Balls In Play Expected Homers Leaderboard

Mike Podhorzer and Chad Young embarked on a journeyquest to find an offensive expected (x)HR/FB rate.

Based on batted ball distance and angle, you can go to Baseball Heatmaps (BHM) and find expected versus actual homers or verify HR/FB ratios through HR+FB average distance.

Here’s an uber simple descriptive balls-in-play (BIP) expected homer (xHR) formula:

xHR = PA*Contact%*OFFB%*HR/FB. Looking at the outcomes from last year we have the following list first ordered by the most likely regressions:

I think it’s safe to say Albert Pujols, Alexei Ramirez, Nelson Cruz are likely to regress in the homer department. BHM agrees with Pujols, Cruz and Adam Jones who are all top 20 likely to regress by angle and distance as well. On the other hand, BHM presents Trout as the 2nd largest differential after Chris Carter. From a BIP xHR perspective, Mike Trout is on the exact other side of the spectrum:

The above verifies Trout’s HR total and then some. It’s nice to see Anthony Rizzo up there as well.

Using this formula (xHR = PA*Contact%*OFFB%*HR/FB), let’s see what are largest xHR totals are if everyone had exactly 600 PA:

Madison Grand Slam Bumgarner! Number 5 overall!

Who is this Ben Paulsen guy at #6? I’ll tell you who he is. He is your deep, NL only or daily fantasy platoon lefty bat if something happens to Justin Morneau.

Dilson Herrera?! Not bad for a 20-year old second baseman. Sample-size-schmample-size.

In our Mock Draft, J.D. Martinez went in the 5th round. He should have ample opportunities to drive guys in, sure, but we are now in round 17 and Brandon Belt is still available. From a homer perspective, they were almost identical last year.

Nelson Cruz didn’t even crack 30 HR. It took luck, Baltimore and almost 680 Plate Appearances for him to hit 40 last year. This and a move to Seattle should help you appreciate Steamer’s projection of 26 HR for him next year in 570 PA.

When evaluating this list, keep in mind that guys like Paulsen and Scott Van Slyke are assets in a platoon or for daily fantasy sites. Their stats can’t be extrapolated as depicted, but the list is still fun and helps present sleeper HR options.

We hoped you liked reading Balls In Play Expected Homers Leaderboard by Daniel Schwartz!

Please support FanGraphs by becoming a member. We publish thousands of articles a year, host multiple podcasts, and have an ever growing database of baseball stats.

FanGraphs does not have a paywall. With your membership, we can continue to offer the content you've come to rely on and add to our unique baseball coverage.

Support FanGraphs




Daniel Schwartz contributes for RotoGraphs when he's not selling industry leading thermal packaging. You can follow him on twitter @RotoBanter

newest oldest most voted
Alex
Guest
Alex

It seems a little unlikely that there would be that much more downward regression expected than upwards. Were there really 275 too many home runs last year?