Daily Notes: Three True Outcome Leaders and Laggards So Far

Table of Contents
Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes.

1. Three True Outcome Leaders and Laggards So Far
2. Today’s MLB.TV Free Game
3. Today’s Complete Schedule

Three True Outcome Leaders and Laggards So Far
Introduction
Recently in these pages, Cleveland corner infielder Mark Reynolds characterized his hitting approach for the benefit of David Laurila, saying, “I would say my swing is… a controlled train wreck. I just get it down and let it eat.” Will the comment win him a much deserved Pulitzer Prize for Joyous Remarks? It remains to be seen. What it reveals beyond his gift for the language, though, is the means by which he has consistently found himself among the league’s leaders both in strikeouts and home runs.

Below are the current leaders and laggards by all three true outcomes — both by overall percentage and then by averaged z-score (i.e. average standard deviations from the mean in all three categories). Numbers don’t include Wednesday games.

Three True Outcomes by Percentage: Leaders
Here are the three-true-outcome leaders by percentage among qualified batters:

Name Team PA HR BB K TTO TTO%
Chris Carter Astros 196 9 20 75 104 53.1%
Dan Uggla Braves 193 10 26 64 100 51.8%
Adam Dunn White Sox 188 12 19 66 97 51.6%
Justin Upton Braves 212 14 33 57 104 49.1%
Josh Willingham Twins 194 9 31 52 92 47.4%
Colby Rasmus Blue Jays 182 8 14 64 86 47.3%
Pedro Alvarez Pirates 172 10 13 57 80 46.5%
Mike Napoli Red Sox 222 8 21 74 103 46.4%
B.J. Upton Braves 176 4 16 60 80 45.5%
Brandon Moss Athletics 181 7 21 54 82 45.3%

Three True Outcomes by Percentage: Laggards
And here are the laggards by the same method:

Name Team PA HR BB K TTO TTO%
Jeff Keppinger White Sox 175 1 2 17 20 11.4%
Placido Polanco Marlins 196 0 10 14 24 12.2%
Marco Scutaro Giants 216 1 16 13 30 13.9%
Alcides Escobar Royals 216 3 8 22 33 15.3%
Juan Pierre Marlins 176 1 9 17 27 15.3%
Norichika Aoki Brewers 221 4 18 12 34 15.4%
Omar Infante Tigers 189 3 12 17 32 16.9%
Andrelton Simmons Braves 204 5 10 20 35 17.2%
Yadier Molina Cardinals 198 3 13 18 34 17.2%
Nick Markakis Orioles 239 5 18 19 42 17.6%

Three True Outcomes by Z-Score: Leaders
Because strikeouts naturally occur more frequently (the average among qualified batters is around 19%) and home runs less frequently (around 3%), considering only overall three-true-outcome percentage naturally skews the odds in favor of high-strikeout batters, even if they lag behind in the other two categories. Roy Halladay, for example, has 11 strikeouts in 11 plate appearances. One-hundred percent of his plate appearances have ended in one of the true outcomse. It wouldn’t be fair, though, to characterize him as a three-true-outcome hitter.

To adjust for that effect, we can look at a player’s true-outcome performance relative to the mean in each category by using z-scores (basically just standard deviations from the mean). Here are the top-10 qualified batters by that methodology:

Name Team HRz BBz Kz TTOz
Justin Upton Braves 2.1 2.2 1.3 1.8
Dan Uggla Braves 1.3 1.5 2.2 1.7
Adam Dunn White Sox 2.0 0.5 2.5 1.7
Chris Davis Orioles 2.8 1.5 0.6 1.6
Josh Willingham Twins 1.0 2.3 1.3 1.5
Chris Carter Astros 0.9 0.5 3.0 1.5
Jose Bautista Blue Jays 1.7 2.3 -0.2 1.3
Lucas Duda Mets 1.1 1.7 1.0 1.3
Mark Reynolds Indians 1.7 0.8 1.2 1.2
Bryce Harper Nationals 2.2 1.7 -0.3 1.2

Three True Outcomes by Z-Score: Laggards
And the laggards, as well:

Name Team HRz BBz Kz TTOz
Jeff Keppinger White Sox -1.4 -2.2 -1.3 -1.6
Placido Polanco Marlins -1.7 -1.0 -1.7 -1.5
Juan Pierre Marlins -1.4 -1.0 -1.3 -1.2
Salvador Perez Royals -1.3 -2.0 -0.4 -1.2
Marco Scutaro Giants -1.4 -0.3 -1.9 -1.2
Alcides Escobar Royals -0.9 -1.4 -1.3 -1.2
Ben Revere Phillies -1.7 -0.9 -0.9 -1.2
Alexei Ramirez White Sox -1.4 -1.0 -1.0 -1.1
Ruben Tejada Mets -1.7 -0.4 -1.2 -1.1
Ichiro Suzuki Yankees -1.1 -1.0 -1.1 -1.0

Notes
• In light of the above, it would probably be most accurate to say that Atlanta outfielder Justin Upton is currently the champion of the three-true-outcome hitters, having recorded home-run, walk, and strikeout rates on average about 1.8 standard deviations above the mean for qualified hitters.

