The Toughest Formula

SOM Secret on Pitcher's Hit Requires Guessing


Let's Formulate It!

This is one in a series of articles on forecast­ing Strat-O-Matic baseball cards. Bruce Bundy has been at it since 1968 and says he achieves up to 95 percent accuracy. But keep in mind that only the game company has the correct formulas, that many of them rely on statistics not readily available and that some ratings are subjective.

Comments should be directed to: Let's For­mulate It!, c/o Bruce Bundy, 4474 Outlook Dr., Brooklyn, OH 44144

 

By Bruce Bundy

Of the 30-odd formulas this series will eventually provide, the one for the hit chances off the pitcher’s card has been the most difficult.  It has been so for 20 years.  After building and rebuilding this formula we have this: A new formula, untested by time, but one which should be 95 percent accurate 95 percent of the time.

As always, we expect to keep refining our work and are eager for the suggestions of other formulators out there to achieve even greater accuracy.

FORMUlA # 16a: PITCHER'S HIT

psomH = (((h * (168 - psomW))/TBF) - ((78 - psomW) * .265)) + ((((2 * opp.BA) -.265) * 30) - 4.9

Pitcher’s somHit equals (((hits yielded times (168 minus pitcher’s som WALK)) divided by Total Batters Faced) minus ((78 minus pitcher’s som WALK)) times .265) times 30) minus 4.9

How it works: The formula breaks into two parts; hits allowed from the 78 non-X-CHART chances on each pitcher's card and hits allowed from the 30 x-CHART chances.

The 168 in this formula is what's left of the 216 combined pitcher/batter card chances. minus 30 X-CHART. 9 batter's walk (use the same number as the year's average batter). and 9 chances I'm not sure of. (For advanced cards, subtract 1 from the 168 to reflect HBP.)

The .265 is the league batting average (this will change from year to year - use the same figure for figuring both the batter's hit and the pitcher's hit chances and league to league. For advanced you will need leftv-righty league averages).

The 4.9 is the average number of hits yielded from the X-CHART.

 

X-CHART VALUES By Position (with chances from Pitcher’s card)

FLDG

P (2)

C (3)

1B (2)

2B (6)

3B (3)

SS (7)

LF (2)

CF (3)

RF (2)

1

0.00

0.15

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

000

000

2

0.20

0.15

0.20

0.60

0.30

0.70

0.30

045

030

3

0.30

0.15

0.40

1.20

0.60

1.40

0.60

0.90

0.60

4

0.40

0.15

0.60

1.80

090

2 .10

1.10

1.45

1.10

5

0.60

0.15

0.80

2.40

1.20

2.80

1. 50

2.25

1.50

AVG

0.30

0.15

0.30

0.90

0.45

1.05

0.50

0.75

0.50

Each position has a 1-5 fielding rating, followed by the actual amount of hits surrendered. For instance, any "2" infielder surrenders two hits in 20 fielding-chart splits, or, .10; multiply that by the chances and you get .20 for a firstbaseman, .60 for a secondbaseman, and so on.

The A stands for the Average of ratings 1-4. The 5 rating doesn't figure in the average, since. so far, it only represents players out of position. All pitchers are 2s.

When you total the averages for all positions. the average X­CHART yield is 4.90 hits out of the 30 possible X-CHART chances.  Here's how each 1991 American League team's fielding converts into X-CHART hits:

1991 TEAM

P

C

lB

2B

3B

55

LF

CF

RF

TOTAL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

2.

4

;-li~

.A.

2

3

.4

2

 

DETROIT

2

3

4

2

2

2

3

1

3

4.05

NEWYORK

2

3

t

~

3

4

3

-

.4,
4

-

2

1

540

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

T~

 

 

 

 

i

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CALIFORNIA

 

2

-2

.
2

2

2

4

3

4

5.40

KANSAS CITY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

535

OAKLAND

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ThXAS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ALpX 1991 Average' 4 ti per team

How it works: Subtract the ALpX average l'r()m the team total and add the difference at the end of the PITCHER'S HIT formula. Result: A pitcher with above-average defense will bear more of the brunt of his hits allowed on his own card than the pitcher whose defense is more porous. Therefore, two pitchers with identical stats. but for different teams, may have different hit chances.

These ratings reflect a composite of the starters at every position. with the influence of part-timers. These are estimated ratings. not an exact accounting for every player's playing time.

For instance, Texas' ratings assume that Juan Gonzalez (a 2 in LF, a 3 in CF) shares time in LF with a host of4s and in CF with Gary Pettis (a I). It's not as precise as what SOM uses. but it series the purpose of comparing a team's defensive ability versus the average.

Note that the average of all these ratings is 4.88 per team. compared to the 4.90 average we cited earlier as the average x-CHART yield. On balance, the league-wide average should be. and is, average.

If you don't have all the stats in the formula above. here is a short-form that yields 90 percent-plus accuracy about 90 percent of the time.

    when it's wrong. it can go way wrong. So be warned.

 

  FORMULA # 16h: PITCHER'S HIT

pHIT = (((oppBA - .265) + oppBA) * ( 78 - sompW ) -5.25

PITCHER'S HIT equals (((the opponents batting average minus .263 ) plus the opponents hitting average ) times ( 78 minus the pitcher's SOM walk result ) -5.25

 

How it works: This is equivalent to the hitter's formula, where .265 is a general league average and the 78 is the 108 chances on every card, minus the 30 X-CHART chances. The 5.25 was the best X­CHART compensation number through trial and error.

Next outing we return to normal. highly efficient prognosticating.

 

Next month: Pitcher's DOUBLE, TRIPLE, and HOMERUN.