Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Clutch or not: Papi vs. ARod

With a hat tip to the guys at RAB, they discussed an article from The Numbers Guy blog (Carl Bialik) at the WSJ. Bialik uses the miracle of small sample sizes to question the clutchness (and the perception of clutchness) for Big Papi and ARod. Funny how these things work.

In his last 16 postseason games, the New York Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez has collected eight hits in 56 at bats, with one home run and one run batted in. In his last 13 postseason games, Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz has 10 hits in 51 at bats, with no home runs and five runs batted in. Rodriguez is famously un-clutch; Ortiz famously clutch. Yet both have had ups and downs in their playoff careers, which provide too small a sample size to reach definitive conclusions, as I wrote last month, and USA Today echoed. Now Ortiz, the hero of the 2004 playoffs, is beginning to experience what A-Rod has: doubts about his clutch abilities.


dinologic (Dean D) said...

I haven't watched much of the ALCS (which is too bad because I thoroughly enjoy seeing Sawx fans suffer) but isn't it probable that Ortiz's lack of success has to do with a) age (he doesn't seem to be able to catch up to the 95mph+ heat) and/or b) no more Manny?

Thing about the age factor that bugs me, and this is totally my cynical nature coming through, is that he went from being pretty much a nobody to being a huge star overnight and now it suddenly seems to be fading...which always makes me think PEDs are in the equation. Same goes for Delgado in Queens. Am I just that jaded?

Jason @ IIATMS said...

Dean.... don't overlook the bad wrist.

Bad wrists and bad backs are death knells for power hitters.

As for the PEDs, well who knows. Ortiz was WAIVED by Minnesota. Waived by a team widely regarded as tops in player evaluations and development. WAIVED! Could he have found something that helped him become Big Papi? Let's just say that while I am not going to accuse with no basis, it wouldn't surprise me.

As I have said, there is no player that would shock me if we eventually learned that they used PEDs. Disappointed me, maybe, but no one would shock me. Even the Cap'n.