## Comparing offensive sabermetrics among World Series teams

By Patrick Gordon, Managing Editor

PBR - High expectations surround the Phillies entering the 2010 season.

To further understand these expectations the Philadelphia Baseball Review studied various historical statistics and will use various sabermetrical formulas during the season to compare the current club to the seven in franchise history that reached the World Series (1915, 1950, 1980, 1983, 1993, 2008, 2009).

This post refers to part one (the offense) of the three-part formula.
___________________________

For the study I limited my focus to the seven Phillies teams that have reached the World Series and examined their offensive output.

CLUB     AB   HR  RBI    TB   SB    R   BB
1915   4916   58  486  1670  121  589  460
1950   5426  125  673  2150   33  722  535
1980   5625  117  674  2248  140  728  472
1983   5426  125  649  2026  143  696  640
1993   5685  156  811  2422   91  877  665
2008   5509  214  762  2412  136  799  586
2009   5578  224  788  2493  119  820  589

I then examined the National League averages for the same categories during those seven seasons.

CLUB     AB   HR  RBI    TB   SB    R   BB
1915   5111   28  474  1689  149  565  408
1950   5302  138  671  2126   47  720  567
1980   5523  104  613  2068  153  728  472
1983   5476  117  621  2058  149  666  535
1993   5535  140  681  2208  122  728  507
2008   5537  163  700  2286   93  734  551
2009   5493  155  683  2245   89  718  558

The sabermetric statistics I used were Total Power Quotient (TPQ), Power Speed-Number (PSN), and Hoban Effectiveness Quotient for Offense (HEQ-O).

TPQ is a formula designed to sum up three traditional power measures: home runs, total bases and runs batted in. Once summed the number is divided by the number of at bats. Thus, TPQ = (HR+TB+RBI) / AB.

PSN is a formula designed to rate the ability of a player or club to hit home runs and steal bases. The formula is PSN = (2 x (HR+SB)) / HR + SB.

HEQ-O is a formula designed to evaluate the sustained effectiveness of a player or club. The formula HEQ-O is populated as TB + R + RBI + SB + .5 X BB.

In addition to finding the TPQ, PSN, and HEQ-O for the seven clubs involved, I also computed the formulas to find the respective year league average.

CLUB   TPQ     PSN   HEQ-O   lgTPQ   lgPSN   lgHEQ-O
1915 .4504   78.41  3096.0   .4287   47.14    3081.0
1950 .5433   52.15  3845.5   .5536   70.12    3847.5
1980 .5403  127.47  4026.0   .5043  123.83    3736.5
1983 .5160  133.39  3834.0   .5106  131.08    3761.5
1993 .5961  114.95  4533.5   .5472  130.38    3992.5
2008 .6150  166.31  4402.0   .5687  118.43    4088.5
2009 .6284  155.43  4514.5   .5613  113.07    4014.0

Normalization and Relativity

The above numbers are raw. Though they indicate how a club performed during a given year, as is, they can't be compared. For example, though the '15 Phillies have a PSN nearly 77 points less than the '09 Phillies, it doesn't mean the '09 club was that much better in the given statistic. To truly gain an understanding of the statistics they must be placed in context. This is where normalization becomes important.

Normalization allows for a clearer understanding of a statistical analysis as it offers a way to interpret degree of difficulty. Totals that led the major leagues in 1915 are vastly different than those that lead the majors today.

Normalization and relativity allow for further comprehension of statistics, so let's look at an example. In 1915 Gavvy Cravath hit 24 home runs in 522 at-bats. So his homer to at-bat ratio is 24 / 522 = 0.0459. From this we can infer that Cravath hit about five (4.5 rounded) homers every 100 at-bats. This is what he would normally produce. In that same year, 1915, the total number of homers hit by all players was 225. Dividing this number by the total number of 40,888 at-bats gives a homer to at-bat ratio of 0.0055. If you think of this number as the average player, most players in 1915 would hit one homer every 150 at-bats.

So, how can we interpret a normalized number? Well, 0.0459 / 0.0055 = 8.3454 (the normalized number). This means Cravath was eight times better than the average homerun hitter of 1915.

The same mathematical procedure can be performed on the statistics from the seven clubs involved in this study. Finding the normalized number indicates how much better (or worse) a specific club was relative to their league. A number above 1 implies better than average. For example, the '15 Phillies had a normalized TPQ of 1.0508. This means the club was 5 percent better in that category than the average National League team in 1915.

CLUB    TPQ/lgTPQ   PSN/lgPSN   HEQ-O/lgHEQ-O
1915       1.0508     1.6634       1.0049
1950       0.9814     0.7447       0.9995
1980       1.0714     1.0294       1.0775
1983       1.0106     1.0177       1.0193
1993       1.0893     0.8816       1.1355
2008       1.0813     1.4043       1.0767
2009       1.1195     1.3746       1.1247

Final Ranking

We now know how each team faired in the three sabermetric categories relative to their league, so I used the rotisserie scoring style used in fantasy baseball to rank the seven clubs (1st place gets 7 points, 2nd place gets 6 points, etc.).

R CLUB PTS
1 2009  18
2 2008  15
2 1993  15
4 1980  13
5 1915  12
6 1983   8
7 1950   3

The same scoring format will be used in mid-March when we examine (Part 2) pitching/defense.

Each week during the season the Review will compare the '10 Phillies to the seven clubs in this study.

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