Passed Balls & Other Advances

When a runner tries to advance after the ball gets away from the catcher, and it’s not ruled a Wild Pitch, two things can happen. If the runner advances safely, the catcher is charged with a Passed Ball. If the runner is thrown out it’s simply an out. You might think the second case is Caught Stealing, but it’s not. From Rule 10.07:

In those instances where a pitched ball eludes the catcher and the runner is put out trying to advance, the official scorer shall not charge any “caught stealing.”

Project Scoresheet codes this as “OA,” Other Advance.

OA is coded for a base runner advance that is not covered by one of the other codes. A comment may be given explaining the advance.

com,"Thompson out trying to advance after ball eluded catcher"

Commish & I saw this happen a couple of times at a B-Mets game this week. Commish was interested to know how many times these events occur. So was I.

Using Retrosheet Event File data from last five regular seasons (MLB 2007-2011), I count 1,522 Passed Balls and 337 Other Advances that involved the catcher. (I didn’t count 19 Other Advances that didn’t seem to involve the catcher.) So, there’s one Other Advance for every 4.5 Passed Balls. A Passed Ball occurs once every eight games on average, while an Other Advance occurs once every 36 games. For comparison, a Wild Pitch occurs once every 1.54 games.

MLB All-Stars on ABL Rosters

  • 1. Chesapeake Bay (8): CJ Wilson, Prince Fielder, Josh Hamilton, Aroldis Chapman, Jonathan Papelbon, Dan Uggla, Ryan Braun, Jay Bruce
  • 2. Long Beach Island (7): David Price, Jose Bautista, Cole Hamels, Craig Kimbrel, Yadier Molina, David Wright, Matt Kemp
  • 3. Orlando (5): Justin Verlander, Adrian Beltre, David Ortiz, Clayton Kershaw, Giancarlo Stanton
  • 3. Syracuse (5): Miguel Cabrera, Derek Jeter, Ian Kinsler, Carlos Gonzalez, Andrew McCutchen
  • 3. Tallahassee (5): Matt Harrison, Matt Wieters, Robinson Cano, Joel Hanrahan, Carlos Beltran
  • 6. Chicago (4): Jered Weaver, Joe Mauer, Mike Napoli, Elvis Andrus
  • 6. Manahawkin (4): Billy Butler, Huston Street, Carlos Ruiz, Joey Votto
  • 6. Titusville (4): Jim Johnson, Asdrubal Cabrera, Adam Jones, David Freese
  • 9. Abilene (3): CC Sabathia, Gio Gonzalez, Jose Altuve
  • 10. Las Vegas (1): Melky Cabrera

MLB All-Star roster as of July 5th. Includes those on DL.


I never realized before that Busch the stadium came before Busch the beer. Here’s the timeline:

  • 1953: The Cardinals are sold to Anheuser-Busch, brewers of Budweiser since 1876. Anheuser-Busch buys Sportsman’s Park from Bill Veeck, who moves the Browns to Baltimore.
  • 1953: NL President Ford Frick denies August Busch’s request to name the stadium after Budweiser. Instead, Busch names the stadium after himself.
  • 1955: Anheuser-Busch debuts “Busch Bavarian Beer.” Coincidence?
  • 1966: The Cardinals move into the new Busch Stadium II, formally titled “Civic Center Busch Memorial Stadium.”
  • 1979: Busch Bavarian Beer is renamed simply “Busch.”
  • 1982: Civic Center Busch Memorial Stadium is officially renamed simply “Busch Stadium.”
  • 2006: The Cardinals move into the new Busch Stadium III.
  • 2008: Anheuser-Busch is acquired by Belgian-Brazilian brewing company InBev.
  • 2026: The current naming-rights deal for the stadium is set to expire.

Head for the mountains!

2012 ABL Draft: TV Picks


 1/  7  Andrew McCutchen CF
 2/ 17  David Freese 3B
 3/ 27  Alex Avila C
 4/ 33  Vance Worley SP/RP
 4/ 37  David Hernandez RP
 5/ 47  Joe Smith RP
 6/ 57  Jim Johnson RP
 7/ 67  Nelson Cruz RF/LF
 8/ 77  Daniel Descalso 3B/SS/2B
 9/ 87  Adam Jones CF
10/ 97  Carlos Villanueva SP/RP
11/107  Marc Rzepczynski RP
12/117  Wilson Betemit 3B/1B
13/127  Alexi Casilla 2B/SS
14/137  Will Venable LF/CF/RF
15/147  Yoshinori Tateyama RP

Just missed out getting Ellsbury in the first round. Didn’t really need a catcher, but Avila too good to pass up in third round. Stocked up on relievers early, because that’s where the value was this draft. Late bargains: Adam Jones & Betemit.

The Best of Waite Hoyt in the Rain


01. Ernie Harwell’s Tribute
02. Bill Akers
03. Breaking In
04. Cantaloupes
05. 1921 Cleveland Series
06. 20-Win Season… NOT!
07. 1926 World Series Game 7
08. What Really Matters to a Pitcher
09. 300 Years From Now

On this 1963 LP, Hall of Famer Waite Hoyt spins yarns during rain delays over his long career as Reds broadcaster. The last track ends abruptly, but that’s the way it is on the wax. There was a volume two in the series, which was devoted to Babe Ruth.


