Filed under: Stats & Analysis | Tags: Khalil Greene, Petco Park, sabermetrics, San Diego Padres
Seems like everyone and their mom is talking about Khalil lately and whether it’s a good value proposition to keep him around through the end of his contract. This is especially relevant since the likelihood of him signing an extension is seemingly low and the chatter about him being trade bait seems to get louder daily. Friar Forecast (Greene acres), Ducksnorts (The Khalil Conundrum) and The Sac Bunt (The kase against KT) have chimed in, among others. MB’s piece at Friar Forecast got me thinking about the types of balls Khalil hits and whether that might have something to do with all this.
Let’s first look at Khalil’s line-drive percentages, both in Petco Park and on the road. It’s been said that line-drive percentage can be a decent predictor of average and power. In 2007, Khalil posted a .197 ISO (SLG-AVG) at home; however, in doing so, he hit .215 in the process. On the road, his ISO jumped to .231, while his average jumped to .288; the average is significantly different, but I would argue that the power difference could be nothing more than the elevation change. So, do the line-drive percentages give us any clues as to why Khalil’s splits are so funky? To a point, yes, but I think that this might be a spurious correlation. At home, 15% of Khalil’s hits were line drives; on the road, 24% were liners. At a glance, this would seem to indicate that either the Petco environment or the perception of that in Khalil’s head lead him to get less solid contact at home. However, when we look at the 2006 numbers, it appears that this might not be the answer; his percentages were 22% at home and 24% on the road with similar ancillary splits (.210 AVG/.136 ISO at home, .280/.227 on the road). For reference, the league average line-drive percentage was 19.1% in 2007, while the league hit .271 with a .152 ISO. This probably merits a more in-depth look, but I don’t think there’s much here.
However, this does lead me to believe that another percentage might hold the key to this. When we take Khalil’s line-drive and ground-ball percentages and subtract them from 100%, we get the percentage of balls that Khalil hit in the air. At home in ’07, this number came out to 48%; in 2006, the number was 49%. On the road, 41% of the balls Khalil hits were in the air.
Now we’re getting somewhere. Though the sample is kind of small, it’s clear that Khalil hits the ball in the air a little more at home than on the road. This leads me to believe that since Khalil hits the ball more in the air at Petco, there’s something either in the environment or in Khalil’s head that makes the ball hang up a little longer in Petco. Maybe it’s the big gaps, maybe it’s the climate, maybe it’s psychological…I’m not going to pretend to have the answer. However, I think this may indicate something about Khalil’s game that is not adaptable to Petco Park. The secondary numbers seem to back up this premonition; his BABIP at home over the last 2 years is .250, while it’s .302 on the road. Further, those 2 averages over the last 2 years have only varied by 1 point, which indicates that this might not be a fluke. The small sample size makes me a little skeptical, however.
Anybody think there’s anything to this?
Filed under: Random Crap | Tags: Baseball Reference, Gaylord Perry, Los Angeles Dodgers, Randomness, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants
Wow, it’s like I died and went to work or something.
Winter break got really crazy; I spent a lot of time working and a lot of time doing absolutely nothing. Nonetheless, I am back with more worthless commentary on the Friars.
Let’s begin 2008 with another gem from Baseball Reference’s Play Index. This tool is unbelievable if you like to fiddle around with obscure stats as I do; definitely worth $5 to try it for a month. Anywho, I was watching highlights from the Pads’ 1-0 win over LA back on June 5, not realizing that we won that game with 2 hits. I remembered at least one other game that we won with 2 hits this year, so I got to wondering: what team in the last 50 years had the most 2-hit wins in one season?
The 2007 Padres are one of three teams that have won 3 games with only 2 hits in the same season, joining the 1971 Giants and the 1965 world champion L.A. Dodgers. Kind of cool that no team outside of the NL West has ever turned the trick.
Only 24 teams over that period have won 2 games in the same season with just 2 hits. One of those teams was the 1978 edition of the Pads, led by Cy Young winner Gaylord Perry.
Not that it means anything, but I thought it was cool to think about. Good to be back.