BtB Power Rankings: Week 4

Toprank-042810_medium

Allrank-042810_medium

"On Paper" Playoff Leaders

American League: E=Rays*, C=Twins, W=Athletics*, WC=Yankees
National League: E=Phillies, C=Brewers*, W=Padres, WC=Giants

This Week's Breakdown

Lots of movers this week.  The Rays had a fine week with a very balanced attack (including great fielding!) to leapfrog over the Yankees for tops in the AL East.  The Rangers gained eight spots in the power rankings and are suddenly right in the thick of things with the Athletics and the A's.  The Nationals are free-falling their way down toward the bottom as you'd expect.

But the team I want to talk about today are the Milwaukee Brewers.  The Brewers had one of the ridiculous weeks I've seen.  On Thursday, April 22nd, the Brewers defeated the Pirates 20-0.  Wow, right?  Then they went back home and got crushed by the Cubs 8-15-1, and 12-2 over the next three days.  Yikes!  And then, finally, the Pirates came BACK into town and were promptly destroyed 17-3.  And finally, last night, the Pirates returned the favor and crushed Trevor Hoffman's bid for his 4th save with the Brewers.

So, what does the power rankings make of a this team?  Thanks in part to those two extreme blow-outs of the Pirates, the Brewers' offense ranks--by a large margin--as the best in baseball.  In fact, we estimate, based on their hitting and baserunning statistics, the Brewers should probably have scored 6 more runs than they actually have...and they already were tied for most runs scored in MLB.  

Defense-wise, early returns have not been as good: the Brewers' team ERA is 5.16, 4th from the bottom in the NL.  Both UZR and DRS have them in the negative 10+ run range, and even the catching shakes out as only about average.  So that's part of what's driving down the ERA.  But some of it might just be bad luck.  Their FIP is a more respectable 4.77, and their xFIP--which adjusts for HR/FB rate and is the basis of the pitching runs allowed estimate--is above-average at 4.22.  The Brewers have their one really good starting pitcher--Yovani Gallardo--while the rest of the rotation is cobbled together as a bunch of decent back of the rotation guys: Randy Wolf, David Bush, Doug Davis, and Jeff Suppan.  Like their bullpen, some of those guys have been solid to start the year (Wolf), while others have been really hit around (Suppan).

Overall, at least while the Pittsburgh games aren't diluted by the rest of the sample, the Brewers shake out as an offensive powerhouse with good enough pitching to get them near the top of the rankings.  We'll see how long it lasts.

 

Converting Runs to Wins

Team G RS eRS RA eRA W% pW% cW% LgAdj TPI
ARI 20 98 96 105 80 0.450 0.468 0.584 -2 0.557
ATL 20 78 77 86 84 0.400 0.455 0.458 -2 0.430
BAL 20 67 75 102 100 0.200 0.315 0.370 2 0.395
BOS 21 94 99 111 113 0.476 0.423 0.436 3 0.460
CHW 20 74 74 91 93 0.400 0.404 0.396 2 0.423
CHC 21 90 99 83 86 0.476 0.541 0.565 -3 0.539
CIN 20 89 78 113 96 0.450 0.386 0.400 -2 0.373
CLE 20 72 78 93 93 0.450 0.388 0.420 2 0.447
COL 21 100 103 72 89 0.524 0.645 0.566 -3 0.541
DET 21 95 108 100 101 0.524 0.476 0.534 3 0.558
FLA 21 103 96 98 100 0.524 0.524 0.480 -3 0.455
HOU 19 63 52 86 83 0.421 0.361 0.301 -2 0.273
KCR 20 87 97 107 114 0.400 0.405 0.426 2 0.449
LAD 20 111 113 122 112 0.400 0.455 0.508 -2 0.486
LAA 22 90 98 110 102 0.500 0.406 0.483 3 0.509
MIL 20 122 128 112 97 0.450 0.544 0.636 -2 0.615
MIN 20 103 109 70 79 0.700 0.672 0.647 2 0.670
NYY 19 101 109 73 85 0.632 0.650 0.611 2 0.633
NYM 21 91 89 70 103 0.571 0.612 0.435 -3 0.411
OAK 21 100 90 74 88 0.571 0.632 0.509 3 0.536
PHI 20 104 97 82 75 0.550 0.613 0.618 -2 0.591
PIT 20 73 77 152 105 0.400 0.187 0.351 -2 0.326
SDP 20 97 94 80 67 0.600 0.586 0.656 -2 0.629
SEA 21 78 68 76 89 0.476 0.512 0.383 3 0.411
SFG 20 90 94 56 77 0.600 0.698 0.588 -2 0.563
STL 20 90 91 68 81 0.650 0.622 0.554 -2 0.527
TBR 20 122 101 70 78 0.750 0.746 0.618 2 0.643
TEX 20 87 81 85 89 0.450 0.511 0.453 2 0.480
TOR 21 94 89 101 87 0.476 0.466 0.515 3 0.543
WSN 21 89 93 104 104 0.524 0.428 0.448 -3 0.423

G=Games
RS = Actual Runs Scored, after a park adjustment
eRS = Estimated Runs Scored, after park adjustment (see "Offense" table below)
RA = Actual Runs Allowed, after a park adjustment
eRA = Estimated Runs Allowed, after park adjustments (see "Defense" table below)
W% = Actual Winning Percentage
pW% = PythagenPat Winning Percentage, based on actual runs scored and run allowed totals
cW% = Component Winning Percentage, using estimated runs scored and estimated runs allowed totals
LgAdj = League adjustment, based on differences in league quality (justification here and here).
TPI = Team Performance Index, a hypothetical winning % based on component estimates of runs scored and runs allowed after the league adjustment.

