How Badly Would You Hurt a Team for a Week?

Let’s be honest. I’ll start. I’m not a very good baseball player. I used to be much better than I am now, but even back when I was better, I was not good. I fit in with my high school competition and, later, adult league, but in the grander scheme I was, sadly, not good. You are also probably bad at baseball. I know because you are reading this and not playing baseball. That’s okay. It’s what joins us together, you and me.

But what if you had to play? What if you were sitting in the bleachers at Camden Yards and all the Orioles came down with 168-hour food poisoning. What if the team bus blew out a tire between the airport and the ballpark and there were no other buses available because the Pope was in town for a week and he loves buses. So, you need to play!

The team needs you, but it also knows you are terrible. You have to play, but you have to play as little as possible while playing. Where could you play with out hurting the team? Well, nowhere. You’re going to hurt the team. Badly. You’re going to really hurt the team because you are awful. Terrible. The worst. You’re just barely better than me, although that’s like saying rotten food is better than poo. It is, but it’s also what Olympic announcers refer to as a “low bar.”

The worst part is that you have to play for a week’s worth of games. And you’re starting. All six games (there’s an off-day but it’s in Baltimore [sad face emoticon]). That’s one long monster truck rally! You have to hit and play the field. No DH for you. Maybe you’re stuck playing for the Red Sox and David Ortiz is like, “No way, bro. Get out there.” Maybe the other people who are forced into duty are older, fatter, and worse than you. Maybe I have to play DH!

So. Now we have to figure out where to put you. First things first: let’s figure out the batting order. Course, it’s actually not hard to figure out the batting order. You’re batting last. The less you bat the better. Because you’re horrible. Sorry to dwell on the fact; I just don’t want you to forget. It’s sort of the point of this article. But it’s probably for the best, batting ninth. I mean, really, do you want to stand in against 95 mph heat? I sure as hell don’t. I don’t want to tell you what I’d do in my pants in that situation, pun sadly intended. I’d bat 10th if I could. I imagine, whether you admit it or not, you would too. But you can’t. You’re hitting ninth. Congratulations. Hope you can foul one off, maybe. Also try not to mess your pants too noticeably.

Batting order was easy. Now we have to figure out where to put you in the field. First basemen obviously receive the greatest negative positional adjustment, but given their place on the diamond, they’re also required to participate on the receiving end of basically every infield assist. Meanwhile, we want you to touch the ball the fewest possible number of times because, need I say it, you are terrible. So, to identify who’s likely to receive the fewest touches, we turn to some batted ball data. Last season, 33.8% of balls put into play were fly balls, whereas 45.3% of balls put in play were put on the ground. That means infielders get the ball more. Yes, some of those ground balls get through to the outfielders, but most of them won’t be too difficult to reach, and we’re assuming you can pick up a very slowly rolling ball and toss it back in. You’re bad at baseball, not paralyzed.

This is good for you. The less you touch the ball the better. So it’s the outfield for you. Probably. There’s the issue of line drives. Last season 20.9% of balls in play were line drives, but the good news there is that 69% of those were hits, and if they were hits against major league fielders they’re definitely hits against you, so you don’t have to worry about them. Of the other 31.1% of line drives that were not hits, some of them presumably went into the outfield, and some presumably near to where ever you will be standing/hiding. However, 31% of line drives is just 6% of the balls put into play, so the total number of balls you’ll see is still fewer in the outfield, at least in terms of the number you’d be able to do anything remotely useful with. It’s not enough to swing the pendulum anywhere near putting you into the infield. No, that’s still a terrible idea.

Now, where in the outfield should you play? It bears repeating that you are horrendous, so putting you in center field would be a massive mistake. Best to hide you in one of the outfield corners. But which one? We need to figure out which one sees the fewest balls, so for that we turn to batted ball data. First, we will, for the purposes of this exercise, assume that last season presents a reasonable sample from which to derive our prescription. Last season, 39.1% of balls put into play were pulled while 25.7% were hit the opposite way. Since 57.4% of the plate appearances were taken by right-handed hitters, with the remaining 42.6% coming from lefties, it would be easy to conclude that the ball is more frequently hit to left field than right. And indeed, that appears to be the case. There is a small difference in percentage of strikeouts (last season left-handed batters struck out slightly less frequently than right handers) which changes the percentages slightly, but it’s not enough to alter the finding. You will play right field. I’m sorry.

Now we turn to our final question. How much will you hurt the team over the week you have to play? That is a bit difficult to say. You will probably be able to make some subset of incredibly easy plays. You might even be able to make a few regular easy plays. After that, you’re probably going to be awful, just awful. Last season, the worst defenders in baseball by the numbers were Matt Kemp (-24.1 UZR) and Hanley Ramirez (-22.9), but it took them 154 and 105 games, respectively, to be that bad. Was there anyone else who was truly monumentally abysmal but in a smaller sample size? Wil Myers was worth -7.7 runs in 60 games, but you won’t be around that long and -7.7 in 60 games worth of innings is a pipe dream anyway. James Jones of the Mariners was worth -6 in 28 games. Still too much exposure, but now we’re starting to see the depths to which you will be able to sink. Oswaldo Arcia was worth -3.5 in just 19 games, which is worse than Jones (somehow) on a per-game basis.

Ah ha! Pay dirt! Ryan Lollis played parts of five games for the Giants last season. He played 26.1 innings, 18.1 of which came in left field, the remainder of which came in right field. During that time he helped the Giants by subtracting 2.3 runs on defense — that is, he was worth -2.3 runs. In other words, Lollis cost his team a run for every 11 innings he played the field. If you were to play a week’s worth of games, which we’re calling six, you would play 54 innings. If you were as bad as Lollis — which, let’s be real, you would be much worse — you would cost your team a bit over five runs on defense. So let’s be charitable to you and merely double the damage and say you’ll cost your team 10 runs.

As for offense, well, you’re not going to get any hits. And you’re not going to be able to lay any bunts down either. You are very bad. So how can we find out how much your offensive ineptitude will hurt the team over the course of your week in the starting lineup? Two words: Jon Lester. Some may say, “Those are names not words, you idiot,” and they’d be right on at least one of those counts. But still: Lester! From 2007 through 2014 Jon Lester came to bat 39 times and did not get one hit. You will probably not come to bat that many times over the course of your six games, so we can scale Lester’s living argument for the DH down to fit our needs. From 2008 through 2012 Lester had 27 plate appearances during which he slashed a robust .000/.043/.000. He walked once in 2010. Oops. So, again, let’s be charitable. You walk once. Hooray you! Otherwise, you exactly replicate Lester’s batting line. You are worth -5 runs.

