Archive for Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day: Putting Luis Valbuena’s Strong Spring Into Perspective

by Ray Kuhn

Did You Know:
Luis Valbuena appears poised to be a contributor this season based on his spring performance. Through action on Wednesday, the third baseman is hitting .429 in 35 at bats with 2 HR, 8 RBI and five doubles.

I know we need to take Spring Training statistics with a grain of salt, but this season Baseball Reference has provided us with a handy tool to evaluate the competition faced. Valbuena’s competition grades out to be 8.8 out of 10 with 8 being Triple-A level and 10 being major league level.

While the batting average is certainly a good thing, we know that he is not going to keep that up once the season starts. Last season, in what was Valbuena’s first full body of work (478 at bats), he hit just .249 with a .294 BABIP. Both were career highs and I wouldn’t expect to see the 29-year old to hit much higher than .250 this season. Read more

Stat of the Day: Will Wily Peralta’s Groundballs Lead To Success In 2015?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Did You Know:
In 8.1 innings this spring Wily Peralta has recorded 17 outs on the ground and 0 outs in the air.


Peralta has always been an intriguing pitcher, aside from his 17 wins a year ago.  He showed the trio of statistics that fantasy owners look for from a starting pitcher, though that often gets overshadowed by the W:

  • Strikeouts – 6.98 K/9
  • Control – 2.76 BB/9
  • Groundballs – 53.6%

The groundouts vs. fly outs are extremely important, as his biggest issue a year ago was the long ball (1.04 HR/9).  That was even worse at home, as we would expect, with a 1.27 HR/9. Read more

Stat of the Day: Why Francisco Liriano’s Strikeout Rate Makes Him A Player To Target

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Did you know:
Among pitchers with at least 250 IP over the past two seasons, Francisco Liriano leads the league with a 13.4% SwStr% (Clayton Kershaw is second at 12.6%)

Of course the question with Liriano isn’t his strikeout ability, with K/9 of 9.11 and 9.70 the past two seasons. The problem is his control, which regressed last season to  a 4.49 BB/9. That said he improved to 4.08 in the second half and posted a 3.52 in 2013.

Couple those types of numbers with pitching in the NL and a groundball rate north of 50%? The potential is there to be fantasy gold. Read more

Stat of the Day: What Happened To Doug Fister’s Strikeouts In 2014?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Did You Know:
Among qualified pitchers Doug Fister owned the fifth worst K/9 in 2014:

1. Mark Buehrle – 5.30
2t. Scott Feldman – 5.34
2t. Henderson Alvarez – 5.34
4. Kyle Gibson – 5.37
5. Doug Fister – 5.38

Its a bit of an oddity, as strikeouts generally rise with a move to the NL. Instead, after posting marks of 6.07, 7.63 and 6.86 the previous three seasons we got this bitter disappointment.

So what happened? While he was getting opponents to chase outside the strike zone (35.3% O-Swing%), he wasn’t getting many swings and misses (6.1% SwStr%). He was throwing his fastball more than he had been in recent seasons, at 63.7%, and cut back significantly on his curveball (8.8%, after using it 20.2% in 2013). Read more

Stat of the Day: Was Prince Fielder’s Power Already On The Decline?

by Ray Kuhn

Did You Know:
Prince Fielder’s production was already on a downward slope prior last season’s disappointment. Let’s take a look at his power metrics from 2011 through 2013.

  • 2011: 170 Power Index; 145 Expected Power; 22% HR/FB; 140 Hard Contact
  • 2012: 126 PX; 128 xPX; 18% HR/FB; 132 HctX
  • 2013: 119 PX; 126 xPX; 14% HR/FB; 116 HctX

Looking at the above metrics, it should not come as a surprise to anyone that Fielder’s home run totals fell in those seasons from 38 to 30 to 25.  Yes, it is easy to chalk up Fielder’s brutal showing (.247, 3 HR, 19 RBI in 150 at bats) to his neck injury that led to season ending surgery, but it appears there is more to the story. The easy response here is to bank on a bounce back from Fielder, and while that is not entirely wrong it is also misguided.

Read more

Stat of the Day: Can Freddie Freeman Replicate His Elite Line Drive Rate?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Did You Know:
In 2014 there were three players who posted a line drive rate of at least 28.0%:

  • Freddie Freeman – 31.0%
  • Nick Castellanos – 28.5%
  • Daniel Murphy – 28.2%

Over the prior ten seasons there had only been two players who posted a season with a line drive rate of at least 28%:

  • Placido Polanco (2005) – 28.2%
  • James Loney (2013) – 29.8%

The last time a player posted a line drive rate of at least 30% was in 2003, when both Mark Loretta (30.7%) and Brian Roberts (30.2%) achieved the feat. Read more