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  #1  
Old 06-12-2005, 02:50 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Lee Behrens

I am curioous as to your thoughts as to why there is so little emphasis put on the "runs scored" statistic? Isn't that the object of the game to score more runs that your oppenant? Yet We rarely hear the statistic mentioned.

Lee

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  #2  
Old 06-12-2005, 03:14 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: barrysloate

Runs scored are important but seem to be less so than runs batted in because there is something forceful about knocking a run in and something passive about standing on base and waiting for someone to drive you in. It's not part of the triple crown and to a degree you are at the mercy of the man at bat.

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  #3  
Old 06-12-2005, 04:57 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Dan Bretta

RBI are overrated statistics as well because they also rely on your teammates to get on base ahead of you.

OPS (On base % + Slugging) is the most valuable statistic for a hitter. It is also the most underrated (or unknown) among casual baseball fans.

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  #4  
Old 06-12-2005, 05:08 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: barrysloate

OPS is definitely important and Barry Bonds is consistently off the charts. But it's hard to say that RBI's are overrated because the only way to win a baseball game is to score more runs than your opponent. You drive in runs, you probably win games.

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  #5  
Old 06-12-2005, 05:35 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Jim Hoffman

I agree that OPS is an important stat, but it bothers me in that by itself, it isn't really a measurement of anything. Kinda like the Quarterback Rating.

At least with Batting Average, you know that it measures how often a guy gets a hit. And OBP and SLG by themselves mean what they mean.

With OPS, two completely different hitters can have similar OPS. Brett Butler . . .lots of walks and singles had a a .753 career OPS. Rob Deer, homers, strikeouts and a bad mustache had a .766 career OPS. Those two couldn't have been more different, but OPS says otherwise.

I also like runs scored, particularly as a team stat. But again with that, the standard of "what's good" isn't commonly discussed.

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  #6  
Old 06-12-2005, 06:10 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Dan Bretta

Who was more important to their team? Rob Deer or Brett Butler? Of course OPS doesn't factor in a player's defense and it could be argued that Brett Butler is a far superior player to Rob Deer, but we're discussing hitting stats so....as far as hitting goes they were roughly equally important to their team.

And FWIW Pete Rose and Mel Ott both had lifetime .303 BA, but they could not have been more different as players. So I wouldn't exactly say that BA tells you more about a player than OPS.

Ott had a .947 OPS
Rose had a .784 OPS

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  #7  
Old 06-12-2005, 06:24 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Dan Bretta

Barry, runs scored obviously are the most important team statistic, but I thought we were talking about individual statistics.

For an individual runs scored and runs batted in all rely in some degree on your teammates. OPS is solely based on the individual hitter. Lou Gehrig certainly wouldn't have had as many RBI had he played for Washington, but his lifetime OPS would still be around 1.080.

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  #8  
Old 06-12-2005, 06:47 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Anson

I've always thought total bases was an underrated statistic as well.

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  #9  
Old 06-12-2005, 07:00 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Dan Koteles

well in the day and age of the home run or nothing, many kids forget how this game is meant to be, runs scored is absolutely the most important , w/o em you cant win games.

last year on my city "A" team, i scored 7 runs in 16 abs, w 5 hits ,4 were infield
OBP of 700 reached base 14 of 20 times w/o causing an out. Not one of my teammates even recognized the 7 runs statistic, they all comment on long fly ball outs. mY 40 and over team do not act this way. I wish you could teach todays 18-24yr olds taht an out is an out no matter how good that you look !!!!

Matter of fact , many high fived my 1bman for his long fly balls, he barely hit 100.

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  #10  
Old 06-12-2005, 07:19 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: barrysloate

No questions one's stats are skewed by the quality of the players who bat around him. Some guys can be productive anywhere, such as Miguel Tejada, who was fabulous in Oakland and even better in Baltimore. I think you really have to look at the total package to evaluate a player. Mel Ott had better stats than Pete Rose but the Reds always found a way to win and Pete was always in the middle of it. I don't think you can isolate any stat- Bonds has the best stats in history, yet his teams are generally slightly above average, and he's had some good players around him (but never someone good enough behind him so they wouldn't walk him so much). What does this all have to do with the value of runs scored? I don't know.

