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southpaw40
04-01-2003, 12:13 PM
I'm kinda new here, so if this topic has been discussed before, just ignore it.
Everyone, from fans to baseball analysts, constantly talk about how bad of a defensive team the Sox are. A review of season statistics for the past three seasons shows this not to be totally true. In 2000, the team had a .978 fielding percentage, which was last in the American League. In 2001, a .981 fielding percentage, which was tied for 7th in the league. And last season, a .984 fielding percentage, which was tied for 5th in the league.
Of last years playoff teams (Twins, Angels, A's, Yankees), only the Twins and Angels had better fielding percentages, with the A's having the exact same as the Sox, and the Yankees had a far worse percentage than the Sox.
To me, this shows a trend of improvement which has elevated the Sox to middle of the pack defensively (among American League teams).
Are the Sox victims of a mis-analyzed reputation, or am I missing something here?

soxnut
04-01-2003, 12:36 PM
YOU ARE RIGHT THE SOX ARE A VICTIM OF MIS-ANALYZED REPUTATION.



THEIR PROBLEM HAS BEEN SITUATIONAL HITTING, NOT DEFENSE, NOT PITCHING.

I THINK THEY HIT TOO MANY HOME RUNS. I WANT TO SEE SINGLES, DOUBLES, BUNTS AND THEN DRIVING THESE GUYS IN WITH A HITOR A SAC FLY. NOT A FREAKING HOME RUN TO SOLVE THE RUN PRODUCTION. :angry:

DrCrawdad
04-01-2003, 12:48 PM
When something gets said and repeated so much it becomes truth.

We've discussed the Sox '02 defense here in the past. IIRC the stats showed the Sox to be average and in a couple of stats to be actually near the top. Because of time constraints, I can't look up the stats.

People are always saying that Carlos Lee is a lousy outfielder. I've heard this many, many times from friends who happen to be Cub fans. This opinion of Lee's defense is based on old information. 2002 Carlos improved and statistically was one of the best LF's in baseball. Of course when I say this my Cub fan friends laugh hysterically. Interestingly Carlos did better than the much ballyhooed Moses Alou in every defensive stat and virtually every offensive stat.

Oh, I found some of the '02 defensive stats:

11. FP (Cubs #23)
10. E's (Cubs #21, Minnesota was #1)
3. ZR (Cubs #19)
28. PO (Cubs #18)
26. TC (Cubs #28)
23. RF (Cubs #28)

Soxboyrob
04-01-2003, 04:06 PM
Originally posted by southpaw40
And last season, a .984 fielding percentage, which was tied for 5th in the league. Of last years playoff teams (Twins, Angels, A's, Yankees), only the Twins and Angels had better fielding percentages
Are the Sox victims of a mis-analyzed reputation, or am I missing something here?

Something to keep in mind is that our fielding pct last season was helped by Clayton, who rarely made what the official scorer termed as an error. So, people noting our poor defense are probably figuring that Clayton's 5 or 6 errors will be replaced by Valentin's 35. Those same people will never be convinced that Lee is any better than a poor outfielder, despite his very good fielding pctg. Most people consider Jimenez to be an unknown entity at 2B. Rowand is considered a poor defender by most who judge him (not me, I think he's at least adequate). Crede is a very good fielder in all of our opinions, but he had a few too many errors in his 2 months w/ the big club last year.

Overall, the "poor defense" tag that's been placed on the Sox is part fact and part fiction. Nobody in the national media considers that Crede is better than his numbers from last year will demonstrate. Nobody cares about Jose's range factor or DP turning ability. Nobody has really noticed that despite the knocks on Rowand in CF, he seems to make most or all of the plays.

In the end, our downfall (if there is one) will not be our defense.

kermittheefrog
04-01-2003, 07:20 PM
Originally posted by soxnut
YOU ARE RIGHT THE SOX ARE A VICTIM OF MIS-ANALYZED REPUTATION.



THEIR PROBLEM HAS BEEN SITUATIONAL HITTING, NOT DEFENSE, NOT PITCHING.

I THINK THEY HIT TOO MANY HOME RUNS. I WANT TO SEE SINGLES, DOUBLES, BUNTS AND THEN DRIVING THESE GUYS IN WITH A HITOR A SAC FLY. NOT A FREAKING HOME RUN TO SOLVE THE RUN PRODUCTION. :angry:

Nothing hurts the team like a home run.

T Dog
04-01-2003, 11:26 PM
QUOTE]Originally posted by soxnut
YOU ARE RIGHT THE SOX ARE A VICTIM OF MIS-ANALYZED REPUTATION.



THEIR PROBLEM HAS BEEN SITUATIONAL HITTING, NOT DEFENSE, NOT PITCHING.

I THINK THEY HIT TOO MANY HOME RUNS. I WANT TO SEE SINGLES, DOUBLES, BUNTS AND THEN DRIVING THESE GUYS IN WITH A HITOR A SAC FLY. NOT A FREAKING HOME RUN TO SOLVE THE RUN PRODUCTION.[/QUOTE]

Unfortunately, too many home runs wasn't a problem Monday. I am hoping to see some home runs in April, though.

I did see the Sox play pretty good defense Monday. There was an inconsequential error, but there was some strong play in the field when it mattered.

The bad-defense tag can be difficult to overcome. Think about the history of Sox third basemen, for example. Robin Ventura won gold gloves, and Bill Melton was referred to by one magazine as "nothing short of an Edsel" in the field. Yet at third base for the Sox, Bill Melton had a better fielding percentage and averaged more assists per game at third base.

Even the drunk who was calling the Sox games in those days failed to acknowledge Bill Melton's improvement in the field.

DrCrawdad
04-04-2003, 06:12 AM
Originally posted by DrCrawdad
When something gets said and repeated so much it becomes truth.

We've discussed the Sox '02 defense here in the past. IIRC the stats showed the Sox to be average and in a couple of stats to be actually near the top...

At least for one game, the Sox defense was worse than advertised yesterday. Absolutely terrible.

Tragg
04-04-2003, 08:07 AM
Originally posted by soxnut
YOU ARE RIGHT THE SOX ARE A VICTIM OF MIS-ANALYZED REPUTATION.



THEIR PROBLEM HAS BEEN SITUATIONAL HITTING, NOT DEFENSE, NOT PITCHING.

I THINK THEY HIT TOO MANY HOME RUNS. I WANT TO SEE SINGLES, DOUBLES, BUNTS AND THEN DRIVING THESE GUYS IN WITH A HITOR A SAC FLY. NOT A FREAKING HOME RUN TO SOLVE THE RUN PRODUCTION. :angry:

I agree - add to that the inability of many batters to take a walk with, it appearc to me, the tacit approval of kenny manuel.