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Fielding Effects


All raw data supplied courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com.
They do a wonderful job, and deserve your support.

Fielding Effects

Through games of Saturday, 8 May 2021.
All results are from true, unadjusted data.

The Table shows two lines for each team. The first is their actual stats to date, from Games through Strikeouts; the stats FEbat and FErun—Fielding Efficiency on batters and Fielding Efficiency on runners—are explained on our page here about Team Fielding. The OR stat on this line is the TPP-projected Runs the team would be expected to have yielded to date (for an explanation of the TPP, see our page here about basic Baseball Analysis). The R stat is the TOP-projected team Runs scored to date. The Δ stats are immaterial for this line.

The second Table line for each team is their calculated stats if their defense were MLB-average. The FEbat and FErun values on this line are their MLB-average values (averaged over the three recent years 2017 - 2019). The OR stat on this line is the TPP-projected Runs the team would be expected to have yielded to date based on the average-fielding stat values. And on this line, the Δ stats show the differences in Wins that having an MLB-average defense would gain or lose (the ΔW stat is for the year to date, while the ΔWyr is for a full 162-game season.

Thus, this table shows us what a given team’s defense is doing to help or hurt it. As you see, the average difference is less than 3 wins a season, and that figure is heavily weighted by a very few very bad defenses. (Without the three exceptionally worst, the average difference is just 2 wins a year, and the widest swings from assuming an MLB-average defense are 6 lost by good-fielding teams and gained by poor-fielding teams, with 2/3 of the teams within a couple of wins of average-fielding results.

(Those interested in the tiresome details of the calculations can follow that link to a full explanation.)

We cannot easily disentangle pitching from fielding, because fielding affects pitching results. But, painting with a very broad brush, we can say that at the extremes the fielding-attributable difference in runs allowed is in the range of being equivalent to perhaps a quarter to a third of a run on the team ERA, with the more normal variations amounting to about an eighth of a run. Pretty clearly, on a team level, fielding runs a poor second to pitching in significance for runs allowed, and thus a very poor third to offense. (Recall that offense and defense are each 50% of the game, and defense is part pitching and part fielding.) Since the extremes of team ERA cover about 2.75 runs (in 2020, 3.02 to 5.75) while the extremes of fielding, even including all the outliers, equate to maybe 0.60 on an ERA, their ratio is—and again, this is very, very broad-brush thinking—around 9:2, making fielding perhaps at most around 20% of defense and thus pitching about 80%, meaning that offense is 50% of the game, pitching is 40%, and fielding is at most around 10%, and so of much less importance than either offense or pitching. (Quite as we said almost 40 years ago.)

