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View Full Version : Walker: Hitters Frustrated


JermaineDye05
05-19-2011, 12:40 PM
Link (http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110518&content_id=19222312&notebook_id=19230258&vkey=notebook_cws&c_id=cws)

kittle42
05-19-2011, 12:43 PM
Not as frustrated as the fans.

JermaineDye05
05-19-2011, 12:44 PM
Not as frustrated as the fans.

Exactly what I was thinking.

ShooterMcGavin
05-19-2011, 12:52 PM
From the article:

But that thought doesn't stop Walker and assistant hitting coach Mike Gellinger from working on ideas and incentives for hitters to get the ball on the plate.


I wasn't even aware the Sox had an assistant hitting coach. :dunno:

daveeym
05-19-2011, 01:12 PM
So walker doesn't even have to put the ball on the tee for these guys or push the pause and rewind buttons on the video since he has an assistant? Hey hey, ho ho walker has got to go.

balke
05-19-2011, 01:15 PM
Sox have some great trade possibilities in my humble opinion. Might be able to get crawford at a discount in the right deal with Boston. Sox have a surplus of power and starting pitching. I think this team is on the upswing - but if they faulter I could see some movement in early June.

Lip Man 1
05-19-2011, 01:18 PM
Am waiting for JB to chime on this, he has long said there's something going on mentally with these guys and a lot of the players on the roster for the past few years.

The question appears to be, why?

Lip

russ99
05-19-2011, 01:23 PM
Vastly more interesting than the usual Walker excuses in that article is Kenny having "a few things on my mind".

Well, we're waiting...

JermaineDye05
05-19-2011, 01:29 PM
Sox have some great trade possibilities in my humble opinion. Might be able to get crawford at a discount in the right deal with Boston. Sox have a surplus of power and starting pitching. I think this team is on the upswing - but if they faulter I could see some movement in early June.

No way can the Sox afford even a fourth of his contract.

Unless they made a bad for bad deal in Rios for Crawford.

kittle42
05-19-2011, 01:50 PM
Sox have some great trade possibilities in my humble opinion. Might be able to get crawford at a discount in the right deal with Boston. Sox have a surplus of power and starting pitching. I think this team is on the upswing - but if they faulter I could see some movement in early June.

Crawford is having a terrible go of it thus far this season, but he is going absolutely nowhere, except in fantasy baseball trades.

Frater Perdurabo
05-19-2011, 02:10 PM
Swinging at strikes? Gee, if it was that easy...

tstrike2000
05-19-2011, 03:17 PM
After reading some of Walker's quotes, I thought I was reading the Onion for a moment.

Gavin
05-20-2011, 12:02 PM
The White Sox have the worst BABIP between 2003-2011. There's something wrong with the team's approach to hitting.

http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=2&season=2011&month=0&season1=2003

cws05champ
05-20-2011, 01:05 PM
The White Sox have the worst BABIP between 2003-2011. There's something wrong with the team's approach to hitting.

http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=2&season=2011&month=0&season1=2003
Even in 2005 they were 3rd worst in baseball???:scratch:

kittle42
05-20-2011, 01:10 PM
Even in 2005 they were 3rd worst in baseball???:scratch:

We really didn't hit all that well in 2005. Well below league average in about everything except homers.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 01:14 PM
The White Sox have the worst BABIP between 2003-2011. There's something wrong with the team's approach to hitting.

http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=2&season=2011&month=0&season1=2003

Actually, they have the worst cumulative BABIP from 1991 to 2011.

Gavin
05-20-2011, 01:15 PM
Actually, they have the worst cumulative BABIP from 1991 to 2011.

In the pre-Walker era from 1991-2002 the White Sox were in the middle of the pack for BABIP.
http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=8&season=2002&month=0&season1=1991

2003-2011, dead last.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 01:21 PM
In the pre-Walker era from 1991-2002 the White Sox were in the middle of the pack for BABIP.
http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=8&season=2002&month=0&season1=1991

2003-2011, dead last.

I also think Walker is to blame. But I want to be able to control for the "park factor" so that we know the numbers demonstrate Walker is to blame.

From 1991-2000, the park had bigger dimensions.

