Thursday, August 14, 2008

More Advancements In The Sabermetric Community

Today is a very good day. Today my life was made a good deal easier, as the fine people of LookoutLanding (a quality M's blog) have started a new site,, that has several handy things on it which I will no longer have to calculate (often incorrectly, as I was using a simplified version of the formula - also, a typo in my spreadsheet has caused a general undervaluing of offense, which I'll need to go back and change for some previous posts); notably, wOBA and tRA. The former I have talked about before, and StatCorner is even nice enough to calculate the Run Value based on wOBA for a player per plate appearance, 600 PA, and total actual PA. For example, Nick Markakis actually has a .397 wOBA. which is worth 0.057 runs per PA, 34.2 runs per 600 PA (about what one can expect for a season projection-wise), and 30.2 runs this season so far. Let's call him a 3 win player with the bat. With his previously mentioned +0.5 defense in RF (-0.5) in the AL (+2.5) (adjusting for playing time) that makes Nick a 5 WAR player. And I was hoping he could get up to that level in his prime, before.

tRA is calculated in a manner similar to wOBA in that it assigns run values to different events (a K saves about 0.11 runs, while a BB costs about 0.33 runs, a line drive allowed costs about 0.38 runs, and so on). Then the number of runs a pitcher is expected to give up is divided by the numbers of outs he is expected to get, and then multiplied by 27 to give the expected numbers of runs allowed per 9 innings. So one can think of it kind of like ERA (except without the whole earned/unearned thing so it's about 0.50 runs higher). It's an upgrade over FIP, so now that it's readily available I'll use it instead.

Jeremy Guthrie was a tRA of 4.32 this year, compared to his 5.15 tRA from 2007. His excellent results are still confusing to me, but at least he's improving. The tRA+ (like ERA+) is also given, and Guts is at 109 this year.

Daniel Cabrera has been awful, with a 5.50 tRA. He's actually gotten worse each of the last four years. Maybe they really should trade him. I guess I wasn't as objective as I should have been with Daniel, because I really wanted him to at least do OK, so he would stop being made the butt of so many jokes.

Garrett Olson has been pitching much better than it would seem, as his tRA is 4.82, for a tRA+ of 98 (just a bit below league average). Like I said, I'm confident that he can pitch at the back of the O's rotation next year, though unfortunately he may end up near the front end.

Radhames Liz and his 7.58 tRA aren't ready for a big-league rotation.

Brian Burres, as I'm sure many of you realized, kind of sucks; 6.19 tRA.

The pen isn't that good, but far from the disaster of previous years.

Alberto Castillo: 2.51
Jim Johnson: 3.28
Dennis Sarfate: 3.88
George Sherrill: 4.14
Randor Bierd: 4.15
Matt Albers: 4.46
Lance Cormier: 4.78
Fernando Cabrera: 5.79
Jamie Walker: 6.18

Another thing I really like about StatCorner is their team info. It has the starting rotation with a tRA of 5.50 (ouch) which translated to giving up 119 runs above average; the bullpen with a 4.42 tRA (13 more runs than average); and the offense with a wOBA of .339 (scoring 32 runs more than average).

I know it may be confusing for the four or five of you that read this stuff to keep track of my constantly changing stat usage, but whenever I find something better than what I had before (and understand it) I upgrade. wOBA and tRA I think should be around for a little while, though. Apparently, on there are going to be a bunch more things added to StatCorner like tRA* (regressed tRA, which should provide even more predictive value) and wOBA+, as well as leaderboards and the like. I have to say, I'm pretty excited. Now if only there was a really good defensive metric to rely on.

No comments: