Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from joel49. Show joel49's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Anyone care to revisit this subject given our anemic offense and number of K's during the current nine game losing streak?  Something certainly has to be done differently or we will be buried long before the AS break.

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  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from ctredsoxfanhugh. Show ctredsoxfanhugh's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    I'm a stats guy, and almost a weekly visit to Mohegan Sun.  You can usually find me there playing black Jack.  I love cards, I don't count cards because I don't have the attention span to talk to someone and keep tally but I play perfect strategy.  You're odds are just about 50/50 playing perfect strategy black jack but there is a huge variance.  Even people who know how to count cards come in with huge bankrolls to endure losses because they know the game results will vary.

    If the book tells you to hit here and stay there in game you end up busting when you should hit and losing when you should stay.  Point is the best players are the ones who make the same decision every time.  If you don't buy insurance you should always not buy insurance.  If you split 8's you shouldn't' stop just because you lost the last two times, people who change their strategy constantly are the ones who usually lose big sums of money and I've seen some people dragged out of the casino screaming.

    Point is, working the count and being patient at the plate is a time tested proven strategy.  Just because it isn't working right now doesn't mean they should change their philosophy.  If the Sox start swinging at every first pitch I seriously doubt the results will be any different.

    Sometimes there isn't a silver bullet.  We can't just trade are way back to the playoffs right now, and we can't just start swinging the bats differently and change the outcome.  If this team invests smartly, develops players better than most, make trades out of good fit and value and not panic etc etc etc over the long run they will be a good organization with good results.  Will they suffer set backs? bad seasons? etc etc etc yes they will.  But overall they will be fine. 

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Joebreidey. Show Joebreidey's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to joel49's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    Anyone care to revisit this subject given our anemic offense and number of K's during the current nine game losing streak?  Something certainly has to be done differently or we will be buried long before the AS break.

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    'Doing something differently is farily meaningless.  Does 'different' mean JBJ trying to hit the ball out every time?  Swinging at ball 1?  The only thing you can do is to make the best possible decision every time.


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  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from joel49. Show joel49's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to Joebreidey's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    In response to joel49's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    Anyone care to revisit this subject given our anemic offense and number of K's during the current nine game losing streak?  Something certainly has to be done differently or we will be buried long before the AS break.

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    'Doing something differently is farily meaningless.  Does 'different' mean JBJ trying to hit the ball out every time?  Swinging at ball 1?  The only thing you can do is to make the best possible decision every time.


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    I think it is obvious what I am saying, Joe.  For JBJ it means swinging at strikes, not watching them go by until he is 0-2 and swinging at a pitch out of the zone like he just did in his last AB. Prior to his pitiful AB, Sizemore stroked a first pitch double.  All I am saying is change things up.  Don't be so damned predictable.

     

     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from dgalehouse. Show dgalehouse's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    I think the key is to be flexible. Make adjustments. Don't be too predictable. Can't just have a one size fits all system. Have to make the pitcher think a little. 

    Stabbed by Foulke.

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from joel49. Show joel49's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Any of the naysayers starting to come around yet?  



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xGUBMmmQWM" rel="nofollow">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xGUBMmmQWM

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from Bill-806. Show Bill-806's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to joel49's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    Yes, it has worked in the past.  Not so much anymore.  Our pitchers are constantly victimized by opposition batters swinging at first pitch fastballs.  Other than Ortiz and AJ, our hitters generally pretty much start their AB's down 0-1 letting the best pitch of the AB (usually a FB down the middle) go by and then grounding out meekly or striking out on off speed stuff or pitches on the corners. Pedey's taking every first pitch and most first strike pitches has worked for him in the past. Not so this season.  He (as well as others) seems to be grounding into double plays more than ever, and the runners left in scoring position stat is over the top. Time to switch things up. Stop giving the pitcher those 0-1 counts, especially the control pitchers.

     




    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xGUBMmmQWM" rel="nofollow">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xGUBMmmQWM" rel="nofollow">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xGUBMmmQWM

    [/QUOTE]Also, we no longer have the base speed that puts pressure on the pitcher, catcher & the fielders !!!!  We as a team, just is not hitting......


