MLB Advanced Analytics: wOBA-xwOBA Pitching Update
Mike Alexander breaks down wOBA vs. xwOBA for pitchers and how it can be used as a tool to predict regression to the mean.
Last week we examined Weighted On-Base Average minus Expected Weighted On-Base Average (wOBA-xwOBA) for hitters. It also a great tool for pitchers now that the sample has become larger. An xwOBA higher than wOBA indicates luck on balls in play. A higher wOBA means a pitcher is having poor luck to some extent.
Here is the leaderboard of wOBA-xwOBA for a minimum of 1000 pitches.
James Paxton could be getting bad luck due to playing home games in Yankee Stadium. It should impact a LHP less, but it’s still a hitters park.
Dylan Bundy tends to be too hittable at times. His bad starts are probably skewing things.
Could Yusei Kikuchi be settling in as an effective off-speed pitcher? He’s getting good results for his underlying metrics.
Drew Smyly is with a new team and has a new lease on the 2019 season. It’s interesting that luck has been on his side so far.
Here are the pitchers getting a bit more luck than the batted balls...