Monday, May 21, 2007

Challenging Week for Tigers

Last week, the Tigers ran into a buzz saw at Fenway Park losing 3 out of 4 to the surging Red Sox. This week, they face similar challenges versus the central division leading (by percentage points) Indians and the west division leading Angels at Comerica Park. So, I thought it would be a good time to do my usual statistical comparison of the Tigers, Indians and Angels.

Overview

The won/loss records of the three teams are within one game of each other but they have arrived there in two different ways. The Tigers and Indians have almost identical numbers of runs scored per game (5.51 versus 5.56) and runs allowed per game (4.77 versus 4.76). They are the top two teams in the league in run production but in the bottom half of the league in run prevention. The Angels on the other hand are 3rd in the league in run prevention (3.69 RA/G) but 6th in runs produced (4.56 R/G).



Detroit

Cleveland

Los Angeles


Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

Record

27-16

4

26-15

3

27-18

2

R/G

5.51

2

5.56

1

4.56

6

RA/G

4.77

10

4.76

8

3.69

3



Offense

The Tigers are hitting for average (3rd) and power (2nd) but not walking too much (9th). The Indians are not hitting for as much average (6th) or power (8th) but are 3rd in the league in walks and 2nd in OBP. The Angels are 10th in OBP and last in isolated power so it's a surprise that they are 6th in runs per game. A look at their splits shows that they are hitting quite well with runners on third base (.359 in 153 at bats) which may explain it. We'll see if that keeps up or whether it's just an early season anomaly.



Detroit

Cleveland

Los Angeles


Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

BA

.274

3

.269

6

.272

5

BB

141

9

170

3

116

13

K

267

8

316

10

212

2

ISO

.182

2

156

8

.122

14

OBP

.338

4

353

2

.326

10

SLG

.456

1

425

6

.394

10

OPS

.794

2

778

4

.720

11



Pitching


The Angels are near the top of the league in fielding indepent pitching or FIP (3.75). The Indians (4.21) and Tigers (4.33) rank in the middle of league closely bunched with a few other teams.


Detroit

Cleveland

Los Angeles


Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

FIP

4.33

10

4.21

7

3.85

3

ERA

4.37

7

4.39

9

3.44

2



Fielding


Neither of the three teams ranks particularly well in fielding statistics - Defensive Efficiency Ratio (percentage of balls in play turned into outs) or The Hardball Times Plus/Minus Stats.
Interestingly, the Tigers rank better in fielding air balls (4th) than ground balls (10th). This is just the opposite of last year. Based on observation, I think part of that can be explained by Magglio Ordonez who has been much improved this year. On the other hand, Carlos Guillen seems to have struggled even more than last year and Brandon Inge seems to be a bit off so far. I could investigate that further but that's another post.



Detroit

Cleveland

Los Angeles


Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

Rate

Rank

DER

.704

10

.708

6

.712

7

+/- Fdg

-1

7

-19

13

-6

9

+/- Grnd

-12

10

-14

12

2

6

+/- Air

11

4

-5

10

-7

12

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