Wednesday, July 06, 2011

The Perceived Value


I have created a stat that ties in RBI, Runners LOB and OPS+ to find the "perceived value" a player might have, if only their batting was taken into account. It takes the more indicative OPS+ and combines it with a "clutch" statistic that I also made up, which is just the ratio of LOB to RBI. It takes the common public perception of coming through when it counts and combines it with the volatility of sample sizes. Anyways, I will highlight the top three and bottom three, and you will see what I mean (then I will link to the whole list)
TOP THREE
#1 Brian Dinkelman - 196 - Helped by his short tenure and having stranded only one runner through his entire tenure. See what I mean about small sample sizes?
#2 Jim Thome - 159.07 - Thome is aided both by his ability to mash (he has the highest OPS+) and his low strand rate. His is the 2nd best "clutch" on the team, behind Dinkelman, and highest of regulars.
#3 Jason Kubel - 107.14 - Remember how unstoppable he was early this season? That mashing and a little bit of luck elevated him to one of the top spots. Note that all three of these guys have missed significant time due to injury, and their sample sizes benefit them.
BOTTOM THREE
#20 Rene Rivera - 8.21 - He has only driven in 4 and has an OPS+ of 39. Not so good.
#19 Drew Butera - 11.64 - Butera has a lower OPS+ but has come through when it matters more regularly. Now would be a good time to note that Steve Holm couldn't be used for this study... no RBI and an OPS+ in the negatives.
#18 Luke Hughes - 19.80 - I think this might be the best instance where the perception of value is most evident. I don't know anyone who trusts him to come through in big spots, and that's because his clutch rate is 2nd worst on the team (better only than Rivera) but his OPS+ is 66. Still not good, but higher than the next 6 guys ahead of him on the list.
The entire list can be found at this Google doc page. I'll try to keep it updated through the season
As I noted, this only involved batting. For example, Thome's value is likely lower, because of his age and injury threat, or Ben Revere's is higher because of his smile and slick glove. The other thing I noticed when I was doing the research for this post... holy crap, what a terrible offense the Twins have had this year.

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