Friday, January 12, 2007

A post DIPS world

Tango Tiger links to a study detailing how Barry Zito keeps his batting average against so darn low. He's doing his best work vs righthanders. It makes sense. All the years of watching Barry from the other side, when he's on his game it always seems to me that lefty hitting Garret Anderson is most likely to come through for the good guys.

I've got Barry at a .271 BABIP for 2007, well below average. One clear example of how big a difference CHONE sees in pitcher's ability in this regard is Johan Santana vs Ben Sheets. Prorating the injury prone Sheets to match Johan's 212 innings, they match up pretty well in the defense independent categories:

(Sheets, Santana)
walks: 37, 42
whiffs: 228, 232
homers: 22, 23

But in hits its Sheets, 190, Santana 159, pretty much the difference 50 points in ERA. BABIP: .303 to .262. Some of that is a Minnesota defense expected to be much better than last year and well above average, Punto and Bartlett did a much better job than Castro and Batista. Some of that is the pitcher's own performance in terms of hits allowed, and some is due to their batted ball data.

Batted ball data helps me keep more of the signal through the noise. Without it I'd have to regress more to the mean, and my projections would have a smaller spread in BABIP.

Pitch by pitch data may be able to take us further by giving information about quality of strikes, a pitcher's ability to keep out of the middle of the plate. Smarter people than me are working on it.

19 Comments:

At 1:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey, great site.
i have a question related to your summary of the 2006 projection results.

when you say 500 at bats, do you mean players who actually had 500 at bats, or only those who were projected to have 500 at bats? because if it's the latter, on some teams that's only like 3-4 batters. even if it's the former, just from the two CA AL west teams, chavez, thomas, ellis, rivera, and kennedy all didn't make it to 500 at bats.

why not set it a little lower and look at more players, like 400 at bats and 70 innings pitched?

 
At 2:04 PM, Anonymous Chone said...

For those, its players who actually had 500 at bats. Originally, I started with Chone, Zips, and Marcel, and compared with 300 at bat, 400 at bat, and 500 AB cutoffs.

Later I added in Shandler, Pecota, and Bill James. At that point I only used the 500 AB cutoff, because I was entering data by hand from their books as opposed to lining up excel spreadsheets.

There were a little over 100 players in the 500 AB sample. I'd be happy to provide what I have for the 300 AB sample if anyone wants to compare it to the other systems, but I ain't doin the data entry.

 
At 4:46 PM, Blogger Yusuf said...

I thought that the common view of BABIP is that a pitcher has virtually
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