Monday, August 13, 2007

Double Play Rates

I think this is pretty cool. First, let's assume the opportune double play situations are as follows:

0 Outs, Runner on 1st
0 Outs, Runners on 1st and 2nd
0 Outs, Runners on 1st and 3rd
0 Outs, Bases Loaded
1 Out, Runner on 1st
1 Out, Runners on 1st and 2nd
1 Out, Runners on 1st and 3rd
1 Out, Bases Loaded

Any other situations take some fluky plays to turn into DP's. Between April 1, 1997, and the end of 2006 batters strolled to the plate 354,609 times in those eight situations combined. They started a double play 42,436 times for a DP rate of 12.0%. The highest rate for a season in that stretch was 2005, where 4357/35121 = 12.4%. The lowest rate was 1999, where 4316/37003 = 11.7%

When is there the highest chance of starting a double play? Between 1997-2006, batters in a 1 out, bases loaded situation have had the highest rate of double plays. It's 2531/18173 = 13.9%. Every year was above 13.2% with the fluky exception of 2000, where the highest number of opportunities (1949) combined with the lowest number of DP's (231), to give an 11.9% rate.

The lowest chance of a double play came in the 0 out, 1st and 3rd situation. Batters there had 10010 PA but only 1013 DP's, resulting in a 10.1% rate. 2006 was the most providential year for offense, as only 82 double plays resulted from 970 plate appearances (8.5%). The worst year was 2000, where 11.3% was the DP rate (120/1066).

If you're scrolling through games and see one of those eight situations, impress your friends by saying there's a one in eight shot of a double play.

1 comment:

Josh Kalk said...

That is super cool stuff there. More just like it. That certainly seem like a statistically significant result with the highest and lowest chances of a double play. Teams must be playing in at the corners in the 1st and 3rd case.