Choke, choke, choke that next at bat
Stress, stress, stress and if you choke your next at bat
Tell St. Torre at the Dugout Gate
That you hate to make him wait
But you just gotta choke during another at bat
Choking is the emotional obstruction of the flow of ability from the brain to the body. Choking prevents RBIs, and can be partial or complete, with partial choking allowing some, although inadequate, flow of base runners to home plate. Prolonged or complete choking results in shutouts which lead to losses and is potentially season ending.
Choking can be caused by:
- Psychological/emotional problems that involve obstruction of the mind/body interface.
- Compression of the player’s ability to focus in late innings.
Symptoms and Clinical Signs:
- The person cannot move the runner over, or has great difficulty and limited ability to do so.
- Run producing, if possible, is labored, producing fan gasping or booing.
- The player’s bat has a violent and largely uncontrollable movement and or swishing noise, though more serious choking victims will have a limited (if any) ability to produce these symptoms since they require at least some bat movement.
- The player desperately clutches his or her throat or bat, and fans attempt to induce vomiting by putting their fingers down their own throat.
- If run producing does not occur, the player’s face turns Dodger blue from embarrassment and resulting lack of fan support.
- If the player does any or all of the above, and if run producing is not restored, then they becomes expendable.
The type of choking most commonly recognized as such by fans is the inability to produce a run with a runner in scoring position. This type of choking is often suffered by unprepared players, who are unable to appreciate the hazard inherent in allowing small negative thoughts to fester in their brain. In adult players, it mostly occurs while the player is batting.
The majority of protocols now advocate the use of hard blows with the heel of the hand on the upper back of the player. The number to be used varies by baseball organization, but is usually between five and 20.
Preliminary 2010 season RISP stats:
3-0 Giants 3-8; 2-6; 5-19 = 10-33 = .303 (11 chances per game)
2-1 Arizona 1-4; 2-7; 0-1 = 3-12 = .250 (4 chances per game)
1-2 San Diego 1-4; 2-9; 1-6 = 4-19 = .211 (6 chances per game)
1-2 Colorado 1-8; 2-10; 1-12 = 4-30 = .133 (10 chances per game)
0-2 Dodgers 2-13; 2-15 = 4–28 = .143 (14 chances per game)
Not only have the Dodgers been terrible in their batting average with runners in scoring position but the consternation surrounding that fact is multiplied by the high number of chances per game compared to other teams in the NL West.
The Hardball Times has one definition of Clutch – “”Clutch” is the name we’ve given to the portion of Bill James’s Runs Created formula that includes the impact of a batter’s batting average with runners in scoring position and the number of home runs with runners on. The specific formula is Hits with RISP minus overall BA times at bats with RISP, plus HR with runners on minus (all HR/AB) times at bats with runners on. This stat is not a definitive description of “clutch hitting,” just one way of looking at it.”
There is not an exact correlation between BARISP and wins but if your BARISP sucks, is below the Mendoza line, you probably will not make the playoffs. - Written by Ken