Posted Under: Stat of the Week
Last week we started to look at Plate Discipline and look at O-Swing %, Z-Swing % and Swing %. You’ll remember that:
O-Swing% stands for the pitches swung at that are outside of the strike zone, Z-Swing% stands for the percentage of pitches a batter swings at inside the strike zone and Swing% represents the total number of pitches a batter swings at when they’re at the plate.
Today we’ll look at the other side of plate discipline with Contact%, along with O-Contact% and Z-Contact%. Similar to the swing percentages, when we look at O-Contact% we’re seeing the percentage of how many times a batter makes contact with a pitch when it is outside of the strike zone (we’ll look Thursday at Vladimir Guerrero’s O-Contact% since he was the most prolific player of his time to make contact with pitches outside of the strike zone) and Z-Contact% measures the amount of pitches a batter hits on balls in the strike zone.
According to FanGraphs the MLB average for each contact statistic is:
It is surprising to see that the MLB average for Contact% is 81%, which means that over 4 out of 5 times a players swings the bat, they are making contact. This also means that pitchers with high strike swinging percentages will undoubtedly have higher strikeout percentages with batters being less likely to make contact to get a hit or get out.
Thursday we’ll look at some of the top hitters and top pitchers of the 2012 season and see if there is a correlation between Swing% and Contact% and try to find what ratio helps determine whether a batter or pitcher will have an extraordinary season.