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  1. “Cocaine is a hell of a drug!”

    Comment by spankystout — October 27, 2011 @ 10:52 pm

  2. brilliant work, almost real time

    Comment by Rogers Hornsby — October 27, 2011 @ 10:56 pm

  3. Run expectancy of bases loaded two outs is 0.85 runs in a neutral context. So yeah. Pretty dumb.

    Comment by Xeifrank — October 27, 2011 @ 10:57 pm

  4. This article is awesome. Couldn’t agree more, and the worst part about it is that 99% of the general population is results oriented. Love Washington, and love managers that manage with heart but in no way shape or form could I ever see an argument that backs up leaving him in there to hit.

    Comment by Matty — October 27, 2011 @ 11:17 pm

  5. How about having Jay bat versus LHP instead of Craig with bases loaded?

    Comment by CircleChange11 — October 27, 2011 @ 11:26 pm

  6. How is the cumulative probability of not making an out worth .15 runs? What sort of calculation leads to that conclusion?

    Comment by John P. — October 27, 2011 @ 11:30 pm

  7. I’m pretty sure its just this: .05*1+.05*2=.15 (the 5% each of 1 run and 2 runs).

    Comment by Everett — October 27, 2011 @ 11:35 pm

  8. How about if he had taken Jay out for Craig, then the Cardinals wouldn’t have a third OF since Holliday left injured?

    Comment by steex — October 27, 2011 @ 11:48 pm

  9. It’s pretty convenient to be able to pretend that the Rangers pen hasn’t been getting hammered this series, especially if you remove Feliz’s performance. Feliz is obviously not available in the 5th inning.

    RW doesn’t have this convenience. He needs to perform in the context of reality. There’s enormous variance in human performance, particularly with pitchers, which you web sabers love to dismiss when trying to look smarter than the guy who is managing in his 2nd consecutive World Series and is one of the most respected people in the sport. (Don’t forget he’s done it in the AL, which is the real major league at this point.)

    The pen has not been particularly sharp this series. Lewis, who handled the Cards quite well in his first start, looked solid after battling through the first inning. Lewis was inconsistent this year, but when he was good, he was very good for stretches of 2-5 games.

    The most significant value a manager offers is the ability to see past the numbers sometimes, because players are in fact humans. We are far too inconsistent to be relied upon to be the same guy where the difference between success and failure is fractions of an inch, a second or a gust of wind.

    Your point is worth thinking about, but to say definitively that it is one of the worst managerial decision you will ever see is absurd. If players were robots, you’d have a much stronger argument. And if my aunt had a penis, she’d be my uncle.

    Comment by Puffy — October 27, 2011 @ 11:52 pm

  10. Also consider that the only other pitcher that has looked good is Holland, and he isn’t available to start game 7. It’s likely the pen would play a larger role in game 7 if it comes to that.

    Pitching is heavily dependent upon feel. “Going with the hot hand” is a meaningful strategy.

    Comment by Puffy — October 28, 2011 @ 12:00 am

  11. It’s pretty convenient to pretend that the Rangers aren’t a very good team and that the reason they may be in back-to-back World Series is because of that and not their manager’s in-game decision making.

    Comment by Brian — October 28, 2011 @ 12:02 am

  12. The Yankees, Red Sox, Angels and Tigers are very good teams too, and none of them are in the series.

    It’s a combination of both arsehole.

    Comment by Puffy — October 28, 2011 @ 12:14 am

  13. “believe that Lewis had somehow reached a new level of enlightenment somewhere in inning #2.”

    Unfortunately, this is more important than sabermetrics have mastered.

    Comment by Foghorn Leghorn — October 28, 2011 @ 12:29 am

  14. If Holliday were playing with a badly bruised pinky finger, would we be able to tell any difference?

    I think he could have stayed in the game. I’m thinking neither he nor StL really wanted him to given how things are going. Seriously.

    I was only interested in the changing value of having those two batters at the plate, not whether he might get injured later in the game and things of that nature.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — October 28, 2011 @ 12:38 am

  15. “Within an hour of posting this, Washington will probably be holding a trophy, and this will just be a footnote in history that ended up not affecting the outcome of the game.”

    Thanks for the jynx, Dave.

    Comment by Mr. Jones — October 28, 2011 @ 1:39 am

  16. Is it just me or do like 95% of Major League (read: elite status) managers not really have much of an idea what they are doing? I see managers make these blatantly wrong moves so often and yet no GM out there wants to go find somebody who understands how to make consistently good moves. Two of the worst decision making managers in the Majors are in the World Series so what I’m writing here will likely always fall on deaf ears.

    Comment by Eric W. — October 28, 2011 @ 1:55 am

  17. Yea but the in game moves you are talking about are a small part of what being a manager is, try reprimanding a guy making 10+ M dollars and get any sort of respect… i think too often people don’t realize this

    Comment by Pat — October 28, 2011 @ 2:31 am

  18. Not impressed by that argument. Make it two jobs if you have to. A head coach, and a MANAGER, who job is to manage the game.

    Comment by Matt Trueblood — October 28, 2011 @ 7:00 am

  19. What’s also convenient is making judgments based upon sample sizes of a dozen and a half innings rather than a season’s worth of work. It’s convenient, just poor decision making.

    Comment by chuckb — October 28, 2011 @ 7:54 am

  20. Great article. I think we all had a sense that this was a bad decision at the time (though, as a Cards’ fan, I was happy it was made) but no idea really how bad it was. Comparing sending him to the mound to sending Andrew Miller or John Lackey really puts it into perspective, and that doesn’t even account for the decision to allow Wilson to hit rather than Torrealba or someone better than Torrealba.

    Comment by chuckb — October 28, 2011 @ 7:56 am

  21. To reiterate a point I made in another thread, there were a number of managerial decisions with which I disagreed, but I am willing to credit arguments that support them such as those presented by Puffy. I think Dave’s approach makes more sense but recognize there may be other factors to consider.

    But the one decision that seems to me indefensible was removing Feldman from the game. Wouldn’t the single most important factor in an extra inning game be to keep the home team from scoring? With 2 outs and a runner on 1B, is it better to pinch hit with German or to keep Feldman in the game?

    This is not hindsight. At the time, during the confusion in the on deck circle, my son and I were commenting that Washington could not replace Feldman with Lowe. Maybe if there were a runner on 2B or fewer than 2 outs, and even then very questionable.

    What do the numbers indicate? I can’t believe anyone thinks that some gut feeling would indicate Lowe was the best choice or that German was going to drive in the run or even keep the inning alive. So all that remains are the probabilities. Is there any way to defend that decision?

    Comment by Bob R. — October 28, 2011 @ 8:31 am

  22. And it looks like Lewis did reach some level of enlightenment, if not nirvana. He got two grounders and weak lineout in the bottom of the fifth, and K’d the first batter in the sixth. Then an infield hit, then an error by Young. Lewis did his job.

    Comment by Ken — October 28, 2011 @ 8:50 am

  23. Even Buck and McCarver questioned that…



    Comment by los — October 28, 2011 @ 9:04 am

  24. When it happened we all agreed he was giving up approx a half run.

    Comment by Telo — October 28, 2011 @ 12:43 pm

  25. Mitch Moreland? Wasn’t he available?

    Comment by Sean — October 28, 2011 @ 1:39 pm

  26. It’s incredible how much time you people spend “thinking” about this game, and how full of shit you are when you discuss it.

    Comment by Puffy — October 29, 2011 @ 2:47 am

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