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  #11  
Old 06-12-2005, 07:41 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Brian

OPS is nice, but OBP*1.5 + SLG is a better indicator -- just not as easy to add up. In my mind, the purpose of a batter is to 'not make an out'

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  #12  
Old 06-12-2005, 09:22 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Judge Dred

Easy question related to the topic....

There are only two players (with lengthy careerss) that averaged one run scored (or better) per game played... name them....

One's in the HOF, the other isn't in the HOF but arguably should be...

I give it less than an hour before the correct answer gets posted...

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  #13  
Old 06-12-2005, 09:23 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Paul

I agree that OPS is, strictly speaking, a meaningless stat. But it is VERY close to what may be the most meaningful stat. There was a book written in the 80s called the Hidden Game of Baseball. (Great book!) The author determined the historic "run value" of a single, double, triple, and home run. Looking over every box score ever, he figured out, on average, how many runs a single, double, triple, or home run contributed to the score for the player's team. Based on this, he assigned a value to singles, doubles, triples, and home runs. Each single represents x runs, each double represents y runs, etc. I think the author also assigned a value to walks.


What you get is something very similar to slugging percentage, but with different weights. Instead of singles, doubles, triples, and homers being worth 1,2,3, and 4 points, they are given values based on the historic values of these hits.

It turns out that adding together the traditional slugging percentage plus on base percentage comes very close to giving you the same numbers as the formula from the Hidden Game of Baseball.

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  #14  
Old 06-12-2005, 10:57 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Daniel Bretta

And it pretty much proves that Pete Rose doesn't belong in the HoF anyway.

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  #15  
Old 06-13-2005, 07:06 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: identify7

Billy Hamilton was one of them. But ain't there three?

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  #16  
Old 06-13-2005, 07:10 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Andrew Parks

Hamilton and George Gore - too easy Fred!

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  #17  
Old 06-13-2005, 07:20 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: warshawlaw

I had no idea how good this guy was until I picked up an OJ of him and was inspired to buy and read the back of a 1961 Fleer of him. Hell of a hitter and baserunner.

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  #18  
Old 06-13-2005, 07:22 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Andrew Parks

His stolen base totals are schewed though. For a long time in the 19th Century, base-runners were given credit for a stolen base for going first to third and second to home on a single.

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  #19  
Old 06-13-2005, 08:31 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Judge Dred

Oops, Gil's right, there are threee. I forgot about Gore, that leaves one more.

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  #20  
Old 06-13-2005, 08:37 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Andrew Parks

Harry Stovey - I forgot him.

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  #21  
Old 06-13-2005, 08:59 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Darren J. Duet

I agree that runs scored is an underappreciated stat. Some players have a talent in being able to find the plate. It certainly isn't passive in all cases, nor is it necessarily dependant on the batter "hittin' you in." A runnner with the ability to stretch a hit, steal a base, and the awareness of when to stop and when to go will always score more runs. Base running and scoring are talents just as valuable as hitting and pitching.

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  #22  
Old 06-13-2005, 09:36 AM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Judge Dred

Rickey Henderson!

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  #23  
Old 06-13-2005, 09:44 AM
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Posted By: Andrew Parks

Henderson did it for a season in 1985 but not for a career. The three guys who did it for a career was Stovey, Gore, and Hamilton.

If you are talking season then there's a whole list of players who did it.

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  #24  
Old 06-13-2005, 01:26 PM
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Posted By: jay behrens

As often as I delved into this area it never occured to me to see if anyone has done the research to credit runners with earned and unearned runs like pirchers. This occured to me becuase in the 19c there were a huge number of unearned runs, which lead to very high scoring game and pitchers with really low ERAs. I'm will to bet that Rickey Henderson is comperable or better than Gore, Stovey and others with high runs per game numbers if you take into account earned versus unearned runs.

Jay

I like to sit outside drink beer and yell at people. If I did this at home I would be arrested, so I go to baseball games and fit right in.

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  #25  
Old 06-13-2005, 01:47 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Judge Dred

My response of Rickey Henderson was for Darren's comments regarding players that are great base runners and base stealers.

Yes, Harry Stovey is the third player that averaged more than 1 run per game stored.

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  #26  
Old 06-13-2005, 02:16 PM
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Posted By: identify7

Rickey Henderson, the all time stolen base leader, by a wide margin, stoled home four times in his career.

Cobb stoled second, third and home four times in his career. In his best season he stole home eight times (54 in his career).

