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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mickey Mantle: percent PA batting righty against lefty pitchers.

Mickey Mantle had a higher percentage of plate appearances (PA) batting righty against lefty pitchers at home in Yankee Stadium than on the road in 14 of his 18 seasons.  The exceptions were 1963, when he missed almost three months with a broken foot, and 1964, 1965 and 1967.  The differences in 1965 and 1967 were slight.  Mickey's very low and almost identical percentages of righty PA in his final season, both home and road, may have been a realization by both him and Yankee manager Ralph Houk that Mickey could no longer hit batting righty ... even against lefty pitching.

Click link to view detailed data and graphs.

Year vLhome% vLroad%
1951 42.23% 38.55%
1952 42.72% 35.49%
1953 41.70% 40.47%
1954 37.93% 30.91%
1955 30.50% 26.56%
1956 33.74% 30.06%
1957 31.74% 24.85%
1958 26.88% 20.06%
1959 28.22% 21.34%
1960 35.03% 23.48%
1961 36.45% 27.09%
1962 36.92% 27.43%
1963 26.32% 44.92%
1964 30.88% 34.75%
1965 44.44% 42.62%
1966 45.54% 38.89%
1967 40.23% 40.42%
1968 26.98% 25.08%

Monday, April 29, 2013

Mickey Mantle: percent AB batting righty against lefty pitchers.

Mickey Mantle had a higher percentage of at bats (AB) batting righty against lefty pitchers at home in Yankee Stadium than on the road in 16 of his 18 seasons.  The exceptions were 1963, when he missed almost three months with a broken foot, and 1964.

Click link to view detailed data and graphs.



Year  vLhome% vLroad%
1951 45.25% 39.75%
1952 43.56% 35.09%
1953 44.81% 42.73%
1954 40.45% 31.16%
1955 30.59% 27.86%
1956 36.57% 29.06%
1957 36.52% 27.87%
1958 27.24% 20.15%
1959 30.80% 21.89%
1960 36.92% 24.15%
1961 40.00% 26.41%
1962 37.58% 28.77%
1963 27.78% 46.00%
1964 31.62% 36.36%
1965 45.00% 41.61%
1966 45.20% 39.10%
1967 41.63% 40.69%
1968 28.71% 26.18%

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Mickey Mantle: suppose he only batted righty?

If you are a Mickey Mantle fan you are about to enter the baseball Twilight Zone:

[Opening narration - season 2]
Narrator (Rod Serling): You're traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That's the signpost up ahead - your next stop, the Twilight Zone!
______________________________________________

Click this link to view detailed righty/lefty splits for all MLB batters 1950-1970.

The premise is that we know Mantle's stats against lefty pitchers when he batted righted handed.  So the base is (vs LHP as RHB).  The percentage difference is for all MLB batters for seasons 1951-1968 are calculated from that base for plate appearances for all MLB batters for (vs RHP as RHB).  Here are the averages of the mainstream stats.

HR/AB BAbip BA         OBP  SLG          OPS
-8.65% -2.92% -8.07% -10.72% -9.29% -9.95%

I will apply the percent differences to Mantle's averages for each of his 18 seasons in future posts.

I've been considering a separate calculation for his home runs (HR).  See this post:

Friday, April 26, 2013
Mickey Mantle: AB/HR home/road v lefty/righty.

Year Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
Min 9.5 9.3 8.0 6.9 9.1
Max 26.2 81.0 64.0 36.7 52.3

In 1961 Mantle had his career high: 54 home runs.  Imagine if he had been more proficient homering against lefty pitchers at home in Yankee Stadium that season, only one homer per 23 at bats, where he had an extraordinary rate of one homer per 6.9 at bats against righty pitchers.  Only fours years later Mantle had his worst home rate against righty pitchers: 36.7.
___________________________________________________

Real Mickey's numbers varied a lot.  Twilight Zone Mickey (batting only righty) would be impacted more by having played his home games in Yankee Stadium.  Maybe only Stan Musial played all his home games and played more home games in only one park, which did not change.  From 1938 through 1973 Yankee Stadium kept the same dimensions and the structure of the park did not change as it did after 1937 when the grandstand was extended into fair territory for the second and final time.

Mick's home run rates (AB/HR lower is better):
home batting righty 19.51
home batting lefty 13.12
road batting righty 15.33
road batting lefty 15.15

I'm inclined to simply use Mickey's HR rate at home and apply it to his at bats (AB) batting lefty at home and leave his road homers alone since the rate is almost dead even.

