Thursday, March 03, 2005

Injury risks

Today, Baseball Prospectus had a couple of (subscription only) articles revolving around the Nationals. The interesting one was Will Carroll's Team Health Report. Will focuses on trying to use metrics with a heavy statistical bent to predict injuries. The high-risk players he identifies are:
  • Nick Johnson. No surprise.
  • Tony Armas. No surprise here, either.
  • Alex Escobar, which isn't much of a surprise, considering that it wasn't too long ago he had knee surgery for a torn ACL. He's not going to get much playing time anyway, but Will seems to think he's not going to recover fully, and he's probably right.
  • Christian Guzman. This one surprised me. I didn't realize he has had back problems, as well as an assortment of other leg and shoulder injuries. Will put it quite well: "Seventeen million bucks for this? Ugh."

Medium risk players are:
  • Schneider, who Carroll thinks is low risk... for a catcher.
  • Vidro. I was pleased to see he wasn't in the highest risk group.
  • Castilla
  • Hernandez, though Carroll believes his metrics are wrong for Hernandez, and that he's a low risk..
  • Loaiza... Carroll doesn't mention any of the signs of a possible run-in with TJ surgery that I was fretting about earlier.
  • Ohka. Not surprising.
  • Day. Not surprising.
Low risk players that Carroll mentions are Wilkerson, Chavez, Guillen, Sledge and Cordero.


At 9:14 AM, Blogger Basil said...

Obviously, Carroll gets bashed good for his attempts at crossing over into the "journalistic zone," but how accurate and/or worthwhile are his health prognostications?

Not being a subscribing, I don't think I've ever actually read a team health report. (I did read "Saving the Pitcher"---it was a pretty quick read in B&N.)

At 9:56 AM, Blogger John said...

A lot of it maps to common sense, and I don't think he's been too detailed about what his methods are. I don't think there's enough of a track record to say how worthwhile, but he seems likely to have a pretty good hit rate.

At 10:00 AM, Blogger Basil said...

About what I figured. Thanks.

At 1:42 PM, Blogger tmk67 said...

I thought I saw Carroll mention (perhaps in his blog) that he was working on an exposition of his methodology, perhaps for the Baseball Prospectus 05 book. But I haven't seen anything yet (nothing in the book).

I have looked at a number of team health reports, and the one for the Nats is definitely concerning and shows them as running more risks than most teams. Worrisome, given that we have one of the youngest teams in baseball.


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