Gavin
05-20-2011, 01:27 PM
I also think Walker is to blame. But I want to be able to control for the "park factor" so that we know the numbers demonstrate Walker is to blame.

From 1991-2000, the park had bigger dimensions.

I can't find that split on Fangraphs or Baseball Reference. I tried BP but that interface confuses the hell out of me.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 01:29 PM
I can't find that split on Fangraphs or Baseball Reference. I tried BP but that interface confuses the hell out of me.

Is there a way to find out visiting team's BABIP at the Cell?

Foulke You
05-20-2011, 01:30 PM
I also think Walker is to blame. But I want to be able to control for the "park factor" so that we know the numbers demonstrate Walker is to blame.

From 1991-2000, the park had bigger dimensions.
This is an excellent point in regards to the skewed BABIP stat. I'm not saying Walker isn't partly to blame in this but the renovations could have played a part in the change. In 2001, the fences came in 17 feet in LF (from 347 to 330) and 12 feet in RF (from 347 to 335). In 2004, the upper deck was renovated slicing 10 rows off the top and a wind screen was added at the top that allows more wind to pass through. Post upper deck renovations in 2004 is when our ballpark started playing like a launching pad in the warm weather. I believe this was in part due to the changed wind patterns that the smaller upper deck created. Prior to that, New Comiskey/US Cellular had always been more of a pitcher's park.

Gavin
05-20-2011, 01:35 PM
Is there a way to find out visiting team's BABIP at the Cell?

I found this:
http://www.insidethebook.com/ee/index.php/site/comments/fangraphs_park_factors_for_pitchers/#3

...which says that USCF has the fourth worst BABIP park factor over 2006-2009.

So let's see..

BABIP PARK FACTOR (2006-2009)
CHW -11 (Fourth worst)
TOR -11
OAK -18
SD -27 (Worst)

BABIP (2006-2009)
http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=8&season=2009&month=0&season1=2006
Reds (Worst), White Sox, A's, Astros, Pads (5th worst). Toronto is 9th worst. All four are in the bottom 10. There's probably a significant relationship between the park and the team's BABIP.

Man, just when I thought I was on to something.

(If we could control for the park, I still think the team would have a ****ty BABIP.)

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 01:39 PM
I found this:
http://www.insidethebook.com/ee/index.php/site/comments/fangraphs_park_factors_for_pitchers/#3

...which says that USCF has the fourth worst BABIP park factor over 2006-2009.

So let's see..

BABIP PARK FACTOR (2006-2009)
CHW -11 (Fourth worst)
TOR -11
OAK -18
SD -27 (Worst)

BABIP (2006-2009)
Reds (Worst), White Sox, A's, Astros, Pads (5th worst)

http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=8&season=2009&month=0&season1=2006

Man, just when I thought I was on to something.

But remember, approximately 50% of the plate appearances at the Cell are made by hitters who Walker coaches. So the "park factor" hasn't controlled for the "Walker factor." And to be fair, opposing hitters playing at the Cell face Sox pitching - which we all agree generally has been pretty good - 100% of the time.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 01:42 PM
Statistics alone cannot tell the whole story, just like qualitative analysis alone cannot tell the whole story.

I wish we could hear from some bona-fide scouts and talent evaluators who could tell us if there are certain things Sox hitters are doing in common, to go along with the enlightening - yet not completely controlled - data we're also getting to see.

WhiteSox5187
05-20-2011, 01:44 PM
In the pre-Walker era from 1991-2002 the White Sox were in the middle of the pack for BABIP.
http://www.fangraphs.com/teams.aspx?pos=all&lg=all&stats=bat&type=8&season=2002&month=0&season1=1991

2003-2011, dead last.

I apologize for the high jack I am about to make, but in BABIP does it take into account the difference between a little nubber back to the pitcher and a line shot that is hit right at someone? I also assume that if you have a low BABIP it typically means you're striking out a lot, right? Or could bad luck (and since you're covering a long period of time here it would be hard to attribute all of this to bad luck) be a factor? Finally, what is typically a good BABIP?

Ranger
05-20-2011, 01:47 PM
Not as frustrated as the fans.

I don't know about that.

