04 July 2007

Remember the Fourth

Once again the day is upon us for celebrating our country's birth and the ideas/beliefs with which she was founded. Now, as we all know, Key set sail to meet to the British in the Northern Chesapeake off the Baltimore Harbor. He was on a mission, under a flag of truce, to arrange a prisoner exchange with the blessing of James Madison. FSK's friend, an elderly doctor from Upper Marlboro, was captured under the charge of aiding American's in the arrest of British Soldiers. He was invited to dinner abound the flagship Minden to discuss the prisoner release. Also discussed were the war plans to take Baltimore. Because of this, they were not permitted to leave until the battle had been completed (who discusses war plans in front of the enemy?). The British attempted to skirt the western defense and make landfall, but were repulsed by the defenses of Baltimore (particularly a line of sunken ships). No one was really injured as the American guns lacked range and the British guns lacked accuracy. The Brits left September 14th, 1814.

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So, in honor of defense, let's go into former MLB consultant Dan Gassko's defense ratings for the Orioles. This data is a couple weeks old, but it is probably about as accurate now as it was then. The idea is basically looking at how often a player is able to make plays within the accepted range minus plays made by someone invading their range. For instance, if a left fielder is called off by a particularly rangey centerfielder . . . that data point is ignored. Out of zone plays are noted, but not typically included in these rough calculations. For instance, if you had two guys beside each other with great range, the opportunity to notch some out of zone plays would be reduced . . . where if you placed a rangey guy next to a statue . . . he would have more opportunities. Anyway, let's take a look:

C . . . sadly not enough data to qualify at this point
1B . . . Huff: -2 runs saved compared to average
2B . . . Roberts: 4 runs saved
3B . . . Mora: 0 RS
SS . . . Tejada: 8 RS
LF . . . Payton: -4 RS
CF . . . Patterson: -4 RS
RF . . . Markakis: 1 RS

So according to this measure, 3 runs have been saved. What to make of it? I'm not sure. 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and Right make sense to me. Tejada was having a better year than I thought. Payton and Patterson both getting minus notches is surprising to me. Payton may not have enough innings logged in for this to be a true indication of his ability. It would be interested to see how it plays out.

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