The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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September 23, 2013

Thoma column: Twins: this is a simple game


And Oswaldo Arcia ... the kid can hit, without a doubt, but batted balls seem to overmatch him. One doesn’t often see an outfielder get hit in the noggin by a fly ball, but that happened this year to Arcia.

Baseball Info Systems has a metric it calls “plus-minus” in which every batted ball is rated and the fielder involved judged. By plus-minus, the Twins are

■ 29 plays below average in left field;

■ 19 plays below average in center field;

■ 36 plays below average in right field.

Arcia by himself accounts for 26 of those 84 plays unmade, 15 in left field and 11 in right.

The Twins need Arcia’s bat in the lineup. But he’s giving a lot back to the opposition in the field. And so are the rest of his outfield mates.

Edward Thoma (344-6377; maintains his Baseball Outsider blog at Follow him on Twitter @bboutsider.



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