Analysis

The value of context

The value of context

Lastings Milledge - ZumaPress

First of all, if you have yet to read Joe Posnanski’s thoughts on Wins Above Replacement (WAR), do yourself a favor and give it a few minutes of your time. Posnanski, with his authentic writing style, wide-ranging appeal and rational thought process, just might be the perfect writer to bridge the gap between old-school baseball fans and Excel-operating baseball nerds.

Posnanski does an excellent job of discussing WAR as a concept, mostly leaving the advanced mathematics at the door. But he doesn’t mention a key point, one that I think leads to much of the arguing about the metric. WAR is a context-neutral statistic. While this is also true of many accepted stats, such as batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage, it seems to hurt the credibility of WAR to a greater extent. WAR is often framed as an all-encompassing stat, one that attempts to measure a player’s overall value to his team. Describing a stat as comprehensive, despi...

This content is for Pirates Prospects subscribers only. Subscribe today to access all of our daily coverage of the Pirates' system, with rates lower than $2.25 per month. If you're already a member, you can log in below. If you think you're receiving this message in error, please e-mail tim@piratesprospects.com.

Analysis

Matt has covered the Pirates at Wait ‘Til Next Year, Pittsburgh Lumber Co. and now Pirates Prospects. He served as Pirates team expert for Heater Magazine in 2009 and 2010 and has contributed to Graphical Player 2009, 2010 and 2011. Matt was also the editor of the 2011 and 2012 Pirates Prospects Annuals.

More in Analysis

Tyler Glasnow 3

Don’t Expect Tyler Glasnow in the Majors This Year

Tim WilliamsJuly 27, 2015
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Pirates Continue to Roll, Led By More Strong Pitching

Sean McCoolJuly 26, 2015
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Middle Relief Problems Continue For Pirates in Loss

Pete EllisJuly 26, 2015
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

How Will Aramis Ramirez Shake Up the Pirates Lineup?

Pete EllisJuly 25, 2015
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

The Backup Plan For Antonio Bastardo

Ryan PalencerJuly 25, 2015
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Polanco Stays Short, Goes Deep in Pirates Victory Over Washington

Pete EllisJuly 25, 2015

Pirates Prospects is an independent media outlet, and is in no way affiliated with the Pittsburgh Pirates, their minor league affiliates, Major League Baseball, or Minor League Baseball.

Copyright © 2015 Pirates Prospects