Gavin
05-20-2011, 01:47 PM
I apologize for the high jack I am about to make, but in BABIP does it take into account the difference between a little nubber back to the pitcher and a line shot that is hit right at someone? I also assume that if you have a low BABIP it typically means you're striking out a lot, right? Or could bad luck (and since you're covering a long period of time here it would be hard to attribute all of this to bad luck) be a factor? Finally, what is typically a good BABIP?

Not to be a dick, but it might be easiest if you read the description here:
http://www.baseballprospectus.com/glossary/index.php?search=babip

Since over time this average should be 0.300, some things must affect a team's BABIP to be consistently lower than the average over time. Like USCF's dimensions. Or Greg Walker's coaching.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 02:02 PM
Since over time this average should be 0.300, some things must affect a team's BABIP to be consistently lower than the average over time. Like USCF's dimensions. Or Greg Walker's coaching.

I would change your description of "USCF's dimensions" to "stadium environment" to encompass not only the physical dimensions, but also things like seasons, weather and wind patterns.

I think both stadium environment and Walker's coaching have a negative effect on BABIP. I just wish there were some stats that could be controlled to isolate one from the other, so that we could learn which exerts more negative influence.

The bottom line, though, is that it should be easier to change the hitting coach than change the stadium environment.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 02:09 PM
In 2001-2002, the Sox were 22nd in BABIP. This was after the dimensions were changed, but before Walker was hired.

Based on that, I think it is reasonable to conclude the changes in the park's dimensions took the Sox from the "middle of the pack" in BABIP to the bottom third, but then Walker took us to dead last.

russ99
05-20-2011, 02:10 PM
I apologize for the high jack I am about to make, but in BABIP does it take into account the difference between a little nubber back to the pitcher and a line shot that is hit right at someone? I also assume that if you have a low BABIP it typically means you're striking out a lot, right? Or could bad luck (and since you're covering a long period of time here it would be hard to attribute all of this to bad luck) be a factor? Finally, what is typically a good BABIP?

Batting Average on Balls In Play

Strikeouts don't factor.

But I agree that BABIP doesn't take into account fly/ground ball/liner percentages.

BABIP is most frequently used to determe how "lucky" or "unlucky" a hitter is depending on how high or low his BABIP is to his standard batting average and to forecast performance when BABIP rises or falls to where it should be.

If we want to judge the Walker era, BABIP isn't the best stat to use, IMO. We should be looking at batting average, on base percentage and (best of all) runs scored and/or created, all modified to remove park effects and compared against league average.

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 02:26 PM
Batting Average on Balls In Play

Strikeouts don't factor.

But I agree that BABIP doesn't take into account fly/ground ball/liner percentages.

BABIP is most frequently used to determe how "lucky" or "unlucky" a hitter is depending on how high or low his BABIP is to his standard batting average and to forecast performance when BABIP rises or falls to where it should be.

If we want to judge the Walker era, BABIP isn't the best stat to use, IMO. We should be looking at batting average, on base percentage and (best of all) runs scored and/or created, all modified to remove park effects and compared against league average.

BABIP actually was designed to study pitchers and defenses.

I'm not sure the measures you cite, even with park factors removed, will tell us what we need to know about Walker. The Sox have had a lot of high slugging, low-OBP, low-average power hitters over the years. The question is: To what extent has Walker helped them improve as hitters?

Paulie credits Walker with reconstructing his swing. If Paulie says so, that's good enough for me (although I think it's fair to remain skeptical, since Paulie was an All-Star hitter before Walker coached him).

What other hitters has Walker definitely helped?

WhiteSox5187
05-20-2011, 02:34 PM
Batting Average on Balls In Play

Strikeouts don't factor.

But I agree that BABIP doesn't take into account fly/ground ball/liner percentages.

BABIP is most frequently used to determe how "lucky" or "unlucky" a hitter is depending on how high or low his BABIP is to his standard batting average and to forecast performance when BABIP rises or falls to where it should be.

If we want to judge the Walker era, BABIP isn't the best stat to use, IMO. We should be looking at batting average, on base percentage and (best of all) runs scored and/or created, all modified to remove park effects and compared against league average.

