Postby DOUGHBOYS » Tue Dec 19, 2017 4:21 pm

:lol:
Indeed.

Here is an amazing stat about Votto and how his base running 'skills' have declined...

Lifetime, including 2017, he has scored from second base on a single 108 times in 201 chances.

In 2017, he scored from second base on a single just four times in 22 chances. :o :o :o
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