If I applied Mickey's annual rate there could be aberrant results such as 1961 mentioned above when home batting righty it was 23.  In 1961 Mickey had 230 AB at home.  Divided by 23 that gives Mickey only ten homers at home for a total of 40 instead of 54.  Real Mickey had 24 at home: 4 righty and 20 lefty.  If I apply Mick's career rate of 19 he would have 12 at home, not much better but probably more realistic and 42 for the season.

Obviously batting only righty would cost Mickey homers at Yankee Stadium, which would probably cost him the triple crown in 1956.  Real Mickey hit 7 righty, 20 lefty at home.  But dividing his 268 home AB by 19 gives him only 14 at home for a total of 41, not the 52 that real Mickey hit.  That's still plenty more than second place Vic Wertz who hit 32.  However, even if all the runners on base scored as they did in real life Mickey would lose 11 RBI from driving in himself.  He beat Al Kaline in RBI 130 to 128 but Mick's RBI would drop to 119.  This could get really ugly if Mick's BA also drops to second behind that of Ted Williams but that is yet to be determined.

At home batting lefty Mickey walked in 20 percent of his plate appearances, which is what drove up his on base percentage despite his batting average being 49 points lower batting lefty for his entire career.  I can only assume that opposing teams were intimidated by Mickey batting lefty in Yankee Stadium with the short right field porch.  If Mickey batted only righty we could assume that he would have fewer walks and more AB at home and hit a few more HR.  I think I'll stay away from this as I don't want to get stuck in the Twilight Zone.

Stay tuned.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Ted Williams: "late and close" homers against the Yankees. Research by Eric Weiss.

Click link.

Ted Williams hit .375 lifetime against the Yankees in Fenway, but only .309 lifetime at Yankee Stadium.

Research by Eric Weiss.

www.weisslawnewyork.com

Mickey Mantle: AB/HR home/road v lefty/righty.

Mickey Mantle splits you may never have seen.  Click link to view detailed data and graphs.  The data is organized by how the pitcher threw.  AB/HR.  Lower is better.



Year        Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
1951 26.2 81.0 64.0 16.3 19.4
1952 23.9 28.8 12.5 21.3 46.3
1953 22.0 27.0 10.4 33.3 31.5
1954 20.1 27.0 28.7 15.9 19.0
1955 14.0 39.0 12.2 10.4 15.8
1956 10.3 14.0 12.8 8.5 9.9
1957 13.9 21.0 17.0 14.6 11.0
1958 12.4 13.4 18.3 11.2 12.1
1959 17.5 21.3 29.0 13.6 18.8
1960 13.1 12.0 8.0 10.9 22.3
1961 9.5 23.0 10.7 6.9 9.1
1962 12.6 20.7 61.0 7.9 11.6
1963 11.5 10.0 9.2 8.7 27.0
1964 13.3 9.3 12.0 20.0 12.3
1965 19.0 15.0 16.8 36.7 15.7
1966 14.5 16.0 15.3 16.2 11.9
1967 20.0 43.5 31.3 15.3 15.2
1968 24.2 19.3 15.3 20.6 43.0
Year       Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
Min       9.5 9.3 8.0 6.9 9.1
Max     26.2 81.0 64.0 36.7 46.3

In 1961 Mantle had his career high: 54 home runs.  Imagine if he had been more proficient homering against lefty pitchers at home in Yankee Stadium that season, only one homer per 23 at bats, where he had an extraordinary rate of one homer per 6.9 at bats against righty pitchers.  Only fours years later Mantle had his worst home rate against righty pitchers: 36.7.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Mickey Mantle: SLG home/road v lefty/righty.

Mickey Mantle splits you may never have seen.  Click link to view detailed data and graphs.  The data is organized by how the pitcher threw.  Slugging (SLG): total bases (TB) / at bats (AB):


Year            Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
1951 0.443 0.321 0.313 0.490 0.588
1952 0.530 0.470 0.730 0.483 0.503
1953 0.497 0.574 0.670 0.361 0.444
1954 0.525 0.500 0.535 0.535 0.526
1955 0.611 0.628 0.616 0.695 0.524
1956 0.705 0.684 0.597 0.782 0.691
1957 0.665 0.750 0.676 0.637 0.642
1958 0.592 0.597 0.655 0.609 0.560
1959 0.514 0.435 0.517 0.597 0.469
1960 0.558 0.646 0.813 0.561 0.433
1961 0.687 0.630 0.733 0.797 0.622
1962 0.605 0.548 0.410 0.718 0.629
1963 0.622 0.650 0.848 0.692 0.352
1964 0.591 0.892 0.702 0.500 0.476
1965 0.452 0.478 0.507 0.364 0.489
1966 0.538 0.488 0.508 0.588 0.547
1967 0.434 0.356 0.468 0.475 0.423
1968 0.398 0.345 0.426 0.493 0.326
Year            Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
Min    0.398 0.321 0.313 0.361 0.326
Max  0.705 0.892 0.848 0.797 0.691

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Mickey Mantle: OBP home/road v lefty/righty.

