Hitter Analytics (3/1/15)

Some updates

• A form has been added for people to added some times. Some players have already been submitted by some readers. Thanks to those helping.
• I have the projected strikeout and walk rates added.
• I have cleaned up the verbiage a little.
• I have 100 scale information for every hitter for each of nine batted ball categories over the past three seasons.

Note: Some people were not able to open the spreadsheet on an Apple. I tried to save the spreadsheet as a .xls, but the embed feature didn’t work. Here is a like to downloadable .xls. I am trying to figure out a solution.

 

Pitchers’ Approach Attacking Hitters

Robert Arthur at Baseball Prospectus has shown pitchers will change their approach depending on the hitter’s talent level. Here is a complete list of the number of fastballs (including sinkers) thrown to each hitter of the past two years divided into half seasons. Also the number of pitches in the strike by half season is included along with the fastball percentage in the strike zone. I will begin adding 2015 information as it becomes available.

 

Batted Ball Profiles

Inside Edge tracts nine distinct batted ball types. The data includes the normal three distinctions of Groundball, Line Drive and Flyball. Additionally, the designations of Weak, Medium and Well-Hit are used. Here are the league average values for each of the nine batted balls.

Batted Ball Type: xBABIP, wOBAcon, % of batted balls
Groundball – Weak: .151, .112, 31.4%
Groundball – Medium: .461, .416, 9.5%
Groundball – Well-Hit: .647, .610, 3.8%
Line Drive – Weak: .622, .579, 2.3%
Line Drive – Medium: .650, .638, 7.3%
Line Drive – Well-Hit: .719, .815, 11.1%
Flyball – Weak: .078, .074, 18.5%
Flyball – Medium: .069, .081, 8.2%
Flyball – Well-Hit: .641, 1.168, 7.8%

With these values, I have created three values to determine a hitter’s talent level.

  • BABIPwHR (including home runs, but excluding bunts) – Number of batted balls which went for hits.
  • wOBAcon (how hard is the contact) – Each hit is weighted to an average run value. I used 0.9 for single, 1.25 for doubles, 1.6 for Triples and 2.1 for home runs.
  • Orig_xBABIP – I created this formula a while back which uses hard hit batted balls and Speed Score to estimate a player’s BABIP

Additionally, I have put the  stats on a Plus system to help put the values in context. A value at 100 is league average, 90 is 10% below league average and 110 is 10% above league average.

I got permission to give out a little more information. I have included how much a hitter is above or below the league average for each of the nine batted ball types. Here are some examples

Name Total AVG wOBA LD_WH LD_M FB_WH GB_WH LD_W GB_M GB_W FB_W FB_M
Ben Revere 558 0.306 0.304 63% 148% 21% 102% 125% 110% 162% 45% 42%
Eric Hosmer 409 0.270 0.314 122% 98% 54% 63% 64% 122% 118% 78% 97%
Bryce Harper 249 0.273 0.338 116% 111% 78% 104% 157% 117% 102% 86% 75%
Giancarlo Stanton 366 0.288 0.403 146% 83% 113% 141% 119% 88% 89% 99% 75%

The nine categories or ordered by likelihood of getting a hit. If you want them in order of damage done per hit move the Well-Hit Flyballs to first in the list.

Plate Discipline

A few years back, I found walk and strikeout rates can be found using O-Swing%, O-Concat%, Z-Contact% and Z-Swing% values found here at BeyondtheBoxScore.com. By looking at a hitter’s approach, we can get a quick idea if they are hacking too much at bad pitches and will this approach catch up with them. Additionally, I included what the expected value would be if regressed. Strikeouts and walks regress in a small number of samples, so this value will near the actual production rather quickly.

Quick analysis on Jon Singleton has him at an expected 38% K which is right near his actual 37% value on the season. With regression, his value only drops to 33%. At least he can point Javier Baez if someone gets him about his high strikeout numbers.

 

Times to First

I am collecting times from home to first base when a hitter is giving it their all to beat out a throw for a hit. With this information, changes in talent from age or injuries could be detected. Readers can submit times to first information by commenting in any of my articles, Tweet the info to #time2first or fill out the form below. All I would need is the player, handedness if a switch hitter, game and inning. If you can time the run even better. If you don’t have the chance to time the run, just let me know the other information and I can watch the game. I will check each when I have time and I will add them to the spreadsheet.

Additions

Lorenzo Cain
Eric Hosmer
Wilson Ramos
Jose Reyes

Additionally, here is a simple tool to give me some times

Final Thoughts

Again, let me know what you like, don’t like or what needs tweaked. I have already implemented a few requests.





Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won four FSWA Awards including on for his Mining the News series. He's won Tout Wars three times, LABR twice, and got his first NFBC Main Event win in 2021. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.

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Paul S
8 years ago

Jeff,

I just saw this project for the first time, and I’m pretty blown away. Hopefully utilizing these new metrics can help improve projection accuracy.