Keith Law doesn't think David Ortiz is clutch

Keith Law's Narrative vs. Reality

10/14/13 in MLB   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

Oct 12, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz (34) hits a grand slam during the eighth inning in game two of the American League Championship Series baseball game against the Detroit Tigers at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY SportsIf you read Keith Law’s analysis regularly, you’ll start to catch on to the buzzwords and terminology he uses to make himself sound credible. He repeats what he’s heard and picked up along the way. He has no in-the-trenches experience of having actually played the game of baseball and he came from a stat-based writing background. Because of that, he was smart enough to analyze the landscape and incorporate a scouting resume to go along with his numbers, thereby becoming all things to all people.
 
Law’s own bio on ESPN.com says that he went to Harvard and Carnegie Mellon, was a writer for Baseball Prospectus, worked in the Blue Jays front office, then joined ESPN.
 
That’s the narrative.
 
“Narrative.”
 
It’s become an important part of what Law does and was on prominent display again last night on Twitter as he sought to hit back at those who touted David Ortiz as a “clutch” player because of his game-tying grand slam in game two of the ALCS.

Law’s take – based on statistics – is that clutch hitting is a myth stemming from opportunity and Ortiz is not any more likely to get a “big” hit than he is to get any other hit. The foundation for the assertion is that Ortiz’s OPS is worse in late and close situations (the exact time when he’s built his legend) than it’s been in other situations.
 
Is it numerically accurate? I suppose so.
 
Is it true? Is it fair?
 
For someone to even suggest that they’d rather have the prototypical “any” good hitter at the plate in that type of circumstance is utter idiocy. If you asked Law whom he’d rather have at the plate with the bases loaded, four runs down in the eighth inning of a playoff game and gave him the choice of Nick Swisher or Ortiz, he’d undoubtedly reply with a straight (smug and pompous) face, “It doesn’t matter.”
 
This is not to get into the accuracy of the statement that “clutch hitting doesn’t exist.” To denigrate Ortiz’s accomplishments in key moments just like last night’s because there’s no evidence that it’s real is the height of the arrogance that is a hallmark of Law’s career. You have to admire the audacity of having no shame whatsoever to think that his analysis is superior to all others and because it hasn’t been proven to him that it’s not there. 
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10/21/13   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

bodhibadaducci wrote:
Your only response is pointing out a typo I made on my phone? Do you legitimately not see how the response you just pointed - the one where you conveniently ignored my main point to point out what was an obvious typing error - only reinforces my original comment?

I'll spell it out for you in case the irony really is lost on you. You disguised an (admittedly impressive) whine session about Law who you clearly do not like as a person as commentary on a) the interesting topic of whether clutch hitting exists, b) the sorta interesting but largely played out meme that sabermetricians don't "get" baseball, and c) the completely disinteresting notion that you somehow hold the rights of First Stone Thrower to critique the resume of an established professional in baseball and journalism. In other words, you don't have any analysis or opinion on the topic that is of worth to a reader, so you decided to spice things up by degrading the post into a rant. When I called you out on this, you had no response that was of any worth to a reader, so you decided to spice things up degrading your response to a rant.

See a theme?

Again, if you have actual baseball expertise or even a layman's understanding of the numbers that would prove or disprove Law's ideas about clutch hitting, go for it. It's a discussion worth having. But if you want to cry about Law having a career trajectory that you currently wish for yourself, I won't hand you the tissues but I'll certainly point to the tissue box.
(Edited by PAULLEBOWITZ)

Established professional? Did you not read what I wrote? The reason Law is in the media is because he has an established fanbase because of his resume. I give him credit for that. But that doesn't mean I have to bow to him for his opinion about clutch hitting, about scouting, about how to determine if a player will be a success or not especially when a large number of people who are actually inside baseball revile him for his arrogance and self-interested creation of a career.

Where am I the "first stone thrower?" Buster Olney loathes Law as do many actual reporters who worked their way into their current position and are offended by this outsider's perceived expertise that is diametrically opposed to in-the-trenches reality. The post wasn't about disproving or proving anything. It was about Law, his pomposity and statements that are designed to garner attention.

Law made a similar statement earlier this year when Miguel Cabrera homered three times on a Sunday night, someone on Twitter mentioned that he was "locked in," Law called that too a "myth" and was refuted by an actual big league player -- and one who's sabermetrically inclined -- Brandon McCarthy. It went on for hours because Law refused to back down even with an actual player telling him it's real. That's Keith Law.

You didn't call me out on anything because you clearly missed the entire point of my posting.

And I thought you weren't going to waste time on me anymore. 

