Originally Posted by duncan_idaho
Five minutes of work. Go to fangraphs. Go to League Leaders section. Select August as a filter. Then select September/October as a filter.
Anyway, I actually don't like the overall WAR stat very much (as the defensive statistics are just too flaky/inconsistent), but offensive WAR - especially the way Baseball America calculates it - is very reliable. Cabrera would hold the edge there, I'm sure (I haven't found a site that will split out offensive and total WAR month-by-month yet), because all of his value is derived from his bat.
I'm of the mindset that statistical analysis is a nice complement to old-fashioned scouting. When the two are worked together in a way that is sound, you get great results (See the Tampa Rays). You can't go all sabermetrics, and you can't go all old-school.
In defense of offensive WAR: Here's the top 10 all-time list at Baseball America.
Factor in longevity (which is what gets a guy like Speaker on there), and I think that's a pretty accurate list. 9/10 of those guys would come up when discussing "best all-time hitter."
Just now getting through this thread.
I agree with your post here but still disagree with your outcome. In the end, the triple crown isn't just some arbitrary set of numbers, as Saul is trying to claim. It's 3 numbers that have historically meant a ton to winning ballgames.
RBI stats do matter - it means that your team thought enough of your performance to put you in the spot most conducive to driving in runs and trusted that you would do so. Realistically, Trout should have been the 3 hole hitter in his lineup, but he wasn't. Was that because the team didn't think he'd be able to handle the pressure of the 3 spot? Possibly. It's happened to far more experienced guys than Trout.
HRs are self explanatory - they matter. A lot.
AVG is still a valuable stat for a middle of the order hitter and you'll never convince me otherwise. A guy like Dunn that bats .240 in the middle of a lineup with a .380 OBP isn't as valuable as a guy that puts up a .290 with a .360 OBP if they're batting in the 3 or 4 hole. You need those base hits to actually get runners in. And in the end, that's how you win ballgames - driving in runners. Drawing a walk there just passes that burden on to the next guy.
Cabrera's contact rates have been outstanding, his baserunning has actually been pretty good (no, he doesn't steal, but steals are wildly overrated) and his defense, by virtue of being acceptable, has yielded huge dividents for the team.
In the end, the traditional stuff does matter, IMO. And if combined with the fact that he does compare favorably in many 'new school' categories (if not outright better), Cabrera is your MVP.