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Articles Tagged Efficiency 

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An in-depth discussion about mechanics with the motion analysis coordinator and coach of the National Pitching Association.

Pitching is both an art and a science, and from youth leagues to the big leagues, so is the challenge of keeping pitchers healthy. The National Pitching Association (NPA) is on the cutting edge of research and instruction on all three fronts, and many of their concepts are shared in their forthcoming book, Arm Action, Arm Path, and the Perfect Pitch: a Science-Based Guide to Pitching Health and Performance. David talked to the NPA's motion analysis coordinator and coach, Doug Thorburn.

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Applying statistical tools to defensive performance is often the quickest way to a fight between traditional baseball minds and performance analysts. At the team level, however, you can learn a lot.

This week, we're going to take a look at a controversial issue from its least controversial angle. The topic? Defense--a subject that, when we approach it statistically, tends to cause fistfights and sour feelings.

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May 18, 2007 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: Defensive Edition

0

Jim Baker

Can you win despite being inefficient defensively? Can you lose despite being efficient?

Best Matchup (opponents with best combined chances of making the playoffs according to the Baseball Prospectus Postseason Odds Report): Atlanta Braves @ Boston Red Sox

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October 22, 2003 12:00 am

Getting PADE, Redux

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James Click

Last time, we cooked up a way to remove park effects when looking at Bill James' Defensive Efficiency, a stat that measures the percentage of balls in play fielded by a team's defense. The new metric, tentatively called PADE, ranked teams on a zero-centered scale, showing how well a team performed against the league average with their given schedule. The intent was to more fairly judge defenses against each other rather than punish teams like Colorado and Boston for having to play in more difficult venues. As stated before, defense can be broken down into many facets, but the three most prevalent parts are park factors, pitching, and actual defensive performance. Since we've already figured out how to remove the first one--park factors--the next logical step is attempting to correct for pitching, leaving us closer to a metric that measures only defensive performance. To do this, we'll take a similar approach to the first version of PADE, but instead of defensive park factors, we'll use defensive pitcher factors. The first step is to determine an expected defensive efficiency for every pitcher, based on their career history.

As stated before, defense can be broken down into many facets, but the three most prevalent parts are park factors, pitching, and actual defensive performance. Since we've already figured out how to remove the first one--park factors--the next logical step is attempting to correct for pitching, leaving us closer to a metric that measures only defensive performance.

To do this, we'll take a similar approach to the first version of PADE, but instead of defensive park factors, we'll use defensive pitcher factors. The first step is to determine an expected defensive efficiency for every pitcher, based on their career history.

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October 9, 2003 12:00 am

Getting PADE

2

James Click

Evaluating defense has always been one of the more difficult tasks for performance analysts. The first reason for this is that looks can be deceiving. Sure, that acrobatic shortstop playing in the country's largest market might appear to be a superior defender to the untrained eye, but all too often we draw our conclusions by putting emphasis on the outcome rather than the process of fielding the ball, itself. The second reason is the still-severe limitations we face with regard to collecting data, and how to properly interpret that data once we get a meaningful amount of it. Granted, there are some statistics that can be used when evaluating defense--errors, fielding percentage, Range Factor, Zone Rating, etc.--but none of them is without its flaws. Which bring us to one of Bill James' measures for quantifying defensive performance: Defensive Efficiency (provided here by Keith Woolner). Defensive Efficiency is a metric that measures a team's ability to turn balls-in-play into outs, using the formula (TotalOuts - Strikeouts)/(BIP-HR). Despite being raw and only applying to entire teams, Defensive Efficiency is a fair measure of overall defensive performance. But that doesn't mean it can't be improved.

Which bring us to one of Bill James' measures for quantifying defensive performance: Defensive Efficiency (provided here by Keith Woolner). Defensive Efficiency is a metric that measures a team's ability to turn balls-in-play into outs, using the formula...

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