Archive for the Uncategorized Category

Orioles on Pace for a 162-0 Season

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on April 3, 2013 by oriolesprovingground

The Orioles won their first game of the season last night, putting them on pace to finish the season undefeated.  They thoroughly embarrassed Tampa Bay 7-4, and it could have been much worse if they hadn’t shown the Rays mercy by choosing to leave an additional 8 runners on base.  Basically the only thing left to do is for the American League to win the All-Star game so the Orioles will have home field advantage in the World Series…not that they would need it.


Posted in Glossary, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 22, 2013 by oriolesprovingground

Below are some definitions for some statistics that I will refer to over the next couple of posts (and most future posts).  I’m going to assume that everyone is familiar with more traditional statistics such as OBP, SLG, ERA, etc, but not necessarily familiar with some of the newer sabermetric statistics that both of my grandfathers would probably hate (my Dad may even hate them as well…I’ll ask him and provide an update at a future time).  All of these definitions are taken directly from Fangraphs, and if you would like to investigate them further, head over to the Fangraphs library page for more detailed explanations, as well as how these statistics are calculated.

BABIP (Batting Average in Balls in Play)Batting Average on Balls in Play measures how many of a batter’s balls in play go for hits.  Typically around 30% of all balls in play fall for hits.  There are three main variables that can affect BABIP rates for individual players: Defense, Luck, and Changes in Talent Level.

wOBA (weighted On Base Average) – Weighted On-Base Average combines all the different aspects of hitting into one metric, weighting each of them in proportion to their actual run value. While batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage fall short in accuracy and scope, wOBA measures and captures offensive value more accurately and comprehensively.  It is set to the same scale as OBP, so league-average wOBA in a given year should be very close to the league-average OBP.

UBR (Ultimate Base Running) – Ultimate Base Running is FanGraph’s way of accounting for the value a player adds to their team via base running. This value is determined using linear weights, with each individual base running event receiving a specific run value.

WAR (Wins Above Replacement) – Wins Above Replacement is an attempt by the sabermetric baseball community to summarize a player’s total contributions to their team in one statistic.  WAR basically looks at a player and asks the question, “If this player got injured and their team had to replace them with a minor leaguer or someone from their bench, how much value would the team be losing?” This value is expressed in a wins format, so we could say that Player X is worth +6.3 wins to their team while Player Y is only worth +3.5 wins.

FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching)Fielding Independent Pitching measures what a player’s ERA should have looked like over a given time period, assuming that performance on balls in play and timing were league average.  FIP’s concept is based on the idea that pitchers have little control over balls hit in play.  A better way to assess a pitcher’s talent level is by looking at results a pitcher can control: strikeouts, walks, hit by pitches, and homeruns.  It is set to the same scale as ERA, so a league average FIP in a given year should be the same as the league average ERA.

UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating) – Ultimate Zone Rating puts a run value to defense, attempting to quantify how many runs a player saved or gave up through their fielding prowess (or lack thereof).  Components that make up UZR include outfield arm strength, infielder ability to turn the double play, the range of the fielder, and errors committed.  UZR/150 is UZR, scaled to 150 games.  As with any advanced defensive statistic, UZR contains a lot of uncertainty, especially in small sample sizes.


Posted in Uncategorized on March 11, 2013 by oriolesprovingground

Welcome to Orioles Proving Ground, a new baseball blog that focuses primarily on the Baltimore Orioles, but may occasionally delve into other general baseball topics from around the league.  My goal for this website is to provide objective analysis of the Baltimore Orioles organization, including everything from the lowest level prospects in the minor leagues, up to the front office.  Not only do I hope to provide some interesting information for prospective readers that happen to stop by, but I also hope to learn something new about baseball along the way.  Once the regular season starts, I’m planning on posting something about once a week.  We’ll see how that goes…

As for me, my name is Nate, and as result of growing up in southeast/central Pennsylvania, I am a fan of the Philadelphia Phillies.  I chose to focus on the Orioles for several reasons.

  • Living in the DC/Baltimore area would allow for easy access to televised and/or live games
  • I recently spent a summer working for the team as a minor league video coordinator, so my current first-hand knowledge of their minor league system is better than any other team
  • I felt I could not write about the Phillies without getting emotional (more anger than crying, but honestly, maybe a little of both) and making subjective arguments
  • I felt like I couldn’t write about the Washington Nationals, since they are currently a model franchise and will likely be one of the many reasons for the Phillies not making the playoffs for several years (with the Phillies front office doing a great job making sure they’re not in the playoffs for several years)

So there you have it.  In the coming weeks before the regular season, look for posts that attempt to tackle the Orioles offseason (or lack of) and the arbitration process.  Also look for mediocre writing skills and bad jokes.  As we get deeper into the season, we’ll also try to get some guest authors in here as well.  See you next week!