Thursday, July 28, 2011
The Brandon Belt vs. Aubrey Huff Statistical Cage Match
Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls. The Crazy Crabbers proudly present our main event! The Brandon Belt vs. Aubrey Huff Statistical Cage Match.
The rules are simple, two first basemen enter the cage and only one can leave with the starting job! Lets meet our competitors.
In the orange corner is the incumbent, standing 6 foot 4 weighing in at 225 pounds out of the University of Miami, AUBREY HUFF!
In the black corner the challenger, standing 6 foot 5 weighing in at 220 pounds out of the University of Texas, BRANDON BELT!
Let's lock the cage and see who comes out alive! We are going to break this down into categories and the contestant with the most wins will be crowned our champion. Let's get it on.
Hitting for Average:
Our first face off is comparing each players ability to hit for average. In the major leagues so far this season things haven't looked great for either.
Huff leads off the battle with his paltry .239 and ZIPS rest of the season projection of .263 the rest of the way. For Belt he counters with his .232 average this year and ZIPS rest of the season projection of .261 the rest of the way.
So it is pretty dang close but with a slight edge to Huff by the slimmest of margins. I guess this round goes to... WAIT WHAT IS THIS! BELT IS PULLING OUT SOMETHING FROM UNDERNEATH THE RING! IT'S HIS MAJOR LEAGUE EQUIVALENCY!
When we add in his MLE to his MLB line Belt's total batting average improves to .258.
HE'S BEATING HUFF OVER THE HEAD WITH IT NOW. THE ROOKIE CAME OUT PREPARED IN THIS NO HOLDS BARED MATCH.
With the turn of events Belt edges ahead in this category. It was a little shady but you don't emerge from a match like this without slightly moving into the gray area.
Getting on Base:
Huff's still a little woozy from the blind side of the MLE to the head but we will move on to the next category, getting on base. Huff who posted a career high walk rate of 12.4% last year has falling to below his career norms this season which has taken his on base average down with it. Sitting at .294 it is one the lowest in all of baseball among those that qualify for the bating title.
Belt on the other hand has been a bastion of patience (maybe to a fault). Even with a below average batting average he has still managed to get on base at a rate better than league average. With a MLB walk rate of 12.5% and an on base average of .338 he takes this in a cake walk.
If he decided that he wants to choke slam Huff on to his MLE's he can really hurt him with a combined MLE plus MLB on base average of .365 which is 70 points higher than what Huff has given the Giants this season. With Huff weakened Belt lands some more serious punishment this round.
Hitting for Power:
With our incumbent stumbling he really needs to land some punches to get back in this thing. Luckily his ring manager says he just needs a little bit longer to get it going.
Our third round turns to power. Huff finds a little bit of a second wind, jabbing with his 9 home runs to Belts 2 and an isolated power of .123 to Belts .116 and .145 MLE plus MLB. Neither contestant really landed anything of value in that trade off.
In the second flurry of punches each brings out their ZIPS rest of the season projections. Huff lands a solid blow with his .160 but Belt counters with a .174.
The incumbent finally holds his own against the challenger. The judges grade out this round as a draw. The match is looking like it is Belts to lose going into the fourth and final round.
Huff is desperate and comes out swinging. He has stripped to just his thong now. It's not a pretty sight folks. His first punch is his above average defense the last 2 seasons. He lands a solid blow with back to back UZR/150's above 6.
He takes a chance with a low blow and throws out his team leading RBI total at 47. Belt took that blow right in the groin as his 7 RBI pale in comparison.
Huff throws out one last hail marry with his intangibles and veteran clubhouse presence. This one lands solidly on Belt's chin but the challenger refuses to go down.
Having withstood the best that Huff can muster. Belt throws a viscous combination of his .320 wOBA and .362 MLE + MLB wOBA against Huff's .284. Down goes Huff.
Belt climbs the to the top of the ropes and comes down hard with his ZIPS rest of season projected wOBA of .350 to Huff's .328. It lands squarely.
Finally he moves in for the cover with his youthful energy and athleticism. 1.... 2.... 3.... AND THAT'S IT THE REF HAS COUNTED HUFF OUT! BELT HAS EMERGED AS THE CHAMPION!!!
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN YOUR NEW HEIR TO THE FIRST BASE JOB!
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