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santo=dorf
03-25-2007, 01:20 PM
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/mlb/specials/spring_training/2007/previews/white_sox.html

Ozzie avoids the numbers:
Manager Ozzie Guillen arrived at training camp still peeved over his team's offensive performance last season. "We were s---, pathetic," Guillen growled early in spring training. "We hit too many home runs. Our situational hitting was horrible. This year we're going back to small ball."
SI points out:
Forget that only two teams in the majors outscored the White Sox last season. Or that no club was more productive than Chicago with runners in scoring position. Or that the South Siders' on-base percentage (.342) was higher than it was in 2005 (.322) when they won the World Series.

the White Sox scored 45.9% of their runs on homers -- in truth the 2005 team, the purported masters of small ball, scored 42.4% of its runs on homers in the regular season and 47.8% in the postseason march to the title.

2006 offense > 2005 offense despite a gaping hole at the 8th and 9th spot, and the leadoff spot with the exception of the month of May.

IT WAS THE PITCHING THAT LED TO OUR 90 WIN DEMISE LAST SEASON. :angry:

Oh, it looks like SI has us pegged for third place.

SoxSpeed22
03-25-2007, 02:02 PM
I thought it was offensive consistency, especially in September when bad pitchers that could throw a change-up were shutting us down. That's more of an on-base issue and not stealing to cause pressure.
Situational pitching had to be taken into account as well. Too many 2-strike hits, 2-out runs. You can't have those and expect to win.

WhiteSox5187
03-25-2007, 02:08 PM
We just totally fell apart in September last year...nothing was working well...obviously, the pitching led to our demise and I can understand people being concerned with it this year, our offense is still a force to be feared. I think that this team has the ability to beat you to death with the homerun or slowly kill you by drawing walks, bunting guys over, etc.

That being said, I'm not at all surprised SI has tagged for third because SI has NEVER had any sort of respect for the White Sox much like a certain East Coast channel. For SI, it's all about the Red Sox and the Yankees which is fine by me. I have no problem laying low this year and surprising everyone again.

oeo
03-25-2007, 03:27 PM
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/mlb/specials/spring_training/2007/previews/white_sox.html

Ozzie avoids the numbers:

SI points out:




2006 offense > 2005 offense despite a gaping hole at the 8th and 9th spot, and the leadoff spot with the exception of the month of May.

IT WAS THE PITCHING THAT LED TO OUR 90 WIN DEMISE LAST SEASON. :angry:

Oh, it looks like SI has us pegged for third place.

Where did Ozzie ever say anything about the pitching not being a problem? He's said numerous times that his pitching stunk, but the offense was far from perfect, especially down the stretch.

The offense was better than it was in 2005, but how many times did we not get the runner over? Popped up a bunt? Failed at a sacfly? Failed to take the extra base? Lost extra innings games because we couldn't get these simple things done? Should I go on?

santo=dorf
03-25-2007, 05:14 PM
Yes, please go on because I would like the actual numbers. We were the best hitting team with RISP. We don't need to make outs in those situations because we knock them in with hits.

If the offense isn't a problem, or the main problem, why mess with it?

Hitting "too many" home runs? :?:

oeo
03-25-2007, 06:41 PM
Yes, please go on because I would like the actual numbers. We were the best hitting team with RISP. We don't need to make outs in those situations because we knock them in with hits.

If the offense isn't a problem, or the main problem, why mess with it?

Hitting "too many" home runs? :?:

In a perfect world, everything could be measured with statistics. We don't live in a perfect world. Lay off the stats a little bit, you might go crazy.

When you watch the games, you notice these things...and they don't go down on stat sheets. I can think of at least two extra inning games that we lost late in extra innings because we couldn't get anything going offensively, many-a-times that there were bunts popped up, a ton of times we couldn't just get a guy in from third, etc.

And yes, there is a such thing as hitting too many homeruns. Power slumps, and it showed numerous times throughout the season last year.

ondafarm
03-25-2007, 08:19 PM
Last year, the Sox could bash with anybody. Their big problem was scoring small ball runs. That caused them to get killed in one-run games. The pitching wasn't up to snuff either.

IndianWhiteSox
03-26-2007, 03:44 AM
Hopefully, the offense will get away from the station to station bull**** as they move Iguchi to sixth in the lineup. Not to mention, with the defense and bullpen being solidified, they have shored up almost all of their weaknesses.

johnr1note
03-26-2007, 11:42 AM
Well, its obvious that the major factor that led to the White Sox not making the playoffs in 2006 was the pitching. Just consider Buehrle alone -- in 2005, he was 16-8 in 33 starts, with an ERA of 3.12. His career ERA before 2006 was 3.63. In 2006, Buehrle was 12-13 in 32 starts, with an ERA of 4.99 (highest he's ever had). Knock 1 or 1.5 runs off his ERA, and he probably wins 5 more games, and we're back in the race (we finished 6 games out, but only 5 out of the wildcard). (As an aside, Buehrle's most telling statitiscal variance in 2006 was he only had 98 K's, when he usually averages about 130 a year, and in the two previous years had over 150 both seasons).

The bullpen is another sore spot. In 2005, middle relief came through again and again (many of the decisions Buehrle didn't get in `05 were wins by the pen). We all recall the pen blowing leads, or giving up more runs as late inning rallies fell short in 2006. In 2005 the bullpen was 24-18. Last year, its 19-22.

