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June 16, 2014

Painting the Black

Lessons of a Bad Basestealer

by R.J. Anderson


You've heard some variation of the idea that you need to endure the clouds to enjoy the sunshine. That sentiment applies in baseball, too. For us to appreciate how good a basestealer Dee Gordon is, you need to experience the inverse. Because Gordon at his best is a high-volume, high-efficiency thief who creates a sense of invincibility—there's nothing you can do to stop him—the inverse is a player who runs often and succeeds rarely. This player doesn't have to be slow, or inept at the physical act of running, he just has to be inefficient and irrational. Lucky for us, Alex Rios fits the description.

Rios made a cameo appearance in last week's piece, serving as the ugly duckling of the most-likely-to-run club. Unlike the others, Rios' rate of success did not justify his attempts per opportunity percentage. Yet those failures have not persuaded the Rangers outfielder to tone down his aggressiveness: Rios has opted to run more often than he had in the past few seasons—more, even, than in 2013, when he stole 42 bases in an uncharacteristically efficient manner.

Season

SB

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Related Content:  Texas Rangers,  Prospects,  Scouting

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article Minor League Update: G... (06/16)
<< Previous Column
Painting the Black: Ho... (06/04)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Painting the Black: Re... (06/25)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Pebble Hunting: The 16... (06/16)

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