I know, I know. We’ll be done soon. So, put that all together. Bad-at-baseball you playing right field for a week and batting as infrequently as possible will cost your team about five runs on offense and about 10 runs on defense. Your team is down 15 runs, or about a win and a half in just a week, and all because you are terrible at baseball. So if you ever sit back, open a beer or soda, and think, “Heh, I could play that game.” You’re right. You’d just be historically and embarrassingly awful at it. Of course, there is always the chance I might be worse.



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mcraw4d
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mcraw4d
3 months 9 days ago

Am I overlooking something or is the math on LF or RF backward? More people bat RH, so pulling the ball more often means more balls go to LF, correct?

LHPSU
Member
LHPSU
3 months 9 days ago

Flyball different from groundball.

Seriously though, I think some of us could probably outfield some major league outfielders, as long as we keep ourselves in reasonably good shape. There are guys who made the major leagues in spite of their defense, not because of it.

SteveM
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SteveM
3 months 8 days ago

With the likely exception of one – Kyle Schwarber, who is not a baseball player in the field by any stretch of the imagination – even the worst of the worst defensive players in MLB are, by mortal standards, pretty other-worldly defensively.

jhalpin23
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Member
jhalpin23
3 months 8 days ago

I’m by no means saying Schwarber is a great fielder or even an average one but he certainly isn’t the standard for which terribleness should be measured against. He’s pretty clearly better than Hanley or Kemp out there.

JaysSaskatchewan
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JaysSaskatchewan
3 months 7 days ago

I think there are a lot of people who could play individual aspects of baseball better than the worst MLB players. For example, a large % of the male population under 40 could probably run the bases better than Jose Molina.

jimbo22s
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jimbo22s
3 months 8 days ago

There is no chance that anyone reading this could play better outfield than anyone in the big leagues unless that person played major college baseball within the last few years at minimum. Even poor big leaguers make very few mistakes, the poor outfielders look bad because they are compared to the best in the world. Even the worst big league outfielders would look good if they played next to anyone reading this. If you haven’t played much but need to find out for yourself, find a men’s league team or teenager team that will let you go out there even just in practice. You will start to make bad mistakes almost immediately.

jimbo22s
Member
jimbo22s
3 months 8 days ago

A more accurate way to have said it is “less than 5% chance” to perform better than the worst big leaguers, rather than “no chance”. There might be a small number of guys who were maybe awesome high school or small college players within the last few years who might be able to hang if they have kept playing. But it would take at least a recent major college player other than these small number of other guys.

elobell
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elobell
3 months 9 days ago

What am I missing with the LF/RF decision? When I run the numbers, I get 33.4% of balls to LF, and 31.4% to RF(.574*.391 + .426*.257 for LF, .574*.257 + .426*.391 for RF). Shouldn’t I be a RF instead of a LF?

Anyway, cool article!

Malcolm-Jamal Hegyes
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Malcolm-Jamal Hegyes
3 months 9 days ago

According to Inside Edge, Lollis was 2 for 2 on “routine” plays and 0 for 1 on “impossible” plays. I would assume that an average Joe would go 1 for 2 on the routine plays, and cost his team another run or two because of it.

theperfectgame
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theperfectgame
3 months 9 days ago

On the bright side, you’d make almost $20K, get lifetime access to MLB’s health plan, and have one hell of a story!

Dreamin
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Dreamin
3 months 9 days ago

You’d also get a permanent Baseball Reference page! Someone could sponser you and could be given a nickname like “Who?” or “The Worst Thing Ever”

Immanuel Kamment
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Immanuel Kamment
3 months 9 days ago

“Last season, 33.8% of balls put into play were fly balls, whereas 45.3% of balls put in play were put on the ground.”

Yes, but the 45.3% of ground balls would be divvied up among C, 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, and the pitcher, right?

Steven Gomez
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Steven Gomez
3 months 9 days ago

But unlike the outfielders, you as a player defending a base or home plate would have to handle the ball on some plays initially fielded by other players, whenever you have to take a throw to your base.

Nats Fan
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Nats Fan
3 months 9 days ago

I would think that a thrown ball from a real major league player that knows you suck would be far easier to catch than a hit ball!

Hurtlocker
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Hurtlocker
3 months 9 days ago

I was a very good player, best on my team in HS, one of the best in our conference, small scholarship to the University of New Mexico. BUT, overmatched at the college level for all intents and purposes. I could have been an average fielding OF in the majors, but would have never hit enough to be useful even in the minors. I’m amazed at how good even the very worst MLB player is.

Nats Fan
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Nats Fan
3 months 9 days ago

I was the youngest and worst player on my pee wee little league team. I batted because every kid got to bat. I fielded deep center field because we had a 10th defender who played way the hell out where no one ever hit the ball. My team was playing .500 until I got hit in the face with a pop up fly in practice and then took a few weeks off. The team proceeded to win every game for the rest of the season while I watched from the stands. True Story! Of course this was the Hillsboro County league in Tampa Florida in the early 1970s, and this young African American kid named Dwight Gooden was by far the best pitcher in the league. A total miracle happened because I got my only official hit ever off him. A bouncer fielded poorly by the Shortstop that was somehow called an infield single. I had my eyes closed because his pitches scared me, but I did watch him wind up and begin his throw. I swung as hard as I could and made contact even though my eyes were closed. The ball bounced low past the pitcher, took a funny bounce when it got to the dirt, and the Shortstop missed the ball. As I ran to first my hands hurt from the vibration of the contact. The next batter was our leadoff hitter, our best player, and the coach’s son. He hit a line drive past the third basemen. As I was rounding third and heading home his dad, my coach, yelled at me to run faster then pushed me on the butt as I rounded. I proceeded to stumble forward and fell to the ground face first into the dirt short of home. The throw home missed the catcher by a mile. So I crawled to home plate and touched it while his son stood behind me telling to go. The son then touched the base and my team mobbed his son. Also a true Story!

frangipard
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frangipard
3 months 8 days ago

I once played church-league softball with a guy who had made it to AA in hardball. He was terrific, and the best athlete I ever played against in anything. In baseball, he was an outfielder, but he played shortstop in softball, and I remember one play where he made a play well behind second base and threw out a guy at first. Which was impressive, what with him being lefthanded.

scotman144
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Member
scotman144
3 months 9 days ago

You may have convinced me that Hanley Ramirez in LF last year was not the most awful defensive performance imaginable…..he’s still got most awful defensive performance by a legitimate major league veteran ever in the bag though.

wash_hts_gold
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wash_hts_gold
3 months 9 days ago

What if I, who am not good at baseball, were playing catcher? Where’s your fancy math now? … (Probably there is no equation for how badly this would go).