 

Team Offenses and Defenses

Team RS eRS wOBA OBP SLG wRC EqBRR Clutch RA eRA ERA FIP xFIP xFIPrns Field Catch BABIP
ARI 98 96 0.340 0.341 0.452 98 -2 13 105 80 5.36 4.81 4.29 89 13 -1 0.319
ATL 78 77 0.309 0.331 0.342 77 0 -10 86 84 3.97 3.86 4.16 85 3 1 0.285
BAL 67 75 0.306 0.307 0.378 75 0 -8 102 100 4.59 4.11 4.51 91 -15 2 0.327
BOS 94 99 0.330 0.333 0.426 99 0 3 111 113 4.87 4.56 4.79 109 -7 -4 0.308
CHW 74 74 0.307 0.302 0.387 73 1 -1 91 93 4.45 3.71 4.25 89 -3 2 0.294
CHC 90 99 0.334 0.340 0.426 100 -1 -18 83 86 3.62 3.41 3.98 85 -4 3 0.304
CIN 89 78 0.308 0.316 0.387 75 3 20 113 96 5.82 4.63 4.36 91 -4 0 0.325
CLE 72 78 0.310 0.323 0.356 77 1 4 93 93 3.92 4.64 4.87 100 12 0 0.280
COL 100 103 0.336 0.345 0.457 100 3 -21 72 89 3.51 3.71 4.21 93 4 1 0.294
DET 95 108 0.345 0.362 0.418 110 -2 13 100 101 4.35 4.23 4.56 98 -5 -1 0.311
FLA 103 96 0.323 0.327 0.393 92 4 7 98 100 4.24 3.98 4.26 93 -11 1 0.299
HOU 63 52 0.281 0.282 0.335 51 2 10 86 83 4.05 3.50 3.96 78 -7 2 0.318
KCR 87 97 0.342 0.342 0.440 101 -4 -3 107 114 5.07 4.86 5.00 106 -14 0 0.315
LAD 111 113 0.351 0.355 0.438 113 0 -2 122 112 4.99 4.61 4.66 97 -15 -3 0.317
LAA 90 98 0.333 0.330 0.414 99 -1 -8 110 102 4.68 4.81 4.40 101 2 -1 0.299
MIL 122 128 0.372 0.366 0.476 128 0 1 112 97 5.16 4.77 4.22 87 -15 -1 0.333
MIN 103 109 0.349 0.360 0.425 109 0 -2 70 79 3.41 3.74 4.11 87 3 4 0.295
NYY 101 109 0.361 0.364 0.443 108 1 0 73 85 3.75 3.94 4.28 81 0 -1 0.276
NYM 91 89 0.315 0.326 0.359 86 3 -7 70 103 3.11 3.81 4.55 103 -4 2 0.299
OAK 100 90 0.321 0.327 0.378 87 3 3 74 88 3.19 3.70 4.08 88 -1 2 0.281
PHI 104 97 0.338 0.345 0.431 99 -2 4 82 75 4.06 4.32 3.85 78 6 2 0.308
PIT 73 77 0.312 0.316 0.364 79 -2 17 152 105 7.49 5.48 4.89 99 -7 -2 0.341
SDP 97 94 0.334 0.320 0.390 93 1 11 80 67 3.25 3.83 3.83 80 10 4 0.281
SEA 78 68 0.302 0.313 0.343 71 -3 14 76 89 3.29 4.29 4.65 100 21 -3 0.277
SFG 90 94 0.336 0.339 0.425 93 1 -12 56 77 2.65 3.42 3.95 83 8 0 0.267
STL 90 91 0.329 0.324 0.415 93 -2 4 68 81 2.70 3.41 4.05 88 5 3 0.276
TBR 122 101 0.345 0.344 0.438 102 -1 17 70 78 3.34 4.37 4.33 92 17 0 0.264
TEX 87 81 0.312 0.320 0.377 77 3 14 85 89 3.86 4.61 4.64 96 13 0 0.295
TOR 94 89 0.324 0.302 0.437 91 -2 1 101 87 4.61 4.07 4.08 90 3 1 0.295
WSN 89 93 0.330 0.339 0.404 96 -3 2 104 104 4.82 4.82 4.83 108 2 1 0.290

RS = Actual Runs Scored
eRS = Estimated Runs Scored: wRC + EqBRR
wOBA The Book's statistic, but park adjusted, and using data from both wRC and EqBRR
OBP = On Base Percentage (Times on Base / Plate Appearances)
SLG = Slugging Percentage (Total Bases / At Bats)
wRC = From FanGraphs, with baserunning removed, after park adjustments
EqBRR = Dan Fox's composite baserunning statistics from Baseball Prospectus, minus stolen bases since they are included in wRC.
Clutch = "Clutchiness" measure from fangraphs; difference between actual WPA and expected WPA based on component statistics.  We report this in runs.

RA = Actual Runs Allowed, after park adjustment
eRA = Estimated Runs Allowed: tRuns - Field - Catch
ERA = Straight-up Earned Run Average
FIP = Fielding-Independent Runs, based strictly on K-, BB-, and HR-rates.
xFIP = Experimental Fielding-Independent Runs from FanGraphs.  Like FIP, but with HR/Outfield Fly Ball rates regressed completely to league average.  xFIP is as predictive as any other DIPS-like stat.
xFIPrns = Pitching Runs Allowed, based on xFIP
Field = The average of team UZR and team DRS (minus rSB since I calculate catcher fielding separately).
Catch = Catcher Fielding Runs, based on SB's, CS's, WP's, PB's, and E's.  The methods are essentially those described here.  But I'm using B-Ref data this year, and so there are slight tweaks to the methodology, generally in ways that should lead to greater precision.
BABIP = Batting Average on Balls In Play.  Fluctuates at the team level with fielding, although chance events can have effects as well.

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