THT Graphical Report—with more graphs!

Time for the latest Hardball Times Graphical Report, which you can download for free. In this latest Graphical Report, we capture some of the dynamics that have recently been fueling teams like the Rays, Twins, Giants and (gulp) Astros. And it also raises the vital question: what has happened to the Kansas City gloves?

I’ve also added a couple of graphs. Several years ago, in an article called How Teams Score: A Picturebook, I rolled out some graphs that highlighted the offensive strengths and weaknesses of each team. I’ve always liked those graphs, but never managed to put them into production.

Now they’re included in the Graphical Report. For a sneak preview, take a gander at the American League:


Considering the Yankees, see how they’ve managed to get runners into scoring position more often than any team except Tampa Bay? That’s the result of some mighty good hitting (and walking), but not necessarily home runs. They’ve also batted well with runners in scoring position—about as well as you’d expect given their prowess at getting runners in scoring position (that’s the dotted gray line). And the Yankees hit home runs, which drives the size of the circle around their triangle.

Only the circles of the Red Sox and Blue Jays are larger (because they’ve hit more home runs) but those two teams haven’t gotten runners into scoring position nearly as often as the Yankees have. In fact, the Blue Jays are last in the league at plate appearances with runners in scoring position.

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  1. Detroit Michael said...

    Thanks, Dave.

    I’m still hoping to see occasionally the HBT report that showed to what extent good or bad performance on balls in play were due to defense and to what extent it was due to a harder or easier distribution of balls in play (i.e. the pitcher / batter combinations).  I liked using those numbers in years past and don’t know where else to find them.

  2. kds said...

    Lots of great info in the THT Graphical Report.

    However, the one I like the least is the graph shown above with PA w/RISP, BA w/RISP and HR.

    1)  There seems to be a weak correlation between PA w/RISP and BA w/RISP.  I think that this is because both correlate, (probably more strongly), with BA, so we’re not getting much additional info here.

    2)  What we’re really interested in is runs, and they do not show up on the graph.

    3)  BA is a poor measure, (lower correlation with runs).  Something like wOBA would be better.

  3. Dave Studeman said...

    Thanks, Michael.  We don’t purchase that data from BIS anymore, so I can’t run it.  I’m not sure where to find equivalent data.

    kds, you’re wrong about that graph.  A few points:

    - Of course there is a weak correlation between the x and y axes.  That’s the point of the gray line.  It’s the variances from the line that tell you a lot.

    - You can find runs scored in other places in the Report.  The point of the graph is to show you *how* teams score their runs.

    - BA is a near-perfect measure with RISP.  With a runner on second or third, a single is just about as good as a double or triple.  wOBA doesn’t provide relevant info, particularly since we’re collecting home run info elsewhere on the graph and walks only have an impact if the bases are loaded.  Arguably, doubles and triples matter more for getting runners in scoring position, which captured in the x axis.

    Bottom line, the R squared between these three factors and run scoring is over 0.9.  That’s higher than the R squared I get from OBP and ISO vs. runs scored.

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