Orsulakfan
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Orsulakfan
3 months 9 days ago

Pitcher would be the worst though. You might have a never-ending game.

Dee P. Gordon
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3 months 9 days ago

Trust me, there is NOTHING worse.

MajesticOwl
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MajesticOwl
3 months 9 days ago

Would it?

If I were the 5th starter for the Padres, I’d cost them one game, but I could stay in the game, lose by a score of 1000 to 3, and save the Padres’ bullpen for the next day. After all, if they’re going to lose, they might as well not hurt their chances of winning the next day. Giving up 1000 runs in one game still only counts once in the loss column, and they have four other starters for the other games.

On offense or defense, I could cost them a win and a half. Maybe more.

Fillmore
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Fillmore
3 months 9 days ago

If you lost by 1000 to 3, each inning would take several days. The entire game would take several weeks. So “the next day” is misleading.

MajesticOwl
Member
MajesticOwl
3 months 9 days ago

That’s even better for my team, though, right?

If I can use up three days of my week while only losing one game, that’s better than dragging them down in six separate games.

I assume I’ll get popups once in a while even if I’m just throwing batting practice, if I can even throw the ball far enough (that’s not a given — 60 feet is a pretty tough throw for someone like me).

tz
Member
tz
3 months 9 days ago

Better yet, keep pitching like crap until a storm front comes by and they have to call the game on account of rain. Just don’t let it get past the 4th inning and you’re all set.

Subway Alum
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Subway Alum
3 months 9 days ago

Shades of W. P. Kinsella’s Iowa Baseball Confederacy game with the 1908 Cubs . . .

Doug Lampert
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Member
Doug Lampert
3 months 9 days ago

tz, the other team can force the game to go to the next inning. Swing at anything, deliberately miss, and get a strikeout, or alternately, have two players take a walk and have one pass the other on the basepaths.

Sure it hurts their individual stats, but not nearly as badly as having the game NOT go official would. They run the score to 100 runs or so, then start forcing innings to end.

tz
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tz
3 months 9 days ago

Very true. It would end up looking like a 2016 Sixers-Lakers game ;)

jfree
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jfree
3 months 8 days ago

>tz, the other team can force the game to go to the next inning. Swing at anything, deliberately miss, and get a strikeout, or alternately, have two players take a walk and have one pass the other on the basepaths.

Well sign me up to pitch then. Give up 50 or so runs before I get the first out. And then get 27 straight K’s to mercifully end the game and ride off into MLB history.

Jake_SABR
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Jake_SABR
3 months 7 days ago

how about i hit the first three batters of the game and proceed to get thrown out?

AlexTheGreat
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AlexTheGreat
3 months 9 days ago

Actually catcher would be the best spot to put you. You would break your thumb on the first pitch/foul tip with any movement and only cost a roster spot and possibly a called ball that should have been a strike.

Orsulakfan
Member
Orsulakfan
3 months 9 days ago

You set the scenario in Baltimore. In that case, the team could (and probably would) DH you, so as to avoid the catastrophe of which you speak.

Lots better to do in Baltimore on an off day than whatever podunk town you’re from, dude.

Dave Stewart
Member
3 months 9 days ago

I was born in a podunk town.
I can breathe in a podunk town.
Gonna die in a podunk town.
That’s probably where they’ll bury me…..

Jason B
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Jason B
3 months 8 days ago

I love, love, LOVE that someone took the time to register this user name for this single, specific response.

carter
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carter
3 months 7 days ago

I’ve been to Baltimore also. What are the good things to do on an off day?(serious question)

dtpollitt
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Member
dtpollitt
3 months 9 days ago

Am I still better than Neifi Perez’s career -3.3 fWAR line? Six seasons of negative value!!

Arjon
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Arjon
3 months 9 days ago

How about if I move myself back and forth between LF and RF depending on who’s at bat? I can’t hit, field or throw worth a lick, but I’m pretty sure I can manage to jog that far a couple of times per inning in a reasonably timely manner without getting out of breath enough to make my fielding any worse than it already is.

Barney Coolio
Member
Barney Coolio
3 months 9 days ago

That actually is a good idea. The Padres did that a few years ago, swapping Yonder Alonso and Jesus Guzman between 1b and 3b, depending on who was at bat and if there was a runner on first.

TKDC
Member
Member
TKDC
3 months 9 days ago

I actually thought about this, too, and for me, I’d think switching to first base at times would be beneficial as well. I am not fast, quick, don’t have a strong arm, and can’t read fly balls. But I can field easy grounders and I can catch (someone with a strong arm would need to take a little off) and I’m very tall. I think I’d be better at first for any batter that would not likely take advantage of the opportunity to drag bunt in my direction.

Also, the point about being able to field a slowly rolling ball and get it back to the infield. David Ortiz would likely stretch a routine single into a double against me. Billy Hamilton would almost no doubt end up on third base at least on any ball hit in my direction.

vecnyj
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Member
vecnyj
3 months 8 days ago

Could you field MLB grounders? I kind of doubt that.

Doug Lampert
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Member
Doug Lampert
3 months 9 days ago

If I were the manager, I’d actually put me in center, tell me to play fairly short behind second base and try to get to anything straight to me on the ground, and tell the left and right fielders to shade toward center and that they have to also cover left-center and right-center respectively.

We give up extra hits down both lines, but the middle of the field is covered and there’s no gaping hole with nothing covering it that the batters can deliberately aim for.

david k
Member
david k
3 months 8 days ago

Yeah, I thought about this too. But also, even though major league hitters have their natural tendencies, wouldn’t it behoove them to hit it the opposite way, right to the lay-fielder, with high odds that he will reach base one way or another? Given that, I’d say a lay-person playing the field would be even worse than what’s stated in the article because a higher percentage than normal plays would go in their direction.

I agree that maybe being the 5th starter would be a smaller detriment to the team, although the thought of standing 60′ from MLB hitters that can hit screaming line drives up the middle would make me much rather play the OF (at least I would have a little more time to get out of the way of a hard liner right at me and just play it off the OF wall for a minimum of a triple, even though my arm is halfway decent)

Bryz
Member
3 months 8 days ago

Considering players have a tough time beating the shift (or just flat-out refuse to beat the shift), I don’t think the whole “hit it at the obviously less than MLB-caliber fielder” strategy would actually come into play that much.

frangipard
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frangipard
3 months 8 days ago

Sure, that sounds good … until Pat Venditte is pitching, and a switch-hitter comes to the plate. Then what, hmmmmmm?????

Joser
Member
Joser
3 months 9 days ago

I mean, really, do you want to stand in against 95 mph heat? I sure as hell don’t.

