Sunday, April 17, 2011

Grounders and Pop Ups

It's still a bit early for any 2011 statistic to mean very much in the grand scheme of things, but it can be insightful to get a head start looking at certain statistics that aren't printed in The Sporting News. In this case, we'll compare 2011 rate stats to the rate stats of combined 2010 and 2011 data.

As we've discussed in the past, in an ideal world, it's best to get pitchers who strike out a lot of batters and walk very few. In addition, pitchers who induce ground balls and popups are preferred to fly ball pitchers.

2011 GB%+IFFB% Leaders
Yovani Gallardo, Brewers 82.4%
Charlie Morton, Pirates 82%
Tim Lincecum, Giants 75.9%
Roy Oswalt, Phillies 75.8%
Tim Stauffer, Padres 75%
Zach Britton, Orioles 74.5%
Matt Harrison, Rangers 74.2%
Brett Anderson, Athletics 73.6%
Francisco Liriano, Twins 73.2%
Jaime Garcia, Cardinals 72.9%

2010-11 GB%+IFFB% Leaders
Blaine Boyer, Mets 77.2%
Sean Green, Brewers 73.4%
Ryan Webb, Marlins 70%
Jamey Wright, Mariners 69.5%
Randy Choate, Marlins 68.5%
Bobby Cassevah, Angels 68.4%
Jordan Walden, Angels 67.1%
Joe Martinez*, Indians 66.4%
Javier Lopez, Giants 66.2%
Takashi Saito, Brewers 64.6%
Todd Coffey, Nationals 63.5%

*Martinez is currently pitching out of the bullpen for the Triple-A Columbus Clippers and waiting for a call-up to the Indians. His numbers are only from the 2010 season.

If a player can combine good strikeout ability with high numbers in the categories above, there will be a lot of clean innings. Maybe we'll take a look at batted ball data through the lens of Line Drive %, Fly Ball %, and Homerun/Flyball %. That could be a good one to see who's best at it and who's worst.

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