All Forums > SimLeague Baseball > SimLeague Baseball > Speed And Defensive Range
12/29/2012 4:10 PM
How can so many OFs with good speed have poor/bad defensive range?
12/29/2012 4:48 PM
Defense has to do with a lot more than speed. That applies in real life too.
12/29/2012 5:16 PM
Posted by GregNLFan on 12/29/2012 4:10:00 PM (view original):
How can so many OFs with good speed have poor/bad defensive range?
Range numbers are strictly based on actual range factor (basically PO+A divided by the number of games) scaled to account for K rates.  WIS calls this relative range factor (RRF).

Obviously fielders have no control over where balls are hit.  You may think over time there would be a somewhat predictable distribution of where balls are hit.  However, pitchers (and pitching coaches) have a lot of control of ground ball to fly ball ratios.  A gold glove CF playing on a groundball heavy team won't have a great RRF.

Additionally, while speed is important to OF defense, being fast doesn't necesarily make a defender good or great.  Positioing, getting a jump on a ball, routes and glove work are all very important.  Lou Brock and Lonnie Smith were poor fielders despite their speed because they took too long to read the ball and took poor routes.  Willie McGee might have been the fastest man ever to play the OF, but he played too deep (though he still won 3 gold gloves).  Jim Edmonds was a great fielder because he got great jumps and took great routes despite not being very fast. 
12/29/2012 5:26 PM
Posted by bringinsxybc on 12/29/2012 4:48:00 PM (view original):
Defense has to do with a lot more than speed. That applies in real life too.
Defense, yes, but shouldn't an OF with good speed also have good range?  I mean, unless he consistently gets terrible jumps on the ball, takes bad routes, etc.
12/29/2012 5:30 PM
Posted by zubinsum on 12/29/2012 5:16:00 PM (view original):
Posted by GregNLFan on 12/29/2012 4:10:00 PM (view original):
How can so many OFs with good speed have poor/bad defensive range?
Range numbers are strictly based on actual range factor (basically PO+A divided by the number of games) scaled to account for K rates.  WIS calls this relative range factor (RRF).

Obviously fielders have no control over where balls are hit.  You may think over time there would be a somewhat predictable distribution of where balls are hit.  However, pitchers (and pitching coaches) have a lot of control of ground ball to fly ball ratios.  A gold glove CF playing on a groundball heavy team won't have a great RRF.

Additionally, while speed is important to OF defense, being fast doesn't necesarily make a defender good or great.  Positioing, getting a jump on a ball, routes and glove work are all very important.  Lou Brock and Lonnie Smith were poor fielders despite their speed because they took too long to read the ball and took poor routes.  Willie McGee might have been the fastest man ever to play the OF, but he played too deep (though he still won 3 gold gloves).  Jim Edmonds was a great fielder because he got great jumps and took great routes despite not being very fast. 
Thanks.
12/29/2012 5:32 PM
Posted by GregNLFan on 12/29/2012 5:26:00 PM (view original):
Posted by bringinsxybc on 12/29/2012 4:48:00 PM (view original):
Defense has to do with a lot more than speed. That applies in real life too.
Defense, yes, but shouldn't an OF with good speed also have good range?  I mean, unless he consistently gets terrible jumps on the ball, takes bad routes, etc.
Not if he doesn't have a lot of opportunities (a corner OF will almost always have a lower range than a CF, for example).
12/30/2012 4:01 AM
Funny- I just came here to discuss this very topic. I, too, find it odd that a guy with a 99 speed rating can have a D- range (e.g. 2001 Clayton Bellinger, who is on the WW right now). Having C range due to poor reads and angles, yeah, ok, but blazing speed and having the same, or worse, defensive range as an old, balky-kneed guy just seems counter-intuitive. Ah well- it's not a big deal- just a curiosity. I guess there's not a perfect resolution to every situation.
12/30/2012 1:46 PM
Posted by jmcraven74 on 12/30/2012 4:01:00 AM (view original):
Funny- I just came here to discuss this very topic. I, too, find it odd that a guy with a 99 speed rating can have a D- range (e.g. 2001 Clayton Bellinger, who is on the WW right now). Having C range due to poor reads and angles, yeah, ok, but blazing speed and having the same, or worse, defensive range as an old, balky-kneed guy just seems counter-intuitive. Ah well- it's not a big deal- just a curiosity. I guess there's not a perfect resolution to every situation.
Keep in mind the speed ratings are based on a formula developed by Bill James, Speed Score.  The spped rating as far as I understand is based on the primary position, hitting profile and stolen bases.  Point being, speed score do not reflect reality perfectly.
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