At Safeco field, in the old “bullpen” pub (since remodeled into “Edgar’s”) there was a wall with little peeopholes in it; if you crouched down and peered through while an opposing pitcher was warming up, you had an umpire’s view over the shoulder of the bullpen catcher. If said opposing pitcher was a fireballer at the end of his routine, you got to experience what it is really like to see a major league fastball coming at you. As Randy Johnson once said of his heater, “Most people couldn’t even catch it, let alone get a bat on it.” Indeed, my hand would ache reflexively just from the sound of those things hitting the catcher’s glove, even muffled by a wall. Trying to get a piece of timber around on that? Unimaginable.

(Though I have to say, curves were even more terrifying, because they were still moving at speeds that would get you pulled over on the freeway, but they looked like they were coming right at your head.)

Lazy flyballs in the outfield, though? I think I could probably still track one of those down before falling and hurting myself.

thecodygriffin
Member
thecodygriffin
3 months 9 days ago

I never realized how terrible I was at baseball. This has given me a lot to think about.

Barney Coolio
Member
Barney Coolio
3 months 9 days ago

Yeah, well, we’re all probably horrible at baseball by MLB standards. But if I was actually doing this, maybe the best case scenario would be me striking out 4 times offensively, and defensively, maybe I would make a few catches, and fail to catch a ball Matt Kemp would have caught. Or maybe zero balls get hit to me. So, it is possible that a drunk guy in the bleachers would not realize how much of an unworthy amateur I am. Yeah, I struck out 4 times, but a lot of players do that in a game, and most drunk guys aren’t keeping track of what each player did in the previous plate appearances.

But put me in an NBA game, and my worthlessness would be instantly apparent.

david k
Member
david k
3 months 8 days ago

Or an NFL or NHL game. I’d be flat run over in all those sports. Maybe my best chance would be to be a defensive lineman in the NFL. If I get zero tackles, I’m sure there have been plenty of other players that have done the same. I’d have less chance hurting an NFL team in that position than any other (that probably includes punter).

Barney Coolio
Member
Barney Coolio
3 months 8 days ago

If this exercise were done for NFL, would “punt returner” count as a position? If so, then the lay person should be the punt returner. Have him practice copious times in practice, but ALWAYS as “fair catch.” Other plays could be random guy on the kickoff team, but avoid contact, and defensive lineman on all extra points.

Roger McDowell Hot Foot
Member
Roger McDowell Hot Foot
3 months 9 days ago

I enjoyed the Will Ferrell spring-training stunt for this reason, because it was the closest I’ve seen anyone get to enacting the thought experiment of how a normal human would look playing against MLB-level competition. Fielding wasn’t the (most) humiliating part.

He managed to put his bat on exactly one pitch in his 2 PA, fouled it off and started shaking his hands in pain. The question of how to shift/position against him defensively was also an interesting one; you could argue the best strategy would’ve been a 7-man infield.

carter
Member
carter
3 months 7 days ago

This reminds me. Did anyone ever catch the old Man Show episode where Adam Carolla goes yard in bp? That certainly surprised me.

Barney Coolio
Member
Barney Coolio
3 months 9 days ago

Cool idea. Here are some thoughts:

1. I often wonder what is more challenging, LF or RF? Most people say that RF is harder, because the throws are longer. Ok, but most amateur leagues hide their worst OF in RF because of fewer balls to catch, and this exercise seems to agree. But here 1b was ignored because we cannot depend on Joe Sixpack to catch the ball, whereas even 40 year old DAvid Ortiz can be counted on occasionally at 1b. Is MLB LF really easier than RF, but if you have to hide Joe Sixpack, RF is better than LF and 1b? I remember when Chase Headley first came up with the Padres, he was blocked at 3b. They put him in Lf. I thought, wouldn’t an inexperienced Of be better in RF? If he has the arm for 3b, shouldn’t he have the arm for RF?

2. “Maybe the other people who are forced into duty are older, fatter, and worse than you.”

hmmm, older, sure, fatter, sure, but worse? Well, defensively maybe. I think that just about every Division III college outfielder might be a better defensive outfielder, than say, latter day Matt Stairs. But how slow is MLB slow? Are famous plodsters like Frank Thomas at age 40 slower than the average American 40 year old?

JayT
Member
JayT
3 months 9 days ago

Sam Miller once talked about timing Jose Molina home to first and then seeing if he could beat Molina’s time. He couldn’t, and from what I understand, Miller is a pretty average 35 year old.

Molina was a little bit less than five seconds home to first.
http://www.raysindex.com/2012/04/jose-molina-is-slow.html

tz
Member
tz
3 months 9 days ago

About four score and seven pounds ago, I ran high school track. Because my muscles were more slow-twitch, I stuck to the 800 meters and up, and was ok enough. But the best I could do for an all-out 100 meters was somewhere between 14 and 15 seconds. That probably meant it took me longer than 5 seconds to cover the first 30 yards, as a pretty average 17 year old.

Running slower than a Molina brother is no more shameful than not being able to top Jamie Moyer’s fastball. These guys are in a league of their own.

Bryz
Member
3 months 8 days ago

3B and LF are on the same side of the field, so it’s easier to read how the ball comes off the bat if you’ve already spent most/all of your professional career on the left side.

Brian Reinhart
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Member
3 months 9 days ago

For those curious, over a 156 game cameo, this person would be worth about -40 WAR, or enough to single-handedly cancel out Mike Trout’s entire career-to-date.

Barney Coolio
Member
Barney Coolio
3 months 9 days ago

If you gave me 156 starts at DH, I would probably very occasionally get a hit. I wonder what my batting line would be? Probably truly abysmal. I wonder who has a better chance of getting a hit, a 25 year old random guy in this situation who takes batting practice constantly, or your average 30 year old AL relief pitcher?

JayT
Member
JayT
3 months 9 days ago

Definitely the AL pitcher. Most of those guys were probably not just the best pitchers, but the best hitters on their high school teams too.

TKDC
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Member
TKDC
3 months 9 days ago

I want to give you a high five for putting me in the same sentence as Mike Trout.

Nathaniel Dawson
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Nathaniel Dawson
3 months 9 days ago

I went and figured that out too, before I read your comment, and got 38 wins below replacement in 150 games. Ouch!

jewellsd
Member
jewellsd
3 months 8 days ago

Could I really turn a 100 win team into a 60 win team just by playing for a year?? I mean obviously I’d be an embarrassment to the game, but wow.

johnsnot20
Member
johnsnot20
3 months 9 days ago

Sometimes i have to put things in perspective for people when they are talking about MLB players. I usually say that some High School out there has a trophy wall and Brendan Ryan is the name on every plaque. Because Brendan Ryan was probably the best athlete his town ever saw (I don’t actually know where he’s from, maybe he went to a great baseball school) Brendan Ryan is still somewhere in the top 800 baseball players on the planet.

