I wasn’t entirely disappointed with Daisuke Matsuzaka last night. I know that he did not quite make it five innings and got the quick hook from Francona. That was partially because it was the playoffs, but also because there were many pitchers awaiting in the pen and everyone was available. And every one of those pitchers that were used, or could have been used, have a day off today.
It wasn’t like they were hitting ropes all over the field. Chone Figgins had a bloop single that fell in front of Manny, and Cabrera had a routine fly ball that turned out to be a double, as Manny was playing incredibly shallow yet again. Garret Anderson also added a bloop double that bounced out of Drew’s glove on a nice attempt for a sliding catch. He also had a borderline pitch on a 3-2 count to Cabrera in the first that was called ball four. But the TBS version of the "K-Zone" showed it was a strike. The Angels actually had a very good approach at the plate early against Matsuzaka. They had never seen him, and they made him throw pitches. Give credit to them for that. But when fans watch "Sportscenter" and see Matsuzaka getting pulled just shy of five innings, they will probably think he was terrible. And he wasn’t.
Should I give out my Gold Gloves? Or should I ignore it because I don’t have enough information? The voters should just rely on statistics mostly in my opinion on this matter. I know defensive statistics are not what offensive stats are, but the voters do not have enough of a sample of [every] defender to judge these. Just a thought, because if Jeter wins another Gold Glove it will make them seem that much more meaningless. If nothing else, speak to John Dewan before you cast your vote.
VORP? I don’t know how much I like this stat. What it does is give the offensive value over that of a replacement player. So if there is a great offensive shortstop, who has the same offensive stats as a first baseman, the shortstop will have the higher VORP. Which is fine, but it doesn’t take into account defense. So the shortstop could be awful on defense and switching positions would be best for the team, yet based on this stat his value will be very high regardless. By the way, it stands for "Value over Replacement Player," to be exact. And I understand what it is showing. It is easier to find a first baseman who can hit then that of a shortstop. Simply because it is harder to play shortstop. But I would much rather look at "Win Shares" because it does take into account defensive performance. And a shortstops defensive value will be based on how much he does for the team, rather than just simply being in between the second and third baseman.