— Place your cursor over any column heading to see what it signifies. —

Team G IP BFP AB BB HBP SH SF CI H 2B 3B HR SO FEbat FErun OR R       ΔW ΔWyr
Nationals,
with actual fielding
29 252.0 1046 919 102 13 6 6 0 196 31 2 44 243 76.4% 9.09% 111 113 --- ---
Nationals,
assuming average fielding
29 252.0 1085 954 106 13 6 6 0 236 37 2 46 252 70.41% 9.18% 124 113 -2 -8
Giants,
with actual fielding
33 288.2 1182 1064 100 13 1 4 0 225 31 4 32 279 74.54% 7.6% 108 140 --- ---
Giants,
assuming average fielding
33 288.2 1227 1104 104 13 1 4 0 233 32 4 33 290 70.41% 9.18% 119 140 -1 -7
Astros,
with actual fielding
33 290.0 1212 1076 106 21 2 7 0 241 45 3 41 291 73.44% 7.82% 127 150 --- ---
Astros,
assuming average fielding
33 290.0 1258 1117 110 22 2 7 0 250 47 3 43 302 70.41% 9.18% 136 150 -1 -5
Mariners,
with actual fielding
34 294.2 1242 1099 112 19 1 10 1 256 53 2 36 247 73.4% 9.82% 136 121 --- ---
Mariners,
assuming average fielding
34 294.2 1289 1140 116 20 1 10 1 266 55 2 37 256 70.41% 9.18% 144 121 -1 -4
Cardinals,
with actual fielding
34 297.0 1276 1099 140 23 4 10 0 243 54 4 24 278 730% 7.23% 129 139 --- ---
Cardinals,
assuming average fielding
34 297.0 1324 1140 145 24 4 10 0 252 56 4 25 288 70.41% 9.18% 133 139 0 -3
Indians,
with actual fielding
32 284.2 1182 1055 107 13 1 5 1 224 33 4 42 311 74.29% 8.12% 123 120 --- ---
Indians,
assuming average fielding
32 284.2 1227 1095 111 13 1 5 1 232 34 4 44 323 70.41% 9.18% 129 120 -1 -3
Yankees,
with actual fielding
33 297.2 1206 1093 86 13 5 8 1 234 39 4 38 348 72.78% 8.21% 114 134 --- ---
Yankees,
assuming average fielding
33 297.2 1251 1134 89 13 5 8 1 243 40 4 39 361 70.41% 9.18% 117 134 0 -2
Brewers,
with actual fielding
34 303.0 1256 1113 113 20 5 4 1 237 42 8 39 354 72.84% 8.68% 126 131 --- ---
Brewers,
assuming average fielding
34 303.0 1303 1155 117 21 5 4 1 246 44 8 40 367 70.41% 9.18% 129 131 -1 -2
Marlins,
with actual fielding
32 283.2 1171 1041 94 22 6 7 1 230 49 5 31 284 73.07% 11.11% 116 121 --- ---
Marlins,
assuming average fielding
32 283.2 1215 1080 98 23 6 7 1 239 51 5 32 295 70.41% 9.18% 119 121 -1 -2
Orioles,
with actual fielding
33 289.2 1227 1096 108 13 3 7 0 257 40 1 45 276 72.99% 7.49% 139 122 --- ---
Orioles,
assuming average fielding
33 289.2 1273 1137 112 13 3 7 0 267 42 1 47 286 70.41% 9.18% 143 122 -1 -2
Rays,
with actual fielding
35 315.0 1291 1164 100 14 5 8 0 269 60 6 35 319 71.57% 10.82% 128 143 --- ---
Rays,
assuming average fielding
35 315.0 1340 1208 104 15 5 8 0 279 62 6 36 331 70.41% 9.18% 130 143 0 -1
Padres,
with actual fielding
34 306.0 1267 1129 107 22 4 5 0 232 39 6 38 368 73.5% 7.43% 124 135 --- ---
Padres,
assuming average fielding
34 306.0 1315 1172 111 23 4 5 0 241 40 6 39 382 70.41% 9.18% 126 135 0 -1
Pirates,
with actual fielding
32 273.0 1156 1015 107 15 5 14 0 235 49 5 33 268 72.44% 8.67% 131 116 --- ---
Pirates,
assuming average fielding
32 273.0 1200 1053 111 16 5 15 0 244 51 5 34 278 70.41% 9.18% 132 116 0 -1
Twins,
with actual fielding
32 279.1 1182 1056 97 15 4 8 2 255 51 2 45 265 72.3% 8.75% 139 149 --- ---
Twins,
assuming average fielding
32 279.1 1227 1096 101 16 4 8 2 265 53 2 47 275 70.41% 9.18% 142 149 0 -1
Dodgers,
with actual fielding
34 306.0 1267 1140 100 13 6 7 1 253 38 3 38 340 72.26% 7.18% 128 169 --- ---
Dodgers,
assuming average fielding
34 306.0 1315 1183 104 13 6 7 1 263 39 3 39 353 70.41% 9.18% 130 169 0 -1
