Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
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The 2010 Season as seen through the Prism of Player Won-Lost Records



Next in my continuing series of looking at individual seasons through the prism of Player won-lost records is the 2010 season.

The Best of 2010

I calculate Player won-lost records two ways: pWins, which tie to team wins and eWins, which control for context and the ability of one's teammates. For players with more pWins than eWins, their Player wins contributed to more team wins than one might expect; for players with more eWins than pWins, just the opposite is true: their Player wins translated into fewer team wins than expected. Or more briefly: a player with more pWins than eWins was better in context, a player with more eWins than pWins was worse in context.

The top 10 players in pWins above Positional Average and Replacement Level were as follows.

pWins over Positional Average
Top 10 Players
          pWins over Replacement Level
Top 10 Players
Player pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL           Player pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL
1Robinson Cano22.917.13.2
4.7
1Robinson Cano22.917.13.2
4.7
2Roy Halladay17.012.53.0
4.4
2Roy Halladay17.012.53.0
4.4
3Joey Votto20.512.72.9
4.2
3Ubaldo Jimenez17.112.72.9
4.3
4Ubaldo Jimenez17.112.72.9
4.3
4Jayson Werth23.816.92.8
4.3
5C.C. Sabathia16.110.92.8
4.2
5C.C. Sabathia16.110.92.8
4.2
6Jayson Werth23.816.92.8
4.3
6Joey Votto20.512.72.9
4.2
7Josh Hamilton20.614.62.8
4.1
7Josh Hamilton20.614.62.8
4.1
8Evan Longoria20.715.42.7
4.0
8Evan Longoria20.715.42.7
4.0
9Albert Pujols22.114.72.7
4.0
9Albert Pujols22.114.72.7
4.0
10Troy Tulowitzki19.314.62.6
3.9
10David Ortiz16.010.92.3
3.9


The top 10 players in eWins above Positional Average and Replacement Level were as follows.

eWins over Positional Average
Top 10 Players
          eWins over Replacement Level
Top 10 Players
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA eWORL           Player eWins eLosses eWOPA eWORL
1Josh Hamilton21.314.63.1
4.5
1Josh Hamilton21.314.63.1
4.5
2Adam Wainwright15.111.32.6
3.9
2Jose 'Joey Bats' Bautista22.617.22.4
3.9
3Cliff P. Lee13.88.92.6
3.8
3Adam Wainwright15.111.32.6
3.9
4Troy Tulowitzki19.114.72.4
3.7
4Cliff P. Lee13.88.92.6
3.8
5Joey Votto20.013.32.4
3.6
5Ubaldo Jimenez15.912.62.4
3.7
6Jose 'Joey Bats' Bautista22.617.22.4
3.9
6Felix Hernandez15.911.82.3
3.7
7Jered Weaver14.810.62.4
3.7
7Troy Tulowitzki19.114.72.4
3.7
8Ubaldo Jimenez15.912.62.4
3.7
8Jered Weaver14.810.62.4
3.7
9Albert Pujols21.614.92.3
3.7
9Albert Pujols21.614.92.3
3.7
10Felix Hernandez15.911.82.3
3.7
10Joey Votto20.013.32.4
3.6


Comparing the above tables, there are a couple of player comparisons that seemed interesting enough to look a little further.
Robinson Cano vs. Josh Hamilton
The top players in the above tables finished 1st and 3rd in AL MVP voting in 2010. The table below compares Robinson Cano and Josh Hamilton in and out of context.

Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
Robinson Cano
160
22.917.10.5733.2
4.7
20.917.30.5472.03.5
Josh Hamilton
133
20.614.60.5852.8
4.1
21.314.60.5933.14.5


Looking at batting splits for Hamilton and Cano at Baseball-Reference, it's not immediately obvious why Cano gains on (and passes) Hamilton when their performances are put into context.

One place where Hamilton loses some ground is in his fielding statistics, which were a bit worse in context than out of it. As one example, two of Hamilton's four errors took place in multi-run innings in Rangers losses (although neither led directly to an unearned run).

Roy Halladay vs. Adam Wainwright
The top two pitchers in the above tables finished 1st and 2nd in NL Cy Young voting. The next table compares Roy Halladay and Adam Wainwright in versus out of context.

Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
Roy Halladay
33
17.012.50.5753.0
4.4
15.913.70.5381.93.3
Adam Wainwright
37
16.013.60.5412.1
3.4
15.111.30.5712.63.9


For the 2010 season, batters put up a batting line of .224/.274/.330 against Adam Wainwright, an OPS of .604. In contrast, batters hit .245/.271/.373 against Roy Halladay, an OPS of .645.

Wainwright's performance got progressively worse, however, as the leverage increased. His OPS-allowed was .702/.598/.581 in high/medium/low-leverage situations.

Halladay's performance was just the opposite, with an OPS-allowed of .537/.594/.728 in high/medium/low-leverage situations.

This difference shows up in the two pitchers' earned run averages, with Halladay's and Wainwright's ERAs ending up virtually identical (2.44 for Halladay, 2.42 for Wainwright - counting unearned runs, their average runs per 9 innings are freakishly similar: 2.6569 for Halladay, 2.6570 for Wainwright).

