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  1. twinsfan34's Avatar
    Can any of those HRs be traced to actual MLB pitching, instead of guys just trying to make it?

    e.g. a HR off of Adam Wainwright matters more than 5 homers off AAAA talent.

    Be curious how that translates. Even so, a very small sample size.
  2. johnnydakota's Avatar
    Would be nice to have other options in the wings , other then Herrmann and Fryer.
    By signing Garza , that would make Correia avalible to trade ,and coming off Kevins career year
    this is the time to trade him. 2 catcher who come to mind are of course Johnny Monnel and Stassi from Huston. Im sure there are others who would fit the bill, but the Idea is to have more then Plan A and hope
  3. stringer bell's Avatar
    I'd certainly like to see Pinto start the season as the Twins regular catcher, but I won't be overly concerned if Suzuki starts the season getting most of the starts. Pinto has a bit of work to do, having played just a month in Rochester. I hope he starts the season with the Twins, but if he doesn't, good play at Rochester will get him back to Minnesota soon enough.

    It's a long season, first of all, and secondly, everyone will get a chance to play and if Pinto is better, I trust he'll get plenty of work.
  4. Brad Swanson's Avatar
    Excellent analysis, as usual. I'm not excited about seeing Suzuki as the starter, but hopefully Pinto will be dynamic at AAA and force his way into the starting lineup.
  5. jtkoupal's Avatar
    These stats can be flukey with not much sample size. However, it is clear that Butera is a better catcher than anyone else that we have had recently. The point that you mentioned about Butera warranting a decent prospect in return is interesting. If we were to trade Doumit, we would get very little unless we sweetened the deal.

    To a point, I agree with your claim that teams are overlooking a catcher's hitting attributes and looking at their defense/game management. Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh are two very good examples. However, St. Louis has the best catcher in baseball, offensively and defensively, and they are in the World Series.
  6. jorgenswest's Avatar
    The Dodgers entered this season trading for Ramon Hernandez. At the time if his release, he was their best hitting catcher by OPS. He is also a historically poor receiver. Yeager referenced this skill as they changed from Hernandez to Federowicz.

    The Dodgers have shown with their Hernandez, Federowicz and Butera roster decisions that they have shifted in how they value defense at catcher. That shift happened after the start of this season.

    I am am not sure how Ellis measures up. There is some info in the link below

    Source

    Studying the art of pitch framing by catchers such as Francisco Cervelli, Chris Stewart, Jose Molina, and others - Grantland

    Back to the Twins...

    Do they need to make a similar shift?
    Updated 10-20-2013 at 07:34 PM by jorgenswest
  7. USAFChief's Avatar
    Deleted.
    Updated 10-20-2013 at 03:42 PM by USAFChief (Faulty memory)
  8. The Wise One's Avatar
    Kershaw's pitches would appear to have much more movement than Wacha's which could lead to more balls being called. But umpires watch the catcher not the pitch.
  9. Willihammer's Avatar
    Last night was a case in point. Kershaw lost some calls on good pitches. Whereas Wacha, with one or two exceptions, didn't. Wacha also appears to have gotten a couple extra out of zone strike calls.





    Could have been home field advantage, hitter bias, etc. If you looked closely though, you could see Ellis did the exact same head ducking as Doumit. Wouldn't surprise me to see Butters taking over next year.
  10. jorgenswest's Avatar
    I am not sure why a Butera is almost a run better than Doumit. It isn't Pavano though. Pavano pitched very poorly in 2012 in a injury shortened season.

    The Twins need to assess how much of that run and how much is due to the skill of the catcher. One run is huge. A half a run is huge. The difference between Minnesota and the top pitching and defense in the AL in 1.17 runs. They were .57 away from the average pitching and defense.

    Doumit caught around 100 games the last two seasons. He wasn't the cause of the poor pitching. His defense made a bad situation much worse. I think the a Twins would have been better off making a bad situation a little better.
    Updated 10-19-2013 at 06:14 PM by jorgenswest
  11. Oldgoat_MN's Avatar
    Excellent post jorganswest!

    Very interesting how many teams seem to be ignoring a catcher's ability at the plate. If you believe in some of these newer ideas then it makes sense to me if:
    you spend millions for pitchers
    you consider pitching to be the most important position in a given game
    you want to give the pitcher every possible advantage to make your team successful


    This is still evolving, though some teams (as you point out) are embracing this approach to their catchers. Hitting is clearly secondary.

