Mike Lieberthal and “Sabbathmetrics”

Last night marked the beginning of Passover, the celebration of the Israelites’ freedom from slavery in Egypt.  That means its time for another Sabbathmetrics post, in which we look at whether certain Jewish players performed better on worse on the Sabbath.

Our focus today is on Mike Lieberthal.  Lieberthal was a 14-year veteran, mostly with the Phillies.  He holds the team record for most games started at catcher (1,139) and was their Opening Day catcher from 1997 through 2006.  He compiled a line of .275/.338/.450 line with the club.   With a 101 career OPS+, he ranks 11th amongst catchers with 1,000+ games caught.  For his career, he nabbed 30% of all basestealers though he also led the NL three times in passed balls.

So did Lieberthal perform better or worse on the Sabbath?  We parsed out all of his games by Sabbath/non-Sabbath and here is what it showed:

SABBATHMETRICS: MIKE LIEBERTHAL
SABBATH? NO YES TOTAL
Games 936 276 1212
PA 3612 1083 4695
AB 3258 960 4218
R 414 120 534
H 888 267 1155
2B 199 58 257
3B 6 4 10
HR 117 33 150
RBI 478 132 610
BB 245 90 335
SO 446 125 571
HBP 70 19 89
SF 31 12 43
BA .273 .278 .274
OBP .334 .348 .337
SLG .445 .450 .446
HR% of PA 3.2% 3.0% 3.2%
BB% of PA 6.8% 8.3% 7.1%
SO% of PA 12.3% 11.5% 12.2%

Lieberthal’s stats were slightly better during the Sabbath.   He had a better batting eye  (better walk rate and lower K rate) and all of his slash stats improved on Friday nights and Saturday afternoons.

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Prior entries in the “Sabbathmetric” series:

Ron Blomberg
Shawn Green
Al Rosen
Ian Kinsler
Sandy Koufax

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