There are a few things that make me a little dubious about BABIP (as I understand it) regarding this team's (and certain players struggles). One is that right now Beckham has a higher BABIP than Rios, both are struggling at the plate but to me and my crappy little eye test, Rios is hitting the ball harder and more consistently than Beckham is. Beckham's BABIP is almost 100 points higher than his average for the month of May so far which would imply to me he is hitting into terrible luck based on the numbers alone, but based on what I have seen at the plate (and I haven't watched every game, so it's likely I am wrong) he just doesn't look right. His at bats have been better but not that much better. Also, in 2008 I remember people citing Swisher's BABIP as a sign that he was going to come around, and he looked just as lost at the plate. It's certainly an interesting stat though, but so far I find it a bit deceptive.

captain54
05-20-2011, 03:42 PM
I wasn't even aware the Sox had an assistant hitting coach. :dunno:

Its bad enough that I'm a stupid, uninformed fan who really doesn't know what a hitting coach does, what effect he has on hitters, or whether or not he can make a difference in their performance. Now I'm faced with
trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.

kittle42
05-20-2011, 03:46 PM
Its bad enough that I'm a stupid, uninformed fan who really doesn't know what a hitting coach does, what effect he has on hitters, or whether or not he can make a difference in their performance. Now I'm faced with
trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.

A better headline would be: "Walker: Hitters Frustrated [that I'm not fired yet]."

Paulwny
05-20-2011, 05:48 PM
Its bad enough that I'm a stupid, uninformed fan who really doesn't know what a hitting coach does, what effect he has on hitters, or whether or not he can make a difference in their performance. Now I'm faced with
trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.

Game day for Cards' assistant batting coach Mike Aldrete.

http://www.stltoday.com/sports/baseball/professional/article_74c091d0-aaf5-5af4-8924-04b58a5d4362.html

rdwj
05-20-2011, 07:55 PM
Its bad enough that I'm a stupid, uninformed fan who really doesn't know what a hitting coach does, what effect he has on hitters, or whether or not he can make a difference in their performance. Now I'm faced with trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.
Ok - that's officially the funniest thing I've read all day

Frater Perdurabo
05-20-2011, 08:16 PM
Its bad enough that I'm a stupid, uninformed fan who really doesn't know what a hitting coach does, what effect he has on hitters, or whether or not he can make a difference in their performance. Now I'm faced with
trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.

He's responsible for changing the hiding place for Walker's file folder of incriminating photos of Ozzie, KW and JR.

Daver
05-20-2011, 08:21 PM
Now I'm faced with
trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.

The same thing an apprentice laborer does is my guess, hand the laborer his shovel.

fisk4ever
05-20-2011, 08:27 PM
As the apprentice blacksmith holds down the anvil...

A. Cavatica
05-20-2011, 09:34 PM
Its bad enough that I'm a stupid, uninformed fan who really doesn't know what a hitting coach does, what effect he has on hitters, or whether or not he can make a difference in their performance. Now I'm faced with
trying to figure out what an assistant hitting coach does.

He studies at the feet of the master and hopes that when Greg Walker retires the organization will insist on continuity.

JB98
05-20-2011, 10:31 PM
The Tribune had an article at the start of the year where Walker was talking about how all the hitters were in a good place mentally.

Well, now we just can't get out of this mental funk we're in, can we?

captain54
05-21-2011, 12:11 AM
The Tribune had an article at the start of the year where Walker was talking about how all the hitters were in a good place mentally.

Well, now we just can't get out of this mental funk we're in, can we?

He's also been quoted as saying to look out for Morel and Dunn, they are ready to bust out..

Lip Man 1
05-21-2011, 12:15 AM
In August when the season is over...

Lip

JB98
05-21-2011, 12:34 AM
In August when the season is over...

Lip

Nah. I've consulted my Walkerball Almanac, and the Sox will go on a hot streak in June.

They'll experience another team-wide slump after the All-Star break, as they always do under this regime.

The net result will be the usual 83-win mediocrity.

tstrike2000
05-21-2011, 08:18 AM
Unfortunately, that looks like the pattern, once again. Finishing 83-79, 4 games back.

Dan H
05-21-2011, 09:00 AM
I don't know about that.

I do know one thing: 46 games is one long slump.

kufram
05-21-2011, 11:34 AM
I don't know about that.

