Baseball Toaster The Griddle
A place where a man can slow down to a walk and live his life full measure, but he has to keep his watch on Pacific Time.
Frozen Toast
Google Search
The Griddle

02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  10  07 
06  05  04  03 
Suggestions, comments, ring the catcher's interference alarm?

Email me at

The stuff I keep track of
Random Game Callbacks

Select a date:

Personal favorites that I wrote
Clutch or not when it comes to personal goals
2008-03-26 07:13
by Bob Timmermann

Phil Birnbaum looks at a Bill James study called "The Targeting Phenomenon," where James tried to find out why there are more hitters who finish a season with a batting average between .300 and .304 than there are ones who finish between .296 and .299.

These are very interesting findings, and I wouldn't have expected as much targeting as seems to have actually occurred. But I'm a bit skeptical about clutchness, and whether players really can boost their performance in target-near situations. I wondered if, instead of clutch performance, it might be something else. Maybe, if a player is close to his goal, he is given additional playing time in support of reaching the target.

That is, if a pitcher has 19 wins late in the season, perhaps the manager will squeeze in an extra start for him. Or if a player is hitting .298, maybe they'll let him play every day until he gets to .300, instead of resting him in favor of the September callup. If and when he reaches .300, then they could sit him (as, I think I remember reading, Bobby Mattick did for Alvis Woods in 1980).




2008-03-26 07:30:24
1.   Josh Wilker
Interesting. Maybe late-season games provide a better environment for good players to thrive. Birnbaum notes that batters chasing .300 might be playing teams that aren't as intent on stopping them as they would be in other "clutch" situations, but they may also be batting against minor league call-ups and may be playing for a team out of the race, making it something of an "anti-clutch" situation for everyone involved.
2008-03-26 08:37:34
2.   ToyCannon
Bill must be bored these days. Once upon a time he addressed issues that were interesting.

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.