Mike Silva's New York Baseball Digest » Blog Archive » Wagner’s Poor Postseason Results Continue

Wagner’s Poor Postseason Results Continue

By Mike Silva ~ October 11th, 2009. Filed under: 2009 Playoffs.

Small sample size?

Mets fans saw a shaky Billy Wagner during the 2006 playoffs. Going into this afternoon’s contest Wagner had a 9.28 career playoff ERA and a WHIP of 1.8. I realize Jonathan Papelbon was responsible for the inherited runners, and the loss, but Wagner was asked to get three outs in the eighth and failed.

The Red Sox demise is shocking because I thought their bullpen made them the best candidate to beat the Yankees. Now Angels fans will have to cross their fingers with Brian Fuentes in New York. I have a feeling we will see another ninth inning like Friday when Joe Nathan melted down in the Bronx.

Back in spring training I predicted Boston to finish out of the playoffs. I questioned their offense as older players like Mike Lowell, David Ortiz, and Jason Varitek had seen better days. It took a while, but age finally caught up to the Sox. You can’t say the window of opportunity is closed, not with the core of young stars they still have, but certainly the Sox are starting to show their mortality.

As for the “small sample size crowd”, it’s obviously difficult to judge players on a limited number of appearances, but when someone, like Wagner, continues to fail in the postseason you have to question their ability to perform under the highest leverage situations. Random samples have no consistency, in the case of Wagner, and A-Rod from 2004-2008, there was a clear decrease in performance during the postseason. I have to question whether the detractors to that theory actually watched any playoff games the last five years.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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4 Responses to Wagner’s Poor Postseason Results Continue

  1. SSS

    Ok…well if we’re going to get nasty about it, I guess I have to question if you ever took basic math in school or can count to 10. I find it highly amusing that you acknowledge the huge difficulties in identifying a “clear decrease in performance” over 10 innings of pitching or 50 some at-bats, and then end the paragraph by saying that anyone who takes that particularly seriously must not be watching the games. Such a tired old slander of statheads.

  2. Jason

    SSS, Silva’s trolling.

    I’ve tried arguing with him, along with several others, and he doesn’t respond with any logic or reason. He’s just trying to drum up page views. Better just to move on to something else. I am, and judging by the general lack of comments around here, most everyone else has already.

  3. Mike Silva

    The comments are fine. I don’t judge by quantity, but rather, quality. And again, as I mentioned before, I don’t need to fabricate debate to drive traffic – we do just fine.

    I was making a point about Wagner, not trying to start a fight. I just am amazed that individuals, who do a great job analyzing formulas, can’t understand it’s the player, not the math, that drives performance.

    Sorry that you feel the need to move on, but we will survive.

  4. Jason

    “I just am amazed that individuals, who do a great job analyzing formulas, can’t understand it’s the player, not the math, that drives performance.”

    Of course it’s the player. No one is arguing otherwise. But you have a choice, you can judge Wagner based on 10 innings of postseason pitching or 800+ innings of regular season pitching. Which do you think is more reliable when predicting what he’ll do in the future?

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