Win Probability Added:Bucs@Cards 4/24/06
Posted by The Right Reverend on April 25, 2006
Chart From Fangraphs.com
Not the most dominant outing we've seen Carp have, but he still only gave up a couple and the Cardinals got some production from the bottom of the lineup, a nice suprise. Here's how it went down, with some help from Win Probability Added percentages.
Carp didn't seem quite 100% right last night, hitting Nate McLouth, the Pirate leadoff man. He then got Jack Wilson to fly out, and Jason Bay hit into a force. "Howitzer" Molina then gunned out Bay trying to steal for nifty li'l 2.3% WPA increase. Bay stole 21 bases last season, getting caught only once. Bottom of the 1st David Eckstein singles to get things started. Edmonds, batting 2nd in the lineup hit into an uncharacteristic double-play, resulting in a big decrease in WPA 62.9% to 54.6% (and 8.3% decrease) I think Jimmy hit into less then 5 dp's all season last year, and for those of you unfamiliar with WPA, hitting into DP's hurts it considerably. Albert Pujols then continued his HR tear, hitting his 12th(!) for +11.1% WPA.
In the second inning, red-hot Hector Luna came to the plate with Encarnacion at second and Molina on first and no outs (74.7% WPA) That's one of the nifty things about WPA, is it takes into consideration the value of men on base w/no outs. Luna came through with a base hit up the middle, scoring JuanE to make it 2-0 Cards (84.7%WPA added) The "So" man then hit a line drive into right field to score Molina and move Luna to 3rd. 3-0 Cards (92.3%WPA) Carp went down swinging (90.2% WPA) and then David Eckstein scored Luna on the squeeze play (93.6% WPA) 4-0 Redbirds.
The Bucs started to mount a comeback, with Jason Bay homering to lead off the 4th, -7.6%WPA for Carp. He then retired the next two batters, but allowed back to back singles to Joe Randa and Freddy Sanchez, which led to Humberto Cota driving in a run, making it a 2 run ballgame (+17%WPA for the Pirates). 4-2 Cards. Pujols then in the bottom of the 5th hit a double that brought home Jimmy Edmonds (89.5% to 93.9% WPA.) 5-2 Cards. Rolen then k'd, Encarnacion reached on an error and Pujols advanced to 3rd. Hector Luna then hit a line drive to score Pujols (+5% for Luna). So Taguchi hit another RBI single, scoring Encarnacion making it 7-2 Redbirds. Interestingly, WPA remained unchanged. And that's the way it remained.
Carp, who didn't have his best stuff, pitched 6 innings, allowed 8 hits and two runs for +13.2% WPA. Wainwright had another impressive inning, not allowing a hit and striking out 2. Then Hancock finished it off in a fairly typical, back of the bullpen, semi-bumpy fashion.
- Biggest contributors at the plate: Pujols 14.9%, Taguchi 12%, and Luna 10.4%.
- Biggest pitch:Carp k's verses Cota with runners on 2nd and 3rd w/2 outs, 2nd inning +8.7%.
- Decisive inning:2nd. WP jumped 24.2% with timely hitting from Luna and Taguchi.
It was great to see the bottom of the order contribute. I'm very happy that Luna is htting well when it matters, but it makes me wonder if it's a hot streak, or if he just truly does find a way to turn it on when it counts, or if he's just a lefty-masher, or who knows what. In the words of Elaine Benes "Maybe he's an enigma wrapped in a riddle." We won't know for sure until he sees more time, which he is earning. Pujols is just continuing his greatness, but even I'm suprised to see his power numbers so far this month. I guess we can look at that last Spring Training game when he hit 3 out is where it all began. Oh, and some of you may have noticed, Pujols seems to stopped the bat-flipping & watching-the-ball-go-out routine on his home-runs. Maybe someone said something to him, I don't know. I didn't really mind before, just found it interesting that he got rid of a habit that was drawing attention to himself and away from the team.
Suppan verses Santos tonight, hopefully Supp can bounce back from last week's rough start verses the Bucs.
Oh, also in another quirky AAA move along the lines of Timo Perez, the team acquired light-hitting Desi Relaford. That's not good, but it should squelch the fears of the return of Tony Womack, who was DFA'd by the Reds. With Hector hitting .393 and Miles hitting .302, it looks like at least for now we have an effective platoon at 2nd base. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it.