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Can someone explain BABIP?

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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby Montana » Thu May 15, 2008 12:26 am

Spartans Rule wrote:The whole BABIP thing started when a guy named Voros McCracken was messing around studying pitcher's stats and noticed that pitchers seemed to have very little control over BABIP allowed.

Now why anyone decided to extend this to hitters, I have no idea. To say that pitchers don't have much control over hit rates on balls in play is a little counterintuitive, but starts to make sense when you look at the whole picture of pitching stats. To say that hitters can't control average on balls in play is just nonsense. Hitting ability and running speed are both big factors in hitter BABIP.



Doesn't mean the statistic isn't valueable though for evaluating hitters..........it just means you're more likely to get valuable information from a players BABIP, by comparing it to seasons past......than by comparing it to the league average.

It's still a valuable tool for hitters, imo........it just has to be looked upon a little differently.
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby Ender » Thu May 15, 2008 12:36 am

Pitchers and hitters both control their own BABIP in different ways. They just tend to regress towards their own statistical mean over time.

Ground Balls tend to have a higher BABIP, thus a GB pitcher will have a higher BABIP. Fly balls have a lower BABIP, thus flyball pitchers have a lower BABIP. Line Drives tend to have the highest BABIP. BABIP is also strongly affected by doubles. Speed players also tend to have higher BABIP. Finally BABIP is influenced quite a bit by defense.

There are certain levels that BABIP tend to fall into, if someone has lower than a .250 BABIP or higher than a .350 BABIP whether they are a pitcher or a hitter the safe money is on their stats being a fluke. If you have 3+ years of data on a player you should assume that their BABIP will regress towards their career rate.
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby cards05 » Thu May 15, 2008 1:17 am

Ender wrote:Pitchers and hitters both control their own BABIP in different ways. They just tend to regress towards their own statistical mean over time.

Ground Balls tend to have a higher BABIP, thus a GB pitcher will have a higher BABIP. Fly balls have a lower BABIP, thus flyball pitchers have a lower BABIP. Line Drives tend to have the highest BABIP. BABIP is also strongly affected by doubles. Speed players also tend to have higher BABIP. Finally BABIP is influenced quite a bit by defense.

There are certain levels that BABIP tend to fall into, if someone has lower than a .250 BABIP or higher than a .350 BABIP whether they are a pitcher or a hitter the safe money is on their stats being a fluke. If you have 3+ years of data on a player you should assume that their BABIP will regress towards their career rate.


I was going to make a post in this thread tonight, but Ender covered it. I'd also add that currently unpublished - but apparently reputable - studies reinforce the notion that pitchers actually have a degree of control over BAPIP - much more than what the McCracken study implied. Again, it's still a great stat to look at, but you shouldn't assume pitchers will always head toward .290 as I had assumed a couple of years ago.

Here's an article that I posted here from HBT that discusses this:

http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/artic ... -at-babip/

Here's the conclusion from that article if you don't feel like reading the whole thing:

The game of baseball is saturated with luck—round ball, round bat. Uncertain outcomes are part of the game’s appeal. The BABIP phenomenon appears random at a large scale because we typically observe it in a way that is random when part of the information is hidden from the observer. In this article I’ve exposed some of the hidden information about the performances of two pitchers whose BABIP seems especially random. Although luck was certainly a factor, a large portion of each pitcher’s BABIP variance can be explained by non-spurious baseball regularities.

Chalking up BABIP as merely the result of chance outcomes does disservice to pitchers’ skill at preventing solid contact, which is the essence of pitching. Tossing a coin is chance, not skill, because you can’t control the result by how you flip the coin. Pitchers demonstrate skill in their control over the hardness of hitter contact, which indirectly but positively affects outcomes on in-park batted balls.

BABIP inevitably includes a random element because of the many unpredictable external events involved in a putout. After a recent loss to the Giants, Tom Glavine complained that “When their guys are hitting ground balls, I’m doing my job. I’m just not getting the results. There’s nothing I can say to make people understand when you go out there, do what you want to do, make the pitches and you don’t get the results.” That’s BABIP luck, the disconnect between pitching skill and batted ball outcome.

But some of the randomness in BABIP, as shown in the Zito and Greinke examples, amounts to a missing data problem. Ordinary baseball records omit pitch and batted ball attribute values, limiting our understanding of pitcher contributions to BABIP.
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby steven lourie » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:05 pm

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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby bigh0rt » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:16 pm

steven lourie wrote:http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/830563/fantasy_baseball_tips_babip.html

this should help

Do you run this site? Otherwise I can't imagine bumping a month old post with the very first of your own. :-b
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby Yanks_Baby » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:30 pm

Yoda wrote:Also need to be careful when looking at BABIP. Generally better pitchers have lower BABIP overall and better contact hitters have higher BABIP. I rarely use it for hitters but use it for pitchers who have a ridiculously low BABIP like low .200s or something.

I also think that pitchers have much more control over BABIP. For instance, If you throw the same pitch at the same location to two different hitters then you will have two completely different results based on their skill.

Also, you have to know who you're talking about. A ground ball pitcher, or a contact pitcher like Bannister or Glavine, generally have a lower BABIP because they play to contact, and therefore, have waay more balls put in paly against them.
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby Yanks_Baby » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:32 pm

noseeum wrote:
interchange wrote:BABIP is batting average for ABs that aren't K, BB, or HR. In general, BABIP is pretty consistent for all players in the majors. Thus, when there is a hot player out there with a very high BABIP expect a regression.


Unless he has 80 home runs of course. :-D

I wonder what Bonds BABIP was the year he hit 73...
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby mtxdevil » Thu Jun 19, 2008 1:08 pm

Yanks_Baby wrote:
noseeum wrote:
interchange wrote:BABIP is batting average for ABs that aren't K, BB, or HR. In general, BABIP is pretty consistent for all players in the majors. Thus, when there is a hot player out there with a very high BABIP expect a regression.


Unless he has 80 home runs of course. :-D

I wonder what Bonds BABIP was the year he hit 73...


Mr. Bonds had a BABIP of .268 that year.
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Re: Can someone explain BABIP?

Postby jectalo » Thu Jul 31, 2008 1:33 am

everything is canceling out. sometimes really nasty pitches fall in for broken bat hits. not all bad pitches result in base hits. take mccrackens example: during the home run derby pitches grooved down the middle are mostly home runs or would be pop-ups/double plays, none of which would increase a pitcher's babip.

good batters like pujols and arod do have consistently high babip because they have higher line drive %'s.

for pitchers, however, babip is a crapshoot from year to year.
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