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Identifying SP improvements using BABIP abnormalities

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Postby Chrisy Moltisanti » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:18 am

GotowarMissAgnes wrote:
Chrisy Moltisanti wrote:I know some pitchers have been identified as being able to control BABIP. I'm interested in the hitters who seem to do so, such as Manny or Ryan Howard. People say Howard should drop of because of his high BABIP last year, but why haven't I heard that about Manny, just about every year? And what about MCab? His BABIP was much higher than Howard's. Todd Helton, Larry Walker, Vlad, Hafner, Berkman, MCab and others seem to consistently defy the odds more often than not. It would seem that player who hit the ball harder and in the air more often have some control over this BABIP.


Actually, most pitchers have little control over BABIP. On the other hands, most hitters DO have quite a bit of control over BABIP. So, while, as with most baseball stats, you can expect a player to regress to the mean if they had a very high BABIP, the regression towards the mean is much less for hitters than it is for pitchers.


Hmm, by the way some of you guys with those nice graduates relay things I think many of us assumed it was the other way around.
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Postby Niffoc4 » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:23 am

With hitters you have to go a little deeper, both Tim Dierkes and Marc Normandin talk about this a lot. A hitter's BABIP can be higher than average, but if so he probably has a good line drive percentage (or in Ichiro's case is an f'ing fast groundball hitter). If the line drive percentage is low AND the BABIP is high than that probably isn't sustainable. I assume I don't have to explain why Ryan Howard doesn't fit in the Ichiro category when it comes to BABIP.
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Postby Chrisy Moltisanti » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:27 am

Howard has a better LD% than Pujols, so you think he'll be good again, right?

(Good ~ 110/47+/125+/.300
Last edited by Chrisy Moltisanti on Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:29 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:28 am

Chrisy Moltisanti wrote:Hmm, by the way some of you guys with those nice graduates relay things I think many of us assumed it was the other way around.


Nope. David Gassko and Dan Fox have lookd at this pretty extensively in the last two Hardball Times Annual and in a few web articles. Neither pitchers nor hitters have complete control, because fielders and "luck" have a role. But, it's clear hitters have a lot more control over whether a batted ball becomes a hit than do pitchers. In particular, there's a stronger correlation in hitter's batted ball data (whether they hit GB, FB or LD) and in whether a particular type of batted ball becomes a hit.
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Postby Chrisy Moltisanti » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:31 am

Nice. I'm not claiming to be a genius or anything, but after looking at the data on fangraphs (sweet site) I figured almost as much. GotowarMissAgnes, would you mind telling me how you think Howard will fare this season?
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Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Wed Mar 14, 2007 7:18 am

I think he'll be fine. He'll be a bit lower in most cats, but I don't see a big drop. BA and HRs a little lower, say .290-.300 and 45-50, with runs and RBIs 10-15 lower.
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Postby Denmarch » Wed Mar 14, 2007 7:46 am

Has anyone tried the BABIP theory before? I mean, did anyone look at it when drafting pitchers in 2006, and did they have the expected results?

Also, someone should determine some ratio for "pitcher's tendency to not have his best stuff." It would have to be based on the pitcher's own admission, though, at post-defeat press conferences. :) (There's a real point in there somewhere about the near-infinite complexity of the human condition. I swear. How can you measure the soul? :~( :-D )
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Postby Philliebuster » Wed Mar 14, 2007 8:12 am

Good points...i'd also like to know if I can make these kind of assumptions for Chris Young-SD using BABIP.

Last season he had a .237 BABIP ;-7 , previous years he was closer to the norm .290. Can I assume there is a good chance he will decline somewhat? Or is this thinking too simplistic?
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Postby josebach » Wed Mar 14, 2007 8:54 am

*nevermind* Misread a post.
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Postby BritSox » Wed Mar 14, 2007 9:19 am

Big Pimpin wrote:Anyway, there's a league average number, but some pitchers do have their own norms, usually based on Ground Ball/Fly Ball tendencies and the defense behind them. For instance, Felix Hernandez, with his groundball tendencies and a great IF defense, should have a lower number.



Half right. Good defence certainly helps, but groundball pitchers should have higher BABIP than flyballers. Someone like Peavy or Patterson (pitchers' park, flyballer) ought to be an example of a guy you'd expect to have a low BABIP.
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