• Both Jose Bautista and Bryce Harper actually hurt their claims to three-true-outcome glory by striking out too infrequently.

Carlos Peguero appears to be the hitter with the fewest plate appearances to have recorded one of each of the three true outcomes. In seven plate appearances, he has a home run, a walk, and two strikeouts.

Today’s MLB.TV Free Game
Boston at Philadelphia | 19:05 ET
Franklin Morales (76.1 IP, 101 xFIP- 0.8 WAR in 2012) faces Jonathan Pettibone (42.0 IP, 117 xFIP-, 0.0 WAR). The former, after recovering from multiple injuries, is making his 2013 debut. The left-hander sat at ca. 94 mph over his last four starts of 2012.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Philadelphia Radio.

Today’s Complete Schedule
Here’s the complete schedule for all of today’s games, with our very proprietary watchability (NERD) scores for each one. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and RotoWire. The average NERD Game Score for today is 5.1.

Note: the following table is entirely sortable.


Away SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Brandon McCarthy AZ 6 4 6 4 6 TEX Justin Grimm 14:05
Jake Peavy CHA 7 0 4 5 3 CHN Travis Wood 14:20
Felix Hernandez SEA 10 6 8 7 6 SD Andrew Cashner 15:40
A.J. Griffin OAK 5 6 4 4 2 SF Barry Zito 15:45
Franklin Morales* BOS 7 7 5 1 4 PHI Jonath. Pettibone 19:05
Homer Bailey CIN 8 6 7 9 6 CLE Scott Kazmir 19:05
Doug Fister DET 6 7 5 7 3 PIT Jeff Locke 19:05
Dillon Gee NYN 3 6 4 5 5 NYA Vidal Nuno* 19:05
Dan Haren WAS 5 2 4 9 1 BAL Freddy Garcia 19:05
Alex Colome* TB 9 7 6 1 5 MIA Ricky Nolasco 19:10
R.A. Dickey TOR 9 6 8 9 7 ATL Mike Minor 19:10
Kyle Lohse MIL 5 5 4 2 4 MIN P.J. Walters* 20:10
Jeremy Guthrie KC 2 6 5 2 8 STL Michael Wacha* 20:15
Lucas Harrell HOU 0 4 3 7 3 COL Juan Nicasio 20:40
Ted Lilly* LAN 4 2 3 5 2 LAA Jason Vargas 22:05

To learn how Pitcher and Team NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
To learn how Game NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
* = Fewer than 20 IP, NERD at discretion of very handsome author.



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Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
KJ
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KJ
3 years 1 day ago

The St. Louis game looks to be the most Wachable.

AW
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AW
3 years 1 day ago

Wacha wacha!

Voxx
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Voxx
3 years 1 day ago

Eh.

I love the Cardinals, and I think the kid will be a solid 4-5 type guy for years, in the Westbrookian vein, but I don’t see him coming out and setting the world on fire like Miller and Harvey have.

Terence
Member
Member
Terence
3 years 1 day ago

I know he’s not qualified, but can’t we include Rick Ankiel for fun? 56% !!

Benzedrine
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Benzedrine
3 years 1 day ago

Not all TTO are equal, TTO should be scaled according to the linear weights, to see who is being the best TTO hitter. BJ Upton has the least HR on the list but a lot of K’s.

Jay29
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Jay29
3 years 1 day ago

Looks like Brian Roberts leads everybody in most PA without any HR or K or BB with 12 PA. Francisco Liriano is second with 7 un-true PA.

Tom H.
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Tom H.
3 years 1 day ago

A general comment on Z-scores:

It looks like, when you compute the total TTO Z-score, you take the average of the 3 component Z-scores (for Ks,BBs and HRs). I think it’s most appropriate to take the average in quadrature (i.e., the RMS average), since Z-scores behave like standard deviations. I could be wrong in how you’re computing the TTO Z-score, so please correct me if that’s the case. In any case, it’s likely to be a small correction if the component Z-scores are comparable in magnitude.

Gregory
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Gregory
3 years 1 day ago

Z scores can be negative so quadrature wouldn’t be appropriate, it’d give Bautista a higher TTO even though his strikeouts are below average

Jake
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Jake
3 years 15 hours ago

Except it doesn’t really matter how it sorts out Harper and Bautista either, they aren’t TTO batters. They just happen to be so good at Two Outcome Hitting, that they sneak into the sort set. The model works fine for what it was trying to calculate, TTO players.

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