Recently, I linked to a **FanGraphs** article about how stolen bases now matter more and why the break-even point is dropping. In the comments section of that article, a user named “Joshua” asked a question I found interesting.

Joshua says:

November 30, 2012 at 7:32 pmInteresting. What would this do to run expectancy tables and bunting? Is the 1st to 2nd sac bunt now less offensive than before?

I’m sure somebody out there smarter than me has tackled this before, but I had not personally seen this addressed yet, so I thought I would take a look at it.

The FanGraphs article analyzed stolen bases from 2007 to 2012, so I looked at those years as well.

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**Run Expectation**

**2012**

Runner On First/Nobody Out: 0.8577

Runner On Second/One Out: 0.6551

Sacrifice Bunt Difference: -0.2026

**2011**

Runner On First/Nobody Out: 0.8500

Runner On Second/One Out: 0.6492

Sacrifice Bunt Difference: -0.2008

**2010**

Runner On First/Nobody Out: 0.8666

Runner On Second/One Out: 0.6586

Sacrifice Bunt Difference: -0.2080

**2009**

Runner On First/Nobody Out: 0.8957

Runner On Second/One Out: 0.6827

Sacrifice Bunt Difference: -0.2130

**2008**

Runner On First/Nobody Out: 0.9037

Runner On Second/One Out: 0.6891

Sacrifice Bunt Difference: -0.2146

**2007**

Runner On First/Nobody Out: 0.9284

Runner On Second/One Out: 0.7077

Sacrifice Bunt Difference: -0.2207

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So is it less offensive? Absolutely.

Still mockable and dumb? Yeah.

Outs are always at a premium over advancing one base. There are certain contexts and situations where it makes sense to bunt a player over, but a great majority of the time, it’s still a move that goes against The Book.

]]>The **Dodgers** won yesterday’s game against the **Braves** 7 to 2, but the logistics of how they got that win is the interesting part.

The team finished the game with 29 AB, 2 K, and 15 H. That means for balls-in-play, the Dodgers finished 15-for-27 for a team BABIP of .556 on the night. Furthermore, they had only one extra-base hit, a double by **James Loney**, so they essentially singled the Braves to death.

You can’t get much more fortunate than that. And it doesn’t even include **Chris Capuano** managing to give up only one run in his seven innings pitched after allowing nine baserunners through five innings of work.

But wait, the Dodgers only had 29 AB? That can’t be right.

But it is. Only 14 AB resulted in outs, yet they still had to make 24 outs on the night, so how did the Dodgers do it?

A concoction of two sacrifice bunts by Capuano and one by **Adam Kennedy**, one sacrifice fly by **Dee Gordon**, one caught stealing a piece by Gordon and **Juan Uribe**, a **TOOTBLAN** each by **Matt Kemp** and **Andre Ethier**, and grounding into two double plays.

Ridiculous.

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When **FanGraphs** ranked the catching situations of teams around baseball, the Dodgers ended up dead last, primarily due to starter **A.J. Ellis**.

Well, so far Ellis is showing exactly why Dodgers bloggers disagreed with the rankings.

His batting line currently sits at .250/.412/.400/.812, and he’s seeing a ridiculous 4.87 pitches per plate appearance, which would rank third in the **MLB** if he qualified (which most catchers don’t). Better yet, he’s throwing out 36% of baserunners, and I have minimal complaints about his blocking of balls, framing of pitches, and handling of the pitching staff.

Granted, none of these statistics have stabilized yet, so there’s ample time for him to crater or tail off, but so far? So good.

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