Friday, August 25, 2006

Baker wrong wrong wrong on OBP

To not be on "the OBP" side of the baseball debate is fine. Whatever, you're entitled. But to say that the big problem with the current Cubs (besides health) is lack of power, not a low OBP, is just plain ignorant.

One area the Cubs appear to be lacking is their on-base percentage. At .318 for the year, the Cubs are last in the National League by a wide margin and ahead of only Tampa Bay (.314) in the majors.

Manager Dusty Baker took his turn addressing the team’s problems Thursday, and he didn’t seem too worried about the lack of baserunners.

“On-base percentage is great if you can score runs and do something with that on-base percentage,” Baker said. “On-base percentage just to clog up the bases isn’t that great to me.”

Baker’s focus would be improving the team’s power. The Cubs are tied for 10th in the NL with 124 home runs.

“I think the problem we have to address as much as anything is the home run problem,” Baker said. “They have out-homered us 2-1 in our own ballpark. That’s the bigger problem.”

He's looking at the problem the wrong way. Would you rather have more homeruns than a higher OBP? Maybe, I don't know what would contribute more to a team's chance of winning between picking exclusively between the two.

But the issue is that guys with a higher OBP are just better hitters. They take more pitches, they don't swing at bad pitches, they produce more. That's what you want, guys that have that ability, and OBP is a way to track that, not the other way around.

"Let's hit more Homers" is the wrong attitude.

How many times do we have to go over this?


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