Also, I saw Casper Wells hit a homer in High School that was hit farther, louder, harder, faster than anything I’ve ever seen done in the majors, batting practice included.

That’s how good the worst players in baseball are.

Although I have some friends who totally raked against jason Grilli in high school. By brother in law hit a ball that hasn’t landed off him in legion ball.

Malcolm-Jamal Hegyes
Member
Malcolm-Jamal Hegyes
3 months 9 days ago

I bet you could take say John Kruk, wake him up out of a sound sleep, and throw him into a 5-on-5 basketball game and he’d dominate. Right now, at his age and all.

You have to be a seriously excellent athlete just to not embarrass yourself in pro ball.

Barney Coolio
Member
Barney Coolio
3 months 9 days ago

I actually really doubt Kruk would dominate. HE is 55, fat af, and openly admitted to not being an athelete while he was a professional baseball player.

I used to play bball every week with my coworkers at a bar I worked at. Kruk very well might have been the best player on the court in those games.

But put him in a game against 20somethings who play regularly and used to play even high school basketball? I doubt Kruck would stand out in the slightst.

My high schol math teacher said that in the mid 1980’s, some members of the SD Chargers would play against HS teachers in some sort of a promotion. He and the other teachers practiced together and beat the crap out of the Chargers, and they were all in their mid 30’s. Is he embellishing? I really have to wonder. But I don’t have much faith in Kruk.

formerly matt w
Member
formerly matt w
3 months 9 days ago

Because I am That Guy, the name on the plaques at Brendan Ryan’s high school is probably Giancarlo Stanton.

TheChaosPath
Member
TheChaosPath
3 months 9 days ago

Because I am also That Guy, the name on the plaques is actually probably Mike Stanton

RC
Member
Member
RC
3 months 9 days ago

I would think LF or RF might be somewhat park dependant. It seems like the best possible situation would be playing LF in Boston; any well hit ball can be picked up once it hits the wall, there is a lot less ground to cover, and the distance to the infield is a lot shorter when you do finally run down the ball. While challenging to play well, LF in Boston seems to be the best play to hide a “bad” outfielder.

Sam Samson
Member
Sam Samson
3 months 8 days ago

On the other hand, Hanley Ramirez.

RC
Member
Member
RC
3 months 9 days ago

Another fun alternate reality thought exercise: If you were able to train through Spring Training, getting practice in the field and at the plate over the course of about a month, how bad would you be over the course of a week? Still terrible, but maybe you’ve learned to read the ball well enough to make a couple more catches, and maybe make enough contact to luck into a hit (though probably not).

Doug Lampert
Member
Member
Doug Lampert
3 months 9 days ago

At no time does the bat leave my shoulder. There’s a real chance I’ll walk, there’s effectively no chance at all that I’ll get a hit.

http://www.sbnation.com/2011/8/15/2364354/santiago-casilla-batting-video-jose-ceda-giants-marlins

eddo
Member
eddo
3 months 9 days ago

I wonder how many average dudes in their mid-30s would even make it through Spring Training without hurting themselves. I’m in pretty decent shape, but I’m basically nursing a gym-related injury a non-insignificant amount of the time.

If it were just shagging fly balls an hour a day, I could probably survive and get better, but shagging fly balls for an hour and then doing 6 more hours of stuff? My body might actually self-destruct.

Shirtless Bartolo Colon
Member
3 months 9 days ago

For a Klondike bar, I’ll hurt them as bad as you want. Just let me know.

Vegemitch
Member
Vegemitch
3 months 9 days ago

I believe someone did an article attempting to see how well we would hit last year. It was based on data derived from pitchers at bat with the bases loaded and 3 ball counts, so the pitcher “must” throw a strike. If we never swung the bat our line would actually be a little better than Lester’s.

Nathaniel Dawson
Member
Nathaniel Dawson
3 months 9 days ago

Certainly the most obvious, first strategy any of us would think to employ is to never take the bat off our shoulders and pick up a walk as a result every few games. But it wouldn’t take long for pitchers to figure out what we’re doing, and then start throwing 80 MPH meatballs over the plate (which we still wouldn’t be able to hit) and getting strike after strike.

GoatHerder
Member
Member
GoatHerder
3 months 9 days ago

Just imagine what happens when the other team realizes I’m not very good at baseball and starts trying to aim hits my direction in RF. It could be worse than bunting on Matt Garza.

What is the record for most inside the part homeruns in a single ballgame?

Matt
Member
Matt
3 months 9 days ago

I wonder how much the team should shift with me on the field to minimize damage. Like, I can play left field, but I’ll basically play on the line, and the team would basically play 2 outfielders while I’m on the field. Or would they be giving up way too many hits to the gaps by shifting over for me?

Brad Johnson
Member
Member
3 months 9 days ago

I’m fairly certain I can outhit Bartolo Colon.

Shirtless Bartolo Colon
Member
3 months 9 days ago

I’m fairly certain I can outeat you. Unless it’s that soy green crap that you tried living off of before, I’d rather die than touch any of that.

TKDC
Member
Member
TKDC
3 months 9 days ago

I had a friend tell me he could hit okay in the big leagues because he was a teammate in high school of a guy who ended up pitching in the NL for a few seasons and he assumed because he was a better hitter than this guy in high school he’d be better in the pros. Not sure how full of it he was.

Ethbob21
Member
Ethbob21
3 months 9 days ago

I know you would theoretically get more balls in center, but there might be an argument for putting you in center and having the better (real) defenders on the corners pinching towards the gaps. It is easier to get a read on the ball in center, which would make it more likely for you to get to routine flys. But as stated earlier, it would be better for the team for you not to touch the ball when possible, so maybe right is better after all.

HappyFunBall
Member
HappyFunBall
3 months 9 days ago

If this really were to happen, they’d DH you every single day. You’re going 0-4 regardless, and it least if all you do is flail away you won’t be costing them any runs on defense.

And the first few paragraphs of your article are answered by those rare occasions when a RP shifts into the outfield in order that an opposite handed RP can enter the game for one batter. They always play an OF corner, and it’s usually RF.

Munchkin
Member
Munchkin
3 months 9 days ago

You have to take one for the team. Crowd the inside part of the plate (the “Utley”). If they miss anywhere close inside, you have a HBP. Or pray that the pitcher miss some pitches on the outside. As they start to pump some FB right in the middle, either lean in even further or give some wild hacks. Mix up some fake bunts for good measure.
Taunting the pitcher could work too. Point the bat towards the LF as if you were going to hit a HR there. Again more HBP opportunities or he loses his cool and misses the strikezone.

