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I dont think I really disagree with you, but I want to clarify this. Bill James was saying it was impossible (or nearly so) for some player e.g. Kaline or someone to have saved 25 runs in RF. And his argument was that no team was saving 400 runs on defense (8 x 25) or some argument akin to that...
ANd that is the pt. I was making with your pt; your claim about teams getting 20 hits to the OF would be true, if you could find a season like that. But in REALITY that doesnt happen teams produce hitting and fielding and pitching stats that are very close to one another. And they are being paid commensurate sums to one another, so we have really good reason to think that we have fielders that are getting very similar numbers of balls it to their zone. Your argument is totally theoretical and doesnt exist in the real world of MLB.
I would submit that baseball GMs would overwhelming choose the catcher in that situation. Would you do otherwise?
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