Here's Wednesday's edition of Saber-Links:
Matthew Carruth of FanGraphs looks at the Angels' incredible defense in September: The Angels are Creating Outs in September | FanGraphs Baseball
The Angels weren’t this good a month ago. To get a clearer look, I turned to the game logs. Over these past 22 games the Angels have surrendered 118 hits on 522 balls in play for a .226 ball in play average (BABIP). That’s a low rate. As regular consumers of baseball stats stuff, we have an internalized notion of context for BABIP. We know that around .300 is average, that .250 is low and that .350 is high. So we can see .226 and instantly know it’s very low.
Shane Tourtellotte of The Hardball Times tests to see whether or not a 19-inning marathon would actually have a negative effect on a team's next stretch of games: The hangover effect--THT
Well, the Pirates collapsed right after losing a 19-inning game, and the next year they collapsed right after winning a 19-inning game. Could the moral be, don't play 19-inning games? More generally, might it be that engaging in extremely long baseball games, win or lose, has a deleterious effect on teams in subsequent games? How long might this adverse effect last? And does it make a difference whether you win the marathon or lose it?
Michael Bates of Baseball Prospectus asks if Ichiro's career has been long enough to be admitted to Cooperstown: Baseball Prospectus | The Platoon Advantage: Is 12 Enough for Ichiro?
These aren’t easy questions. Ichiro has 49.4 WARP, and Jackie Robinson produced 56.9. Of course Suzuki didn’t face the same prejudice that Jackie Robinson did, and please don’t think I’m comparing one to the other. But it’s clear that Ichiro faced at least some discomfort as the only Japanese superstar in the game for much of his career, and as usually the only Japanese player on his team. How much do you want to credit him for his handling of that pressure? Do we consider the phenomenon that grew up around the man or is that just hype that results in his career being overvalued?
BP's team of writers also combined for an interesting "Lineup Card" that suggests nine awards that the MLB should give out: Baseball Prospectus | The Lineup Card: Nine Awards that Should Be Given Out
The Jeff Ballard Award is given annually to the pitcher who best embodies the spirit of its namesake, a left-hander who in 1989 went 18-8 with a 3.43 ERA for the Orioles despite a paltry 2.6 K/9. The intent is to honor the most effective pitcher who can't strike out batters.