Tag: Winter Meetings

Now wait just a secondary

Despite his strong offensive year, Aaron Rowand’s secondary average this season was just .288, 43rd best among the 75 National League players that had at least 500 plate appearances. That was especially surprising to me given his .515 slugging percentage — his secondary average was lower than Shane Victorino’s. Someone needs to get to the bottom of this and I’m here to help.

The Phillies were a tremendous offensive team in 2007, which can be demonstrated in a bunch of different ways. One of them is this: among NL players with 500 plate appearances this season, the Phils had four players in the top 20 in secondary average:



Player


SECA


NL Rank

Howard

.520

1

Burrell

.487

3

Rollins

.352

17

Utley

.343

19

Fantastic. Way to go, fellas. Alert the press. Would probably be even better if we knew what secondary average actually was or understood what it meant. A moment, please, and I’ll give it my best shot.

Another way to demonstrate that the Phillies were a fantastic team is this: among the NL players that had 500 plate appearances, the Phillies had four of the top 20 players in slugging percentage.



Player


SLG


NL Rank

Howard

.584

4

Utley

.566

6

Rollins

.531

15

Rowand

.515

18

Five good offensive players, but the lists aren’t the same. Burrell was third in the league in secondary average and not in the top 20 in slugging (he was 21st). Howard dominated the league in secondary average, but three players posted a higher slugging percentage. Utley’s slugging percentage was way better than his secondary average and you have to look hard to find Rowand’s secondary average (43rd of 75 NL players with 500 PA) despite that fact that he was 18th in the league in slugging.

What secondary average is is easy. Secondary average is TB-H+BB+SB-CS/AB.

Understanding what it means isn’t quite so easy, but secondary average measures a player’s offensive contribution. Players that walk a lot and get a lot of extra-base hits have high secondary averages. But players that have high slugging percentages don’t necessarily.

Singles hitters, especially ones that don’t walk or steal bases, get hammered. Singles don’t help your secondary average, but, unlike slugging percentage, walks do. For example, a player that is 10-for-10 with ten singles and no walks or stolen bases has a slugging percentage of 1.000 and a secondary average of .000.

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Or maybe they’ll just talk about Scott Rolen’s secondary average for four days and decide to do nothing

If the Phils spent the first day of the Winter Meetings dealing for a corner outfielder, a third baseman and a couple of pitchers they’re apparently keeping it on the down-low. Fingers crossed.

This article suggests that the Dodgers are more interested in trying sign Andruw Jones to a shorter contract than giving a longer deal to Rowand. Opinions apparently vary about the chances of Rowand returning to the Phils. I think he is going to the White Sox, but I would say the chances of him coming back to the Phils are low but not zero. You have to believe that they would increase at least a little if the Phils don’t add another corner outfielder or acquire help at third.

This article suggests that the Phils have clear interest in Kris Benson and some interest in Bartolo Colon and Jason Jennings and not as much in Carlos Silva or Kyle Lohse. Gillick also sounds like he’s feeling a little less than warm and fuzzy about Randy Wolf, calling Wolf’s signing with the Padres a blessing in disguise.

While we’re on the subject, Scott Rolen’s secondary average last year was .232. I would guess the Phillies are about as likely to bring him back as they are Steve Jeltz.

And speaking of the man, if we could get Jeltz to weigh in it sounds like we could call it just about unanimous that the Phillies aren’t interested in Melvin Mora.

This article talks about what the Braves might be trying to do at the Winter Meetings. The Braves, I fear, are looking likely to continue their upswing.

The Nationals traded for Elijah Dukes. It’s gonna be quite a clubhouse.

This article says that the White Sox are still interested in Rowand and may be looking to trade Joe Crede.

Lefty Brian Anderson is attempting a comeback after missing the last two seasons. The Rockies may be interested. Anderson had elbow surgery in 2005 and 2006. In 2004 with the Royals he gave up 33 home runs in 166 innings while throwing to 5.64 ERA, so he’s not really screaming ideally suited to finish out his days at Citizens Bank Park.


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