This is living the dream, playing ML baseball. I wouldn’t just stand there, take 3 strikes and go back to the bench. Give me the Great Gazoo helmet, some body armor and lets go.

Malcolm-Jamal Hegyes
Member
Malcolm-Jamal Hegyes
3 months 9 days ago

Just like that kid Rudy in the Bad News Bears, just with adequate protection.

Nathaniel Dawson
Member
Nathaniel Dawson
3 months 9 days ago

Matthew did mention what might happen with our pants if we had to face live major league pitching. And you’re gonna crowd the plate?

Munchkin
Member
Munchkin
3 months 9 days ago

We’ll have to face ML pitching regardless, there is no escaping it. Add adult dippers to the list of required equipment.

You have to wonder if the scouts are going to notice the prominent derriere and say “boy, he’s got some power there!”

Avi24
Member
Avi24
3 months 8 days ago

You could always just “take one for the team” and injure yourself when the 95 MPH pitch nails you. Although the team may not be able to get you back onto the field to stand at first base and thus might have to forfeit the game because they ran out of players.

comish4lif
Member
3 months 9 days ago

Wait, If the entire Orioles team is unavailable, I’m playing third base and batting in the 6 hole. I’m one of the better players that you could pull out of the stands.

Against a population of MLB/MiLB/Indy League players, I’m terrible – no question there. But compared to the general population, I can play.

I reject your reality and insert my own.

Phillies113
Member
Member
3 months 9 days ago

So it looks like you’ve discovered the Phillies’ secret.

AutomatedTeller
Member
AutomatedTeller
3 months 9 days ago

I suspect that, if I were to have to play the OF for a ML team, this understates the effect somewhat.

A) I would very likely be struck out on 3 pitches every time, which might allow the pitcher to stay in the game longer. Certainly, there’s no need to throw very hard – I could probably not catch up to 70 MPH. My AB would basically be 3 BP pitches.
B) I would quite likely screw up almost any play I’m involved in. a double down the line would be stretched to a triple by anyone with speed – a single through the SS hole would have a good chance of being a double, cause I’d not get to the ball, or not get my glove down or overthrow the 2B or underthrow or throw it 20 feet to the side. You definitely could not include me in a run down play – the runner would simply run over me, assuming I didn’t drop the ball the instant it was hit to me.
C) I would almost certainly be under orders to not try to catch anything near another fielder, on the assumption that the likelihood of hurting the other player is far higher for me than any player. There are collisions between major league baseball players. God knows what would happen were I out there.
D) We would find out just how much hitters can control the ball – it would not take long for all hitters to try to just drop the ball over the IF for a single/potential double. I think LF get 2 or so plays a game – my guess is that if I were in LF, there would be more like 8-10 balls a game out there, almost all of which would be hits, many of which would be doubles.

Cidron
Member
Cidron
3 months 9 days ago

Dont put me in the outfield. I will gasp myself onto the DL simply running from the dugout to field and back every inning. At least hide me somewhere on the infield. Catcher-backup maybe. Play two outfielders. The only shape I am in is “Round”

Jetsy Extrano
Member
Jetsy Extrano
3 months 9 days ago

Look here, son, I’ve been buried in right field in tee-ball since before you was born, so you and your numbers ain’t nothing new.

This is fun, but I think you could just go all the way to what is the (negative) win value of a total zero player: zero OBP, zero FP%. Not much different anyway and then you know where the floor is!

I guess another question though is, since the other team knows you’re awful, could they exploit you further? For example, the argument against playing corner infield is even stronger than it immediately looks, because if you did that they’d bunt all the time and you’d fuck up all the time. It’s harder to aim bloops at a shitty corner outfielder, I’m pretty sure. Pitching strategy could even help keep the ball to the other field a little.

Schmidt Happens
Member
Schmidt Happens
3 months 9 days ago

I have no way to prove it, of course, but I strongly suspect that the game-theoretic optimal strategy when we’re in the field would be to stick me immediately behind the second-base bag and just play with 2 OFs.

The average MLB hitter has the skill required to go oppo (or pull the ball, for LHH) a high enough percentage of the time that, if I’m out there turning every other fly into a two-base error and misplaying singles into triples, I think it would actaully result in more runs allowed per 9 than simply forcing two guys to cover the entire outfield and not letting me touch a ball in play, ever.

Easyenough
Member
Member
Easyenough
3 months 9 days ago

In high school, there were kids who really didn’t belong on the field. They were a danger not just to themselves but to everyone around them. I’m pretty sure that’s what I would be like during an MLB game. You know how they say that you have to “slow the game down?” Yeah, it would all be in fast motion. I was a good catcher, recruited for college football, and we had some hard throwing pitchers, and I saw at least a few gruesome bunts to face with blood everywhere. I saw a hitter tap a ball, be out by 20 feet, and run into the first baseman because he was so focused on “running the ball out.” I was clubbed in the back of the head with an aluminum bat more than once. You all have so many more stories like this. I think this article underplays how bad I would be.

As a now moderately fit 40 year old, I think to just stay on the field for a week would be a challenge. Hell, I bet the average American man could not manage to run in and out to right field (in a pro stadium) nine times by the first pitch of the inning without getting injured. You should see my softball team!

tz
Member
tz
3 months 9 days ago

Sounds like me (trying) to play basketball. My elbows wreaked havoc on shorter players’ heads and taller players’ groins, and that includes teammates.

And it got even worse when I tried to go up for a rebound.

jwbiii
Member
jwbiii
3 months 9 days ago

In the long history of baseball many strange things have happened, include this.

http://sabr.org/bioproj/person/8b444434

The final score was 26-2. I have no doubt that the level of play has increased significantly since 1912 and the beating would be far worse. I also think that you could better replacement players than a bunch of guys hanging out in some random neighborhood.

david k
Member
david k
3 months 8 days ago

I think this article is living proof of how much better major league baseball players are today than they were back then. Do you really think an entire team of similarly qualified scrubs would only lose 26-2 against even the worst team in MLB, not to mention a team with a couple of Hall-of-Famers on their roster? I think a MLB team would put up 26 in one inning, and wouldn’t give up two runs if the game lasted a full month.

glanzerr
Member
glanzerr
3 months 9 days ago

These things are all true but I would make up for my shortcomings with my tenacity, heart, and locker room leadership a’la Torii Hunter.

wubbie075
Member
wubbie075
3 months 8 days ago

This is baseball. The correct term is “grit”.

