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Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Giants Series Preview

Pablo Sandoval: Striking out at career norms!
Photo Credit: S.D. Dirk
Here's the series preview that I wrote for the Giants/Reds series this week.  It included an update to my piece on strikeout rate risers from last month:
I'm pretty sure that, based on his preseason weight reports, this was supposed to be a good Pablo Sandoval year.  He had a really tough first month, and I noted that on May 8th, his strikeout rate had risen as high as 22% while wOBAing 0.240.  He's made a nice turn-around since then, however, and is regressing quickly back up to his career norms.  So, maybe a good year isn't out of the question after all!
The lesson here is that even when you're looking at appropriate sample size (based on Pizza Cutter's study) for a given statistic, there's still plenty of reason to expect players will project more toward their career averages than their most recent rates.  In Sandoval's case, he posted a 20.6% strikeout rate in April, but followed up with a 13% strikeout rate in May.  His career strikeout rate?  13%.

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