Last year was one to forget for a lot of people, but the Padres' Tommy Pham now has scars that will always remind him of the dumpster fire that was 2020.
Pham was involved in a vicious incident in a San Diego strip club that resulted in him having his lower back slashed and requiring more than 200 stitches to repair, leaving a scar from one hip to the other across the base of his back. Pham is lucky to have come away from that incident with his career intact and is theoretically heading into the 2021 season in good health. There are reports he is considering legal action against the Pacers Showgirls International strip club where his injuries were sustained.
In our ongoing quest to determine if there is a correlation between off field activities and their effects on game performance (and if those correlations be used to make MLB picks), we decided to look at Tommy Pham's stats for this study.
Does a taste for strip clubs affect the performance of someone like Pham when they are on the road during a season? Could performance levels possibly drop (or improve? stranger things have happened) because of off-field distractions?
Pickdawgz has analyzed the performances of Pham over the last three seasons to see if off-field habits had any effect on his output for the for the Cardinals, the Rays or Padres, or if his performances stayed the same, regardless of distractions across the country.
To do this, we looked at the top-rated strip clubs across the country using Google reviews to calculate their effect on the performance of Pham.
By working out his average performance stats per game over the three-year period and the performances in each city he played in every year, every individual key statistic has been analyzed and compared to his overall averages for the period to consider whether he performed below or very below average in each city in each season.
A below average performance is anything below his overall average for each category (batting average, on-base percentage, on-base slugging and average leverage index) over the three-year period, while a very below average performance is anything more than 20% below his average performance.
Our research shows that Pham’s best performances in 2020 came in Colorado, which rates quite poorly in terms of average strip club ratings according to Google, at just 3.43 out of five.
In Colorado, Pham played three games last year, averaging 0.282 with the bat (compared to a season average of 0.229), had an OB% of 0.407 (0.354), an OBS% of 0.81 (0.663), meaning it was the only city in which he performed above average across all metrics over the season, with only his ALI dropping slightly below his average with 1.016 compared to 1.059.
Pham’s worst performances over the three-year period however came in San Francisco, but this is another city which doesn’t rate particularly highly in terms of strip clubs (3.5/5) so despite seven below average performances overall, it is fair to say that he is rarely distracted by the quality of strip clubs away from the game.
In San Diego, his home city and where he suffered the attack, he did, however, have a poor 2020, returning scores below his three-year averages in his batting stats (0.243) and OBS% (0.681).
Over the last three years which have been studied, Pham’s overall batting average has been 0.260, his OB% 0.371, his OBS% 0.765 and has an ALI of 0.994.
Anything below these scores are considered to be below average performances, while anything more than 20% below is considered a very below average performance.
Were the patterns in form really related to partying too often and not focusing on his profession, or are they merely coincidence and he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time?
Only the man himself will know.
Methodology: The number of below average performances is worked out by assessing how many times Pham performed his cumulative average in each metric across every game. The very below-average performances came when Pham performed at least 20% worse in a performance metric in a game when compared to his season averages. The average nightclub rating has been calculated by using the review ratings of the top 10 Google results in each city.