Which Players Benefited Most from Triple-Crown Stats?Posted: September 6, 2011
This post was born out of a conversation randomly started by Ronit Shah on Twitter. He asked me:
“Is there a more interesting player page than this one? http://j.mp/pIN4hF #CoorsEffect”
The page links to Dante Bichette and I did a little research, eventually concluding that Bichette’s slash line was .360/.397/.642 at home and .268/.303/.431 away from 1993 to 1999. He also had a HR/PA of 0.06 at home versus only 0.03 away and hit 1.5 times more extra base hits at home than he did on the road.
Satchel Price decided to chime in, asking the question I asked in the title: “Has any player ever benefitted more from triple crown stats? Bad defense, rarely walked, played in Coors during the steroid era.”
I was interested to see what I could find on this, so I made up an analytical tool. I downloaded all player careers for all qualified batters from Fangraphs. Then I found the average and standard deviation for home runs, runs batted in and batting average for all of these players. Finally, I used the formula (player HR – avg HR)/(SD HR) to find some sort of variance (I use a similar method for fantasy baseball rankings). Then, I added up all of these variances for each player and graphed them versus fWAR. I have basically no idea what this is measuring, but it’s measuring…something. I deleted all players who have a variance below negative 4, leaving me with this:
Finally, based on the linear relationship, I found which players have the greatest discrepancy between expected fWAR based on triple crown stats and actual fWAR. Here are the top 10 players whose fWAR is much lower than it should be based on their triple crown stats:
Turns out Satchel was right. Obviously, this methodology is severely flawed; however, it worked out pretty well and was a fun exercise to do.