Proposing A New Stat for Slappers
This is a proposal I think has been a long time coming, and one that is sure to be cheered by every lefty slapper and her parents. It’s a new stat that helps measure the effectiveness of slappers at doing their job – getting on base.
The problem slappers have always had with the current scoring system is that it doesn’t accurately reflect their ability to get on base. Under the current system, if a slapper reaches base every at bat by hitting the ball in a way that it bounces off the shortstop’s or third baseman’s glove each time, and that contact is scored as an error, her batting average and on-base percentage will be .000.
That’s correct. It’s .000. That just doesn’t seem right.
Reaching base on an error doesn’t help either statistic. So when you’re looking at who should be where in the lineup, and using stats to make your decision (as so many coaches are wont to do these days), that poor slapper doesn’t show very well.
That’s why I’m proposing a new stat called GOBA – Got On Base Anyway. GOBA would count the number of times the slapper reached based because she hit a ball that was too tough to handle and either beat the throw or there was no throw.
Think about it in terms of our poor girl with a BA and OPB of .000. If you look at her GOBA, it would be 1.000. That tells you she belongs at the top of the lineup rather than lurking somewhere in the low-middle.
You want her getting more at bats because she gets on base. Every. Single. Time.
Now, there would have to be some training and qualifications to make GOBA work. For example, everything a slapper hits doesn’t count as GOBA, otherwise the stat is useless. For example, if she hits a soft ground ball or easy popup that should have been fielded for an out with normal effort, it’s still an out.
With a hard ground ball, especially to the side, a little more judgment would be involved. But still. What you’d be looking for is those contacts that would have been an out with anyone else, but ended up with the hitter on base due to her speed.
In other words, even if a fielder had a little trouble once the ball in was play a right-handed hitter, or a lefty with normal speed, would have been out. But this particular hitter, as a result of the wonders of slapping, managed to be safe. She Got On Base Anyway.
What do you think? Does this idea have merit? Would it make for a more fair assessment of the effectiveness of slappers than simply relying on BA and OBP? If so, let’s get a movement going!
No matter which side you’re on, if you have some thoughts about this idea leave them in the comments below. Just remember to be kind to others.
Posted on July 24, 2018, in Hitting and tagged GOBA, Lefties, Slap hitters, Slapping, statistics. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.
Using the same logic a power hitter who lines the ball off the third baseman should have the same benefit as your skipper.
I use OBE / AB to rectifying this – that tells you who puts the ball in play and get on base.
I am not familiar with OBE. What is that?
Sounds good to me!
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Sorry, but that’s a solution in search of a problem. There’s no difference between a slapper hitting a ball that goes off a shortstop’s glove and a power hitter’s grounder that goes off the same fielder’s glove. An error is an error. A hit is a hit. It’s always going to be a subjective decision by the official scorer as to whether the fielder had a chance to make the play or not. Slappers should not get special treatment by scorers. Earn your way on base…
I think I recognize that slapper Ken…;)
Also the work of the photographer!
I agree- if the slapper out runs the throw in 3 seconds that should be a hit all the way! An error is obvious but if the slapper uses her technique right then she could be credited with a hit!
Laura, to me part of the reason for slapping at all is to put pressure on the defense and cause them to make mistakes as a result. So even if there is a bobble or a rushed throw that goes awry because of the speed I’m thinking it should be scored a hit. It’s a judgment call but so are a lot of things in our sport. If the error likely wouldn’t have occurred with any other hitter I say give credit where it’s due!