FanPost

RISP myths and the 2009 Cards

I really don't have any faith that anybody is really "clutch." I think clutch is more a myth than a real phenomenon. But recently -- and after a record-setting LOB game, unsurpisingly -- much muttering about poor performance with runners in scoring position has been heard. I wanted to throw some numbers out there.

 

The Cards as a whole have done well with RISP, hitting better with RISP (team OPS .764) than with no one on (.738) or with a man on first (.747).

Here are the stats with RISP for the top 19 players on the team -- below these 19 are only real bit players (e.g., Brian Barden) and pitchers.

1 Albert Pujols  .361 .556 .697 1.253

2 Jarrett Hoffpauir.500 .667 .500 1.167  

3 John Smoltz.500 .500 .500 1.000

4 Ryan Ludwick  .323 .373 .582 .955

5 Khalil Greene .353 .419 .529 .948

6 Matt Holliday.317 .406 .512 .918

7 Nick Stavinoha .308 .333 .577 .910

8 Julio Lugo  .250 .355 .417 .772

9 Joe Thurston .269 .390 .373 .763

10 Chris Duncan.231 .364 .397 .761

11 Yadier Molina .305 .404 .344 .748

12 Colby Rasmus  .252 .304 .407 .710

13 Mark DeRosa .200 .345 .333 .678

14 Skip Schumaker.250 .353 .310 .663

15 Brendan Ryan .242 .302 .337 .639

16 Chris Carpenter .176 .222 .412 .634

17 Troy Glaus .222 .300 .333 .633

18 David Freese .286 .267 .357 .624

19 Rick Ankiel .194 .281 .245 .526

As you can see, our 3-4-5 hitters (Albert, Holliday, Luddy) have hit excellently with runners in scoring position. Even past those team leaders, lots of role players (molina, duncan, lugo) have hit reasonably well with RISP. Of the players with substantial playing time, only DeRosa, Schu, Ryan, and Ank have really disappointed.

Again, I am convinced that performance with RISP is more a sample size issue than anything else, but to say we haven't hit well with RISP is just not correct.

I can't find a month by month team split for RISP but our leading producers have done reasonably well in August and September.  Ludwick had a weak Aug. (OBP .300/ SLG .296) but a good Sept. (.333/.536). Pujols had an okay Aug. (.452/.409) and a sick Sept. (.563/.952 - yes, that is a .952 SLG with RISP, not a typo).  Holliday had the reverse, with an excellent Aug. (.341/.618) and an okay Sept. (.357/.405).

Anyway, there are some legit complaints about this team. Hitting with RISP is not one.

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