Unassisted double-play: 2 quick thoughts

Progression to the mean”

Last Saturday night was the last day in the month of August.  An historic month that saw a new low in Cardinals baseball.  Cardinals’ first-round draft pick, and 18th overall pick in the amateur draft, Pete Kozma set the new (low) record, and is now the not-so-proud owner of the lowest batting mark for a month in St. Louis Cardinals history at .062.  Not a typo.

This Cardinals franchise’s inception was 1892.  Let that sink in.

Coincidentally, that Saturday night, Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher, A.J. Burnett stepped up to the plate batting .063.  All he did was pick up his 2nd RBI of the season, and (obligatory statement warning!) “help his own cause” on the way to a 7-1 Pirate rout.  Burnett, who is in his age 36 season (Kozma is 25) now owns a batting mark of .077.

For all the buzzphrases we’re hearing these days, “regression to the mean” is used an awful lot.  Particularly among Cardinals fans for the past 5 months when talking about their expectations for this Pittsburgh ballclub.  Math demands it, right?  Hasn’t happened yet, and there’s less than a month to play.  Maybe this is who this Pirates team is.  Do those same people expect Kozma to “progress to the mean”?  Does math demand it?  Add an “-eny” and it sure does.

“Siegrist?  Out.”  (and his middle name is Ryan)

This man is disgusting.  While I will concede to those who would argue “small sample size”, there are some astonishing things going on here.  I’m just going to run down some bullet points, but the filth this man possesses is truly remarkable.  A few notable numbers from what we’ve seen out of him so far in 2013*:

  • Has struck out more than 1/3 of the batters he’s faced (121 BF, 44K)
  • In 32IP, he’s allowed just one HR, and a grand total of 2ER
  • His K/9 is north of 12 and K/BB is approaching 3
  • Scattering 10 hits over 34 appearances (fewer than 3/9IP), he boasts an ERA of 0.56, and a WHIP of 0.813

How he fares in higher-leverage situations may (or may not) keep the numbers on this path, but he has appeared in a couple of pressure situations here and there.  He’s seen a little action in the 8th or later, but those haven’t always been in close games.  And he’s come into close games, but those haven’t always been 8th or 9th inning appearances either.  It’s worth noting that his only loss came against the Pirates.  But that was one appearance out of 34 (before Tuesday night)–not too bad!

 

*Prior to last night’s game

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