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braves-and-mlb-offensive-leaders | July | 2005 Articles

2005 Archives

Braves and MLB Offensive Leaders

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I know you're curious. Here's how this works: MLB bests and worsts require 250 plate appearances to qualify, but Braves hitters only require 100 plate appearances to be on the list. This allows me to compare Braves hitters with significant numbers of plate appearances even if they don't qualify for league leaderboards, while also listing MLB bests and worsts on the same list among players who do (or almost) qualify.
AVG .369 Derrek Lee .309 Peter Orr .287 Wilson Betemit .286 Marcus Giles .278 Andruw Jones .277 MLB Average .276 Julio Franco .270 Chipper Jones .265 Adam LaRoche .261 Johnny Estrada .260 Rafael Furcal .259 Braves Team .244 Brian Jordan .238 Ryan Langerhans .236 Kelly Johnson .211 Raul Mondesi .186 Christian Guzman OBP .446 Derrek Lee .398 Chipper Jones .365 Marcus Giles .360 Andruw Jones .345 Julio Franco .345 Peter Orr .344 MLB Average .344 Wilson Betemit .330 Kelly Johnson .326 Braves Team .322 Ryan Langerhans .320 Adam LaRoche .318 Rafael Furcal .308 Johnny Estrada .292 Brian Jordan .271 Raul Mondesi .226 Christian Guzman SLG .733 Derrek Lee .601 Andruw Jones .500 Chipper Jones .474 Julio Franco .473 Adam LaRoche .468 Wilson Betemit .447 MLB Average .437 Marcus Giles .427 Braves Team .409 Peter Orr .408 Kelly Johnson .398 Ryan Langerhans .392 Rafael Furcal .371 Johnny Estrada .359 Raul Mondesi .335 Brian Jordan .264 Tony Womack
OPS 1.180 Derrek Lee .960 Andruw Jones .898 Chipper Jones .819 Julio Franco .812 Wilson Betemit .801 Marcus Giles .793 Adam LaRoche .791 MLB Average .754 Peter Orr .753 Braves Team .738 Kelly Johnson .720 Ryan Langerhans .710 Rafael Furcal .680 Johnny Estrada .630 Raul Mondesi .627 Brian Jordan .501 Christian Guzman Contact .951 Placido Polanco .898 Johnny Estrada .885 Peter Orr .872 Rafael Furcal .835 Adam LaRoche .833 MLB Average .822 Chipper Jones .821 Andruw Jones .820 Brian Jordan .809 Braves Team .789 Marcus Giles .785 Wilson Betemit .773 Julio Franco .762 Ryan Langerhans .755 Raul Mondesi .729 Kelly Johnson .619 Mark Bellhorn RC/27 13.77 Derrek Lee 7.78 Andruw Jones 7.44 Chipper Jones 5.57 Marcus Giles 5.55 Julio Franco 5.19 Adam LaRoche 5.15 Wilson Betemit 5.14 MLB Average 4.70 Peter Orr 4.54 Braves Team 4.33 Rafael Furcal 4.25 Kelly Johnson 4.18 Ryan Langerhans 3.56 Johnny Estrada 3.04 Brian Jordan 2.93 Raul Mondesi 1.60 Christian Guzman
  What is Contact Percentage? "Contact" is simply the percentage of plate appearances in which the batter puts the ball in play without counting walks or interferences for or against them. The simplest formula is:     Contact Percentage = 1 - ( K/(AB+SF+SH) ) You can also calculate the total number of balls put in play ( BIP = AB+SF+SH-K ), and divide that total by the same numerator above to get the exact same percentage:     Contact Percentage = BIP/(AB+SF+SH) Notice that the denominator is simply AB+SF+SH, which is equal to TPA-BB-HBP-CI. The reason is when a player reaches base on a walk, hit-by-pitch, or catcher's interference, his ability to make contact is not actually tested during that plate appearances, so it should not count for nor against him. However, sacrifices should certainly count in a player's favor (and be included in the denominator). The only thing that really counts against a player's contact percentage is a strikeout. I can think of one obvious situation that can slightly corrupt this percentage: making contact but striking out on a two-strike foul bunt. However, I believe a player should be able to bunt the ball fairly in three attempts or be penalized for it, so I do not believe strikeouts in those situations should count as making contact at all, and therefore I like the purpose of this statistic.   What is RC/27? Over the years, various formulas for a player's "Runs Created" have been derived and tested, and this is just my version. My formula actually takes the mean of two different RC values (which I call RC1 and RC2). The first is probably more well known, but the second is quite similar, and so far I've found that averaging the two together comes closer to estimating an entire team's quantity of runs scored than either number does by itself. But before deriving them, let's derive a couple of useful sum totals:     OB = H+BB+HBP, OB/TPA = OBP     TB = H+2B+2*3B+3*HR, TB/AB = SLG     aTB = TB+BB+HBP+SB-2*CS aTB is Adjusted or Actual Total bases and is one of my creations. It is a sum total that isn't very useful in the short run, but over the length of an entire season or career, the players with the highest total aTB are invariably the best over that stretch of time. Maybe their rate stats like OPS don't compare with the best of the best, but sum totals like aTB also consider playing time as a bonus. And once you have aTB, you can calculate RC2:     RC1 = OB*TB/TPA or OBP*SLG*TPA     RC2 = aTB2/(2*TPA)     RC = (RC1+RC2)/2 After using whichever Runs Created statistic you prefer (either variation of RC1 seems most common), multiply it by the number of outs in a game (27), and then divide by the total number of outs the player actually created. Outs Created can be derived in a number of ways, but my personal favorite is to add at-bats, sacrifices, and failed steal attempts and subtracting hits. (I do not add double and triple plays to individual stats, but I do add them to team and league stats.)     Outs = SF+SH+CS+AB-H     RC/27 = 27*RC/Outs RC/27 is not an incredibly useful statistic except to measure a player's potential value. In theory, it is the number of runs a team would score if all nine positions in its lineup were occupied by a player who hits and runs like the player in question. In other words, a lineup with nine batter-runners exactly like Andruw Jones in 2005 would score almost eight runs per game (in theory).   But X PLAYER is better than these numbers show! Obviously, these numbers are not sabermetrically perfect, and any statistic taken out of context can be quite misleading, since no player's value (or lack thereof) can be reduced to a single number. However, any players consistently found near the top of several of these lists are undoubtedly valuable players (Andruw Jones, Chipper Jones). Likewise, any players who consistently are found near the bottom of these lists likely should be replaced (Brian Jordan) if they haven't been already (Raul Mondesi). Finally, I offer one last bit of advice when comparing players: always consider their worth compared to other players at their position, and not just other players on the team or around the league at large.

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