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This question below was originally posted by Andy Katz on Facebook, and I thought it might generate some interesting discussion here on CheckSwing....

"Should a sacrifice fly that does not score a run count as an at bat? A sac bunt does not. Why are sac flies treated differently?"

I've pondered this as well. While it doesn't happen as often, it probably should be treated the same as a sacrifice bunt if it advances the runner. What about when a batter hits the ball to the right side to advance a runner to third? The intent is there.


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In a New York minute I'll take the .220 hitter that hits with guys on base over the .300 hitter that only hits with 2 outs or when the game isn't on the line. Last I checked, if you don't score more runs than the other team you lose. The winner doesn't come by most hits.This is why you have hitters stuck in the minor leagues with these unimpressive .300 averages. If a lead off guy is hitting .300 I really hope he has other abilities as well like seeing a lot of pitches or getting a lot of walks or gets hit by pitches because a .300 average alone will not help the team much. I can go on and on about what I would rather have but my fingers can't take the pounding. BTW, the person themselves has a lot to do with it as well. Alex Rodriguez comes to mind.
You're advocating for a .220 hitter who gets lots of RBI and then you mention Alex Rodriguez? His career average is over .300. ARod is someone who can bat .300 AND drive in runs. That's why he'll probably be a HOFer.

I sure wish there was some game simulator somewhere that I knew of. I'd love to plug it in with 9 batters who all hit .300 and have 40 RBI and give you 9 batters who hit .220 with 110 RBI.

RBI is one of the most useless stats for evaluating players. It merely shows that they have teammates who can get on base. I'm guessing you'd also argue that wins is a good stat for measuring pitchers, because that's what the game is all about, winning. Never mind that a pitcher only controls half of the game, but yet can get a full win. And Sabathia has had a better season than Felix because CC "wins more", right?
Hi Patrick. I agree with alot of what you just said. I'm having a slight problem with, "RBI is one of the most useless stats." If you knock in 130 runs and I'm your agent, the bidding will start at probably about 15 million per year. The least of my concerns would be that out of the 20 teams that will be interested in your services any of them will mention that you had all those RBI because you had very good players "setting the table" for you. Don't forget my 10%!!!
Larry, when comparing it to a great many other stats available to us, it is as valuable in rating a hitter as using wins to rate a starting pitcher. RBIs are a by-product of a great many other attributes a hitter has like high contact rate, high on base percentage and high slugging. The guys we named with high RBI and low BA are actually a rarity. It's far more common to see the Pujols types who have all other high numbers to go with their high RBI totals. I don't remember Rob Deer commanding a top salary in the game, because he didn't have any other tools but the home run and strikeout.
Hi Patrick and point well taken. I still want to be your agent though if you knock in 130. Take care.
When I do, I'll call you. However standard rate on salary is 4%. Endorsements is 10%. :)
You're misinterpretating (sp) what I'm saying. I bring up Alex Rodriguez not for his numbers but because he has had unbelievable numbers over his career and has been on a lot of really good teams. But my question is why haven't but only one of these teams won it all? And why did Joe Torrey hit him 7th and 8th in the lineup at times? Just like Barry Bonds, why didn't he ever win it all? Character maybe?

RBI's is one of the most useless stats in baseball? Honestly, all I can say is really?
>>But my question is why haven't but only one of these teams won it all?

C'mon, seriously? The Texas Rangers didn't win because of ARod? He "didn't know how to win"? The 116 win Seattle Mariners didn't win because of ARod? And when he got to NY, then he learned how to win? How to do what it takes to win? So what about Griffey? He has zero championships and he was on that Seattle team too. Is he another one that doesn't know how to win and know how to do the little things in baseball? Michael Young?

>>And why did Joe Torrey hit him 7th and 8th in the lineup at times?

Not "at times", it was for one little stretch (might have been just one game) in the playoffs, because he was slumping. Not because he forgot how to win and do the little things.

And yes, relatively speaking, RBIs is one of the most useless stats in baseball, compared to OPS, OPS+, VORP, OBP, etc. Even home runs is a better stat than RBI. At least the hitter has control over adding to a stat column when he hits a HR.
Hi Patrick. Personally, I don't like the expression "He couldn't win the big one." How could the Texas Rangers ever win anything with the extremely weak pitching staffs they had? Michael Young...The guy is a winner in my opinion and so is Griff. You're right about A-rod. He was dropped to the bottom of the order when he was slumping. Take care.
Larry, you and I are on the same page. Kip asked why is it that only one of ARod's teams has won it all, implying that ARod had something to do with that.
Hi Patrick. I joined this group to simply discuss baseball and sometimes we will all have different points of view. That's what makes for baseball discussions and that's what makes the world go round! It's all good and glad we are on the same page. Talk soon.
I do bring up Rodriguez because I know a bunch of his teammates from the past and all say that he's not the greatest teammate. Face it, the teams he was on in New York were AWESOME and should be embarrassed to have NOT won every year. As far as lineups, you could pull those lineups from a hat each day and still gotten to the playoffs. Great players on great teams win and he hasn't. AS far as the 116 wins in Seattle, yep, I'd have to say the pattern started back then with him. Yes, he is one hell of of a player though. So Patrick, you don't believe Rodriguez had anything to do with the team not winning?

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