Largest Decrease in OPS, 1st to 3rd (or greater) Time
|Rank||Name||1st Time vs. SP||2nd Time vs. SP||3rd+ Time vs. SP||OPS Increase|
(1st to 3rd+)
|1||Jack Wilson||131 PA, 1.014 OPS||127 PA, .772 OPS||92 PA, .571 OPS||-.443|
|2||Morgan Ensberg||74 PA, .940 OPS||62 PA, .834 OPS||59 PA, .528 OPS||-.412|
|3||Gary Matthews||136 PA, .889 OPS||133 PA, .716 OPS||131 PA, .526 OPS||-.363|
|4||Adam LaRoche||148 PA, .920 OPS||145 PA, .884 OPS||135 PA, .585 OPS||-.335|
|5||Jim Thome||124 PA, 1.104 OPS||118 PA, 1.041 OPS||126 PA, .821 OPS||-.283|
|6||Yunel Escobar||77 PA, 1.004 OPS||73 PA, 1.040 OPS||60 PA, .726 OPS||-.278|
|7||Matt Diaz||81 PA, 1.235 OPS||75 PA, .844 OPS||52 PA, .967 OPS||-.269|
|8||Alex Gonzalez||103 PA, .916 OPS||96 PA, .824 OPS||66 PA, .647 OPS||-.268|
|9||Bobby Crosby||92 PA, .773 OPS||89 PA, .674 OPS||65 PA, .505 OPS||-.268|
|10||Jason Kendall||131 PA, .625 OPS||124 PA, .848 OPS||77 PA, .360 OPS||-.264|
|11||Hideki Matsui||143 PA, .999 OPS||139 PA, .921 OPS||114 PA, .739 OPS||-.259|
|12||Adam Kennedy||75 PA, .702 OPS||73 PA, .809 OPS||57 PA, .443 OPS||-.259|
|13||Barry Bonds||116 PA, 1.219 OPS||114 PA, 1.084 OPS||116 PA, .963 OPS||-.256|
|14||Luis Gonzalez||131 PA, .939 OPS||126 PA, .831 OPS||103 PA, .684 OPS||-.255|
|15||Kevin Millar||135 PA, .960 OPS||132 PA, .773 OPS||121 PA, .706 OPS||-.254|
|16||Chad Tracy||63 PA, .928 OPS||59 PA, 1.084 OPS||55 PA, .681 OPS||-.247|
|17||Frank Catalanotto||92 PA, 1.095 OPS||87 PA, .495 OPS||89 PA, .849 OPS||-.246|
|18||Rob Mackowiak||82 PA, .823 OPS||73 PA, .726 OPS||51 PA, .592 OPS||-.231|
|19||Mike Redmond||72 PA, .740 OPS||71 PA, .715 OPS||53 PA, .512 OPS||-.228|
|20||Jack Cust||115 PA, .977 OPS||108 PA, 1.039 OPS||98 PA, .757 OPS||-.220|
|21||Nick Markakis||158 PA, .983 OPS||157 PA, .833 OPS||175 PA, .773 OPS||-.210|
|22||Gary Sheffield||131 PA, .985 OPS||128 PA, .967 OPS||137 PA, .777 OPS||-.207|
|23||Bengie Molina||126 PA, .913 OPS||124 PA, .647 OPS||98 PA, .706 OPS||-.207|
These twenty-three players were the only ones to see a 200 (or more) point decrease in their OPS over the course of a game. Guys like Molina and Catalanotto actually did the worst in their second times to the plate while Chad Tracy, Adam Kennedy, and Jason Kendall improved before crashing downward.
Kendall is a good case study again of the effects of BABIP. He can't hit in the first place, and this is borne out by his .625 OPS with a .252 BABIP in the first column. That .252 is kind of low (again, the MLB average was .305), but .625 is also a little below what you would've expected him to hit anyway. Then in the second time against the same pitcher, his BABIP jumps to .353 and his OPS hops up to .848 - more balls were falling in and, when they did, they went for extra bases. Finally, in the last column, his BABIP fell to an awful .164 and his OPS crashed to an anemic .360. When you look at his career splits (scroll down about 2/3 of the page), you can see that he's usually a normal player, improving slightly against pitchers as the game wears on. This season, however, BABIP wreaked havoc on his numbers.
Only two members of the list saw their BABIP actually increase while their OPS went down. Rob Mackowiak's went from .269 to .360 to .308 and his OPS fell at every step. Gary Sheffield had a barely noticeable .259 to .277 to .260, and his OPS also fell at every step. Kind of strange, but both players' slugging percentages also went down through the game so perhaps they hits they were getting didn't go for extra bases.
Finally, a few players from this list have seen dips in their OPS across their careers. I'm going to express their numbers in the form OPS/BABIP for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd+ time facing an opposing starter.
- Morgan Ensberg: .924/.307 to .779/.287 to .893/272
- Adam LaRoche: .819/.315 to .884/.321 to .810/.307
- Yunel Escobar, though 2007 was his first season.
- Hideki Matsui: .884/.302 to .836/.304 to .850/.305
- Adam Kennedy: .776/.329 to .760/.326 to .677/.288
- Rob Mackowiak: .768/.332 to .669/.286 to .717/.310
- Mike Redmond: .755/.318 to .732/.321 to .747/.329
- Most of Jack Cust's numbers are fueled by 2007.
- Nick Markakis: .841/.330 to .888/.347 to .806/.295
- Gary Sheffield: .945/.290 to .953/.288 to .904/.282
Of course, in the end, you just look at the fact there's not many plate appearances to work with for a lot of guys and decide this all doesn't mean anything anyway. :)