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Feature
 
 
Exceeding Expectations

Reineke
on 06/17/2003

 

Your name would have to be Pip, or perhaps Ned Yost, to have had great expectations about the Brewers offense entering this season. The Brewers had finished right near the bottom in runs scored in the National League three years running and their biggest "name" acquisition of the off-season was Royce Clayton who is known more for his glove than his bat.

And yet, as of June 15, 2003, the Brewers stand in 12th place in the National League in runs scored and are much nearer to average than to last place. Without a great influx of hitting talent that's to the credit of Butch Wynegar and Ned Yost who said they were going to change the hitting approach from one of "aggressiveness" to one of "patience and working thecount". And it's to the credit of Wynegar and Yost that they've made strides in accomplishing exactly what they said they were going to do.

One of the things that is useful to do is to try to quantify just how much better, if anything, the Brewers offense is producing versus expectations to try to determine how much credit may be due to Wynegar and Yost. To that effect, I've put together a table to try to determine actual production vs. reasonable expectations.

I've used two sources to try to determine reasonable expectations.One source was BaseballReference.com in order to determine Career Averages entering this year. In general Career Averages are a good expectation, however it's reasonable to assume that younger players getting more playing time will improve and older players will tend to get worse, so I also looked atprojections from Baseball Prospectus to try to quantify that effect.

The next step was to come up with a formula for runs scored.I used the simple formula of Runs Created = ABs*OBP*SLG. This is the simplest formula, but it is generally accurate. It doesn't take into account stolen bases, but as a team the Brewers have stolen 43 bases and been caught 20 times, essentially break even. Scott Podsednik and Eric Young may have produced a run or two more than is estimated, but that's balanced by the rest of the team.Checking the formula for accuracy, the formula estimates that the Brewers should have scored 300 runs to date, versus the 295 runs they've actually scored, a difference of approximately 1.7%. I've used the actual ABs for the season for each player in estimating projected runs created and have developed the following table.

Richie Sexson

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.273

0.341

0.521

 

0.862

Projected Averages

0.262

0.342

0.489

 

0.831

2003 Actual Averages

0.256

0.363

0.535

254

0.898

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

45

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

42

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

49

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

4

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Geoff Jenkins

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.279

0.342

0.510

 

0.852

Projected Averages

0.263

0.334

0.461

 

0.795

2003 Actual Averages

0.268

0.345

0.500

228

0.845

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

40

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

35

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

39

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

0

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Royce Clayton

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.258

0.311

0.372

 

0.683

Projected Averages

0.247

0.303

0.361

 

0.664

2003 Actual Averages

0.21

0.302

0.360

214

0.662

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

25

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

23

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

23

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

-1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wes Helms

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.234

0.287

0.423

 

0.710

Projected Averages

0.247

0.302

0.430

 

0.732

2003 Actual Averages

0.243

0.324

0.436

218

0.760

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

26

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

28

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

31

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

4

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eric Young

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.288

0.362

0.392

 

0.754

Projected Averages

0.276

0.335

0.371

 

0.706

2003 Actual Averages

0.245

0.332

0.440

216

0.772

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

31

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

27

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

32

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alex Sanchez

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.277

0.331

0.351

 

0.682

Projected Averages

0.273

0.331

0.372

 

0.703

2003 Actual Averages

0.282

0.316

0.380

163

0.696

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

19

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

20

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

20

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eddie Perez

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.252

0.299

0.385

 

0.684

Projected Averages

0.220

0.241

0.326

 

0.567

2003 Actual Averages

0.290

0.321

0.426

155

0.747

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

18

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

12

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

21

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

3

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scott Podsednik

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.192

0.290

0.385

 

0.675

Projected Averages

0.251

0.326

0.370

 

0.696

2003 Actual Averages

0.302

0.378

0.436

172

0.814

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

19

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

21

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

28

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

9

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

John Vander Wal

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.264

0.354

0.441

 

0.795

Projected Averages

0.250

0.341

0.406

 

0.747

2003 Actual Averages

0.292

0.382

0.507

144

0.889

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

22

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

20

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

28

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

5

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keith Ginter

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.233

0.364

0.400

 

0.764

Projected Averages

0.256

0.350

0.421

 

0.771

2003 Actual Averages

0.269

0.358

0.296

108

0.654

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

16

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

16

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

11

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

-4

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

-4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keith Osik

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.231

0.306

0.329

 

0.635

Projected Averages

0.198

0.273

0.296

 

0.569

2003 Actual Averages

0.230

0.343

0.264

87

0.607

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

9

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

7

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

8

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

-1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brady Clark

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.239

0.332

0.358

 

0.690

Projected Averages

0.243

0.322

0.354

 

0.676

2003 Actual Averages

0.266

0.299

0.351

94

0.650

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

11

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

11

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

10

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

-1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

-1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jeffrey Hammonds

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.276

0.340

0.455

 

0.795

Projected Averages

0.263

0.333

0.410

 

0.743

2003 Actual Averages

0.158

0.22

0.289

38

0.509

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

6

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

5

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

2

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

-3

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

-3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enrique Cruz

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0

0

0

 

0.000

Projected Averages

0.233

0.300

0.355

 

0.655

2003 Actual Averages

0.129

0.206

0.161

31

0.367

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

0

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

3

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

1

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brooks Kieschnick

BA

OBP

SLG

ABs

OPS

Career Averages

0.220

0.297

0.405

 

0.702

Projected Averages

0.229

0.297

0.431

 

0.728

2003 Actual Averages

0.389

0.389

0.611

18

1.000

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Runs Created based on Career

2

 

 

 

 

Projected Runs Created

2

 

 

 

 

Actual Runs Created

4

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Career Estimates

2

 

 

 

 

Difference between Actual and Projected Estimates

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grand Total Actual vs. Career

19

 

 

 

 

Grand Total Actual vs. Projected

35

 

 

 

 

There are a number of questions that can be asked based on this table. What happened to Ginter's power? Did working out with Barry Bonds really improve Eric Young's power that much? Why is Eddie Perez having a career year at age 35? Were unrealistic expectations placed on Alex Sanchez by the coaching staff, GM, media, and fans? And, probably most importantly, can the Brewers keep this up over the course of 162 games?

With minor exceptions, almost everyone on the team that's getting significant playing time is meeting or exceeding expectations. Using arule of thumb estimate of "an additional ten runs equals one additional win" the Brewers are 2 to 4 wins ahead of expectations for their offense. And that projects out to around 5 to 9 wins for the season. Obviously, the Brewers aren't a good team. The pitching staff is if anything worse than last year and12th place in runs scored is still below average. More talent is needed in the organization. But, so far, it looks like Wynegar and Yost can run an offense and get the most out of their position players. That's a good sign for the future.

 




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