Re: Here is a fact for those that love using Batting average as a guide to how good a player is
posted at 9/3/2013 9:02 PM EDT
BA is important, but I'll take a leadoff hitter with a .250 BA and .400 OBP over one with a .300 BA and a .350 OBP as long as the XBHs and SBs are pretty even.
moon - For 500 ABs, the extra 50 points equate to 25 extra hits. For a .250 BA player to have a .400 OBP, he would need 150+ BB. Do the math.
1) My argument was more theoretical. I used nice round numbers to make a point. The reality is somewhere inbetween, but what I'm trying to say is, I'd rather have a guy with a much better OBP than a much better BA. I realize that most great hitters have a high OBP as well, but if I had to sacrifice on one or the other, it would be BA.
2) Doing the math. If someone is batting 250 with 500 ABs, it means he is 125 for 500. To have a .400 OBP, he does not need 150 BBs; that would make him get on base 275 times in 650 PAs, which is a .423 OBP not .400. To get him to 400, he'd actually only need 125 BBS (125H+125BB = 250 H + BB / 625= .400)
I'm not saying these hitters are common: they are not, really, but they do exist, and if you just judged players by BA alone, these guys would be overlooked. Add to this the fact that some of these types might have a lot of power, and some pretty good offensive players would be overlooked.
Of course, in many situations a hit is better than a walk, but clearly a batter with 80 more BBs is better than a batter with just 40 or 50 more singles.
You make a 'POTENTIALLY' valid argument, but don't you think that someone with 25 extra hits would have some EXTRA XBH?
It's a hypothetical example. There are hitters with 25 extra singles than other and close to the same XBHs. It gets too complicated if you want to bring 3 variables into the equation, but of course XBHs are very important. BA does not show XBH value or BB value.
Wouldn't some of those 25 hits also come in situations where it would generate an an RBI where a walk wouldn't?
Probably yes, but wouldn't the extra walks keep innings going where the other guy makes an out, and more times on base leads to more runs scored- perhaps at the expense of less RBIs.
Lastly, check MLB.com, Baseball reference, etc. Because of the number of walks needed, in the history of baseball, there have only been a handful of players that have had a .250 or lower average (M. Bishop in 1930, Mickey Tettleton with 97 BB in 339AB and Gene Tenace with 124 BB in 424 AB) with an OBP over .400.
I think there may be more, but my point was theoretical. I could have said .275/.375 vs .300/.325 instead. There's plenty of examples similar to that. My point still stands.
These guys that you would prefer to have, they don't exist and if they did, they aren't leadoff hitters.
What's leadoff hitting have to do with it?
High OBP and high SLG are more valuable than high BA in every slot in the line-up.