Mickey Mantle splits you may never have seen.  Click link to view detailed data and graphs.  The data is organized by how the pitcher threw.  On base percentage (OBP):


Year            Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
1951 0.349 0.299 0.250 0.398 0.400
1952 0.394 0.391 0.439 0.370 0.397
1953 0.398 0.398 0.413 0.382 0.405
1954 0.409 0.372 0.455 0.415 0.403
1955 0.430 0.505 0.412 0.440 0.397
1956 0.465 0.473 0.480 0.476 0.444
1957 0.515 0.473 0.524 0.535 0.510
1958 0.443 0.471 0.537 0.470 0.385
1959 0.392 0.315 0.364 0.446 0.377
1960 0.401 0.422 0.455 0.386 0.387
1961 0.452 0.430 0.527 0.508 0.390
1962 0.487 0.474 0.436 0.481 0.514
1963 0.443 0.480 0.500 0.486 0.338
1964 0.426 0.557 0.469 0.400 0.366
1965 0.380 0.393 0.385 0.388 0.352
1966 0.392 0.402 0.368 0.426 0.364
1967 0.393 0.371 0.457 0.404 0.353
1968 0.386 0.309 0.356 0.436 0.379
Year            Tot vLhome vLroad vRhome vRroad
Min    0.349 0.299 0.250 0.370 0.338
Max        0.515 0.557 0.537 0.535 0.514

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Mickey Mantle: BA home/road v lefty/righty.

Mickey Mantle splits you may never have seen.  Click link to view detailed data and graphs.  The data is organized by how the pitcher threw.  Batting average (BA):



YearTotvLhomevLroadvRhomevRroad
19510.2670.2470.2030.2760.320
19520.3110.3220.3600.2680.319
19530.2950.3430.3510.2330.278
19540.3000.2960.3600.2830.289
19550.3060.3970.3150.3110.259
19560.3530.4080.3380.3470.335
19570.3650.4170.4260.3700.313
19580.3040.3280.4360.3070.261
19590.2850.2590.2760.3300.256
19600.2740.3440.3440.2440.244
19610.3170.3370.4130.3260.268
19620.3210.3390.2790.3200.331
19630.3140.3500.4350.3080.204
19640.3030.4730.3810.2690.211
19650.2550.2440.2840.2270.277
19660.2880.2750.2950.3200.263
19670.2450.2410.3300.2380.197
19680.2370.1900.2300.2920.209
YearTotvLhomevLroadvRhomevRroad
Min0.2370.1900.2030.2270.197
Max0.3650.4730.4360.3700.335

Mickey Mantle: home/road v lefty/righty.

Mickey Mantle splits you may never have seen.  Click link to view detailed data and graphs.  The data is organized by how the pitcher threw.

Here are Mantle's career numbers:

WherethrowsBAOBPSLGOPSPAAB
homeL0.3230.4140.5520.9661,7281,483
homeR0.2940.4350.5791.0143,1552,492
roadL0.3380.4360.5981.0341,5281,288
roadR0.2710.4040.5220.9263,4942,836
Tot9,9058,099
home0.3050.5694,8833,975
road0.2920.5465,0224,124

Mantle walked in 20% of his plate appearances (PA) at home against righty pitchers, only 13.6% against southpaws.  Even on the road he walked at a higher rate against righties: 18.2% to 15%.  This accounts for all four of his on base percentages (OBP) being over .400 despite his road batting average against righties being only .271.

At home he made up a 29 point (.029) deficit in BA against righty pitchers for OBP that exceeded that against southpaws by 21 points (.021).

Pitchers feared his home run power, especially when The Mick batted lefty at home in Yankee Stadium.  AB/HR home: 19.5 v lefties, 13.1 v righties; road almost dead even: 15.15, 15.33.

Subsequent posts will include graphs of annual data.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Jackie Robinson Day taken to its irrational conclusion: call everyone Jackie Robinson.

Read post: Jackie Robinson day: enough already! Monday, April 16, 2012

Jackie Robinson must be rolling over in his grave.  Even the day after the day teams that did not play on that day feel compelled to have every player wear number 42.  I had lunch with some baseball friends today and the subject came up and one said very solemnly that we should all remember what a great injustice Robinson suffered.  What?  Jackie was insulted but he got to play and those who had been denied were wronged but let's not equate playing baseball with real injustice like ... lynching.  Lynching is a terrible injustice.  Being excluded from playing in the old American League and the old National League was really bad but let's have some perspective.

