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How did the Blue Jays compare to their division rivals in scoring and preventing runs? Click on “more” and find out.


Runs Scored (ranked by RS+ *)
Team   RS/G   Factor   RS+
NYY    5.50    1.00    116  
BOS    5.61    1.02    114
TAM    4.65    0.97    100
TOR    4.77    1.04     97
BAL    4.49    0.99     95
OPS (ranked by OPS+)
Team	OPS   Factor   OPS+
NYY    .806    0.99    114
BOS    .809    1.03    112
TAM    .754    0.98    103
BAL    .761    0.99    103
TOR    .736    1.04     91

Toronto and Baltimore ended up similarly mediocre in terms of scoring runs, but Baltimore had an OPS+ of 103 while Toronto’s was only 91. How did Toronto scores so many runs relative to its weak OPS+ while Baltimore did the opposite? Here’s one reason:

Percentage of Home Runs with Runner(s) on Base:
1. Toronto (54%)
AL Average (44%)
14. Baltimore (39%)

Having said that, Toronto’s rate stats with runners on base are nice (.268/.340/.435) but don’t leap off the chart. For whatever reason, the Jays managed to score more runs than their peripherals would predict. That’s why they have a solid Pythagorean record of 89-73 but only an 80-82 “third-order” record per Baseball Prospectus.


Runs Allowed (ranked by RA+)
Team   RA/G    RA+    ERA     ERA+
TOR    4.37    111    4.08    111
BOS    4.99     97    4.76     94
NYY    4.86     96    4.48     96
BAL    4.96     93    4.58     94
TAM    5.78     79    5.38     79

Toronto excelled at run prevention, allowing only 4.4 per game in a hitter-friendly park. Plenty of teams have won divisions with worse Pitching and defense. No other AL East team was even average at preventing runs. Where did the rest of the above-average Pitching go? Chicago, Oakland, Minnesota, LA, and Cleveland.

Oh, Tampa Bay. The Rays allowed 5.8 runs per game in a pitcher’s park and in a league where scoring declined a quarter-run per game from the previous year. Tampa Bay’s RA+ of 79 is the 19th-worst since 1900 and the fifth-worst in the history of divisional play (1969-present).

Incidentally, Kansas City also had an RA+ of 79. Grim.

Rotation (ranked by ERA+)
Team   IP/G   ERA     ERA+
TOR    5.8    4.22    107
BOS    6.2    4.58     98
NYY    6.0    4.57     94
BAL    5.7    4.83     89
TAM    5.6    5.62     76
Bullpen (ranked by ERA+)
Team   ERA     ERA+
TOR    3.82    118
BAL    4.13    104
NYY    4.28    101
BOS    5.19     87
TAM    4.96     86

Toronto didn’t get the most innings from its rotation but did lap the field in preventing runs. Typically, teams have a lower ERA+ in the rotation than the bullpen, so Boston is really about average. The Jays again easily outdistanced the divisional competition with its bullpen. The numbers for Boston and New York show just how heavily they relied on their bats.

* RS+ is an index of a team’s scoring relative to the league average and adjusted for home park. 100 is average, and higher is always better. Same methodology applies to OPS, runs allowed (RA), and ERA. I use a two-year park factor. Baseball Prospectus probably has, and Baseball Reference probably will have, slightly different park factors because there’s a jillion different ways to calculate them.

Toronto Versus The AL East: Some Statistics | 3 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Mike Green - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 04:36 PM EDT (#129817) #
Thanks, Lucas. ERA+ has its difficulties as a measuring stick for bullpens, due to run attribution rules and victory-important performance, among other things. In the Jays case, it does overstate their performance. The Jays' bullpen might indeed have been better than the Yankees' one this season, but the difference, if any, was not large.
Magpie - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 05:06 PM EDT (#129822) #
Curiouser and curiouser. The Blue Jays offense was either incredibly efficient or incredibly lucky, in squeezing out 775 runs out of their various offensive components.

And then they were either incredibly inefficient or incredibly unlucky at winning just 80 games, having actually pushed those runners across home plate.

Oakland's circumstances, by the way, are very similar. Won fewer games than expected, scored more runs than expected. But there are some other factors that set the two teams apart...

Mike Boehm - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 04:54 PM EDT (#129855) #
The Blue Jays are going to be the first team to outshine the Yankees and Red Sox. They've got the best base of young talent.

Sadly, Tampa Bay probably won't be far behind while the hapless Orioles, my team, sit at the bottom and sulk.
Toronto Versus The AL East: Some Statistics | 3 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.