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"Lou is not talking about mechanics when he goes out to the mound,"
~Chicago Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Tim Kurkjian Loves Grit

Real quickly, let me put on my Fire Joe Morgan hat and rip an article written by Tim Kurkjian today.

Because apparently we don't hear enough about intangibles, Kurkjian decided to give us a look at 5 MLBers who supposedly are just loaded with things like hustle, grit, unselfishness, and the desire to "play the game the right way." Of course nobody claims that these traits are bad things, but when you use Sandy Alomar Jr, Darin Erstad, Mike Matheny, Mark DeRosa, and the timeless Julio Franco as your examples of why intangibles are so great, it makes me glad there aren't any intangible-filled players on my favorite team.

If I'm making an arguement about why OBP correlates to runs scored much better than batting average, I'm certainly not going to cite Neifi Perez as my example. If I wanted to show how pitchers with high strikeout rates are less susceptible to random fluctuations in BABIP than those who don't strikeout batters, I wouldn't point you towards Carlos Silva's career numbers. So why would somebody use the 5 aforementioned players in an article about intangibles?

The only thing less shocking than "the Intangible King - Darin Erstad" being on this list is that I found the list on ESPN. The only thing more shocking is that the whole article wasn't dedicated to David Eckstein. And the only thing more shocking than that is the fact that I continue to get duped into reading anything an ESPN writer not named Simmons or Neyer writes.

Screw this. I'm switching my homepage to Baseball Prospectus.

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