Interesting post from BBTF’s Chris Dial yesterday utilizing his OPD numbers. OPD stands for Offense + Defense and it’s Dials attempt at a more complete measure of a players worth by taking into account run creation and run prevention. Both very important things to have in a player.
Dial is quoted as:
The runs are rated above average at position. The offense is XR, park-adjusted, and specific to the number of outs a player has used up. Baseball-Reference tweaked their league batting pages to provide all the necessary categories in one place to calculate Extrapolated Runs, so this will be much easier than in yea’s past to generate. Thanks, Sean! The defense is DRS (Defensive Runs Saved: ZR converted to runs), explained in my previous work. It is runs, not plays, above average. The units are the same, so I simply add the numbers together. The decimal places are for consistency’s sake, not meant to represent accuracy. There are several runs of give in these (and any) numbers, offense or defense. Also, for defense, actual chances are used instead of estimated, as those are now available.
You can find the full OPD spreadsheet, right here.
Of course, we should be wondering, how did the 2008 Giants fair in this system? Not very well. Let’s take a quick look at a few numbers from the Giants, courtesy of Dial, and then I’ll leave you to browse the numbers yourself.
Top 5 Giants by OPD:
These look about right. Winn was the best Giants position player with Molina and Lewis right behind him. How amusing is that Denker is #4 on the list? The guy we just jettisoned for nothing. The Denker bus has lost a wheel! Nate was #5 and had fine, but brief, season with the Giants this year hitting: .320/.370/.493 in 81 PA’s. Beware Nate’s 3 total BB’s and his .348 BABIP before you pencil him in as the starting RF in ’09.
Now, let’s look at the bottom 5 Giants by OPD:
The ‘Dude That Hit Doubles’ really didn’t hit enough doubles to raise his value. Castillo’s -24.2 runs below average rank him as the worst Giant and one of the worst players in the National League. Only Jeff Keppinger (-26.4 runs), Michael Bourn (-34.2 runs), and Jeff Francoeur (-41.6 runs) were worse. Bowker and Aurilia also rank poorly on our list but they aren’t helped by qualifying as first basemen, thus raising their offensive requirements. Velez isn’t very good and Ochoa was awful in his time with the Giants. Good lord, I just looked at Ochoa’s stats for the first time since the end of the season and I must have had a mini-stroke somewhere along the way because I had completely forgot about how terrible they were. Ochoa hit: .200/.244/.267 in 135 PA’s for the Giants while playing near average defense at SS. That’s an OPS+ of 35.
Other notables: CF Aaron Rowand (-8.4), Omar Vizquel (-8.6), Brian Bocock (-7.8), Dave Roberts (-2.5), Travis Ishikawa (-2.5), and Manny Burriss (-0.2).
Dial also includes a nice feature in his spreadsheet that shows you the total OPD by position and team. The Giants had the lowest team OPD in the National League with a score of -103.2 runs. The Giants also had the worst production in the NL from the following positions: 1B (-40.3), 3B (-31.9), and SS (-29.4). These are the positions that the Giants must improve on in the future if they want to get back into the playoffs, or at least finish higher than 4th place.