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April 12, 2007

Another Way To Look At Runs Allowed

Inspired by Random Curiosity and their Fun With Baseball Statistics: Plate Appearances & Runs study, I decided to look at all big league teams this season, to date, and their ratio of "Batters Faced" (BF) to runs allowed. Here are the results:


Two things jump out at me here: Boy, the A.L. really is a hitters league. And, the Yankees need to close that pitching gap between them and Boston. If not, all that extra offense in New York may not matter.

Posted by Steve Lombardi at April 12, 2007 11:42 AM


The Mariners have King Felix and he hasn't allowed a run all year. That's interesting that even with King Felix they are still 2nd to the bottom.

Posted by: Garcia [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 12, 2007 12:29 PM

Ain't nothing like extrapolating a season trend from the results of 8 games.

Posted by: Ben K. [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 12, 2007 12:40 PM

This ratio is very strange - Garcia got me thinking about it with his comment about King Felix.

The assumption in the above chart. and Steve's comment on it, is that high BF/RA is good, and low BF/RA is bad. I suppose that makes some sense - it either means you are getting more outs between runs (which means fewer runs per 27 outs), or you are pitching out of jams.

But there's some weirdness at the extremes too, and this weirdness could have effects at small sample sizes.

Suppose two teams both have both have the Yankees numbers given above after 8 games - 306/39, a ratio of 7.85. The next day, the pitcher for team A pitches a perfect game, adding 27 batters faced and no runs. The pitcher for team B also throws a shutout, but first he loads the bases and pitches out of the jam every inning - so he adds 54 batters faced.

Now team A has (306+27)/39 = 8.5
and team B has (306+54)/39 = 9.2

Team B suddenly looks better, even though team A's got a much, much better performance from its pitcher. So it's possible low-hit shutouts - exceptional performances like King Felix - can, at these small samples sizes, actually make a team look *worse* than it really is.

Posted by: carla [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 12, 2007 01:50 PM

Excellent point Carla. Probably makes better sense to use OUTS instead of BF for something like this.

Posted by: Steve Lombardi [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 13, 2007 10:36 AM