2017 OPS as the Superior Indicator
By Joe Gavazzi
Winning Sports Advice
In the last 4 MLB seasons I have authored numerous articles on the Sabermetric Indices that most accurately reflect a team’s W/L record. After numerous efforts and use of multiple indicators, I came to the clear conclusion that OPS is the best indicator of MLB success. That is true of both batting, pitching, and overall team success. To once again verify that was the case in 2017, I am presenting the final pitching and batting ratings of each team with my unique rating system. Just to refresh your memory, OPS is the joint measure of a team’s OBP (On Base %) and SLG (Slugging %).
Before getting to the chart and the conclusions I would like to relay other off-season work I did in MLB regarding the OPS Plus. OPS Plus takes into account other variables, such as home/road dichotomies, then translates them into a power rating index where the average is approximately 100. Eager to check its merits I put it to the usual test against the OPS ratings. The OPS Plus measurements failed miserably. Only 11 of the ranking numbers came within 5 position ranks of the W/L rank of the 30 MLB teams. 16 of them, more than half, fell 8 or more positions away from the true W/L rank. I strongly advice against using these OPS Plus ratings for handicapping purposes.
Returning to our check of our 2017 OPS ratings for 2017 I present the chart below. All teams are ranked from top to bottom with their year to date W/L records ranked from 1 to 30. In the next column I present a team’s batting OPS, this is followed by a pitching OPS which includes both starters and relief pitchers. BECAUSE A LOWER OPS IS BETTER FOR PITCHERS I then invert that number so that the better numbers are represented by the better rank. I then add the batting ops plus the inverted pitching ops with the sum of that ops in a separate column I rank it from 1 to 30. By comparing that rank with the year to date W/L rank (in the third column of the chart) I can see which teams most accurately performed to their OPS levels last year as well as judging the overall efficiency of the OPS.
|Team||2017 W/||2017 Rank||Batting OPS||Pitching OPS||Inverted Pitching OPS||Sum OPS||Rank of SUM||Rank Diff|
It is not surprising to me that my method of using OPS ratings has again proven to be an outstanding success in the 2017 season. 14 OF THE 30 TEAMS RANK DIF FELL WITHIN 2 POSITIONS OF THEIR FINAL W/L RANK. AND NO RANK DIFF WAS FURTHER THAN 6 POSITIONS FROM THEIR FINAL 2017 W/L RANK.
Beginning May 1st I will begin to use these OPS numbers as a way to predict a team’s future success or failure. Stay tuned for these periodic articles which have led to huge success in recent seasons.