SkyKing162's Baseblog

A fan of the Yankees, Red Sox, and large sample sizes.

Bret Boone Versus Alfonso Soriano 2003


Ok, so make me an argument that says Soriano should start the All-Star team over Boone.

The only possible things I see in favor of Soriano are these:
- Soriano's had more plate appearances (about 35 it looks like)
- Soriano's stealing many more bases at the same success rate

My rebuttal (after laughing profusely) is thus:
- 35 PA isn't very many and compard to the quality difference, is insignificant
- The stolen base difference equals about 3 runs according to linear weights - not a big deal.

Points in favor of Boone, put simply:
- .040 OBP advantage
- .090 SLG advantage (for a .130 difference in OPS for those scoring at home)
- Half the time Boone hits at Safeco
- Boone plays kick-ass defense, whereas Soriano merely holds his own.

Let's do a quick runs created analysis:
Soriano: .341*.513/338 = 59
Boone: .381*.606/304 = 70

Definitely an advantage for Boone, but here's the kicker - consider outs (AB-H+CS) and RC/27 outs:
Soriano: 229 outs yields 6.7 runs/game
Boone: 189 outs yields 10 runs/game

Ok, it's an extremely rough analysis, but much more accurate than the general argument of "Soriano's such a great athlete and can hit any pitch." Sure, he can probably do athletic things than Boone (or most others) can't, but that's not the issue - the issue is which player is doing more to help his team win. And it should be obvious that it's Boone.

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