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  1. I really don’t understand the point of this series.

    Wow, a guy who has a really high BABIP will have an inflated wOBA. And reducing that BABIP reduces his wOBA. Shocking stuff.

    As even you wrote, Jack: “What does this tell us? Not much that we didn’t already know, really.”

    So why are we getting constant “Expanded Four Factors” updates? I believe Bill James said that if a new stat doesn’t surprise you, it’s worthless. I’d file EFF in that category.

    Comment by AJS — August 13, 2010 @ 8:05 pm

  2. I’ve always found this stuff laughable, at best. You’re right AJS, this doesn’t tell us anything. Doesn’t take many statistics to know that Hamilton is a great hitter who’s having a phenomenal/lucky season. Guess you could say it doesn’t take a rocket scientist? Or a statistician with his own website?

    Comment by John — August 13, 2010 @ 9:02 pm

  3. Another monster game tonight from Hamilton, in all phases of the game. Yes, his BABIP is nearly .400, but this is no flukey 150-plate appearances sample. He is now around 475 PA on the season. Many all-time great seasons have been fueled by abnormal BABIP increases.

    Comment by Phantom Stranger — August 14, 2010 @ 12:41 am

  4. I’m not sure if you’re saying that because he has that many plate appearances he won’t regress, or simply that he could continue to play this well because it’s been done before.

    In the first case I absolutely disagree; he will regress to his norm, and still be a phenomenal player. 450 PA is not enough to normalize BABIP. If I recall, there is no good number like there is for AVG, OBP, SLG, ect.

    Your second point (possibly) is mostly true. Insane BABIP have occurred over full seasons. However, the most likely occurrence is regression, and we should treat any projection with that in mind.

    Comment by TFINY — August 14, 2010 @ 1:11 am

  5. Put another way, when his hot streak is over and he goes into a slump, his numbers will drop.

    Comment by pft — August 14, 2010 @ 3:34 am

  6. I’m guessing it’s just intended to demonstrate where the increase in production is coming from and where we should expect him to end up when he comes back to Earth (which is still pretty good).

    Comment by ACWNS09 — August 14, 2010 @ 5:17 am

  7. Nobody’s mentioned his scoring from 2nd last night on ground ball to the second baseman.

    Hamilton also has quite a home-away split:
    H: .397/.442/.750, 1.192 OPS, .511 wOBA
    A: .325/.378/.509, .887 OPS, .380 wOBA

    So yes: Very good hitter + high BABIP + hitter’s park = monster season

    Comment by schmenkman — August 14, 2010 @ 7:37 am

  8. I didn’t know you were required to read this article. Is it by law, or is it some sort of situation from “Saw”?

    One might suggest the point of this article is to quantify the effect of a BABIP drop on wOBA. E.g.,
    AJ’s .422 BABIP = .342 ffwOBA. If his BABIP regressed to .350, he would have a .300 ffwOBA. .072 BABIP drop = .042 ffwOBA drop.
    JH’s .396 BABIP = .440 ffoWBA. If his BABIP regressed to .340, he would have a .383 ffwOBA. .056 BABIP drop = .057 ffwOBA drop.

    The graphs bear it out; the slope of Hamilton’s line is steeper than the slope of AJ’s. Re-reading the original article on AJ, though, it seems that a good part of his wOBA is from his SB component. They then adjust for that. I don’t see similar analyses here for Hamilton, so I’m going to ignore that, but it will go some of the way to explain the differences.

    So please understand that there are some of us out here who do appreciate these articles, because it helps us understand the game and its players a little better. Perhaps you should spend more time on ESPN.

    Comment by Travis L — August 14, 2010 @ 12:20 pm

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  12. He’s easily the MVP,,, neither the Yankees, nor the Red Sox can lay claim to that award this season. Lee could get the Cy Young Award, and oh yeah…. this article was basically stating the obvious. As long as Hamilton stays healthy without having a major slump, he’s the guy to beat.

    Comment by Kyle — August 15, 2010 @ 4:17 am

  13. It has been such a treat getting to watch him every day this year.

    His baserunning and defense are amazing. The game he played Friday night may have been the single best all-around performance I’ve ever seen on an MLB field.

    Comment by Bill — August 16, 2010 @ 9:44 am

  14. Why aren’t people allowed to read articles and comment? Why do some always respond to these post with a “if you don’t like it, leave” or “you don’t have to read it” or “if you don’t like it, don’t read it” (my favorite). Don’t be a Fascist. That’s boring.


    I do agree, with a couple of the comments, (but maybe not the tone).

    The article stated:

    [1] Hamilton has a really high BABIP.
    [2] He’s lowered his K-Rate
    [3] Hitting for the same power as career average.
    [4] High LD hitter, avoids FBs.
    [5] .343 career BABIP.

    Saying that Hamilton won’t sustain the highest BABIP in history is obvioius. I think it should be assummed that the FG readership is, at least, educated enough to assume that. If not, we need to change the focus of the articles.

    What I would personally like to see is something more than just “current stat v. career stat = analysis” thinking. I mean, duh.

    I would like to see the authors use spray charts to look for differences in trends and results. Hamilton seems to be going oppo gap a lot. A spray chart comparison or spray breakdown from 2001 v. career might be revealing (might not).

    If he’s both [1] lowering his KRate, and [2] Going to oppo (with the pitch), he may very well be doing some things that could lead to an increased BABIP for the near future (No, not a sustainable .400 BABIP). That would be interesting to me.

    If we keep looking at the same old things we always look at, we’ll only know what we currently know, and come to the same conclusions we already come to.

    But, really, the article stated that Hamilton’s BABIP is unsustainable, but even if/when it lowers, he’s still a good hitter and really good player. I think someone could post a “no s—” type comment and everyone could have a chuckle.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — August 16, 2010 @ 10:47 am

  15. My problem with that is the default assumption by FG is “Hamilton is just getting really lucky on BABIP”, rather than “Hamilton is hitting the crap out of the ball” (or as the players say “Seeing the ball well”).

    Don;t get me wrong, he may be getting lucky … assuming that a player can get lucky all season long. I mean aw shucks, uh-uh uh-uh, I’m the best masher in the AL this season.

    But he might also be doing a lot of things very well, and some very small differences at the plate can result in big differences in results. A millimeter here, a millisecond there …

    Just bothers me that luck is referred to so quickly, without exploring all the aspects.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — August 16, 2010 @ 10:54 am

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