Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The most powerful man in the American League

Who are the best sluggers in the American League? On the Detroit Tigers? The statistic "homeruns" (or even at bats per homerun) is limited because it does not take doubles and triples into account. Slugging average (SLG) adds doubles and triples into the equation but also includes singles. Another statistic, isolated power (ISO), was developed by Branch Rickey and Allan Roth (perhaps the first sabermetrician to influence managerial decisions) in the 1950s. It was re-introduced by Bill James in the 1980s in his Baseball Abstracts.

ISO describes a hitter’s ability to get extra base hits by separating doubles, triples and homeruns from singles. It is calculated by subtracting batting average (BA) from slugging average and is a purer measure of slugging ability than slugging average:

Isolated Power = SLG-BA = (doubles + 2 x triples + 3 x homers)/AB

Isolated power is not a good measure of overall batting performance. It doesn’t say anything about how often a batter makes contact or how often he gets on base. It just measures one aspect of hitting – power.

Table 1 below shows how the Tiger players ranked among American League hitters in isolated power. The ISO* column is isolated power adjusted for ballpark. Table 2 shows the American League leaders and Table 3 presents the National League leaders. All players with at least 300 plate appearances are included in the rankings.

We can see that Marcus Thames led the American League in ballpark adjusted Isolated power in 2008. If we just go by straight isolated power without the adjustment then Thames finished second to Carlos Quentin. Other Tigers in the top 25 included Miguel Cabrera (11th) and Curtis Granderson (24th). Albert Pujols, Ryan Ludwick and Adam Dunn led the National League.

Table 1: Isolated Power for Tigers in 2008

Player

PA

ISO

ISO*

Lge Rank

Hessman

31

.593

.596

.

Hollimon

25

.304

.306

.

Thames

342

.275

.277

1

Cabrera

684

.245

.246

11

Joyce

277

.240

.241

.

Granderson

629

.213

.214

24

Ryan

50

.182

.183

.

Santiago

156

.177

.178

.

Ordonez

623

.176

.177

45

Sheffield

482

.175

.176

47

Inge

407

.164

.165

54

Guillen

489

.150

.151

65

Raburn

199

.132

.133

.

Rodriguez

328

.123

.123

97

Thomas

133

.121

.121

.

Larish

111

.115

.116

.

Renteria

547

.111

.112

108

Polanco

629

.110

.111

109

Jones

90

.089

.089

.

Sardinha

49

.045

.046

.

Clevlen

28

.000

.000

.


Table 2: American League Isolated Power leaders in 2008

Player

Team

PA

ISO

ISO*

Thames

DET

342

.275

.277

Rodriguez

NYA

594

.271

.267

Shoppach

CLE

403

.256

.261

Longoria

TB

508

.259

.260

Quentin

CHA

569

.283

.260

Youkilis

BOS

621

.257

.258

Davis

TEX

317

.264

.255

Cust

OAK

598

.245

.253

Giambi

NYA

565

.255

.252

Pena

TB

607

.247

.248

Cabrera

DET

684

.245

.246

Choo

CLE

370

.240

.245

Ortiz

BOS

491

.243

.244

Huff

BAL

661

.247

.241

Drew

BOS

456

.239

.240

Sizemore

CLE

745

.233

.238

Thome

CHA

602

.258

.237

Bradley

TEX

510

.242

.233

Ramirez

BOS

425

.230

.231

Dye

CHA

645

.249

.229

Guerrero

LAA

600

.218

.224

Hinske

TB

432

.218

.219

Hamilton

TEX

704

.226

.218

Granderson

DET

629

.213

.214

Scott

BAL

536

.215

.209


Table 3: National League Isolated Power leaders in 2008

Player

Team

PA

ISO

ISO*

Pujols

STL

641

.296

.308

Ludwick

STL

617

.292

.304

Dunn

CIN

464

.295

.280

Howard

PHI

700

.292

.277

Jacobs

FLA

519

.266

.274

Braun

MIL

663

.268

.267

Uggla

FLA

619

.254

.262

Delgado

NYN

686

.247

.256

Gonzalez

SD

700

.231

.253

Hairston

SD

362

.230

.253

Ankiel

STL

463

.242

.252

Lee

HOU

481

.255

.250

Berkman

HOU

665

.255

.250

Bay

PIT

459

.237

.248

Ramirez

FLA

693

.239

.247

Burrell

PHI

645

.257

.244

LaRoche

PIT

554

.230

.240

Wright

NYN

736

.232

.240

Soriano

CHN

503

.252

.237

Wigginton

HOU

429

.241

.236

Ross

FLA

506

.228

.235

Cameron

MIL

508

.234

.233

McLouth

PIT

685

.221

.232

Utley

PHI

707

.244

.231

Fielder

MIL

694

.231

.230

2 comments:

  1. where would Manny be placed in this number?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good question. Ramirez had an ISO of .349 in 229 PA in the NL which would have led the league if he had enough PA. He finished 19th in the AL at .231. .Overall, his ISO was .272.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete

Sabermetrics Book

Sabermetrics Book
One of Baseball America's top ten books of 2010

Blog Archive

Subscribe

501 Baseball Books

501 Baseball Books
Recommended by Tiger Tales

Total Pageviews