I think it is a misjudgement to think that the hitters aren't frustrated. It is their profession so they might not want to show it as much as fans do, but I'd bet these guys would rather have everybody cheering for them than looking at the numbers they are putting up and jeering.

I also think that if a bunch of millionaire, professional hitters were failing at the plate because of a hitting coach, that coach would gone. The only thing I know about Greg Walker is that he faces enormous criticism with dignity and that impresses me, but if his replacement meant that we'd win games and get base hits one out of every three at bats and win the division without really trying because we spend more money, then I'd drive him to the airport myself.

Dan H
05-21-2011, 11:42 AM
I think it is a misjudgement to think that the hitters aren't frustrated. It is their profession so they might not want to show it as much as fans do, but I'd bet these guys would rather have everybody cheering for them than looking at the numbers they are putting up and jeering.

I also think that if a bunch of millionaire, professional hitters were failing at the plate because of a hitting coach, that coach would gone. The only thing I know about Greg Walker is that he faces enormous criticism with dignity and that impresses me, but if his replacement meant that we'd win games and get base hits one out of every three at bats and win the division without really trying because we spend more money, then I'd drive him to the airport myself.

I have nothing against Walker and don't even know if he is the main problem. I do know that it is puzzling why this team continues to go into such slumps that it puts itself in an impossible position to win anything meaningful. So what is the problem? Could it be that the talent of the team has been over-estimated? How much denial is going on?

kufram
05-21-2011, 12:43 PM
I have nothing against Walker and don't even know if he is the main problem. I do know that it is puzzling why this team continues to go into such slumps that it puts itself in an impossible position to win anything meaningful. So what is the problem? Could it be that the talent of the team has been over-estimated? How much denial is going on?

That is the question that no one seems to have the answer to. I certainly don't. Maybe the clubhouse is the wrong colour. I'm colour blind.... please tell me that is teal.

FielderJones
05-21-2011, 12:46 PM
Maybe the clubhouse is the wrong colour. I'm colour blind.... please tell me that is teal.

Nope.

:tealtutor:

kufram
05-21-2011, 12:56 PM
Nope.



:tealtutor:
Thank you. I don't get a pop-up telling me what it is.

captain54
05-21-2011, 10:49 PM
I also think that if a bunch of millionaire, professional hitters were failing at the plate because of a hitting coach, that coach would gone.

Not if a better qualified replacement wanted things done his own way and required more compensation than the current hitting coach.

To try to convince me that Greg Walker is the most qualified man on the planet for the job and that's why he hasn't been replaced is a bit far fetched.

I'd be interested to know if there's any actual endorsements in the TV/Radio/Web/Newspaper archives from past or present Sox players of Greg Walker. I don't recall a lot of that kind of reading material available

TheVulture
05-21-2011, 11:01 PM
Batting Average on Balls In Play

Strikeouts don't factor.



Strikeouts don't factor, but two players with the same average, one who strikes out twice as often will have a much higher BABIP than the other. So teams who strike out less will typically have a lower BABIP. I don't know if that's the case with the Sox, though.

TheVulture
05-21-2011, 11:06 PM
For example, Adam Dunn has a career .295 BaBIP compared to .285 for Konerko, even though PK's career BA is more 35 points higher than Dunn's. And Konerko still strikes out a bit himself.

kufram
05-22-2011, 03:38 AM
Not if a better qualified replacement wanted things done his own way and required more compensation than the current hitting coach.

To try to convince me that Greg Walker is the most qualified man on the planet for the job and that's why he hasn't been replaced is a bit far fetched.

I'd be interested to know if there's any actual endorsements in the TV/Radio/Web/Newspaper archives from past or present Sox players of Greg Walker. I don't recall a lot of that kind of reading material available

I'm not defending Walker's position and I don't think hitting coaches make enough money compared to hitters for it to be an overiding factor. If a hitting coach was the sole reason for a team failing at the plate and, hence, failing to win which leads to failing ticket sales I still think he would be gone. That would be the only sound business decision that could be made.

The best argument for dismissing Walker is that no one knows what else to do to try to fix the situation we've had for the past few years and that is valid. Bad luck for Walker but managers get fired for player's collective failure.... well, some do.

I'm not sure if there is any record of Walker's hitter's complaining that he is the problem either, so I don't know if that point is relevant.