... a leadoff walk is more likely to lead to a multi-run inning than a leadoff homer. (McCarver has his own fact wrong.) I've counted enough innings -- thousands of them -- now to feel comfortable saying this is true.
I've looked so far at the 2007 Angels and Astros seasons (they're first alphabetically), and
-- LA Angels 2007: 120 leadoff walks leading to 124 runs with 33 multiple-run innings (27 percent). 30 leadoff homers leading to 37 runs, with 5 crooked numbers (17 percent).
-- Astros 2007: 102 leadoff walks leading to 83 runs with 24 multiple-run innings (23.5 percent).
42 leadoff homers leading to 57 runs, with 8 multiple-run innings (19 percent).
Basically, if you lead off with a homer, you're going to get one run. If you lead off with a walk, you're probably going to get zero but your chance of getting more than one is higher than it is with a leadoff homer.
For once, I think you're kind of missing the point on the lead off walk vs lead off HR thing . In either situation, the potential second run of the inning comes to the plate. In terms of whether there will be a multi-run inning or not, it doesn't really matter all that much where the first runner is, since the second guy has to score regardless. Like when you're down two, it doesn't matter a whole lot if the first guy doubles or homers, because the next guy has to score either way.
That being said, McCarver is still an idiot because a) a HR is more indicative of a guy pitching poorly and thus giving up future hits than a walk, and b) the next guy could always hit into a DP if the first guy walks.
Labels: tim mccarver
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