     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from royf19. Show royf19's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    I have a bigger problem of not swinging at strike three, rather than not swinging at the first pitch.

     

     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from dgalehouse. Show dgalehouse's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    I could be wrong, but it seems to me that some teams are starting to get away from the working the count philosophy, at least somewhat. I think there is a time to be patient, but also a time to be more aggressive. A good OBP doesn't do you any good if you are not scoring runs. Despite what some say, a hit is usually better than a walk. And not too many guys are good two strike hitters. Ask any pitcher and they will tell you they love to get an easy strike one on the batter. Baseball is always a game of adjustments. You should not become too wedded to one method. Teddy Ballgame said it all. "Get a good pitch to hit."  Sometimes that will be the first pitch. 

    Stabbed by Foulke.

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from joel49. Show joel49's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to royf19's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    I have a bigger problem of not swinging at strike three, rather than not swinging at the first pitch.

     

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    No argument from me on that score, Roy.   We seem to do a lot of that.   Good win tonight, though, a game in which working the count was a factor in getting Sanchez out of the game.  Sometimes it's the right move.  But lately (as in most of the season thus far) not so much.

     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from joel49. Show joel49's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    I could be wrong, but it seems to me that some teams are starting to get away from the working the count philosophy, at least somewhat. I think there is a time to be patient, but also a time to be more aggressive. A good OBP doesn't do you any good if you are not scoring runs. Despite what some say, a hit is usually better than a walk. And not too many guys are good two strike hitters. Ask any pitcher and they will tell you they love to get an easy strike one on the batter. Baseball is always a game of adjustments. You should not become too wedded to one method. Teddy Ballgame said it all. "Get a good pitch to hit."  Sometimes that will be the first pitch. 

    Stabbed by Foulke.

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    Indeed, Denny.  Did you catch ESPN's crew and Verlander talking about how blown away they were that Pedey swung at a first pitch during Saturday's game?  I thought that was pretty telling.  Verlander pretty much admitted that he expects Pedey to take that first one.  Have to keep them guessing.

     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from slasher9. Show slasher9's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    drove the pitch count up quick last night vs Anibal.  edit:  naps dinger was off anibal

     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from dgalehouse. Show dgalehouse's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to joel49's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    I could be wrong, but it seems to me that some teams are starting to get away from the working the count philosophy, at least somewhat. I think there is a time to be patient, but also a time to be more aggressive. A good OBP doesn't do you any good if you are not scoring runs. Despite what some say, a hit is usually better than a walk. And not too many guys are good two strike hitters. Ask any pitcher and they will tell you they love to get an easy strike one on the batter. Baseball is always a game of adjustments. You should not become too wedded to one method. Teddy Ballgame said it all. "Get a good pitch to hit."  Sometimes that will be the first pitch. 

    Stabbed by Foulke.

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    Indeed, Denny.  Did you catch ESPN's crew and Verlander talking about how blown away they were that Pedey swung at a first pitch during Saturday's game?  I thought that was pretty telling.  Verlander pretty much admitted that he expects Pedey to take that first one.  Have to keep them guessing.

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    [object HTMLDivElement]   I am sure Pedroia thought to himself:  I am going up there and be more aggressive this time. He should do it more often.

     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from ctredsoxfanhugh. Show ctredsoxfanhugh's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Overall, there is NOTHING wrong with the patient approach, and should not be dropped.  Does that mean you shouldn't swing at the first pitch every once in a while to switch it up and jump on a fastball? no...you should jump on that first pitch every once in a while.  Mix it up and stay balanced, but overall it is better to make the pitcher work.  You drive him out of the game sooner, you put more stress on a bullpen which can help you later in a series, and you see everything the pitcher has...the more pitches you see...the more of an advantage a batter has the next time up.  With hitters...it's all about seeing pitches. 

    But that isn't the problem, the Sox being too patient is not the problem. 

