BABIP (batting average of balls in play) – this stat calculates what a player’s average is when they hit the ball within the field of play. All home runs and strikeouts are taken away to determine how they fair in this regard. The goal of this stat is to indicate a hitter’s “luck”. In other words, a really high BABIP may indicate the hitter has a fair amount of luck and has been fortunate to ‘hit it where they ain’t’ more times than most. A really low BABIP may indicate poor luck where the hitter is hitting it right at the defender for an out more times than most. Over time, the stat should even out, but it lets us know if we can predict a player whose production may decrease or increase going forward.
OPS (on-base plus slugging) – this represents a player’s ability to get on base and hit for power. Generally anything above .750 is good…and anything above .900 is excellent.
RISP (runners in scoring position) – this is not really a SABR stat but it is one that cannot be found in MSU’s stat book. It’s one that I really like though as it measures the ‘clutch’ gene.
RC (runs created) – this is a popular stat that seeks to determine how many runs a particular player is responsible for. Hits, walks, total bases and at-bats are used to calculate this stat – it has nothing to do with RBI which is viewed by some as “luck” with regard to coming up with men on base. I’ve also added the stolen base element to it which factors in SB and CS.
Batting average – (minus) productive outs – there may be an official name for this stat, but I don’t know what it is and this is one I like to look at. Productive outs meaning a fly ball or grounder that advances the runner with 0 outs but is not counted as a sacrifice or scores a runner but is not counted as a sacrifice. For instance: a groundout to 2nd base that advances the runner to third base with 0 outs is a productive out. It is not a productive out with 1 out because the runner can no longer score from 3rd on a sac fly. Also a groundout to 2nd base that scores a runner from 3rd with 1 out is a productive out and works the same as a sacrifice fly (so why don’t they count it as a sacrifice grounder?!)
BABIP – same idea as the offense, only it goes to measure a pitcher’s luck. I will note that Ross Mitchell is an example of someone who defies this stat, he will likely always have a high BABIP but he’s good plain and simple.
WHIP (walks + hits per inning pitched) – this is a very popular stat that has even made its way to the mainstream. It simply attempts to find out how many base-runners a pitcher has per inning. Anything less than 1.0 is excellent.
FIP (fielding independent pitching) – this stat I did not use in week one, but it’s a good one that should be used. The purpose of this stat is to determine how good a pitcher is based on what they control. And what they can control are HR, K, BB and HBP. In other words, they can’t always control balls that are hit into play. For instance, over the course of 100 balls hit to a SS, ‘fielder A’ who doesn’t have excellent range may putout 85 of them, while ‘fielder B’ with tremendous range may putout 95 of them. The pitcher has no control over who is playing behind them, so this statistic attempts to take the place of ERA in determining a pitcher’s value.
Percentage of inherited runners who score – this one is pretty self-explanatory, and for a team that relies on its bullpen as heavily as MSU does this is a very important stat.
Quality Starts – a minimum of six innings pitched with no more than three earned runs given up. For this staff it could probably be adjusted to two runs but I’ll leave the stat as it is.