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  #16  
Old 09-05-2019, 04:55 PM
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Brian26 Brian26 is offline
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One thing I noticed last night about Palka at the plate, watch his ABs and how much he is cheating to try to catch up to a fastball. I don’t remember if he was doing this last year or to this extent. I don’t know jack about hitting, but I’m always telling my son when I coach him to start his swing early and get the leg kick going on the kids that throw hard. But that’s a way to cheat at lower levels. That’s not sustainable. Palka was lifting his right leg and holding it in the air as the pitcher started his windup. Not mid-windup, but as the pitcher began his motion. In fact, the Tribe pitcher paused a split second a couple of times and Palka was left hanging. It’s such a simple thing but has to be a huge red flag if a guy needs to cheat that much. Most major leaguers will begin their stride as the pitcher is releasing the ball or just prior to releasing. But if the batter is picking up his leg and striding as the pitcher starts his motion, that seems like a huge flaw and easy to exploit. The batter essentially becomes a one-legged hitter if the pitcher sees it. I just went back and watched video of Jose Altuve. He’s got one of the biggest leg kicks/strides. He doesn’t start until release.
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  #17  
Old 09-06-2019, 05:12 AM
insp insp is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grzegorz View Post
"While it may be true that the Sox hitting coach is incompetent"

Evidence is not on the side of Steverson being incompetent.
White Sox hitters are the worst in MLB in terms of getting walks.
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  #18  
Old 09-06-2019, 07:36 AM
blurry blurry is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by insp View Post
White Sox hitters are the worst in MLB in terms of getting walks.
Yup, and it hasn't been that way for a long time. Here's were they ranked in the MLB just by number of walks taken per game:

2019: 30/30
2018: 29/30
2017: 28/30
2016: 22/30
2015: 26/30
2014: 23/30
2013: 29/30
2012: 23/30
2011: 20/30
2010: 25/30
2009: 19/30
2008: 21/30
2007: 14/30
2006: 14/30
2005: 14/30

They were mediocre at it when they had a good team for 1 1/2 seasons. Since they they've been flat out bad to awful. This is an organizational philosophy, not just a hitting coach problem. If they fire Steverson they'll just bring in another hitting coach who still believes walks are pointless.

I don't know what the walk rates are for some of the up and coming prospects, but I know Madrigal has a lower walk rate. I'm not sure about Robert. Vaughn seemed like a player who takes walks, as does Collins, so there is some hope for the future I suppose.
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  #19  
Old 09-06-2019, 08:39 AM
Frater Perdurabo Frater Perdurabo is offline
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I don’t think want Sox hitters “trying” to take walks as a general rule.

I want them to stop swinging at breaking pitches out of the zone.

If they do this, more walks will come AND they will get better pitches to hit, which means they will get on base more and drive in more runs.
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  #20  
Old 09-06-2019, 09:01 AM
ChiTownTrojan ChiTownTrojan is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frater Perdurabo View Post
I don’t think want Sox hitters “trying” to take walks as a general rule.

I want them to stop swinging at breaking pitches out of the zone.

If they do this, more walks will come AND they will get better pitches to hit, which means they will get on base more and drive in more runs.
Exactly right, the low walk rates are just a symptom of the underlying problem, not the problem themselves.

Moncada was another player who was supposed to be a high-walk guy, but we saw last year that the patient approach of waiting for the perfect pitch wasn't working as he kept getting behind in counts. This year with his more aggressive approach his walk rate has gone down, but his OBP has gone way up (a 60-point increase in batting average will do that). I don't think anyone would prefer to have the 2018 version back.
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  #21  
Old 09-06-2019, 09:14 AM
ChiTownTrojan ChiTownTrojan is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blurry View Post
Yup, and it hasn't been that way for a long time. Here's were they ranked in the MLB just by number of walks taken per game:

2019: 30/30
2018: 29/30
2017: 28/30
2016: 22/30
2015: 26/30
2014: 23/30
2013: 29/30
2012: 23/30
2011: 20/30
2010: 25/30
2009: 19/30
2008: 21/30
2007: 14/30
2006: 14/30
2005: 14/30

They were mediocre at it when they had a good team for 1 1/2 seasons. Since they they've been flat out bad to awful. This is an organizational philosophy, not just a hitting coach problem. If they fire Steverson they'll just bring in another hitting coach who still believes walks are pointless.

I don't know what the walk rates are for some of the up and coming prospects, but I know Madrigal has a lower walk rate. I'm not sure about Robert. Vaughn seemed like a player who takes walks, as does Collins, so there is some hope for the future I suppose.
The "organizational philosophy" regarding walks doesn't have much to do with who they're picking to coach the team - it's not like Hahn and Williams are sitting in their offices somewhere saying that they will only hire managers (who in turn pick hitting coaches) that don't value walks. It has more to do with the players they were acquiring not being the type of players that accumulate high walk totals. As other teams got more analytical and realized walks were being valued they started to accumulate those players, but the Sox were slow to adjust.

I'm hopeful that they're catching up with the times and realize that this is an important and valuable skill, but they can't turn over an entire roster overnight. Other than Collins and maybe eventually Vaughn there aren't a lot of prospects that are known for their huge walk totals but other than Anderson I don't expect it to be a huge problem like it has been. Hopefully the team can move towards the middle of the pack, which would be progress.

The worst part about the current lineup is that they are at the bottom of the league in walks AND strikeouts, which is hard to do.
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  #22  
Old 09-06-2019, 09:14 AM
GoSox2K3 GoSox2K3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post
Exactly right, the low walk rates are just a symptom of the underlying problem, not the problem themselves.

Moncada was another player who was supposed to be a high-walk guy, but we saw last year that the patient approach of waiting for the perfect pitch wasn't working as he kept getting behind in counts. This year with his more aggressive approach his walk rate has gone down, but his OBP has gone way up (a 60-point increase in batting average will do that). I don't think anyone would prefer to have the 2018 version back.
Agreed. I expect Collins will need to take a similar path. He's known as a high-walk guy but needs to avoid Moncada's 2018 issues with being too patient if he's to succeed in the majors.

If Madrigal can hit for gap power and high average while keeping his ultra-low K rate, I'm not going to be too worried if he doesn't draw a ton of walks.
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  #23  
Old 09-06-2019, 09:20 AM
HomeFish HomeFish is offline
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Organizational philosophy only goes so far. I guarantee you that if peak Frank Thomas was with the Sox right now, he would still be taking a lot of walks (and not just the intentional ones).
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  #24  
Old 09-10-2019, 04:44 PM
Tragg Tragg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frater Perdurabo View Post
I don’t think want Sox hitters “trying” to take walks as a general rule.

I want them to stop swinging at breaking pitches out of the zone.

If they do this, more walks will come AND they will get better pitches to hit, which means they will get on base more and drive in more runs.
Moncada probably over did it to start his career. but he knew the strike zone and himself well enough to know that there were some pitches in the zone that he couldn't hit; and while his walks are down so are his Ks, so he found a better balance. I don't know whether Collins' Ks are largely swinging are looking, but let him find the balance...I hope no one tells him to start hacking. Good plate patience is a nice place to start.

To some extent the Sox are anti-walk. The macro evidence is just too strong - 20th or worse since 2010. They were okay in the early naughts and when Thome was on the team, but since 2001, they've been in the top half of the league in walking 3 times, peaking out in 2001 (Williams' first year) at #7. Walks are kind of the heartbeat of analytics - where it all began - and it's not coincidental that the Sox are also at the bottom in analytics.

And then there is the micro evidence. Abreu basically stopped taking walks; Narvaez, the team's best walker, shipped out of town. And others.

Last edited by Tragg; 09-10-2019 at 05:08 PM.
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  #25  
Old 09-10-2019, 06:15 PM
RCWHITESOX RCWHITESOX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoSox2K3 View Post
0.019!


Why give Yermin Mercedes some at bats when we've got Palka! Maybe he can get hot and raise his average to .100.
Yeah and he still has a job “unbelievable “ The Sox can show him along with Detwiller, Engel, Cordell, and Covey the door!
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  #26  
Old 09-10-2019, 10:36 PM
TDog TDog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tragg View Post
...
And then there is the micro evidence. Abreu basically stopped taking walks; Narvaez, the team's best walker, shipped out of town. And others.

Abreau would walk more if you hit him in front of Engel. He's walking less now as he has more protection in the lineup. Ideally, you don't want your top RBI man walking.
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  #27  
Old 09-13-2019, 11:24 AM
A. Cavatica A. Cavatica is offline
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No comment on the Palk infield smash yesterday? Raised his average all the way from .018 to .035.
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  #28  
Old 09-13-2019, 12:38 PM
TomBradley72 TomBradley72 is offline
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There's a reason Palka was available on waivers before 2018.

A nice season in 2018 (even though plenty of holes underneath, couldn't hit LHP, didn't draw walks). Only hit .240, 153 K to 30 walks, .570 OPS vs. LHP.

Can't play defense- 27 yo- AAAA player at best- not part of the rebuild at all.

His swing has looked very long and slow all season.
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  #29  
Old 09-13-2019, 02:27 PM
A. Cavatica A. Cavatica is offline
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I was actually sad to see the hit because I wanted him to hit his number (18).
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  #30  
Old 09-14-2019, 08:24 PM
A. Cavatica A. Cavatica is offline
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Palka starting tonight in right field. Nonsense.
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