Reds,
with actual fielding
31 277.0 1200 1038 133 15 4 10 0 239 45 5 41 300 72.15% 6.82% 143 143 --- ---
Reds,
assuming average fielding
31 277.0 1245 1077 138 16 4 10 0 248 47 5 43 311 70.41% 9.18% 143 143 0 0
White Sox,
with actual fielding
31 267.1 1111 992 95 9 5 6 4 215 29 4 28 310 71.88% 7.21% 106 143 --- ---
White Sox,
assuming average fielding
31 267.1 1153 1029 99 9 5 6 4 223 30 4 29 322 70.41% 9.18% 105 143 0 +1
Mets,
with actual fielding
28 234.1 959 862 71 12 4 7 3 188 35 5 17 268 70.92% 9.86% 85 106 --- ---
Mets,
assuming average fielding
28 234.1 995 894 74 12 4 7 3 195 36 5 18 278 70.41% 9.18% 83 106 0 +2
Blue Jays,
with actual fielding
32 277.2 1164 1055 90 15 2 2 0 254 54 4 40 272 71.35% 11.02% 132 140 --- ---
Blue Jays,
assuming average fielding
32 277.2 1208 1095 93 16 2 2 0 264 56 4 42 282 70.41% 9.18% 130 140 0 +2
Diamondbacks,
with actual fielding
33 288.2 1258 1115 109 13 8 12 1 286 55 10 45 270 70.61% 6.22% 163 159 --- ---
Diamondbacks,
assuming average fielding
33 288.2 1305 1157 113 13 8 12 1 297 57 10 47 280 70.41% 9.18% 157 159 +1 +3
Cubs,
with actual fielding
33 291.0 1296 1114 140 30 4 8 0 275 48 3 45 303 70.44% 7.03% 168 141 --- ---
Cubs,
assuming average fielding
33 291.0 1345 1156 145 31 4 8 0 285 50 3 47 314 70.41% 9.18% 161 141 0 +3
Tigers,
with actual fielding
34 286.2 1283 1128 134 12 3 6 0 290 58 3 47 256 70.86% 5.79% 175 110 --- ---
Tigers,
assuming average fielding
34 286.2 1331 1170 139 12 3 6 0 301 60 3 49 266 70.41% 9.18% 168 110 +1 +3
Royals,
with actual fielding
32 280.0 1217 1069 124 10 3 11 0 264 54 6 36 276 70.43% 7.6% 148 131 --- ---
Royals,
assuming average fielding
32 280.0 1263 1109 129 10 3 11 0 274 56 6 37 286 70.41% 9.18% 142 131 +1 +3
Phillies,
with actual fielding
34 299.0 1270 1140 100 16 8 6 0 278 55 5 43 308 70.73% 8.13% 144 133 --- ---
Phillies,
assuming average fielding
34 299.0 1318 1183 104 17 8 6 0 288 57 5 45 320 70.41% 9.18% 139 133 0 +3
Rangers,
with actual fielding
35 311.2 1324 1205 92 13 3 8 3 309 60 5 50 297 70.2% 8.25% 162 146 --- ---
Rangers,
assuming average fielding
35 311.2 1374 1250 95 13 3 8 3 321 62 5 52 308 70.41% 9.18% 157 146 0 +3
Braves,
with actual fielding
33 288.1 1271 1108 128 16 9 8 2 281 54 5 47 311 69.49% 6.02% 163 143 --- ---
Braves,
assuming average fielding
33 288.1 1319 1150 133 17 9 8 2 292 56 5 49 323 70.41% 9.18% 155 143 0 +4
Athletics,
with actual fielding
35 309.0 1333 1210 98 14 2 9 0 307 59 4 37 300 69.46% 4.69% 155 143 --- ---
Athletics,
assuming average fielding
35 309.0 1383 1256 102 15 2 9 0 319 61 4 38 311 70.41% 9.18% 145 143 +1 +5
Rockies,
with actual fielding
33 281.0 1258 1092 134 9 12 10 1 295 60 11 41 254 68.99% 8.19% 175 138 --- ---
Rockies,
assuming average fielding
33 281.0 1305 1133 139 9 12 10 1 306 62 11 43 264 70.41% 9.18% 162 138 +1 +6
Red Sox,
with actual fielding
34 300.1 1287 1144 114 18 4 7 0 281 62 4 24 324 68.15% 8.31% 139 170 --- ---
Red Sox,
assuming average fielding
34 300.1 1335 1187 118 19 4 7 0 292 64 4 25 336 70.41% 9.18% 126 170 +2 +7
Angels,
with actual fielding
32 282.2 1265 1106 134 14 2 8 1 278 53 3 36 337 67.43% 5.01% 164 145 --- ---
Angels,
assuming average fielding
32 282.2 1313 1148 139 15 2 8 1 288 55 3 37 350 70.41% 9.18% 143 145 +2 +10




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This page was last modified on Sunday, 9 May 2021, at 1:27 pm Pacific Time.