StinkyPete
Member
Member
StinkyPete
3 months 9 days ago

It’s not about baseball, but a very good book that approaches this subject is “A Few Seconds of Panic” by Stefan Fatsis. Fatsis was 43 years old and a decent club soccer player who trained for nearly a year before embedding on the Denver Broncos as a field goal kicker.

Bobby Mueller
Member
Member
3 months 9 days ago

You have obviously never seen my knuckleball. :-)

Schmidt Happens
Member
Schmidt Happens
3 months 9 days ago

I can’t believe we’ve gotten this far down the comments in a “random guy from the stands gets to play OF” article on FanGraphs without anyone making a joke about having a better arm than Khris Davis.

Bobby Mueller
Member
Member
3 months 9 days ago

Or Johnny Damon.

Just ask Manny Ramirez. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SCdp-pSA8kc

amaahs
Member
Member
amaahs
3 months 9 days ago

We would probably get picked off or do something similarly stupid in our one time on base. Minus about a half for base running runs depending on the base-out scenario.

wily mo
Member
3 months 9 days ago

possible we’d have a better chance if we could choose to run straight from first to third

Joe
Member
Member
Joe
3 months 9 days ago

Good to see NotGraphs is back.

Big Daddy V
Member
Big Daddy V
3 months 9 days ago

I thought this article would be about breaking your rival team’s legs. Now I want to see that article.

davedsg
Member
davedsg
3 months 9 days ago

Ugh. Its like playing little league all over again. I’ll stick collecting baseball cards and playing RBI Baseball on my NES. Canseco was a beast on that game!

descender
Member
descender
3 months 9 days ago

I still regret to this day not taking college ball seriously. :(

I played for most of my younger life (tee-ball through college) and barring some extreme lack of physical activity I would think that anyone that made a high-school baseball team (where there were actual tryouts) would still do relatively OK in either corner OF spot… especially if they were shifted away from the batters pull side. If you play IF in a large adult softball league (not a beer league) you could probably handle your own for a week in the majors. That ball isn’t coming at you all that much slower, and you are standing closer so the reaction times aren’t that dissimilar. You could probably play a deep 1B or 2B and keep the throws shorter. There would be no point to putting most people at 3B because they could never throw anyone out because of how deep they would have to play.

Personally I feel like I’d be fine in the OF. My “gun” still shows up at softball tourneys and I dawdle and bait guys into taking extra bags just so I can throw them out… :D I would probably embarrass a few major league outfielders in the fielding department, even at 33. I see outfielders make short dribbling throws that I know beyond a doubt that I could still 1-hop to the plate.

Hitting a professionally thrown pitch, however… nope. Fast or slow, that would clearly be the biggest problem. I would at least try to bunt a few times, square up and slap swing… lean in… basically try anything to get on base.

A fun thought experiment for sure.

wily mo
Member
3 months 9 days ago

one time we were sitting around and my friend claimed that “anybody who isn’t [mild ableist slur redacted] can throw 80” so one thing led to another and we ended up getting one of those radar balls and checking it out. i topped out at 55. pretty sad. it turned out his dad played in the PCL so his perspective was a little warped. but he was only hitting 72 himself, so, it was all a tower of lies

a little while after that the pats had that really terrible punter who they couldn’t get rid of because he was vinatieri’s holder, so me and the same friend went out to see if we could actually punt farther than that dude. we couldn’t do that either! sports are difficult

`Gareth
Member
Member
`Gareth
3 months 9 days ago

And Jenny Finch struck out Albert Pujols:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gm9iZnqGMvY

Mark Davidson
Member
Member
3 months 9 days ago

Jenny Finch would often practice at Cal State Fullerton and a couple times she threw to the team…none of us (not even Turner or Suzuki) could put good contact on the ball (if any).

Mark Davidson
Member
Member
3 months 9 days ago

As a senior in high school I was elected to the all-state team. I attended Cal State Fullerton on a full ride scholarship and promptly blew out my elbow, undergoing an unsuccessful Tommy John Surgery. I was a pitcher, but also a decent-ish outfielder if you ask my mom. I’ll be honest: When I first saw the title of this article, my knee-jerk, egotistical, seeing my glory days through rose-tinted glasses reaction was, “Not any more than Hanley hurt the Sox in LF”. Then I saw Matt Kemp’s defensive numbers from this year (and his -64.8 UZR dating back to 2012) and reality snapped me back like getting hit in the face by a bird turd. Maybe it’s because of my backstory and the fact that I’ve stayed in shape (6-‘6″, 230), I’m prone to suffer outbursts in my mind from that irrational voice that says “pfft, yeah dude, you could totally do it”. I’ve learned that I need to tell that voice that he’s pathetic as am I..because the last time I listened I broke my ribs running with the bulls..and the time before that I developed Quadrilateral Space Syndrome from trying to clean and jerk a christmas tree…and the time before that I had to be escorted out of disneyland for…I shan’t bring that one up. Bottom line is I would make Manny Ramirez or Brad Hawpe (2007 – 08) or even Matt Kemp look like the super hero version of Kevin Kiermaier. You were right, Matthew Kory, and friggen awesome article, man.

Nats Fan
Member
Nats Fan
3 months 9 days ago

I would put money on me being the worst player that ever played baseball! Somehow I developed an interest in the Math of baseball in college that got me playing fantasy baseball in the 1980s I now I come here daily even during the offseason.

burgh_fan
Member
burgh_fan
3 months 8 days ago

Hmm interesting concept but I think you may underrating our offensive performance. Lets think about the typical fan shall we. The typical fan probably isn’t actively involved in playing baseball anymore. I’m sure they do some baseball related activities but I’m guessing like me its at a minimal.

Now lets imagine how we would react to facing 90+ mph fastballs and breaking pitches that move as much as they do in the major leagues. I’m guessing most of us would try to stand as far away as possible at the back of the box and routinely “dive” out of the way on every pitch. This would be such an unorthodox style that I’m not convinced major league umpires would know how to handle it and our strike zone might wind up rather small. The small strike zone may earn us an extra walk or two as umpires try to figure out how in the world to call our zone.

tz
Member
tz
3 months 8 days ago

Exchange from American Idol last night:

Harry Connick Jr.: “The band was so good for [the previous song] that even you would have sounded good Ryan”

Ryan Seacrest: “No, uh-uh. No [shaking head repeatedly]”

And despite the audience chanting his name and the judges and band egging him on, Seacrest wisely stood his ground to not embarrass himself.

That’s how I would handle a request to fill in as a major leaguer, even with all the perks that theperfectgame mentions above.

