Figgins Got Lucky?

Continuing our series on how luck effected a player’s season, today I will look at Chone Figgins. I will once again refer you to Chris Dutton and Peter Bendix’s great work on xBABIP which will be referenced. Additionally, BABIP in these posts is defined (H-HR)/(PA-HR-K-BB-HBP).

In my league last year, Chone Figgins had 2B, 3B, and OF eligibility. He also racked up 34 stolen bases to go along with a decent .276 average and 72 runs. While none of these numbers are eye-popping he still was pretty valuable as a guy with a lot of flexibility in a down year. He only played 116 games, and a lot of his numbers were lower than the year before; but a fantasy owner still got pretty good value for him. They were lucky in a sense, as well, because even though his numbers were down he still benefited from pretty good luck on balls in play.

Figgins sported a robust .332 BABIP. Lower than his .389 BABIP the year before, he still outperformed what we’d expect his BABIP to be based on other factors. His xBABIP was a less seemly .295. Had he performed at the level that would be expected in a luck-neutral environment his slash line would have dropped from a paltry .276/.365/.318 to a ghastly .246/.339/.284. With the loss of 14 trips on base, he would lose a couple steals and RBIs coupled with a loss of 5 runs. He already only hit 16 XBH and the loss of two more totally kills his SLG (and as a result his OPS). He essentially becomes Wily Taveras. While that’s decent value it is not what you expect from a guy you take in the 5th round or so. This output seems to be what you would expect from Figgins going forward (maybe a little more but not much). Below is the full stat-line for his 2008 season and what it would have been with a neutral BABIP:

figgins-table

What say ye?



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Joel
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Joel

Should Figgins BABIP be higher than his xBABIP because of his speed and how he can reach on ground balls?

Sam
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Sam

xBABIP accounts for speed, so no.

Michael
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Michael

“Speed Score A comprehensive measure of speed, developed by Bill James. The speed score is the average of five individual formulas based on stolen base percentage, stolen base attempts, triples, runs per time on base and double plays.”

I’m not too familiar with this, but I don’t think he takes infield hits into consideration.

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