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by Ray Flowers
July 17, 2004

Always on the lookout for new an innovative ways to bring you statistical analysis, we have decided to present to you the extremely complicated and convoluted stat named “Troubles.” Before you undertake the daunting task of this analysis you should know the following: in reality Troubles is actually just about the easiest thing you have ever seen, so before we blow any more smoke your way, let’s just get to it. 

The idea for Troubles comes from John Hunt’s Baseball Fantasy Insider on the Sports Weekly of June 9-15, 2004 (p.15). In his weekly column Mr. Hunt occasionally discusses alternative ways to score fantasy baseball other than the standard 5x5 stats that we almost all use (Avg., HR,RBI,RUNS,SB and W,K,ERA,WHIP,SV). Hunt wrote of Michael Slater’s Coal Valley Illinois league that has created a variant on the standard 5x5 league used to make it a 6x6 league; they count Troubles.  

Troubles, simply put, is the addition of triples and doubles, hence TR - OUBLES. Though its extremely simplistic in comparison to many sabermetric type analysis’ that are often expounded upon by the current writer, it’s a “new” and neat way to count extra-base hits without counting HR (which are already counted in their own separate category). Troubles offer the added benefit of allowing a slap hitting speedster to have a bit more value to your team, even if he doesn’t possess long ball power (i.e. Chone Figgins). So before we unveil the 2004 Troubles leader at the all-star break, let’s take a look at the 2B leaderboard. 

Stats as of July 13th, 2004 


L.Overbay 37
D.Ortiz 33
D.Lee 29
T.Hafner 29
V.Castilla 28
M.Ramirez 28
M.Loretta 28
T.Helton 27
J.Estrada 27
K.Matsui 27

*The all-time record for 2B in a season is 67 set be Earl Webb in 1931.
Lyle Overbay is currently on pace for 70! (No player has even hit 60 since 1936)

Think OVERBAY should have been on the all-star since he also is hitting .344 while leading NL 1B in RBI? Its been over 70 years since someone posted 60 2B, could this be the year it happens? With a big 2nd half, HELTON has an outside shot at matching his career high in 2B of 59. Despite his slow start LEE has rebounded and put himself in position to match his numbers from the past few seasons. LORETTA, all that man does is quietly keep exceeding expectations. 

Now on to the “most exciting play” in baseball…triples. 


C.Figgins 13
C.Crawford 9
C.Guillen 7
J.Wilson 7
D.Roberts 6
J.Pierre 6
M.Young 6
*11 tied 5

*The all-time record for 3B in a season is 36 set by Chief Wilson in 1912.
Chone Figgins is currently on pace for 24, a total which would be the highest since 1925.  

FIGGINS can scoot, but how does he have only 42 runs scored batting in front of Vlad? WILSON continues his amazing run of all around excellence, but it’s a long season. CRAWFORD/ROBERTS/PIERRE, we could have called those three before the season started with their blazing speed. 

And now to what you’ve all been waiting for…Troubles (2B+3B). 


L. Overbay


D. Ortiz


C. Guillen


D. Lee


T. Hafner


V. Castilla


L. Gonzalez


R. Clayton


J. Wilson


M. Ramirez


M. Loretta


K. Matsui


A. Jones


T. Helton


J. Estrada


S. Casey


M. Lowell


C. Biggio


R. Belliard


A. Pujols








Not surprisingly OVERBAY leads because of his huge 2B total. GUILLEN, with the big yard in Detroit, leads all ML SS in Troubles, while sitting 3rd on the list (CLAYTON is just down the list in 8th). CASEY/ORTIZ/HELTON/ESTRADA, despite not hitting a single 3B, all rank in the top 15. FIGGINS rounds at the top 25 with a perfectly equal score of 13 2B/3B. 

So that’s it, concise an exquisite in its simplicity. Troubles won’t revolutionize fantasy baseball, heck you might even think its lame. However it is another way that you can spice up your fantasy leagues stale and redundant scoring categories. If nothing else, we think it’s a cool name, it kinda rolls of your tongue and makes you feel like Robert Dinero…are you looking for Troubles?  

Did you know that Norm Cash owes something to Beethoven? During what would become a Nolan Ryan no-hitter on July 15, 1973, Norm Cash, realizing the futility of trying to hit Ryan, brought not a bat to the plate, but a piano leg! He was ordered to return to the dugout to procure a bat prior to be allowed to hit.

Ray Flowers can be reached with comments/questions or suggestions at:

You can also visit Rays’ blog at for a full review of all of his recent articles.


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