    I'm not saying Mauer isn't a good to excellent catcher. Butera's stats are skewed in that he caught Pavano when Pavano was our ace. More research required before I could manage to draw a conclusion.

    (and I bet other team fans are jealous when Mauer steps to the plate, too)
    Updated 10-19-2013 at 02:22 PM by Oldgoat_MN
  12. jorgenswest's Avatar
    I don't think the Twins get optimal use of platoon advantage. I was surprised to see their position and acknowledged that they have several switch hitters.

    Gardenhire may have been able to take the current roster and get a few more wins. Different roster construction may have allowed more. I think the Indians and A's position on the list was intentional on their part. In the Indians case it will be the difference in making the playoffs.
  13. old nurse's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by AM.
    Lefty-leaning line-ups will also gain a bigger platoon advantage. Switch hitters get 100% platoon advantage, lefties get 70%, righties get 30%.

    So the Twins gain advantage by batting lefties and switch hitters, although we know that they never platoon.
    It depends on how loose your definition of platoon is. There are outfielders and backup catchers that rarely see left handed pitching. Plouffe's days off are against right handed pitching.
  14. AM.'s Avatar
    Lefty-leaning line-ups will also gain a bigger platoon advantage. Switch hitters get 100% platoon advantage, lefties get 70%, righties get 30%.

    So the Twins gain advantage by batting lefties and switch hitters, although we know that they never platoon.
  15. jorgenswest's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim H
    I appreciate the work that went into this post. I am afraid that what I take away from it is that if you have good hitters, platoon advantage doesn't matter. Also getting platoon advantage doesn't necessarily make you a good hitting team. Most of the teams near the top of your list in platoon advantage aren't really that good of hitting teams.
    I should have added runs scored rank.

    Cleveland and Oakland are third and fourth in runs scored. They may not have several great individual hitters but as a group they score a lot of runs. Boston is first. Baltimore fifth. They all get better than average platoon advantage. Detroit is second in runs scored and the only one in the top five that get below league average platoon advantage.
    Updated 09-28-2013 at 01:42 PM by jorgenswest
  16. Jim H's Avatar
    I appreciate the work that went into this post. I am afraid that what I take away from it is that if you have good hitters, platoon advantage doesn't matter. Also getting platoon advantage doesn't necessarily make you a good hitting team. Most of the teams near the top of your list in platoon advantage aren't really that good of hitting teams.
  17. jorgenswest's Avatar
    You caused me to check...

    Josmil Pinto 5'11"
    Chris Herrmann 6'0"
    Matthew Koch 6'0"

    I hope you are correct.

    Doumit is 6'1" so there is skill involved in this other than height. Height helps. You can't teach Joe to be 5'11".
  18. Willihammer's Avatar
    I wouldn't doubt its harder for an umpire to stare over a 6' 5" frame than a 6 foot one.

    According to umpire.org:

    A major error umpires make is that their head is too low.* Thus, they cannot see the outside corner of the plate because the catcher’s head is in the way. The bottom of the chin should be no lowerthan the top of the catcher’s helmet. If the catcher lines up inside then the height of the head may be even higher.
    Emphasis mine.

    Shorter catchers would be able to crouch lower, allowing umpires to crouch lower, giving them a better view of low pitches and presumably call more strikes down there.
  19. Oldgoat_MN's Avatar
    I agree that Mauer's value is greatest when he is behind the plate. I expect that he is working on framing as part of his effort to be the best that he can be. At least I hope so.

    One thing that is interesting to me is that the Molina brothers are 5'11", 5'11" and 6'0".
    Hank Conger, rated #1 for framing so far this year, is 6'1".
    Lucroy, who they also chat up, is 6'0".

    Is it more difficult for a tall man, such as Mauer, to make those borderline pitches look like strikes?
  20. jdotmcmahon's Avatar
    Moving Mauer to first base before it's necessary eliminates the singular advantage the Twins have at any position on the diamond right now. He is a solid-average framer and he's throwing out runners as well as he has in his career right now, with no injuries to speak of. He needs to stay behind the dish as long as he can do it effectively to maximize his value.
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