Graph of the Intermittent Time Period

EDIT: There was a typographical error in the original post. This post has been edited to reflect the correct information.

After Kelly Johnson stole second base in the top of the third inning during tonight’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, I got the feeling that the Phillies haven’t been throwing out base-stealers all that often. I took a stroll over to Baseball Reference and found out that, unfortunately, is the case. Base-stealers are 18-for-22 running on the Phillies, a success rate of 82 percent. The league average stolen base success rate hovers in the 70-75 percent area.

Carlos Ruiz has been known as a solid defensive catcher, but that mostly comes from his great ability to block pitches in the dirt. Brian Schneider used to be quite good at catching runners, but given his age and significantly reduced playing time, his 21 percent caught stealing rate last year pales in comparison to his 37 percent career average.

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4 comments

  1. Fantusta

    April 26, 2011 10:31 PM

    It feels like Chooch doesn’t even have a chance most of the time, like they’re stealing off the pitchers.

  2. MplsPhilsFan

    April 27, 2011 07:11 AM

    That was my question also, how much of this can be attributed to the pitching staff, especially the young relievers that may not be as effective holding runners on first?

  3. John M

    April 27, 2011 08:55 AM

    I assume you posted before Schneider threw out Upton and Drew, so the numbers will be different now, right?

    Also, isn’t this the “small sample size” argument that is always made when people try to artificially use stats against sabermetrics? Seems as if we are OK using small sample sizes when it suits us, but argue against it when we don’t like the results.

    Thanks for all the insight and discussion starters!

  4. Bill Baer

    April 27, 2011 09:26 AM

    There were no conclusions made from the data, other than that Ruiz isn’t great at throwing out runners and that Schneider doesn’t have the gun he used to have, both of which are based more on previous years’ data.

    The problem with small sample sizes isn’t that they are small; it’s that people try to make conclusions with a high level of certainty, when the data has a lot of uncertainty due to the small sample size.

    And yeah, I posted this after the first stolen base during last night’s game, but I think the data is accurate since I updated twice, including once after Baseball Reference updated their database to include last night’s games.

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