Sunday, October 07, 2007

Rob and Me

I don't know why I email columnists, they never respond with anything worthwhile. Ok so he stopped reading at the word vendetta. Good, that means he read all my data-oriented arguments and the vast majority of my email, right? No response to that whatsoever aside from accusing me of a (data) bias, thanks Rob? And what does the sentence "I was just doing my job, however poorly" mean? So I can totally fuck up at work and then say "nah it's ok guys, I was doing my job, just poorly." I understand that most ESPN baseball analysts do their jobs extremely poorly, but I didn't know it was so outwardly accepted over there.

Me:
Rob I didn't understand this piece when you wrote it, but I figured I would wait until the end of the season and be just as opportunistic when Beckett both reached 200 innings and pitched effectively: http://insider.espn.go.com/espn/print?id=2869659

The thing is you don't have to be a doctor, or know anything about blister problems to look at this situation more correctly. All you had to do was look at Beckett's career innings to see that he increased them every year from 2002 to 2006. Is that the mark of someone who is an injury risk? Clearly you can get better at dealing with blisters as a pitcher, since Beckett has. And to say Beckett wasn't effective last year seems pretty shortsighted to me, for someone who I would assume shouldn't be head over heals in love with era. We both know giving up a lot of homers doesn't make you a bad pitcher (Santana this year). And we both know that stats like k/9 and BAA are more important than era. Or they are at least a better indication of "stuff", which you were getting at with Beckett, implying that he has to "preserve" his finger by not throwing curve balls as well. Well in his ineffective 2006 Beckett allowed a BAA of .245 (ahead of lackey, sabathia, smoltz, halladay), and a k/9 better than oswalt or verlander. His stuff was definitely good last year, as it has always been. And he sure as heck didn't look like he was trying to prevent himself from getting blisters, judging by the high 90s fastball and wicked curve he featured in nearly every one of his starts last year. I think a much more sane and objective look at his 2006 season would conclude that his pitch selection was too predictable, his changeup was poor for most of the year, and his uninspiring superficial stats like era could have largely been because of sample size.

I can't begin to imagine what personal vendetta you have against Josh Beckett, but at least in this piece it made you look quite foolish. Not only does Beckett and the Red Sox staff have his blister problems under control, but we should look at Beckett as a one of a kind mid 20s fireballer, as he hasn't thrown nearly the innings that similarly gifted pitchers have in the past by his age. The Red Sox should be very happy that his shoulder and arm have been artificially under-stressed to this point, and there's no reason that I can see (either in his career peripheral stats or arbitrary belief that him getting a cut is related to his past blister problems) for him not to remain a top MLB pitcher for many years to come.

Rob:
When you accuse me of having a "personal vendetta" you make me stop reading, because that's just silly. And your attribution of bias suggests that you're the one with the agenda. I was just doing my job, however poorly.



Cheers,

rob

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1 Comments:

Anonymous bee said...

we are talking about rob neyer right?

that is infuriating. he doesnt address a single substantive point. if hes just going to blow you off, why read the entire email first?

2:18 PM  

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