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  • Gleeman and the Geek, Ep 87: Opening Day

    John and Aaron talk about loving Opening Day at the ballpark and on the couch, the Minnesota Twins' lowest expectations ever, moving Joe Mauer up and Brian Dozier down in the batting order, what to do with Justin Morneau, appreciating the greatness of Johan Santana, bullpen and bench usage issues, finding what you need on Ticket King, exactly how bad the rotation can get, and why baseball is so damn comforting. Here are:

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    This article was originally published in blog: Gleeman and the Geek, Ep 87: Opening Day started by John Bonnes
    Comments 47 Comments
    1. glunn's Avatar
      glunn -
      Quote Originally Posted by Shane Wahl View Post
      The Twins could surprise, certainly. I think 70 wins is my over/under. That's a four-game improvement from last season. Health plus an improved rotation could push that further to 72+.
      I am hoping that you are correct. I bet the over in Vegas with 68 as the break point.
    1. Shane Wahl's Avatar
      Shane Wahl -
      Quote Originally Posted by PseudoSABR View Post
      Honestly, I agree. And I get the disdain, but to be fair that probably won't play well here.

      Many sabermetricians remind me of that hipster that brags about reading Socrates, yet fails to discern the difference between knowledge and wisdom.

      I think this is a sloppy comparison. There are real technical and philosophical problems with many of the metrics sabermetricians espouse. From simply adding onbase percentage to slugging to the mysteriously derived coefficients that some metrics employ--this is hardly science. Not to mention defensive metrics. Sabermetrics is burgeoning in terms of its capacity for precision, much of it remains totally convoluted and very flawed. I scoff at the notion that sabermetrics is somehow as elegant or as scientifically hard-won as evolution.

      Sure statistical analysis is valuable, but only if its put into a larger context in which we can interpret that data. We should be guarded about anything that claims to totalize, anything that claims to quantify which before was abstract.
      You don't think I qualified the comparison enough?
    1. Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
      Brock Beauchamp -
      Quote Originally Posted by Shane Wahl View Post
      You don't think I qualified the comparison enough?
      You did. There are valid comparisons in how the two are received, as opposing viewpoints are often nothing more than a plugging of the ears and yelling "LALALALALALALA" over the speaker. It has little to do with the theory/metric themselves, more how they're "refuted" (basically, without logic-based debate of the information).

      Of course, this does not apply to everyone. There are weaknesses that can be debated about both but that's generally not what happens. An example of this is USAChief, who has huge issues with WAR but instead of just saying "that's BS", he actually gets into the nitty-gritty of why he thinks it's BS. I may not agree with him but he's definitely putting thought into his reasoning why it's a bad metric.
    1. Shane Wahl's Avatar
      Shane Wahl -
      True, Brock. And I have far less of an issue with anti-WAR people than those who will say "OPS doesn't actually measure anything" (yes, I have read that before).
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      I was thinking I would listen to the podcast on my drive to Cedar Rapids this afternoon, thinking I'd try it again now that there might be some new topics... Reading this thread, I think I'll just listen to music.

      A couple of thoughts on the topics addressed above:

      Mauer batting second has always made sense. Mauer batting third has always made sense. As Gardy said in his pre-game presser, "I'd like to bat him 1st, 2nd and 3rd, but they only let me bat him in one spot." I think that the hope is that Brian Dozier will be able to relax and adjust better by hitting 8th in the lineup early in the season and be what he was in 2011 when he hit for average, took a lot of walks, was able to do all the things a prototypical #2 hitter should do. Once he can show that consistently for a little while, it would be great to move him to the #2 spot and slide everyone else down one spot and extend the lineup. That should be, and likely is, the hope and plan. But until there, Mauer is a great #2 hitter and it makes sense for the early season.

      Regarding Wilkin Ramirez getting that bases loaded, down 3-0 at bat, it only made sense. Seriously, if he's not going to pinch hit in that situation, they might as well have Butera sitting on the roster. Ramirez hit something like 15 homers in half of a season in Rochester last year. He's fully healthy. He's still just 27. He's a team-first guy. He took a and aggressive, yet patient plate appearance. He just didn't come through on that occurrence. It was the right move, and hopefully Gardy would do the same thing in that same situation if it comes up today.

      The "I'm right, you're wrong. There's only one way to think about baseball topics" thing bothers me to no end. Baseball is a game, played by humans. Managers should go by gut feel sometimes. In my opinion, there are no absolutes in baseball, and there shouldn't be. That's what makes the game great.
    1. Willihammer's Avatar
      Willihammer -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      The "I'm right, you're wrong. There's only one way to think about baseball topics" thing bothers me to no end.
      Did someone say that? I have read through the entire thread and don't see it.

      Or are you just railing against logic or mathematics based debate in general?
    1. mike wants wins's Avatar
      mike wants wins -
      Once again, Seth and I are in total agreement.
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