Maybe that lack of perspective is what causes the current policy of the Major Baseball League (MBL), leaderless during the administration of Bud Selig.  The MBL has let this devolve into a pseudo religious ceremony.  Robinson has been described by his widow as a religious man but I'm guessing that he would be offended by the fake reverence of what has become an annual obligation for all MBL employees and related organization employees to babble on about something that was essentially over in a short time.  Robinson had indicated that he understood the prejudice of the southern players and others and that once they got to know him by playing against him they were pretty much OK with him.  They were all ball players, trying hard to win.

His is a great story, one which always appealed to me.  I always thought that Jackie Robinson was an American hero.  I still do.  Although his experience that first season in Brooklyn was made much worse by having Robinson be alone, the only black player on the Dodgers.  That seems to have been a stupid and unnecessary policy.  At least give him a black roommate, someone on the team who can share the burden.  Robinson's isolation makes it a better story.  As fiction it would be ridiculed as unrealistic.  As fact, it carries weight.  The irony is that the current MBL activities just turn me off.  They are so phony.

So, what to do?  We can wait for the sequel to the new movie about Robinson: 43.  Or we can view the old 1950 movie in which Robinson plays himself.  What, that's not sophisticated enough?  Not real enough?  Suppose we had a movie with Abraham Lincoln playing himself?  Not good enough?  Let's get a non-American to play Lincoln and go see that instead.  Much more real.

So let's make a real mockery of the MBL.  Call all the players Jackie Robinson.

Now batting for Arizona: Jackie Robinson.

Jackie Robinson is into his windup.  Jackie Robinson hits a ground ball to Jackie Robinson at short  who throws to Jackie Robinson at first base.  Jackie Robinson is out!

Next up: Jackie Robinson.

Mickey Mantle: plate appearance distribution

Mickey Mantle had 33% of his plate appearances (PA) from his natural right side.

Year  Lefty% Righty% Lefty Righty
1951 58.06% 41.94% 216 156
1952 61.50% 38.50% 345 216
1953 59.60% 40.40% 301 204
1954 65.51% 34.49% 416 219
1955 70.85% 29.15% 452 186
1956 67.94% 32.06% 443 209
1957 71.91% 28.09% 448 175
1958 76.61% 23.39% 501 153
1959 75.16% 24.84% 481 159
1960 70.92% 29.08% 456 187
1961 68.58% 31.42% 443 203
1962 68.53% 31.47% 344 158
1963 63.21% 36.79% 134 78
1964 67.20% 32.80% 381 186
1965 56.32% 43.68% 245 190
1966 57.51% 42.49% 226 167
1967 59.67% 40.33% 330 223
1968 74.04% 25.96% 405 142
67.16% 32.84% 6,567 3,211

As you can see, after his rookie season the only times he had as much as 40% of his PA batting righty were 1965, 1966, 1967.  Yankee manager Ralph Houk knew he had to rest his aging superstar and Houk mistakenly thought that Mantle was more effective batting righty, so apparently Houk rested Mantle late in his career so that he batted more against southpaws and batted righty.

Monday, June 20, 2011
Mickey Mantle (1965-1968): much worse batting lefty ... or was he?

BA    OBP SLG    OPS
.248    .389 .451    .840  lefty
.254    .388 .450    .839  righty

The Mick's HR per AB were almost dead even.

This contradicts the conventional wisdom, the type that tends to float around baseball and passes for fact.  In this case the general understanding is that Mickey Mantle hit much worse late in his career batting lefty, especially during those four down, tack-on seasons, 1965-1968.
____________________________________________________

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Mickey Mantle was a great left handed hitter.

See previous post.

For cumulative seasons, From 1950 to 2013, vs RHP as LHB (within Platoon Splits), (requiring PA≥4500 and onbase_plus_slugging≥.920), sorted by greatest On-Base Plus Slugging for this split

