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Pick Your Braves Outfield Option

Braves center fielder Michael Bourn is rumored to want $100m this off season and is likely not a part of the Braves future. Photo Credit: Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE

I’ve written a couple of posts with generalities about Braves options for the outfield next season and thought I’d look at some folks specifically being talked about by fans to fill the holes in the lineup.  In order to have a little fun and find out what fans think, I thought a blind comparison would be an interesting way to start.  Numbers without names erase a lot of prejudices and allow an clear statistical evaluation. Now I’m the first to say that numbers aren’t everything and many – like UZR – have little predictive value.  I know that everyone can’t be nor do they want to be wrapped up in statistics. . . most folks have a life to lead. . .  I had one once I recall.  Anyway you will hear more of these numbers used (correctly and incorrectly I might add) in stories and on TV so a little knowledge can be helpful.  It’s also a great way to get to know your team better and understand why some things that seem obvious to you aren’t so obvious when you get past anecdotal information.  With that in mind I try to use the most meaningful numbers relative to what I’m trying to learn when looking at a player. You may want to use others and I’m always open to discussion of those I omit. Lets start in what might be called The Bourn Vacancy; center field.

Option A or B or. . .

With word on the street that Bourn’s asking for a $100M contract Braves fans are pondering a replacement in center field. While it would be nice if the CF were also a leadoff man it doesn’t have to be the case. I’ve put together a list of players mentioned or potentially available that I’ve heard rumors about, read articles on or generally might be an option because their team may need what we have to trade.The list is in no specific order, not alphabetical or sorted in any special way so there are no clues in that. You could I suppose dig thorough the databases and figure out who each is but that would defeat the purpose of a blind résumé now wouldn’t it.

I purposely haven’t included home runs or stolen bases. Instead I will say that all of these gentlemen have stolen bases successfully at some point and are not beyond stealing more. In order to address power I included the isolated power stat (ISO) as CFs are not typically home run monsters anyway and it gives a  relatively complete gauge of power.  The ground ball – fly ball ratio and hit type percentages will give you a clue about the kind of hitters these gentlemen are so that too may help in that area.  I’ve included Bourn’s numbers last year as a basis for comparison. So, have a look and vote.

Michael Bourn:

AB R BB SO AVG BABIP OBP SLG ISO LD GB FB IFFB Contact
624 96 70 155 .274 .349 .348 .391 .117 22% 54% 25% 2% 78%

The leaders in certain categories are marked in green , second place in orange and third in blue. All percentages are rounded off due to space limits.

Your Options

plyr AB R BB SO AVG BABIP OBP SLG ISO LD GB FB IFFB Contact
A 605 95 48 97 .288 .329 .338 .440 .152 23% 42% 35% 10% 88%
B 506 76 61 89 .263 .301 .350 .403 .140 24% 41% 36% 10% 86%
C 516 71 47 62 .283 .315 .342 .395 .112 21% 54% 24% 10% 93%
D 455 68 45 64 .259 .280 .325 .418 .158 20% 44% 36% 11% 86%
E 573 79 45 169 .246 .294 .298 .454 .208 19% 40% 41% 10% 71%
F 552 63 53 56 .288 .310 .348 .402 .114 23% 49% 29% 6% 92%
G 595 72 53 80 .255 .278 .321 .383 .128 18% 46% 36% 15% 87%
H 511 70 29 54 .294 .325 .333 .342 .049 19% 67% 15% 2% 93%

That should be sufficient data to make a guess. Here are a couple of definitions in case you aren’t familiar with some of the stats used.

UPDATE:

I was asked to provide multiple years of data and I’m happy to do that. Below is the last three years -2010 thru 2012 – for the payers listed.  Player H played less than 3 full years so I extrapolated his raw data (marked with an * ) in order to give a realistic picture of three full years. The percentage data is real data however as the percentages would theoretically be the same for the missing portion of the three years. In any event the data is a realistic look t the player projection.

 

Plyr AB R BB SO AVG BABIP OBP SLG ISO LD GB FB IFFB Contact
A 1662 243 136 256 .281 .317 .334 .415 .134 22.0% 38.1% 40.0% 9.4% 88.2%
B 1300 182 140 222 .270 .308 .325 .409 .139 21.5% 43.5% 34.9% 8.6% 86.8%
C 1429 193 134 172 .271 .302 .334 .367 .097 19.8% 54.1% 26.2% 7.1% 92.1%
D 1276 188 116 178 .266 .288 .324 .406 .140 21.0% 43.9% 35.1% 9.6% 86.6%
E 1669 250 183 494 .242 .299 .317 .436 .194 17.9% 40.3% 41.8% 9.3% 73.6%
F 1300 164 109 170 .271 .299 .326 .378 .108 21.3% 48.5% 30.3% 8.5% 91.4%
G 1701 251 161 222 .264 .280 .334 .432 .168 17.0% 44.6% 38.4% 14.0% 86.8%
H 2037* 243* 141* 192* .278 .308 .319 .323 .044 19.1% 67.7% 13.3% 2.6% 92.2%

 

Isolated Power (ISO) is a measure of a hitter’s raw power. Or, to look at it another way, it measures how good a player is at hitting for extra bases.

Batting Average on Balls In Play  BAbip tells us how many hits a player is getting when the ball is put in play. Oddly enough home runs are not in play but that’s another discussion.

Contact % is simply that, how often does a hitter make contact.

Line Drive (LD), Ground ball (GB), Fly Ball (FB) and Infield Fly Ball (IFFB) percentages tell you the trajectory of balls in play.

Which play from the table shown would be your blind choice to play center for the Braves next year?

  • Player F (29%, 33 Votes)
  • Player A (20%, 23 Votes)
  • Player C (18%, 21 Votes)
  • Player H (11%, 12 Votes)
  • Player G (7%, 8 Votes)
  • Player E (6%, 7 Votes)
  • Player B (5%, 6 Votes)
  • Player D (4%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 114

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That’s A Wrap

The poll will close at noon EST Monday and I’ll post the names that go with the numbers and some thought on them. Please vote and tell your friends to vote.  There is no right or wrong of course, just opinion and ideas. I’m always looking for subjects for my posts that answer readers needs so drop us a note or contact me @Fredeowens on Twitter with those ideas or any questions you may have.

Topics: Atlanta Braves

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  • Lee Trocinski

    This is basically asking everyone who had the best 2012 season. It would be interesting to post career rates, or at least their last 3 seasons combined, to go along with just last year’s stats. That would help answer the real question.

    • fireboss

      Updated as requested. The last three years where available and extrapolated raw data for a portion of one year for one player. Best I can do on short notice.
      Fred

      • Lee Trocinski

        I didn’t expect any update, so I’m impressed. Definitely would have changed my answer to Player G.

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