The Cardinals’ championship made the papers in Gothenburg Sweden!


St. Louis Story Ends with Victory
“Left for dead in August. Setback after setback. Now the St. Louis Cardinals are American baseball’s most unlikely winners in living memory.”

(Thanks, Anders.)

B-Mets Games in 2011

From a stack of ticket stubs. Might have missed one or two.

  1. April 14, New Hampshire, L
  2. April 20, Portland, W
  3. April 30, Akron, W
  4. May 1, Akron, L
  5. May 9, New Britain, L
  6. May 21, Harrisburg, L
  7. May 28, Altoona, L & L
  8. May 30, Altoona, L
  9. June 7, Harrisburg, L & L
  10. June 18, Trenton, W
  11. June 19, Trenton, L
  12. June 30, Bowie, L
  13. July 1, Bowie, W
  14. July 5, Portland, L & L
  15. July 14, New Hampshire, L & W
  16. July 17, New Hampshire, W
  17. July 26, Portland, L
  18. August 5, Reading, W
  19. August 12, Richmond, L
  20. August 16, New Britain, W
  21. August 24, Erie, W
  22. August 25, Altoona, L, Jose Reyes rehab
  23. August 26, Altoona, W, Jose Reyes rehab
  24. September 2, Reading, L
  25. September 3, Reading, L
  26. September 4, Reading, L
  27. September 5, Reading, L, final game

I didn’t bring ’em any luck. They were 10-21 (.323) when I was in the stands, 65-76 (.461) overall.

B-Mets Jersey Auction

Results from last night’s (2011-09-03) jersey auction. The B-Mets wore 1992 throw-backs from their inaugural season. $80 minimum bid.

# Player Winning Bid
22 Brandon Moore $210
49 Matt Harvey $200
2 Reese Havens $190
13 Juan Lagares $170
16 Matt den Dekker $150
18 Brahim Maldonado $120
43 Jheris Familia $120
34 Alan Dykstra $120
9 Kai Grönauer $120
11 Jon Malo $120
5 Mike Fisher $110
6 Wally Backman $110
3 ? $110
7 $110
50 Rob Carson $100
4 $100
10 Ricky Brooks $90
8 $90
15 Eric Turgeon $80
19 Tobi Stoner $80
21 Eric Campbell $80
23 Colin McHugh $80
25 Roy Merritt $80
27 Edgar Ramirez $80
38 Jean-Luc Blaquiere $80
44 Brad Holt $80
47 Rhiner Cruz $80
17 ? $80
33 $80
45 $80
1 $80
20 $80
24 Niuman Romero

How many drafted players make it to the Bigs?

Commish & I were speculating about the amateur draft. How many guys make it to the big leagues? How much more likely is a first-round pick to reach the majors compared to, say, a tenth-round pick?

I collected stats from the 2002-2005 June drafts, figuring that almost everyone from the 2005 draft that would ever reach the majors would have already had some time there by the end of the 2010 season. (Maybe that’s a bit optimistic.) BR has a nice draft section that goes all the way back to the beginning. (Rick Monday in 1965, remember?) The graph below (click to enlarge) shows the percentage of players with MLB appearances for each round of the draft. (Again, 2002-2005 drafts only.)


I see about three distinct sections in the graph.

  1. From rounds one to ten, there’s a pretty good correlation between the round and the number of guys who make it. That tells me that the scouts make pretty accurate predictions for the first 320 or so amateurs each year. A little over half the guys who make the big leagues from the draft are selected in the first ten rounds.
  2. Rounds 11 to 20 send about the same percentage of guys to the bigs: 12%, which is also the overall big-league rate for the entire class. These rounds account for about a quarter of the big leaguers from the draft.
  3. There’s a big drop-off for rounds 21-50, with only about 5% of the guys making the show. These rounds provide the other quarter of the drafted MLBers.

I also collected some WAR stats, but you can’t draw too many conclusions from these, as all of the players are still young and will rack up lots more over the coming years. Still, from the 2002-2005 drafts, counting WAR through the 2010 season, it appears that the first-rounders account for 45% of the total WAR accumulated by all draftees. (The supplemental picks, usually about ten a year, are classified as first-round picks, so this inflates the first-round WAR figure compared to other rounds.) The first ten rounds account for 81% of the total WAR. It’s actually probably more than that, because many of the guys picked in the later rounds (Lincecum 48th round 2003 & 42nd round 2005) get credit there, even though they didn’t sign. (Lincecum signed after getting picked in the first round in 2006.)

Historical Pitcher Usage

How long do starters go, how many relievers, etc.

Here’s the simplest measurement, one obtainable from Retrosheet game logs: the average number of pitchers used in one game by one team.


The DH is certainly a factor from 1973 on, but it looks like it was falling anyway in the two seasons prior.

I wonder if we’ve reached a limit at 4 per game. Might be the max for a 25-man roster.

More to come…