Times were different then, I guess.

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  #27  
Old 06-13-2005, 02:21 PM
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Posted By: Andrew Parks

Gotcha, Fred.

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  #28  
Old 06-13-2005, 02:34 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Darren J. Duet

All good points, and granted there are stats that matter and stats that do no matter as much. For certain winning matters, and baseball for one is a TEAM sport.

How do you measure some of the intangibles associated with winning? Derek Jeter is a winner with good but not great stats----intagibles. Nolan Ryan was a great pitcher with silly stats but only a bit better than 50% winning percentage(yet his ERA was quite decent). This year Clemens ERA is miniscule yet he has lost as many as he won.

Tradition says we must respect players who hit over .300, 40+ homers, 100+ RBI's, 20+ wins, less than 3.00 ERA, etc.; there are other parameters that may have more meaning or just as much. Runs scored, Wins per start, and TEAM wins that may paint a better picture. What good is it to have a triple crown or cy young winner if your team can't win half its games.

Bottomline, it's a team game.

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  #29  
Old 06-13-2005, 03:16 PM
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Posted By: Dan Bretta

It may be a team sport, but in no other team sport is the individual performance more celebrated than in baseball.

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  #30  
Old 06-13-2005, 03:19 PM
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Posted By: jay behrens

Baseball is a team sport, but main component of the game is a mono-a-mano match up between the batter and pitcher. This is why individual person is valued and celebrated in baseball.

Jay

I like to sit outside drink beer and yell at people. If I did this at home I would be arrested, so I go to baseball games and fit right in.

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  #31  
Old 06-13-2005, 03:37 PM
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Posted By: Darren J. Duet

Good points dan and jay, but the object of the game is to win. There are immeasurable and measurable aspects to achieve that goal.

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  #32  
Old 06-13-2005, 03:41 PM
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Posted By: Judge Dred

I wonder how Steve Carlton felt after the 1972 season....?

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  #33  
Old 06-13-2005, 04:30 PM
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Posted By: Dan Bretta

He probably felt like a one-man team.

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  #34  
Old 06-13-2005, 05:45 PM
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Posted By: Dave Williams

If my memory serves me, the original triple crown (according to Bill James in his historical abstract) was BA, HR, and Runs scored.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm not sure RBI's were kept consistently until the early 1900's.

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  #35  
Old 06-15-2005, 04:46 PM
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Posted By: Darren J Duet

Jay,
In this mono-a-mano match-up (pitcher vs. batter), there are several ways that a batter may win and several ways a pitcher may win. How does a pitcher undeniabley and emphatically win the match-up? A STRIKEOUT. How does a batter? A HOMERUN.

That is why Nolan Ryan is among the great pitchers of all time--he emphatically won that match-up many more times than anyone else. IF he had played with winning teams, we would not have to defend his status.

The same holds true for Mark McGwire (or Mcguire).....just that he is a hitter, follow me?

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  #36  
Old 06-15-2005, 05:32 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Lee Behrens

How many runs did Mark McGwire score? I believe there are many non-homerun hitters that scored more runs in a season. Does this not make on non-homerun hitter more valuable? By the way, If I was to have a choice between Rickey Henderson in his prime over McGwire I would take Rickey everytime.

Lee

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  #37  
Old 06-15-2005, 07:08 PM
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Posted By: Daniel Bretta

Well the non HR hitters that lead the league in scoring are usually batting in the 1-2 spot and have the big hitters knocking them in. Both are equally important in the lineup. A guy like Rickey Henderson scored a lot of runs because he got on base and usually put himself in scoring position. Guys like Henderson are a dying breed in these days of 150+ strikeouts as guys swing from their heels, but the tide is turning as the steroid testing is now in place. I read recently that at the current homerun pace there will be 700 fewer homeruns hit this year over last. That's huge. And IMO good for the game. It may leave a few sluggers out of the Hall of Fame though as more and more voters will recognize the 1986-2004 era as the Steroid Era.

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  #38  
Old 06-15-2005, 07:43 PM
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Default Runs Scored, Why so Little Emphasis?

Posted By: Darren J Duet

After all the OPINIONS are in, and some skewing--Baseball is a TEAM sport.

By the way Lee, I too would take Henderson over Mcgwire if I were building a team--It wouldn't even be close in my opinion.

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