     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from crazy-world-of-troybrown. Show crazy-world-of-troybrown's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Ted Williams was not an advocate at swinging at first pitch. But, he was a .344 lifetime hitter. You can do that. Also situations in game you should swing at 1st Pitch. Pitcher struggling throwing strikes, men on base, when Pitcher really needs to get ahead of count, and will probably throw you a fastball, easier to guess at.
    Patience is good, but you also have to have the aggressive approach too. Hitting is a lot above the shoulders.
    Todays Pitchers really do not know the importance of first pitch strikes. That's why all the patience.

     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from maxbialystock. Show maxbialystock's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Some good comments in this thread.  Some comments:  Pierzynski doesn't work the count and swings at 57% of the pitches, most in MLB, thrown to him, and it works for him. 

    By and large, however, I agree with keeping the current approach which is working the count.  This approach becomes even more effective when the Sox batter can foul off a couple of pitches. 

    That said, there is a tendency by some Sox hitters to become overly passive--or picky.  As royf19 says, it is very irritating when a Sox hitter takes a called third strike.  Very.  I believe it is correct to say that Ted Williams used to choke up slightly on the bat when he had 2 strikes because he believed this would help him make contact and avoid striking out.  A few of our batters have decided they simply don't need to swing at anything they don't like, regardless of the count.  Several times--not often, I grant you--we have seen players strike out without swinging the bat, once or twice on three pitches. 

     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from joel49. Show joel49's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to maxbialystock's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    Some good comments in this thread.  Some comments:  Pierzynski doesn't work the count and swings at 57% of the pitches, most in MLB, thrown to him, and it works for him. 

    By and large, however, I agree with keeping the current approach which is working the count.  This approach becomes even more effective when the Sox batter can foul off a couple of pitches. 

    That said, there is a tendency by some Sox hitters to become overly passive--or picky.  As royf19 says, it is very irritating when a Sox hitter takes a called third strike.  Very.  I believe it is correct to say that Ted Williams used to choke up slightly on the bat when he had 2 strikes because he believed this would help him make contact and avoid striking out.  A few of our batters have decided they simply don't need to swing at anything they don't like, regardless of the count.  Several times--not often, I grant you--we have seen players strike out without swinging the bat, once or twice on three pitches. 

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    Case in point, Max, with regard to Williams choking up on the bat with two strikes.  Last night Kruk was commenting on how JBJ needed to shorten his swing and just try to make contact with RISP in a tight game. JBJ proceeded to swing from his heels on every swing, and of course, struck out swinging mightily.  He should be watching Holt's every at bat at this point.

     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from dgalehouse. Show dgalehouse's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Nothing wrong with working the count if it means not swinging at pitches out of the zone, prolonging the at bat by fouling off tough borderline pitches, that sort of thing. But if it means constantly taking a strike one fastball right down the middle, count me out. 

    Stabbed by Foulke.

     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from crazy-world-of-troybrown. Show crazy-world-of-troybrown's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    JBJ 4 at bats saw 22 pitches K'd 3 times
    Holt 5 at bats saw 18 pitches 4 hits 0 K's.

    JBJ absolutely needs to change his approach. Pitchers are taking advantage of it. At this point in his career he is overmatched against Major League Pitchers.

     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Nobody would think to question the 'working the count' philosophy in a year when the team leads the majors in runs scored, like 2013.  When your run scoring falls off a cliff, everything comes under question.

     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    In response to crazy-world-of-troybrown's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    JBJ 4 at bats saw 22 pitches K'd 3 times
    Holt 5 at bats saw 18 pitches 4 hits 0 K's.

    JBJ absolutely needs to change his approach. Pitchers are taking advantage of it.

    [/QUOTE]

    I think a lot of those pitches for JBJ are swings and misses, aren't they?  That's not working the count, that's just getting beat.

     

     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from crazy-world-of-troybrown. Show crazy-world-of-troybrown's posts

    Re: Time to abandon the working the count philosophy?

    Your probably right. He's got to start thinking he's not facing Minor Leaguers anymore. Just start making good contact, and cut down on the K's.

     
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