I still don’t get it

Baseball Prospectus | Articles | Prospectus Triple Play: Atlanta Braves, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Toronto Blue Jays

They want Chipper to move back to the outfield in favor of Marte, partly because they say Chipper’s a bad defensive third baseman, but he wasn’t last year. He was mediocre. Sure, Marte will probably be better, and would almost certainly outhit Brian Jordan, but the fact is that Chipper got hurt playing the outfield and his hitting declined out there as well.

7 thoughts on “I still don’t get it”

  1. Yeah, i love their site, but I’m just not with these guys when it comes to the Braves. they don’t seem to get it.

    They posit two scenarios — one in which chipper stays at third and one in which he moves. In the former, they “predict” Jordan and Mondesi will less combined at bats than Chipper but dont factor in any production from Langerhans or Marte or Francoeur or McCarthy.

    Then they posit that if Chipper moves to left, we’ll have Marte and Langerhans and Mondesi, and thus will be better. It doesn’t make any sense. What, do they think We’re just going to take Jordan out of games in the sixth inning and not replace him?

  2. Just got done reading the article. I’m confused as well. The statistical metrics obviously must have painted Chipper as the worst defensive third baseman in baseball last year. I didn’t see it that way but hey I don’t have the metrics nor am I sure that I want to take time to understand them. Troy is right in the comparison they posit that Jordan gets the most at bats not Langerhans. I love BP but I think in this case they set up the statistical analysis to favor thier position. I know that PECOTA looks at comparables at age and position and all but doesn’t that projection look kinda small for Chipper?

  3. Their metrics don’t show Chipper as significantly below average last season. He was a little below average and well above replacement, as he’s been throughout his career.

    I can’t say for certain, but my belief is that the study they’re relying on is flawed by a very simple mistake. Chipper’s aggregate defensive stats are poor because he’s played so many games at third base and because they’re using “average” as their baseline and not replacement level. He’s a little below average in one year, a little below average in the next… It adds up.

    Relatively few players have played as many games at third base as Chipper, and most of them have been better defensive players. Chipper shows up as a historically poor defensive player not because he is, but because most of the players worse than him have been moved off the position quickly. If Chipper is five runs below average a year for ten years, then he shows up as one of the worst third basemen ever because while lots of guys are ten runs below average, none of them last more than a couple of years.

    Also, Chipper was positively awful as a left fielder in 2003; he didn’t play enough there in 2004 to judge, but he didn’t look any better.

  4. Setting aside their strange analysis of the outfield situation and Chipper’s defense, I’d like to point out the first ‘if Mazzone can make pitcher x productive then he should be in the Hall of Fame’ pronouncement of 2005.

  5. Any Braves related article coming from Prospectus should always have this disclaimer:

    “We really don’t follow the Braves that closely. Honestly, if the team isn’t run by Billy Beane or a Beane disciple, it’s not on our radar.”

    Whomever did this analysis does not appear to be aware of the rules of baseball.

  6. Yeah, doesn’t Mazzone already deserve any accolades you could come up with? I’m sure he and Bobby have already earned historical recognition no matter how many more great seasons they coax out of their talent.

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