FanShot

Dewan Updates 1B Scoops Study to Note Opportunities

An earlier fanshot noted a MLB.com story that claimed Todd Helton was the "best scooper" based on a John Dewan "Stat of the Week" which determined that Helton had the most scoops/game during the 2008-2009 seasons. The obvious response was that it's hard to make much sense of scoops/game without knowing something about the number of opportunities. (Think about judging hitters if you only knew how many hits/game they had, and not how many at-bats.) Dewan has updated his study to include opportunities. It now notes both successful scoops that lead to runs as well as scoops of wild throws that keep the runner from advancing past 1st. He lists the leaders not in terms of percentage, but in terms of successful scoops above average during the 2008-2009 seasons. Helton has the 2nd highest total: 7 scoops above average over the two seasons. Giambi is 10th, with 3 scoops above avg. So that's more confirmation of the belief that Helton is an excellent receiver at first base, and also gives one an idea of the value of the skill. We don't know how many of those 7 plays resulted in outs that an average first baseman would not have converted, and how many "merely" saved bases advanced on the bad throw. However, if all 7 plays were outs, that would mean Helton's scooping ability saved about 5-6 runs over the two seasons.

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