Monday, March 7, 2011

Rox Talk - Relief Game Score

Reliever's Game Score
If you know my work then you know I have an interest in Bill James' Game Score (Part I, II, and III). I have a belief that it favors the strike out kings and tends to ignore those finasse pitchers. I even came up with an alternative. Well years ago I wrote myself a note and said what about a relief game score? Sure over the years they have gotten the save and the hold but what about scoring the relief just like the starter? Rate the bullpen for that game much like you do for a starter? So let's start with the game score for starters premise:

1.Start with 50 points.
2.Add 1 point for each out recorded, so 3 points for every complete inning pitched.
3.Add 2 points for each inning completed after the 4th.
4.Add 1 point for each strikeout.
5.Subtract 2 points for each hit allowed.
6.Subtract 4 points for each earned run allowed.
7.Subtract 2 points for each unearned run allowed.
8.Subtract 1 point for each walk.

So if the above works for a starter how might it work for a bullpen? Well to me what is important? Strikeouts! Yeah lots of those. Keeping opponents of base? Yeah amazing how that walk in the 8th inning of tight game can really bite you in the...

So here it goes
1.Start with 50 points (I will get back to this later...)
2.Add 1 point for each out recorded.
3.Add 3 points for each strikeout (how relief should be...short, sweet and to the point)
4.Add 3 points for each inning completed allowing zero runs (include partial innings)
5.Subtract 2 points for each baserunner (baserunners bad...)
6.Subtract 6 points for each earned run allowed or inherited runner to score
7.Subtract 2 points for each unearned run allowed (hey defense gotta help too)

So what does it mean? Well using the 2010 rox bullpen I ran the numbers and for the most part I am pretty pleased. I obviously played around with numbers a bit to make an average bullpen outting approximately 50 - 60 points (the blank game scores indicate a complete game from the starter).

Graphically how does it compare to the Starters? Well below graphs the 2010 Rox starting pitcher's game scores (in red) versus the reliever's game scores (in blue). The distribution looks good although maybe the numbers are a bit high. The average starter game score comes in at 51 while the average relief game score comes in at 59. I could probably manipulate the numbers a bit more to get the average closer to 50 but then maybe our relief squad was pretty good last year. I will track the numbers this year and give it a whirl. Maybe next year I will make some adjustments. Next week I will look at starter and relieve game scores as a component score and see if maybe we should adjust the relief game score a bit more...

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