10/21/13   |   bodhibadaducci   |   1 respect

PAULLEBOWITZ wrote:
You using "ad honimem" and misspelling it tells me all I need to know about you and your reverence for Law. You can't even spell one of the concepts he's always referring to as a lackluster defense for his own absence of credibility, so it's probably best if you steer clear of my writing and stick with Law's. 

Your only response is pointing out a typo I made on my phone? Do you legitimately not see how the response you just pointed - the one where you conveniently ignored my main point to point out what was an obvious typing error - only reinforces my original comment?

I'll spell it out for you in case the irony really is lost on you. You disguised an (admittedly impressive) whine session about Law who you clearly do not like as a person as commentary on a) the interesting topic of whether clutch hitting exists, b) the sorta interesting but largely played out meme that sabermetricians don't "get" baseball, and c) the completely disinteresting notion that you somehow hold the rights of First Stone Thrower to critique the resume of an established professional in baseball and journalism. In other words, you don't have any analysis or opinion on the topic that is of worth to a reader, so you decided to spice things up by degrading the post into a rant. When I called you out on this, you had no response that was of any worth to a reader, so you decided to spice things up degrading your response to a rant.

See a theme?

Again, if you have actual baseball expertise or even a layman's understanding of the numbers that would prove or disprove Law's ideas about clutch hitting, go for it. It's a discussion worth having. But if you want to cry about Law having a career trajectory that you currently wish for yourself, I won't hand you the tissues but I'll certainly point to the tissue box.

10/21/13   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

bodhibadaducci wrote:
Dude, there is no credible argument to be made against this ad honimen attacked wrapped up in a Dear Diary entry. If you want to prove that clutch hitting exists then go for it, and if you want to use your disagreement with Law as the foundation for that argument that's great. But that was not the point of this hit piece; it was to publicly bitch and moan about somebody you don't like. As somebody who happened across this article on a site I never heard of this holds zero interest. Zero. Interest. I'll be sure to swerve widely around pieces with your name on it because, clearly, you don't have much of a point other than that Law is a big fat poopy head whose career you wish you had.
(Edited by PAULLEBOWITZ)

You using "ad honimem" and misspelling it tells me all I need to know about you and your reverence for Law. You can't even spell one of the concepts he's always referring to as a lackluster defense for his own absence of credibility, so it's probably best if you steer clear of my writing and stick with Law's. 

10/18/13   |   bodhibadaducci   |   1 respect

Dude, there is no credible argument to be made against this ad honimen attacked wrapped up in a Dear Diary entry. If you want to prove that clutch hitting exists then go for it, and if you want to use your disagreement with Law as the foundation for that argument that's great. But that was not the point of this hit piece; it was to publicly bitch and moan about somebody you don't like. As somebody who happened across this article on a site I never heard of this holds zero interest. Zero. Interest. I'll be sure to swerve widely around pieces with your name on it because, clearly, you don't have much of a point other than that Law is a big fat poopy head whose career you wish you had.

10/16/13   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

kantwistaye wrote:
So you're saying it still made more sense than your article?

You can take all the shots you want. That's all you're doing and it's becoming increasingly obvious that's all you can do since you've presented nothing but that as refutation.
Have something worthwhile to say or don't waste my time. 

10/16/13   |   kantwistaye   |   4214 respect

PAULLEBOWITZ wrote:
Since your comment is so poorly constructed, I was initially going to ask if you were talking about me or Law. After checking your bio, it's obvious you're talking about me. 
It really isn't any kind of a retort to my posting. Just a shot. And a poor one since it missed completely until I did some research. 

So you're saying it still made more sense than your article?

10/14/13   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

orangemen90 wrote:
He is just a talking head... His last baseball job was 2006......Just like old retired players and coaches that entertain us..... It is entertainment and not based in any reality other than the talking head him/her self......

in other words hot air...

I don't think people realize that Law is only so heavily promoted by ESPN because he has a significant following among stat guys. The same people who are paying for the Insider status on ESPN to read his stuff. That's a lot of money that comes in because of him. It behooves them to keep him around and for him to draw attention to himself as he does. 

10/14/13   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

kantwistaye wrote:
This is pure small town, rural America, we're the real people who really get things arrogance and its quite frankly, f***ing stupid.

Since your comment is so poorly constructed, I was initially going to ask if you were talking about me or Law. After checking your bio, it's obvious you're talking about me. 
It really isn't any kind of a retort to my posting. Just a shot. And a poor one since it missed completely until I did some research. 

10/14/13   |   kantwistaye   |   4214 respect

This is pure small town, rural America, we're the real people who really get things arrogance and its quite frankly, f***ing stupid.

10/14/13   |   orangemen90   |   5785 respect

He is just a talking head... His last baseball job was 2006......Just like old retired players and coaches that entertain us..... It is entertainment and not based in any reality other than the talking head him/her self......

in other words hot air...