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Monday, June 29, 2009
What do we make of CitiField?Posted by Derek Carty at 2:38pm
CitiField will make for an incredibly interesting case study at the end of the season. During the preseason, while some said it would play as a hitter's park, the raw data seemed to suggest that it would play as an extreme pitcher's park. ESPN's Tristan Cockcroft recently discussed the situation to this point in the season using data from our good friend Greg Rybarczyk of HitTracker. Tristan noted that Citi has robbed hitters of 36 balls that would have been homers in Shea Stadium.
Earlier today, however, our own Dave Studeman noted that the Mets have actually hit more homers at home this year, giving it a very simple home run park factor of 1.12 — meaning that it inflates home run totals. Accounting for the robbed balls, the park factor for Shea this year would be an insane 1.74. Shea usually played as a pitcher's park, so something is amiss here. I don't have much to contribute to the discussion at the moment, but I think this is very noteworthy and worth bringing to everyone's attention.
The moral of the story: don't jump to conclusions about Citi just yet. My guess is that it will eventually be declared a pitcher's park, and what we're seeing now will be some sample size shenanigans, but we really can't say anything for sure yet.
Derek Carty, 23, has also been published by NBC's Rotoworld, Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports, and USA Today. This season, he'll be contributing to FanDuel and will be linking to all of his work at DerekCarty.com. In his three years competing in expert leagues, he has won 2 titles with 4 top three finishes, including a LABR NL title in 2009, making him the youngest person to ever win a major expert league title. Derek is a proud graduate of the MLB Scouting Bureau's Scout Development Program and is a firm believer in the importance of combining stats and scouting. He welcomes questions via e-mail, Facebook, or Twitter.
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