London Yank
Member
London Yank
3 months 8 days ago

This experiment has actually been tried. Tom Verducci was allowed to be a Blue Jay for five days during spring training of 2005:

http://www.si.com/vault/2005/03/14/8254911/i-was-a-toronto-blue-jay

I actually think you are overestimating how much better MLB players are than regular people. For example, Tom Verducci was able to make contact against major league pitchers. Tom Verducci! Obviously MLB players are amazing at what they do, but they are not superhuman.

It is the hitting that really separates MLB players from regular people, since that is what they are primarily selected for. Even the best fielders in MLB are really the best fielders who can hit at a minimally acceptable amount. It would almost certainly be possible to find people who could field better than many MLB players. For example sprinters would make most centerfielders look downright plodding. Many could probably play an acceptable center field.

Pinstripe Wizard
Member
Pinstripe Wizard
3 months 8 days ago

I played in high school and was a half decent pitcher. I was never a stud hitter or anything, but if you’ve never tried to hit someone throwing 90+, I’m not sure most people realize what that looks like coming at you. Guys throwing low 80s were fairly standard where I played and we’d hit well off of them. Guys throwing 90+ just make it look like the ball has grabbed another gear. You can literally hearing the ball whistling past you at times. Now the average Fangraphs reader might have been the best player on their high school team, but the average person couldn’t even foul off a major league fastball if they swung at it 20 times in a row.

BigMax
Member
BigMax
3 months 8 days ago

Having coached little league for the last few years, I am probably a better hitter now (age 46) than I ever was growing up. I stepped in against my 13-year old son (who clocked mid-60s on a radar gun a few days earlier), throwing from 54 feet (so equivalent in timing to a low 70s fastball from MLB distance). I could foul off the fastball, but was utterly helpless against his cutter. As a proud father, I would say that his cutter is good pitch. As a realist, I think I would look ridiculous against any pitch that moved at all.

God Albatross
Member
3 months 8 days ago

a friend of mine sent over this link in response to this post:

http://baseball.wikia.com/wiki/Allan_Travers

Aloysius Joseph “Allan” Travers, aka Rev. Aloysius Stanislaus Travers (May 7, 1892 – April 19, 1968) was a Major League Baseball pitcher who played for the Detroit Tigers in one of the most unusual games in baseball history. On May 18, 1912, Travers gave up 24 runs as a replacement player for the striking Detroit Tigers team.

Death to Flying Things
Member
Death to Flying Things
3 months 8 days ago

Apparently if given the opportunity, I would emerge as both the best pitcher and best hitter in the league, a latter day Babe Ruth, only better looking. At least that’s how my mental simulations always seem to turn out.

wubbie075
Member
wubbie075
3 months 8 days ago

I never played organized baseball, but in my late teens I used to play pickup games in my neighborhood. I once played first base and my third baseman had apparently done some time in low A ball. It was frikkin terrifying how fast he was getting those throws to me.

As for batting in the article’s scenario, I’d just squat down as low as the umpires would allow me to, take my occasional walk and get picked off 1B 99% of the time.

davedsg
Member
davedsg
3 months 8 days ago

You’d have to pick a different team. Peter Angelos was the only owner during the 94-95 Strike to not potentially field a team with replacement players because they would be nonunion. Believe it or not, the cheap bastard actually opposed a salary cap and supported the player.

jfree
Member
jfree
3 months 8 days ago

I think the experiment would go a lot better than you think. It was done before with Eddie Gaedel and I have no doubt that an Eddie Gaedel comparable would give pitchers fits today as well.

Momus
Member
Momus
3 months 8 days ago

I would immediately be put on the DL because of my destroyed ACL.

If we assume I’m fully healthy then I would play RF and probably cost my team runs at about twice the rate of Chris Colabello or Hanley Ramirez on defense. I suspect I would probably have better range than either of them but would also have the instincts of head trauma victim out there.

At the plate… well I don’t think there has ever been a player in the Majors who was a worse hitter than I would be. In most baseball leagues I have played in I was generally the fastest runner, one of the better outfielders, and finished in the top handful of guys for home runs. In the majors I doubt I could hit a batting practice pitch to the fences on my pull side.

So let’s say I get 54 innings in the field and bat 24 times. I would probably rack up about -8 DRS in those innings… with maybe a -80ish UZR/150. Then figure I would go 1/24 with a squib single at the plate.

I think all told I could cost my team at least one whole game, maybe 2.

Momus
Member
Momus
3 months 8 days ago

Okay… I just want to point out that I wrote the above comment without reading the article and I’m now pretty impressed by how close my estimates of how catastrophically bad I would be are to what’s in the article.

:-)

Kyle
Member
Member
Kyle
3 months 7 days ago

That was fun. Thanks!

jimcal
Member
jimcal
3 months 7 days ago

I am surprising that no one have made “I’m gonna turn single to a double, or triple, even Homerun…..as an outfielder” joke yet.

tz
Member
tz
3 months 7 days ago

Kind of like the “I broke 80 once….but I shot 107 on the back nine” golf joke.

(Actually, that’s not a joke. That actually IS the highlight of my golf career.)

bravesfan
Member
bravesfan
3 months 7 days ago

for the sake of argument, why no consider putting me at 2nd base? No illusions here, I have no arm whatsoever, but I’m big and have a decent chance of knocking down anything hit right towards me. Also, I’m fairly heady and although we wouldn’t make a single dp with me involved, I can field a toss from ss like no man! downside? i would probably turn 75% of plays directly to me from outs into singles, but better than singles into triples, no?

baseball bettor
Member
baseball bettor
3 months 7 days ago

I think lots of decent athletes could play some 1st baseman, not well but not totally awful.

bravesfan
Member
bravesfan
3 months 7 days ago

I’d probably feel better about it if they let me wear a catcher’s mask….actually, maybe the whole tool kit.

Bronnt
Member
Bronnt
3 months 7 days ago

This article needs a Herb Washington reference. Everyone who hasn’t heard of Herb Washington needs to now look up Herb Washington.

tz
Member
tz
3 months 6 days ago

OK, now I really feel inadequate.

I mean, I work in the financial services industry, and I suppose I should have taken my college finance and economic courses seriously :( I mean, I have had a few rare occasions to be a fly on the wall when the heavy hitters talk through some kind of acquisition or divestiture or pursuit of new legislation with key politicians they know, and I can only imagine what a fool I’d look like if I had to stand in for any of these executives in a real time situation.

Which makes my mind explode at how out of my league I’d be if I had to fill in as Director for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Just can’t do it.

(And feeling kind of bummed that I stand the same zero chance of significance in my actual profession than I would as an MLB ballplayer….)

JaysSaskatchewan
Member
JaysSaskatchewan
3 months 7 days ago

How would the average 20-40 year old male hold up compared to a composite player of:

– The worst fielder in MLB
– The worst hitting pitcher
– The worst baserunner

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