Rk I Player Split From To G OPS GS PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB ROE BAbip
1 Barry Bonds vs RHP as LHB 1986 2007 2607 1.084 8459 6496 1967 400 48 535 1336 367 93 1852 964 .303 .458 .626 1.084 4068 111 52 2 57 577 54 .283
2 Jim Thome vs RHP as LHB 1991 2012 2317 1.034 7412 5933 1735 340 24 494 1277 16 15 1381 1703 .292 .426 .608 1.034 3605 120 43 0 55 168 45 .327
3 Todd Helton vs RHP as LHB 1997 2013 1948 1.014 6444 5362 1762 444 27 289 981 22 24 982 695 .329 .431 .583 1.014 3127 112 30 0 67 168 58 .331
4 Lance Berkman vs RHP as LHB 1999 2013 1698 1.008 5819 4787 1471 337 24 314 987 63 34 946 984 .307 .423 .584 1.008 2798 92 47 0 39 140 46 .328
5 Larry Walker vs RHP as LHB 1989 2005 1765 .993 5613 4798 1515 334 42 293 885 168 48 694 839 .316 .407 .586 .993 2812 109 72 5 44 115 41 .329
6 Carlos Delgado vs RHP as LHB 1993 2009 1874 .981 6167 5110 1466 338 10 383 1089 8 7 879 1182 .287 .399 .582 .981 2973 100 117 0 61 171 33 .300
7 I Stan Musial vs RHP as LHB 1950 1963 1399 .980 4590 3903 1263 252 35 203 716 14 23 640 251 .324 .418 .562 .980 2194 109 15 0 32 177 43 .305
8 David Ortiz vs RHP as LHB 1997 2013 1682 .973 5390 4540 1329 329 11 312 957 9 7 795 938 .293 .396 .576 .973 2616 106 12 0 43 119 24 .305
9 I Mickey Mantle vs RHP as LHB 1951 1968 1965 .965 6573 5260 1477 205 42 369 1000 123 31 1260 1262 .281 .419 .546 .965 2873 47 10 11 32 96 60 .303
10 Duke Snider vs RHP as LHB 1950 1964 1799 .958 6445 5556 1686 281 61 351 1078 71 61 820 895 .303 .393 .566 .958 3142 139 15 28 26 151 84 .308
11 Brian Giles vs RHP as LHB 1995 2009 1683 .958 5616 4640 1402 315 36 245 829 92 38 891 566 .302 .414 .544 .958 2524 89 33 1 50 107 36 .298
12 Jason Giambi vs RHP as LHB 1995 2013 1973 .954 6150 4972 1422 289 8 323 1007 13 8 1033 1015 .286 .412 .542 .954 2696 109 79 1 65 91 31 .297
13 Jim Edmonds vs RHP as LHB 1993 2010 1809 .951 5940 5069 1499 341 22 318 920 56 39 790 1216 .296 .391 .560 .951 2838 87 31 6 44 90 33 .330
14 Chipper Jones vs RHP as LHB 1993 2012 2298 .947 7686 6451 1956 402 26 361 1206 117 37 1144 1005 .303 .405 .541 .947 3493 164 13 2 76 143 70 .309
15 Ken Griffey vs RHP as LHB 1989 2010 2401 .936 7816 6710 1951 375 29 444 1278 159 57 993 1133 .291 .382 .554 .936 3716 143 42 3 68 226 62 .290
16 I Willie Stargell vs RHP as LHB 1962 1982 2004 .935 6442 5620 1649 319 40 365 1108 14 13 726 1257 .293 .376 .559 .935 3143 108 48 2 46 200 48 .318
17 Fred McGriff vs RHP as LHB 1986 2004 2186 .930 6989 5946 1746 333 10 367 1063 58 19 970 1210 .294 .392 .538 .930 3200 153 24 0 49 162 54 .312
18 Willie McCovey vs RHP as LHB 1959 1980 2242 .926 7344 6157 1706 274 39 421 1189 21 14 1085 1034 .277 .387 .539 .926 3321 139 49 0 50 245 76 .270
19 Will Clark vs RHP as LHB 1986 2000 1727 .925 5579 4760 1478 299 30 220 793 36 33 727 780 .311 .400 .525 .925 2497 62 24 9 59 143 49 .329
20 I Eddie Mathews vs RHP as LHB 1952 1968 2027 .925 7388 6240 1774 287 56 391 1079 58 30 1076 880 .284 .388 .536 .925 3346 94 15 12 45 135 81 .276
21 Ryan Klesko vs RHP as LHB 1992 2007 1622 .920 5064 4329 1256 280 24 247 824 74 35 668 750 .290 .383 .537 .920 2325 100 14 1 46 82 48 .299
22 Bobby Abreu vs RHP as LHB 1996 2012 2145 .920 7198 5987 1795 420 48 250 1022 333 108 1130 1231 .300 .409 .511 .920 3061 111 20 1 60 109 50 .338
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 4/21/2013.

In 3,250 plate appearances from 1950 through 1960 lefty batter Ted Williams against righty pitchers had OPS 1.166.  Of the batters ahead of Mantle, Musial is the only one from Mantle's era; all the others played in the recent high offense era.