Interesting SP78 Ejection Factoids

In an e-mail I’d sent to my friend Steve P a few weeks back, I told him about a recent Statis Pro game I’d played, between the Pirates and Astros, where Bucs slugger Willie Stargell had been hit by a pitch thrown by Houston starter Vern Ruhle, after Stargell had homered two innings earlier. I was ready to have Stargell rush the mound in response, and prepared to eject both batter and pitcher from the game, but then I wondered: had Stargell ever been tossed in his career? I looked it up and found out that no, he hadn’t. So I sent him to first, and I ejected Ruhle instead, and that was that.

I’d also discovered that Robin Yount, another SP78er, had never been ejected, and he ranked #4 on the list—behind Stan Musial, Willie Mays, and Brooks Robinson—of non-expelled players who’d played more than 1,500 games in their careers. Steve responded to my e-mail a short while later, and he included a list that he’d compiled while researching my site, titled Interesting SP78 Ejection Factoids. I thought it would make for a fun and informative post, so here it is (all numbers are current through August 18th).

Times Ejected – Player
Boone, PHA – 5
Tenace, SD – 4
Gura, KC – 3
Porter, KC – 3
Bench, CIN – 3
OSmith, SD – 3
Ott, PIT – 3
Carew, MIN – 3
Singleton, BAL – 3
Fisk, BOS – 3
Turner, SD – 3

Times Ejected – Position
Pitcher – 82
Batter – 60
Catcher – 41
First Base – 19
Shortstop – 5
Baserunner – 4
Second Base – 3
Left Field – 2
Third Base – 1
Center Field – 1
Right Field – 1

Ejections – Team
San Diego – 16
California – 13
Kansas City – 13
Baltimore – 13
Milwaukee – 13
Los Angeles – 12

Reason for Ejections
Arguing safe call on batter at first base – 49
Disputing calls while catching – 21
Use of a doctored bat during game – 16
Disrespectful comments towards umpire – 14
Involvement in brawl following HBP – 14
Arguing call on apparent home run down RF line – 13
Arguing strike calls – 12
Arguing balls and strikes calls – 11

If you noticed, the #1 reason for an ejection is ‘arguing a safe call at first base’, the deadliest of Z-play draws, which all at once removes a team’s pitcher, first baseman, and catcher from the game, helping to explain why that trio of positions make up the top four spots of ejections in that category.

It should also be noted that, over the course of the SP78 season, there have been three managers who’ve been given the heave-ho and suspended for their frenzied outbursts: Sparky Anderson of the Reds, Joe Altobelli of the Giants, and of course, Earl Weaver of the Orioles.

6 responses to “Interesting SP78 Ejection Factoids

  1. What I would like to know is how long of a search was it to obtain those stats by going back and researching the site? It’s easy to keep track but to go back and pull up the information is a different story. Impressive I must say.

    • Yes, Steve did some good research, and I’m sure it took an hour or two out of his evening, and perhaps cost him a few broken bones. (All the ejections and suspensions for the SP78 season are listed on the main SP78 page, under ‘Statistics’, if you’d like more specifics).

  2. Obtaining these stats took mere minutes, as I copied the html out of the ejections log on this site, pasted it into Microsoft Excel and ran a series of pivot tables that gave me the information. Not really a challenge, given the excellent work of the commissioner and the stat monkeys in Evanston.

    • Well shoot, I was hoping you had to grind it out a bit…use a little elbow grease perhaps, or work up a modicum of sweat. But I do appreciate the kudos (and the work), as do my lacy-ass primate statfinders at Northwestern.

  3. Now I have to take it all back and grant all credit to the Commissioner. How are those pencils? When is the article going to come out?

    • You should be granting credit to the SP78 commissioner for ALL aspects of your daily routine! And your pencils have to wait a bit for the current collection of Dixieline pencils to end their rotation; the article, on the other hand, will come sooner.

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