The Hardball Times has published my latest research project, Introducing PrOPS. Using some of THT’s excellent hit-type data I develop a metric that predicts player hitting performance (OPS). The goal of this project was to separate out hitting luck from actual performance. You can think of Predicted OPS or PrOPS for hitters as similar to DIPS and Component ERAs for pitchers. If you’re interested, read the article for more information. This is just my first attempt to developing this metric, so please feel free to send me suggestions for improvement.
If you’re still confused as to what I’m trying to find with PrOPS, this quote from Moneyball captures the spirit .
[W]hat is a double? It really isn’t enough to say that a double is when a runner hits the ball and gets to second base without a fielder’s error…. There are lucky doubles and unlucky outs. To strip out the luck what you need, really, is something like a Platonic idea of a double.
So, I guess you could say I’m trying to measure a Platonic OPS. Maybe I should have called it PlOPS?… No.
Some interesting things I’ve noticed from looking at the PrOPS numbers:
- Jason Giambi hasn’t been as bad as his stats: PrOPS=.891 versus OPS=.736
- The A’s are due: Not one single player has an OPS >= PrOPS. They are all hitting better than their stats.
- Tony Pena maybe should have stuck around for some better times: Only 3 players have an OPS>PrOPS. The next manager may get some undeserved credit when the bounces even out.