He talked about the Red Sox farm system (he ranked it #2 in MLB, with the Yankees at #25, by the way; FU MFY) and the edge it gives them in any upcoming bidding for Adrian Gonzalez, and Theo Epstein's increased attention to run prevention.
Law also talked about more advanced metrics, when (as you might expect) answering a question about you-know-who:
RBIs are useless. ... It's not a stat I've looked at since I stopped playing fantasy baseball eight years ago. And batting average is not useless, but it's totally incomplete ... a single and a home run are treated as if they're exactly equal. Well, they're not. ...After I finished reading this interview, I did something that I almost never do: I glanced a bit further down at the first few readers' comments. That is ALWAYS a mistake. The large number of people who seemingly boast of their closed-mindedness, who take excessive pride in their ignorance, is staggering. And, sadly, they procreate.
Do you really think that RBIs are useless, rather than just overvalued?
Totally useless. In terms of measuring the value of a player's performance, I find them absolutely useless because 1) it's determined by how many opportunities you get — the guys who hit in front of you in the lineup, how often did they get on base; and 2) there's no particular skill to driving runs in. There's no such thing as a hitter who is significantly better in RBI opportunities. ...
Some guys take advantage of those opportunities that are there for them, and some don't. Some guys have a knack for driving people in.
I disagree with that. I do not think that's true ...
Do you think that the new metrics in baseball are a tough sell to the person who grew up thinking that the sacrifice bunt is an essential part of baseball?
They scare people. They really do. They scare people in the industry. I've noticed that with a lot of other writers. I take criticism, I took criticism for the Cy Young vote back in November [he did not include Chris Carpenter on his ballot] ... I do think ultimately you see a lot of guys who are scared, who are threatened who, "I have understood baseball this way for 50 years, you can't tell me I'm wrong — I don't want to hear that I'm wrong, that everything I thought about baseball was wrong or misleading, that I had a bad understanding of this game." ...
When it comes to "clutch hitters", if you look at who excels in various hitting categories -- with runners second and/or third or "close & late" situations, things like that -- you will notice that the same guys do not appear at the top of the list year after year. And there are always some odd names. You know who the top 10 clutch hitters from 1960 to 2004, the players who (as Tom Ruane says here) "were able to raise the level of their game when it mattered most (or at least when runners were on second or third)"?
NO RISP W/RISPIn a nutshell, coming through "in the clutch" is something that has not been proven to be an actual, sustainable talent.
Name AB AB BPS AB BPS DIFF
Bill Spiers 3430 2548 .607 882 .722 .115
Mike Sweeney 3760 2673 .764 1087 .867 .103
Pat Tabler 3948 2815 .626 1133 .725 .099
Jose Valentin 4882 3678 .666 1204 .765 .099
Wayne Garrett 3308 2557 .557 751 .643 .087
Sandy Alomar 4748 3831 .519 917 .592 .073
Tony Fernandez 7972 6100 .665 1872 .736 .071
Rennie Stennett 4554 3520 .612 1034 .682 .070
Joe Girardi 4150 3117 .596 1033 .666 .070
Rick Miller 3910 2991 .599 919 .668 .069
(BPS - batting average plus slugging percentage)