Saturday, August 18, 2007

More on Double Play Rates

Last Monday I had a post about double play rates that you can read here. Today I've got some more data and charts and other fanciness.

I looked at the Baseball Reference Play Index's log of plate appearances and double plays from 1970 to 2006 to get the data; the B-R PI itself culls information from Retrosheet.

To recap, the opportune situations for double plays are:

0 Out, 1--
0 Out, 12-
0 Out, 1-3
0 Out, 123
1 Out, 1--
1 Out, 12-
1 Out, 1-3
1 Out, 123

Between 1970 and 2006, batters came up a staggering 1,129,812 times in those eight situations combined. A double play resulted 137,745 times, or at a 12.2% rate. Last Monday I noted that from 1997-2006 the rate was 12.0%; it would seem that's pretty close to standard. To wit, a chart:

(click to enlarge)

That chart shows the overall double play rate from 1970-2006, along with the rates of 0 out and 1 out situations. It looks pretty constant, though slightly elevated in the early 1980's. The overall rate is closer to the 1 out rate and with good reason: there were 657, 387 PA in those situations with 1 out compared to 473, 172 with nobody out. For the curious, the DP rate across all years with 0 out was 11.2% (52766/473172) while the rate with 1 out was 12.9% (85064/657387).

Before I get to three very hard to read charts, let's look at some relevant numbers in table form:

Outs:0 Out1 OutTotal
Bases Filled:PADPRatePADPRatePADPRate

Alright, with that in mind, here's three hard-to-read charts of each situation year-by-year. The order is Overall situations, 0 out situations, 1 out situations.

Finally, here's easier-to-read charts of each situation on the bases with DP rates for 0 out, 1 out, and both combined. Note 1977 on the Bases Loaded chart; that is the only time the 0 out DP rate ever exceeded the 1 out DP rate in any situation. The order of the charts is 1--, 12-, 1-3, 123.

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I hope this wasn't too tedious.

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