That ever astute comment comes from a commenter on Metsblog, responding to Matt Cerrone's post of his interview with Jeff Francouer. It's an amazing accomplishment to make Mr. Francouer sound intelleigent by comparison, especially when he says things like this:
Well, I think you obviously want to do both. But, you look at a guy that I played with in Atlanta this year, Garrett Anderson, who’s had a heck-of-a career and his OBP isn’t that great. I think you learn as you go. I’m still 25 and I’m learning different things, learning the strikezone and hopefully I will continue to get better at that; but, at the same time, I’m not going up there thinking to walk, thinking about this or that, if there is a guy on second or third I’m gonna try to drive him in – that’s my first priority. Whether I ground out or fly out or whatever, I want to get him in and do my best to help the team. I think as you learn more you’re OBP goes up; but, I think for me, that’s not something I just think about. I know to a lot of statistical people OBP seems to be a huge thing… 15 to 20 years ago it wasn’t a big deal… and all of a sudden it is.
It's a bit petty to write an entire fanpost - especially my first one - about a commenter on another site, but this just struck me as the exemplification of all that is wrong with the anti-SABER bias. Everyone reading this understands what the commenter's logical fallacy is, but it's a point that needs to be emphasized. If people don't get on base, then there are drastically fewer opportunities for a player to get RBI unless they hit a ton of sole homeruns. Therefore, OBP most certainly does = runs, which in turn = wins. It's not that complicated a concept, and I don't think one has to be particularly saber-friendly to appreciate it.
As for Francouer's comments, as has been pointed out on the main page, a player's lack of understanding of sabermetrics is not the worst thing, but Francouer's utter lack of concern about the importance of getting on base should raise some alarm bells. The idea that it not the "role" of a 5th or 6th place hitter to get on base is completely ludicrous. Certainly his value comes from his ability to drive in runs, but now you're placing an extra burden on the top of the lineup to get on base and make some noise if the bottom of the lineup lacks the ability to get on base at a decent clip. Not all offense in baseball stems from the 1-4 positions in the lineup. How often do we see rallies in the National League started when the bottom of the lineup pieces together a few hits?
So if Francouer doesn't appreciate the importance of getting on base, then he's signalling that he has no intention of changing his approach at the plate. That would be fine if he were - what's the word I'm looking for? - oh, right, good. But while he might impress the HittheWeightsZeile's of the world, he's costing the Mets games by his lack of ability to get on base at an appreciably higher clip than Bengie Molina. But hey, it's not like both those guys are going to be on the same team next year, so no big whoop.
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