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Monday, January 31, 2005

PROBABLISTIC RUNS v.CF
Scroll down for the drill; here's the link to Pinto's post. I'll list the actual runs above average before the numbers prorated to a full season, just because that makes more sense to me.

And another thing: remember, this is just one season, so the below is not meant to represent a player's true talent level. Even if I believed 100% in this method, which I don't, I don't believe Steve Finley is as good a defender as Carlos Beltran, even if we grant the premise that they had defensive seasons of equal quality in 2004.

My hope is that doing this will make comparisons between Pinto's method and UZR, as well as the non-play-by-play metrics, easier. Pinto's giving us plays above expected, which we can convert to plays above average for any one year. So someone's 20 plays better than average, what does that mean? This is the attempt to figure that out.

I should also note that the conversions for outfielders are less exact than those of middle infielders. Practically every ball that gets by a middle infielder is a single. Outfielders, by contrast, allow hits of every stripe. In converting Pinto's outs to runs, we have to make the assumption that each outfielder prevents singles at the same rate he prevents doubles or triples. This assumption is obviously false. However, UZR is, to the best of my knowledge, the only semi-public system that gives an outfielder more credit for preventing a double than preventing a single.

When you're measuring range by a number like Pinto's or zone rating, you're basically measuring OBP Against for a defender. But to figure out runs, you also need SLG. For middle infielders, that's pretty simple, because they're damn near equal. For outfielders, not so much.

All of which is to say that while I'm pretty confident that the numbers I've posted for the middle infielders credibly convert Pinto's numbers to runs, I am far less confident that it will be credible for other positions.

Anyway, here we go with the estimates:

Player            Runs Above Average

Actual
Corey Patterson 23.2023
Andruw Jones 17.9346
Jay Payton 13.5458
Mark Kotsay 10.5679
Vernon Wells 10.3257
Wily Mo Pena 8.4441
Tike Redman 6.5660
Jim Edmonds 6.5610
Marquis Grissom 6.5509
Luis Matos 6.4773
Endy Chavez 5.7220
Mike Cameron 5.5610
Luis Terrero 5.2436
Torii Hunter 4.8814
Grady Sizemore 3.8561
Lew Ford 3.1165
Preston Wilson 2.5552
Scott Podsednik 1.2540
Laynce Nix 1.0132
Milton Bradley 0.7521
Rocco Baldelli 0.6342
Coco Crisp 0.6181
Nook P Logan 0.5977
Kenny Lofton -1.4825
Craig Biggio -1.8034
Juan Pierre -1.9508
Marlon Byrd -2.3406
Jason Michaels -2.9727
Aaron Rowand -5.3107
Johnny Damon -5.3634
Carlos Beltran -5.4549
Steve Finley -5.7894
Jeromy Burnitz -6.0519
Chone Figgins -7.7018
David DeJesus -11.2500
Alex Sanchez -12.5832
Ken Griffey Jr. -15.4196
Randy Winn -16.9601
Garret Anderson -18.7756
Bernie Williams -24.9356


Player            Runs Above Average

per 4000 BIP
Wily Mo Pena 27.8975
Corey Patterson 24.2383
Jay Payton 17.2400
Andruw Jones 17.2343
Grady Sizemore 14.9376
Luis Terrero 14.5414
Lew Ford 12.1327
Vernon Wells 11.7733
Mark Kotsay 11.1039
Luis Matos 10.7882
Tike Redman 7.2156
Preston Wilson 7.1436
Jim Edmonds 7.0270
Endy Chavez 6.9334
Marquis Grissom 6.9037
Mike Cameron 5.9033
Torii Hunter 5.8416
Nook P Logan 2.0338
Laynce Nix 1.4788
Milton Bradley 1.2868
Scott Podsednik 1.2095
Coco Crisp 1.0063
Rocco Baldelli 0.7800
Juan Pierre -1.8269
Kenny Lofton -3.5727
Marlon Byrd -4.1219
Craig Biggio -4.4031
Carlos Beltran -5.1461
Steve Finley -5.5767
Johnny Damon -5.6515
Aaron Rowand -6.8090
Jason Michaels -11.8849
Jeromy Burnitz -14.9184
David DeJesus -19.0537
Randy Winn -20.5267
Alex Sanchez -24.1691
Ken Griffey Jr. -29.6898
Chone Figgins -29.7593
Garret Anderson -31.3781
Bernie Williams -38.1217
The suckage of the Angel "centerfielders" of Anaheim should come as no surprise. And we do have the pleasing result of having both Andruw Jones and Jim Edmonds coming out pretty well; Zone Rating thinks Edmonds is pretty good and hates Jones, where UZR loves Jones and thinks Edmonds is terrible. So that seems to make sense.

There are surprises, though. Let's compare to UZR again:

Player    PMR    UZR    Difference

Winn -17 +22 39
Griffey -15 -52 37
Edmonds + 7 -24 31
Grissom + 7 -19 26
Nix + 1 -23 24
Finley - 6 -28 22
Payton +13 +34 21
Rowand - 5 +16 21
Bernie -25 -44 19
Chavez + 6 +22 16
Burnitz - 6 -22 16
Baldelli + 1 -15 16
Redman + 7 +20 13
Patterson +23 +32 11
Hunter + 5 +16 11
Kotsay +11 + 9 2
Garret -19 -17 2
As you can see, there are some huge, huge differences here. I'm sure part of that is because of what I discussed up top: not all outfielders prevent the same type of hits equally. But that can't be the only explanation.

(By the way, anyone have any ideas on how Ken Griffey Jr. was -52 runs in 78 games? That's what UZR is, and that just seems crazy. -52 runs!)

Comments:
Did you see Griffey play centerfield last season? Doesn't seem so crazy to me...
 
Perhaps they had him confused with the Black Knight. Or maybe I was playing center last year and completely forgot about it.
 
The -52 runs (as all the other UZR numbers you are using) were per 150 games. His actual UZR runs would have been ~-27.
 
Ricahrd, did you? Have you seen Griffey play ceterfield this season? Obviously neither. It has mostly to do with the pitching staff/batting practice they throw out there on a daily basis.
 
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