John Gibbons Managerial Style via Statistics

The Jays fooled everyone in the local and national media this week by pegging John Gibbons as their manager. By now I’m sure you’ve read multiple positional pieces/reasoning/etc behind the signing. I’ll avoid jumping on the pile, instead opting to throw out some questionable statistics.

Found below, a selection of stats from Gibby’s three full-seasons with the jays (2005 – 2007). Why this group of data? Well, to be perfectly honest, I couldn’t figure out how to get Gibby’s partial seasons (2004 & 2008) to work on B-Ref.

On the offensive side we have SB, pinch-hit AB’s, HR, and sacrifice bunts/hits. On the pitching side we have complete games and IBB issued. These offensive/pitching stats are in plus/minus format vs league average. IE league avg is 10, Jays are 12, then it will read ‘2’. Negative score, will read ‘-2’.

After that we delve into the Jays records in 1-run & extra inning games, as well as the teams +/- record vs expected Pythagorean outcomes.

Note: These stats should be taken with a grain of salt; in-fact, I was on the fence about posting this article in the first place. But the research was completed, so what the hell?



Obviously the teams on-field talent, as well as J.P. Riccardi’s front office money ball philosophy play a large factor in the statistical outcomes of this data set.



Offensive Stats


Year PinchHit AB SB HR SacBunt GIDP
2005 36 -15 -38 -13 7
2006 24 -24 17 -17 30
2007 29 -40 4 -2 -1

Pitching Stats, Win Related Stats


Year CG IBB pythWL 1-Run Xtra-Inn
2005 3 -3 -8 16-31 4 W 6 L
2006 1 18 1 20-10 7 W 1 L
2007 6 -4 -4 29-25 8 W 9 L


And… this is pretty much by the old school sabermetric book. Limit ‘outs’ via lack of SB, sacrifices, in turn waiting for the longball. This typically translates into not starting runners and could be a tipping point for the high GIDP rates. On the pitching side, the Jays had Doc; and thus high CG numbers. Outside of that, Gibby received credit for his handling of players and the pitching staff, and issued fewer than average IBB.

The Jays did underperform their Pythagorean record by 11 games over this time frame, but the jury is out on how important that stat is.

Jumping ahead to last season in AA San Antinio, where Gibby managed within the stacked San Diego Padres minor league system. Here are a similar stats and rankings (for what I could find).

There’s a reason why this blog is called Mop-Up Duty…

  • San Antonio led the Texas League in Holds by a wide margin: 64 to Arkansas 55. League average was 45.5
  • In the steal department, San Antonio attempted 145 steals. This was roughly middle of the pack (4th of 8th) and slightly above the league average 138.75

Can anything be gleaned from these MLB or MILB stats? Are the numbers a product of the front-office or Gibby’s management style? I don’t have an answer. What do you think?

Notes: Stats via B-Ref, image via Nathan Denette/Canadian Press


More from Matthias Koster
Is Mike Mussina headed to the Baseball Hall of Fame?
Is Mike Mussina headed to the Baseball Hall of Fame?    
Read More