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Our lineup vs. the rest of baseball


Dochalo

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Batting order - wRC+ - league rank

 

1st - 74 - 29th

2nd - 148 - 3rd

3rd - 169 - 2nd  (Trout 206, Pujols 144)

4th - 90 - 30th 

5th - 97 - 19th

6th - 94 - 17th 

7th - 93 - 8th

8th - 53 - 28th tied (bear in mind that the team below them is the cubs who bat their pitcher 8th)

9th - 61 - 9th of 15.  

 

So at 3 lineup spots we have the worst or 2nd worst production in the league.  

 

We are second and third at two spot because of Trout.  

 

We are at the margin of the mid and lower third at 3 other spots.  

 

We have one spot in the order that hasn't been occupied by Trout where we are in the upper third.  

 

 

This team has effectively had one offensive weapon.  The stats show that Trout has a WAR of around 7?  I wonder if we'd be 10-12 games worse than we are now if we didn't have him.  

 

 

 

 

 

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Managers are responsible for how their team performs.

We know this is true but come on. If people want to get on Scioscia get on him not for the wins and losses but for execution. Can they run bases effectively? No, that's on Sosh. Can they get the run in from third with less than two outs consistently? No, that's on Sosh. Can they sacrifice effectively, that would be on Sosh. But to expect any manager to have this group of guys, the same group we bitch about every single day in the game day thread, playing consistently good, it's not going to happen. Who here thinks there's a manager out there that can make Gia good with the glove? Make Albert play younger? Make Cron more consistent. The blame pie is not 75-25 on Scioscia. It's probably 75-25 roster construction and talent.

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We know this is true but come on. If people want to get on Scioscia get on him not for the wins and losses but for execution. Can they run bases effectively? No, that's on Sosh. Can they get the run in from third with less than two outs consistently? No, that's on Sosh. Can they sacrifice effectively, that would be on Sosh. But to expect any manager to have this group of guys, the same group we bitch about every single day in the game day thread, playing consistently good, it's not going to happen. Who here thinks there's a manager out there that can make Gia good with the glove? Make Albert play younger? Make Cron more consistent. The blame pie is not 75-25 on Scioscia. It's probably 75-25 roster construction and talent.

My comment was just poking a stick at TD.

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There is some legit stuff to criticize Scioscia about:

 

- The contact play...he will forever be associated with this mind-nubmingly stupid move.  Runner at 3B, ball hit to the left, that runner is going regardless of odds of which he will actually succeed in scoring.  The thought behind this is that MLB quality defenders, who have played baseball all their lives, would somehow be surprised that the runner at 3B would attempt to score and would be so flumuxed by this event that they would forget how to grip the ball and make an errant throw.  Surprisingly, this is rarely the case.  Mike claims to have evidentiary support for inflicting this move on his various rosters.  Also, he still gets confused by the arrival of gift baskets from opposing managers post game.

 

- Platoons...not that actual platoons are employed at times but how and with whom.  From Kendrys Morales to Kole Calhoun, productive players, predominately rookies, were paired with others for reasons seemingly as simple as "lefthanded hitters usually struggle against lefthanded pitchers" despite actual numbers supporting the alternative. 

 

- Bunting...in the 3rd inning...using a position player...in an AL game.  'Nuff said.  Granted, the player was usually Mathis but it also begged the question as to why one of the worst hitting catchers in the history of the sport was allowed any playing time at all apart from the occassional "breather" start for an actual MLB catcher.  The only answer is it was a love affair...Mathis was Scioscia's Marion Davies.

 

There are more, feel free to add your own.  However, despite being at a seemingly tactitcal disadvantage before putting on his spandex-supported baseball uni, he seems to get enough out of his players to make them a successful group. 

 

The roster rebuild was left incomplete by Dipoto's departure with the pitching refreshed but the offense stale and rotting.  Can't see a way to blame the aging, quickly declining Pujols and his penchant for rally killing AB's on Scioscia. 

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Lots of work to do this off-season. I would hope the team gives serious consideration to signing a legit outfielder (Heyward, Upton) and second-baseman (Kendrick).

And as underwhelming as Freese is, we see just how bad this lineup misses him when he is gone. He should probably be brought back too.

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Lots of work to do this off-season. I would hope the team gives serious consideration to signing a legit outfielder (Heyward, Upton) and second-baseman (Kendrick).

And as underwhelming as Freese is, we see just how bad this lineup misses him when he is gone. He should probably be brought back too.

 

Team also needs a catcher in the off-season. Iannetta is a FA and isn't worth re-signing and Carlos Perez is not a starter.

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Another angle on this is to look at projected fWAR for the entire season. Let's say that:

 

0-1: replacement player/scrub

1-3: solid regular

3-5: borderline star

5-7: star

7+: superstar

 

The Angels have played 112 games, or 69%. The multiplier is 1.45 x current fWAR for projected season total. A couple caveats: Clearly this isn't a very accurate way to do this, namely because it doesn't take into account who is injured, and the fact is players like Murphy and DeJesus should be expected to do better than they have. Also, WAR is a poor stat for DHs because they're called upon to do one thing and one thing only: hit, while WAR penalizes them for defense. But all of this does tell us something. Let's take a look...

 

Top 10 players by fWAR:

2014: 8.0, 4.7, 4.3, 3.8, 3.0, 2.9, 2.1, 2.1, 1.2, 0.5

2015: 9.4, 4.4, 2.9, 2.0, 1.9, 0.9, 0.7, 0.4, 0.4, 0.4

 

Right there you can see the problem. Trout is even better this year, but the problem is the "mid-section." Where in 2014 there were fully eight players with at least 2 WAR, this year the Angels are projected to only have 4. Last year's team was very balanced, with no bad players in the lineup.

 

The main difference? Well, Trout and Calhoun are actually better and Pujols is projected to be exactly the same (2.9). But the Angels have Howie Kendrick's 4.7 replaced with Gio's 0.9, a loss of 3.8 WAR. Aybar has dropped from 4.3 to 1.9, a loss of 2.4. And Iannetta has dropped from 3.0 to 0.7, a drop of 2.3. So in those three players, the Angels have a loss of 8.5 fWAR, a huge fall-off.

 

The loss of Howie is huge. And Aybar and Iannetta have had bad years. But let's be honest: all three played above their career norms last year. It was Howie's second best season according to fWAR, Iannetta's second best, and Aybar's best. All three were due to come back down to earth a bit.

 

But yeah, the big problem with this team is that after Trout, Calhoun, and to a lesser degree Pujols, the lineup stinks.

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Didn't we win in 2002 because we had great offense, great bullpen and crappy starting pitching?

 

 

To amplify, you need at least 3 of the following four to win it all:  great offense, great starting pitching, good bullpen, and good defense.  This year I would say we have a poor offense, very good starting pitching, a mediocre bullpen, and an average defense.

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