Strategy June 18, 2009

# Ranking The Offenses For Pitching Matchups

By Jake Sheets

First off, I’d like to point out that the majority of the credit for this article belongs to user EverybodyHits. Last year he provided a fascinating thread attempting to rank each offense in the league from best to worst. Many Cafe regulars immediately saw the value of his work — I was one of them. Unfortunately, this innovative member has been absent from the forums this year. Therefore, in this article I’ll be creating a similar ranking based largely on the work he put in last year.

The color coordinates are used to make it easy to quickly identify top or bottom teams in each respective categories. The cells shaded in green signify favorable pitching environments (i.e., teams that either score few runs per game, have low team OBPs, or strike out most often). The cells shaded in red show the opposite.

The ultimate rankings, shown on the left side of the table, are a composite of these three parameters. Additionally, since recent trends hold more relevance than those that occurred earlier in the season, I weighted each month accordingly. Specifically, I weighted stats occurring in May the highest, June next (because as we are only half way through the month, it didn’t seem fair to weight these relatively few games too heavily), and the first month of the season, April, lowest.

For example, the weighted value of runs scored for the St. Louis was calculated as follows: (5.78*.25)+(3.52*.45)+(4.13*.3)=4.268

In a similar fashion, I found the weighted values for OBP and Ks-per-game. I used these three values to form a total for each team. K/G was factored in by taking the inverse of the weighted value — I was forced to do this because low run and OBP numbers each signified a favorable pitching situation, while a low K/game ratio suggested the opposite. I also weighted this number to ensure it carried enough weight.

All of these weights and the subsequent totals can be seen here, along with home/away splits and home run totals (neither of which were included in the rankings). Furthermore, I’ve uploaded the Excel file into this public Google Document so that anyone who wishes to save this data in their own Excel workbook can do so. Please use the Article Discussion link below for discussing the data.

Jake Sheets is one of a growing number of fantasy experts who write for the Cafe. You can catch up with Jake in the Cafe's forums where he posts under the name of jake_twothousandfive.

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