If those two factors were reversed -- let's say Buehrle was 3-5 games over .500, and the bullpen was .500 or a few games better, that's a potential addition of 6-10 wins. That would have won the division.

Hopefully, our starting 5 comeback and have better years. I am happy that it appears KW has improved the pen.

But there is a "small ball" factor to be considered. The 2005 Sox had 137 stolen bases, caught stealing 67 times, 53 sacrifices, and grounded into 123 double plays. The 2006 White Sox have 93 stolen bases, caught stealing 48, 44 sacrifices, and grounded into 118 double playes. At first glance, these stats don't look significantly different, but looking at them overall, a trend is revealed. The 2005 White Sox had a lot more going on the base paths. They were more aggressive. They were trying to manufacture runs. Indeed, they were successful at it, and the formula for winning baseball games in the playoffs is proof. Sure, they also hit for power, but when that is plugged into a backdrop and philospohy of a sort of reckless abandon on the bases, you get at least a "feel" of small ball.

One of the morons on Baseballprospectus published an article last year about how basestealing is actually detrimental to offensive stats. OK, fine. But for the first half of 2005's championship run, whenever Podsednik was on base, it rattled the opposing pitcher. This was an intangible that went a long way.

I think there is an argument to be made that we lost something in losing this sense of "small ball" or "Ozzie ball." It may be hard to put your finger on, but its there. I agree that while our power stats are a great plus, the need to play more "small ball" is a great psycological advantage in the AL, and will lead to more success.

WhiteSox5187
03-26-2007, 12:37 PM
Well, its obvious that the major factor that led to the White Sox not making the playoffs in 2006 was the pitching. Just consider Buehrle alone -- in 2005, he was 16-8 in 33 starts, with an ERA of 3.12. His career ERA before 2006 was 3.63. In 2006, Buehrle was 12-13 in 32 starts, with an ERA of 4.99 (highest he's ever had). Knock 1 or 1.5 runs off his ERA, and he probably wins 5 more games, and we're back in the race (we finished 6 games out, but only 5 out of the wildcard). (As an aside, Buehrle's most telling statitiscal variance in 2006 was he only had 98 K's, when he usually averages about 130 a year, and in the two previous years had over 150 both seasons).

The bullpen is another sore spot. In 2005, middle relief came through again and again (many of the decisions Buehrle didn't get in `05 were wins by the pen). We all recall the pen blowing leads, or giving up more runs as late inning rallies fell short in 2006. In 2005 the bullpen was 24-18. Last year, its 19-22.

If those two factors were reversed -- let's say Buehrle was 3-5 games over .500, and the bullpen was .500 or a few games better, that's a potential addition of 6-10 wins. That would have won the division.

Hopefully, our starting 5 comeback and have better years. I am happy that it appears KW has improved the pen.

But there is a "small ball" factor to be considered. The 2005 Sox had 137 stolen bases, caught stealing 67 times, 53 sacrifices, and grounded into 123 double plays. The 2006 White Sox have 93 stolen bases, caught stealing 48, 44 sacrifices, and grounded into 118 double playes. At first glance, these stats don't look significantly different, but looking at them overall, a trend is revealed. The 2005 White Sox had a lot more going on the base paths. They were more aggressive. They were trying to manufacture runs. Indeed, they were successful at it, and the formula for winning baseball games in the playoffs is proof. Sure, they also hit for power, but when that is plugged into a backdrop and philospohy of a sort of reckless abandon on the bases, you get at least a "feel" of small ball.

One of the morons on Baseballprospectus published an article last year about how basestealing is actually detrimental to offensive stats. OK, fine. But for the first half of 2005's championship run, whenever Podsednik was on base, it rattled the opposing pitcher. This was an intangible that went a long way.

I think there is an argument to be made that we lost something in losing this sense of "small ball" or "Ozzie ball." It may be hard to put your finger on, but its there. I agree that while our power stats are a great plus, the need to play more "small ball" is a great psycological advantage in the AL, and will lead to more success.
You nailed it...it's like the old axiom says, every team wins a third of their games, loses a third of their games and the other third determines how you finish and doing the small things really helps win those other games and we just didn't win enough of 'em last year because we didn't do any of the small things.

SBSoxFan
03-26-2007, 02:08 PM
Yes, please go on because I would like the actual numbers. We were the best hitting team with RISP. We don't need to make outs in those situations because we knock them in with hits.

If the offense isn't a problem, or the main problem, why mess with it?

Hitting "too many" home runs? :?:

But they still didn't get a hit over 60% of the time with RISP. The numbers I'd like to see are the percentage of times they got a runner in from second with no outs or from third with less than 2 outs without a base hit.

White_Sock
03-26-2007, 03:27 PM
It seemed to me that we were getting a LOT of production out of fewer guys last year, whereas in 2005, you never knew who was going to be the hero of the day. Consistency across the lineup seems far more important to our club than great strength in the 2-6 slots. Having strong 2-6 hitters is a huge plus, but the last three guys and the leadoff hitter need to be sloid at best for small ball to coexist with big-ball. Hitting "too many home runs" isn't a problem unless the other half of your (7-2 holes) lineup can't successfully execute smallball tactics. Pods wasn't up to par last year which really hurt us, and then there was our bottom of the lineup...