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John Dewan's Stat of the Week

Who’s Hot and Who’s Not…According to Bill James

The first month of the MLB season is already behind us, and as temperatures are heating up across the country, I am reminded of one of my favorite Stats of the Week to write each year: who’s hot and who’s not. Several years ago, Bill James developed a system to measure how hot players [...]

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Why Shifting Does Work

Renowned Baseball Prospectus researcher Russell Carleton wrote an interesting article earlier this week on Baseball Prospectus that utilized the Baseball Info Solutions shifts data made available by the great folks at FanGraphs and questioned whether defensive shifts are actually an effective technique. However, there are a couple of small flaws in the technique that [...]

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How Good Have the Cubs Been So Far?

One of our readers, Andrew Berman, shared some research he did where he looked into the best starts to the regular season in major league history, specifically referencing the Chicago Cubs and their 20-game tear to open up 2016. Andrew’s research references Bill James’ Pythagorean Winning Percentage, which uses a team's runs scored and runs allowed to estimate their expected [...]

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The Best and Worst Defensive Teams Thus Far

As we inch closer to the second month of the season, defensive performance has begun taking form across the league. Several unexpected teams have flashed some leather in the early going, which has helped propel them to the top of their respective divisions.Best Defensive Teams as of April 22TeamRuns SavedChicago Cubs17Los Angeles Dodgers16St. Louis Cardinals15Houston [...]

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Early Season Shift Leaders

While the 2016 season is still quite young, it never hurts to get an early perspective of how team-wide and league-wide trends are developing. When diving into the early-season defensive positioning numbers, several developments relative to shifting strike us as noteworthy. MLB Shifts by Season 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 [...]

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How Baserunners Alter the Way Teams Shift

As defensive shifts continue to increase across baseball, more and more teams are reaping the benefits of improved run prevention. But how do baserunners affect the way teams shift?Whether it’s driven by holding runners on, playing at double-play depth, or other situational alignments, teams in aggregate shift less often with more runners on. In the table below, shift percentage represents how [...]

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Revisiting the Upper Limits of Shifting

Last March, Baseball Info Solutions devoted a Stat of the Week article to determining the upper limits of defensive shifts. Today we’re going to revisit that analysis.This offseason, BIS made modifications to their shifting software BIS-D. The software used to recommend shifting left-handed hitters who pull grounders and short liners at least 80 percent of [...]

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The Best Projected Defensive Infield and Outfield

With Spring Training working its way into full swing, it’s time to break down our team Defensive Runs Saved projections for the 2016 season.The Baltimore Orioles own this year’s best defensive infield projection at 27 runs saved. Baltimore Orioles Infield Pos Player 2016 Proj DRS 2015 DRS [...]

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Who Will Be The 2016 Statistical Leaders?

It is March 1. Today marks the beginning of Spring Training games, and we are just over a month away from Opening Day. With the majority of the offseason moves now behind us, we’ve just completed our annual spring update of the Bill James Projections. The full updates are now available for [...]

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The Most Improved Pitch Framers

When Baseball Info Solutions developed its pitch-framing component Strike Zone Runs Saved, we discovered that it was one of the most consistent and important aspects of catcher defense. Catchers who are good at drawing extra strike calls because of their framing tend to stay good from year to year. For example, Jonathan Lucroy [...]

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