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Weeks vs. Braun (OBP)


ILuvDaBush
By the end of the year, who will have a higher OBP, Weeks or Braun? As it sits right now, Weeks has him by 10 points, but many Braun fans think he will develop a better eye at the plate and adjust a bit to raise his OBP, as he is still a young pup. Rickie, on the other hand, has been the model of consistency with his OBP skills, sometimes even at the expense of his batting average. Many "fair weather fans" around the state dismiss me when I tell them that Weeks has a higher OBP than Braun since Braun has ascended to the highest level. So the questions becomes, Who does my brethren believe will have a higher OBP by the end of the season?
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Weeks easily.

 

Braun is batting nearly 90 points higher than Weeks yet Weeks' OBP is 13 points higher. Assuming Weeks gets his average up into the .240-.250 range it's not a stretch to assume his OBP will be in the .370-.380 range. For that to happen with Braun he would either need to drastically improve his BB% from now until the end of the year or bat in the .330-.340 range which is very unlikely to happen.

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The likely hood that Braun develops an eye is much smaller than the likely hood that some of the hard hit balls by Weeks start to fall in to boost his average. I think Weeks will have an OBP of around .375 by the end of the year with Braun more like .330.
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Braun went 62 plate appearances to start the season before taking his first walk. Since then, he's taken nine walks in 135 AB and has a .319/.361/.651 average. That's still a pretty poor walk rate, but more in line with what he did last year and what he'll likely do for the remainder of the season. If he keeps that up then he'll finish the season with about a .350 OBP, which will most likely be lower than Weeks, but I think it will be close.

 

The problem with waiting for some of Weeks' hard hit balls to drop in is that he's actually *not* hitting many hard hit balls. He's got a LD% of just 10.4% and a GB% of 50.7%, both the least amount of line drives and most ground balls on the team this season. For comparison, last season he had a LD% of 17.5% and a GB% of 43.3%, which are about what his career numbers are. Now, he's making A LOT more contact this season, striking out roughly 10% less often than what he's done in the past three seasons, which is a fairly remarkable jump in one season. It's way too early in the season to draw sold conclusions, but you could make a case that his increased effort to put the ball in play has caused him to hit fewer line drives, which in turn is making him hit for a lower average.

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It's way too early in the season to draw sold conclusions, but you could make a case that his increased effort to put the ball in play has caused him to hit fewer line drives, which in turn is making him hit for a lower average.

Thanks for the numbers Herb.

It seems like everyone just points to Weeks' low BABIP as justification that he has had poor luck. While that is true to some extent, there is clearly a difference in BABIP on a weak hitter like Kendall v Braun. I just haven't seen Weeks "drive" that many balls this year. He has had some bad luck, but I doubt he crosses over .250 BA anytime this year.

 

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but many Braun fans think he will develop a better eye at the plate and adjust a bit to raise his OBP, as he is still a young pup.
for what it's worth Braun is only a year older than Rickie. On a perennial contender it's probable rickie would be just a rookie this year, or maybe in his second season.
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Per The Hardball Times

 

Line Drive Percentage. Baseball Info Solutions tracks the trajectory of each batted ball and categorizes it as a groundball, fly ball or line drive. LD% is the percent of batted balls that are line drives. Line drives are not necessarily the hardest hit balls, but they do fall for a hit around 75% of the time.

 

http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/statpages/glossary/

 

If a line dirve falls for a hit approx 75% of the time I would think that hitting more linedrives would lead to a higher BABIP.

 

 

Edit: I will take Weeks to have a higher OBP. I think Braun would have to hit roughly .310+ to maintain a .350 OBP and I am not convinced Braun will hit over .300 yet.

Fan is short for fanatic.

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I'll take Weeks by 5 OBP points.

 

It is astounding how every person who cuts down on Rickie also seems to ignore how important it is not to get out, which is OBP. It is not coincidence Rickie has scored more runs than anyone in the game since he came back from AAA last August...he's simply on base a lot and runs really fast.

 

EDIT: Spelling.

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I have heard his LD% was down multiple times on here. Someone (Ennder?) said there isn't any correlation between LD% and BABIP.

 

Do they just figure LD% from the boxscore in which it says lineout? Anyone know what constitutes a line drive?

 

It isn't that there is no correlation, it is the correlation isn't so strong that you can turn LD% into expected BABIP accurately. LD% is also not a very stable skill, it jumps all over from year to year.
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rotoherb[/b]]The problem with waiting for some of Weeks' hard hit balls to drop in is that he's actually *not* hitting many hard hit balls. He's got a LD% of just 10.4% and a GB% of 50.7%, both the least amount of line drives and most ground balls on the team this season. For comparison, last season he had a LD% of 17.5% and a GB% of 43.3%, which are about what his career numbers are. Now, he's making A LOT more contact this season, striking out roughly 10% less often than what he's done in the past three seasons, which is a fairly remarkable jump in one season. It's way too early in the season to draw sold conclusions, but you could make a case that his increased effort to put the ball in play has caused him to hit fewer line drives, which in turn is making him hit for a lower average.
LD% is based on the percentage of balls put into play. This year Weeks has been striking out less, and a lot of those are probably turning into GBs instead of Ks. That will lower his LD%, but increase his value. You can reach on an error or non-error infield hit, where as a strikeout is an out.

 

I'm not optimistic about the Brewers chances, but remain high on the potential of Rickie.

The poster previously known as Robin19, now @RFCoder

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