Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A-Gon and his Reputation

Admittedly, I've been a bit surprised by A-Gon this year. I actually expected a bump in his power numbers due to the GABP effect. However, I wasn't expecting the shoddy glove work.

That said, GABP used to have an unusual park effect for errors. When the park first opened, it was much more likely that an infield error would be made at GABP than other NL parks. Accordingly, I thought I'd check it out to see if A-Gon was making significantly more errors at home.

I started by looking up the fielding park effects for GABP and over the past three years (2004-2006) infielders were 9% more likely to make an error at GABP than the average NL ballpark.

So, on the year, A-Gon has already made 12 errors. I looked up the type of error and the location to see if there was anything in particular going on.

Here's what it looks like:
H/A: Catch__Groundball__Throw===Total

So, much to my disappointment, A-Gon has actually made twice as many errors on the road. And, as to be expected, he has made the most errors on groundballs.

Sad to say, I'm not sure what's going on with A-Gon. I never bought into him being a great defensive shortstop, but I certainly expected him to be above average.

Unfortunately, the truth may ultimately be that this is the real A-Gon. His fielding percentage is currently at .960, which is far from great, but he's actually posted a .960 or lower fielding percentage three other times in his career. So, this actually isn't quite the outlier that we might think.

Fielding percentage certainly isn't everything, but so far his range is only middle of the road. A-Gon's bat has been solid, but it would be nice if his glove lived up to its (perhaps undeserved) reputation.

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