Thursday, April 11, 2013

Fun with Stizzles

I just realized that my free trial of the Baseball Reference play index is going to expire on Monday.  Very sad.  Although, if you read this post, you already know that I am planning to purchase a subscription anyway.  Happy times!  Now that you can relax with this knowledge, let's find some fun stats and occurrences and seasons and whatever.  Oh, and I apologize for the word "stizzles" in the title.  It should read "stats" but you know how touchy autocorrect can be.


Round Numbers

Round numbers are excellent.  

Del Ennis is the only player in MLB history to have a season where with 10 triples, 20 home runs and 30 doubles.  He also scored 90 runs.  However, he ruined everything by driving in 107 runs.  That kind of non-round numbering does not endear him to me.  If he had ended with 7 fewer RBI, he'd be my favorite player of all time.  Round!

Roy Smalley had 80 walks and 80 strikeouts in 1979.  This is fitting because he also has 80 hair.  Round!

In 1993, Mike Bordick had 10 stolen bases and was caught stealing 10 times, for a nice, terrible, round 50% success rate.  He also scored 60 runs, walked 60 times, had 170 total bases and had 10 sacrifice bunts.  His WAR that season was 2.0 and he ended his career with exactly 1500 hits, 500 walks and 800 strikeouts.  He hit .260 for his career.  Round!

In 1973, Dick Woodson had 10 wins and posted a 100 ERA+.  Round! 

Josh Collmenter went 10-10 with 100 strikeouts in 2011.  How did I not know this?  He also had zero complete games!  Vida Blue posted the same numbers in 1986 and he also hit zero batters.  Round!

Ok, hold on, here comes the hotsteppa.  In 1990 (round number), Jeffrey Leonard hit 10 home runs, 20 doubles, 0 triples, had 120 hits and as a result had 170 total bases.  He also grounded into an astounding 20 double plays.  But get this:  he wore jersey number 00!  00!!  00!!!  His WAR that season:  --1.8.  Perhaps round numbers aren't all that valuable. 


The Greatest Blown Save of all-time

On June 11, 1963, the Boston Red Sox played the Detroit Tigers.  In the bottom of the 7th, Dick Radatz replaced Wilbur Wood with one out and a runner on first.  The Red Sox were leading 3-2.  Radatz struck out the first batter he faced, then issued a walk and a single, allowing his inherited runner to score.  He got the next batter and the game went on.  From there, Radatz pitched 8 more innings, giving up just 2 hits and striking out 11 total batters.  The Red Sox hung four runs on the Tigers in the top of the 15th and Radatz was allowed to complete the game in the bottom of the inning.  He ended the game with a blown save and a win.  Not the way they drew it up, but not bad either. 

Goin' Streaking!

Old School is 10 years old. 

Last season, Kris Medlen had a huge breakout.  However, if you are a fan of odd streaks, you probably had already heard of him.  Medlen had exactly 5 strikeouts in 5 straight games.  This is a feat that has only been accomplished 8 times.  Pete Harnisch did it twice.  Kris Benson joins Kris Medlen as the two guys who accomplished this feat with a misspelled name.

Back in 2000, Scott Williamson struck out exactly three batters in five straight save opportunities.  He got four saves over that stretch, totally blowing the first game in this streak by issuing 5 walks in his appearance.  In the other four, he only walked one.  He went to Friendswood High School, which sounds friendly.

Bob Gibson has the longest streak without a pickoff.  He never had one in his career.  So, his streak sits at 482 straight starts without a pickoff.  The record stands and technically is still active, as he retired with the streak intact.  If he could just come back for 18 more starts, it would be a nice, even 500 starts.  Round!

Ken Ray did not strike out a batter in his first 13 appearances, back in 1999.  This is a record.  Ray posted a robust 8.74 ERA in his rookie season and then did not play in the Majors again until 2006, when he resurfaced with the Braves as Kwang the Ninja.

Carlos Quentin was hit by a pitch in a record six straight games.  Quentin always seems to have a look on his face as though he'd been hit by a pitch, so this is fitting.  F.P. Santangelo was hit by a pitch in four straight games and that was prior to anyone hearing him as an commentator.  I kid.

Julio Cruz

Julio Cruz entered the lineup in the 9-hole on May 8, 1984.  About a day later, he had completed 11 at bats, the most ever out of the 9 spot in the lineup.  The game went 18 innings that night, then was suspended until the next day.  After 7 more innings the following day, the game concluded when Harold Baines hit a walk-off home run.  Cruz went 1-11 with 2 strikeouts.  At least his team got the win.

Other Fun Stuff

I found something I am calling a xylophone game:  5IP, 4H, 3ER, 2K, 1BB, 0 HR.  It's only happened four times.  The last time was by Jimmy Jones on 9/24/1987.  He lost that game 5-4.  So...

Wilkin Ramirez reached on catcher's interference during Sunday's game against Baltimore.  This hadn't happened for a Twins player since 2008 when Brian Buscher reached in a September 16 game against the Angels.  When these guys enter the Twins' Hall of Fame together, they should both tell their story of reaching base in the oddest way possible.

No one walked more batters with the bases loaded than Nolan Ryan, who did so nine times.  Mitch Williams walked a batter with the bases loaded seven times.  I had the opportunity to look up how many innings each player pitched and found that Ryan threw 5386 innings and Williams threw 691.1 innings.  If you extrapolate, Williams would have walked a batter with the bases loaded 54 times if he had pitched as long as Ryan.  Or something like that. 

Cleatus Davidson stole a base in each of his first two MLB games.  He never stole another base and only played in 10 more games.  He ended his career with an OPS+ of -31.  This seems like a good place to stop.

The play index is entertaining.  I hope you enjoyed the exact same things I enjoy. 

Brad Swanson is.  Philosophy!

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