The results are that Wainwright looks better when context is neutralized, while Halladay looks better when their performances are put into context.

One other player of note in 2010 was Joey Bautista who enjoyed a breakout season in 2010. I have previously written about Bautista.

2010 Postseason

The 2010 postseason saw a couple of firsts. The Texas Rangers made the World Series for the first time in team history while the San Francisco Giants won their first World Championship since moving to San Francisco in 1958.

The best postseason performers, overall and by round, are shown in the next four tables.

2010 Postseason: Total
pWins pLosses pWORL
Tim LincecumSFN3.21.71.1
Cody RossSFN3.11.31.0
Cliff P. LeeTEX3.32.20.9


Top postseason players by round were as follows.

2010 Postseason: World Series
pWins pLosses pWORL
Edgar RenteriaSFN1.40.40.6
Tim LincecumSFN1.20.60.4

2010 Postseason: League Championship Series
pWins pLosses pWORL
Cody RossSFN1.40.50.5
Cliff P. LeeTEX1.00.20.5
Colby LewisTEX1.10.50.4
Brian WilsonSFN0.80.30.3
Bengie MolinaTEX0.70.20.3
Josh HamiltonTEX1.10.70.3
Elvis AndrusTEX1.10.80.3

2010 Postseason: Division Series
pWins pLosses pWORL
Cliff P. LeeTEX1.50.60.6
Tim LincecumSFN1.10.20.5
Roy HalladayPHI0.90.20.4
Cole HamelsPHI0.90.30.4


Best of 2010 by Factor and Position

Next, let's look at the top players in (context-neutral, teammate-adjusted) eWins over Positional Average in various aspects of the game.
Best by Factor: Batting, Baserunning, Pitching, Fielding
There are four basic factors for which players earn Player won-lost records: Batting, Baserunning, Pitching, and Fielding. The top players in 2010 in eWOPA by factor were as follows.

Batting
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Joey Votto16.510.03.0
Jose 'Joey Bats' Bautista15.910.32.8

Positional Average excludes pitcher offense



Baserunning
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Michael Bourn2.01.10.5
Juan Pierre2.41.50.4
Rajai Davis1.81.00.4
Brett Gardner1.60.90.4

Positional Average excludes pitcher offense



Pitching
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Cliff P. Lee12.18.33.8
Ubaldo Jimenez13.310.13.3
Jered Weaver13.010.03.0
Adam Wainwright12.09.03.0
C.C. Sabathia12.39.52.8
Felix Hernandez13.710.92.8


Fielding, P
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Randy Wolf0.50.20.4


Fielding, C
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Matt Wieters1.81.20.6


Fielding, 1B
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Adrian Gonzalez3.42.60.8


Fielding, 2B
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Chase Utley4.64.00.6


Fielding, 3B
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Chase Headley5.03.81.2


Fielding, SS
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Cliff Pennington6.75.70.9


Fielding, LF
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Brett Gardner3.92.51.4


Fielding, CF
eWins eLosses Net Wins
B.J. Upton5.64.80.8


The next table shows the top 10 single-season player winning percentages for Fielding won-lost records in center field for players who earned at least 2.0 fielding eWins in center field in the season since 1939.

Fielding, CF
Best Single-Season Winning Percentages
eWins eLosses Win Pct. Net Wins
Buddy Bradford19712.21.10.6671.1
Ken L. Hunt19642.61.40.6431.2
Mickey Rivers19713.82.20.6361.6
Carl Furillo19484.22.60.6151.6
Del Unser19724.12.60.6101.5
John Shelby19863.01.90.6101.1
Lorenzo Cain20122.21.40.6080.8
Al Kaline19652.71.70.6030.9
Duke Snider19534.83.20.6001.6
Leonys Martin20154.53.00.5981.5


Fielding, RF
eWins eLosses Net Wins
Jay Bruce6.45.11.3


Best by Position
Next, we look at 2010 Major-League leaders in eWOPA by position. The figures shown here only include Player decisions earned while playing this particular position, and include no contextual adjustments (expected or actual).



Catcher
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Joe Mauer12.19.91.5


First Base
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Joey Votto19.813.52.2


Second Base
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Robinson Cano20.717.31.9


Third Base
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Evan Longoria19.315.22.1


Shortstop
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Troy Tulowitzki18.914.92.3


Left Field
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Josh Hamilton15.410.12.4


Center Field
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Colby Rasmus15.913.51.0
Curtis Granderson14.913.01.0


Right Field
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Nelson R. Cruz14.510.81.6


Starting Pitcher
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Cliff P. Lee12.38.62.0
Ubaldo Jimenez13.710.41.8
Adam Wainwright12.39.11.8


Relief Pitcher
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Hong-Chih Kuo3.51.90.7
Joaquin Benoit3.41.90.7
Neftali Feliz4.12.60.7


For relief pitchers, context-neutral records may not be the best measure of how good they are, as context can matter a great deal, depending on how a pitcher is used. Here are the top relief pitchers of 2010 in context, in terms of pWins and pWOPA.

Top Relief Pitchers of 2010, based on pWORL
Player pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL
Heath Bell8.53.30.7192.53.3
Brian Wilson7.93.00.7252.43.1
Carlos Marmol9.04.90.6481.92.9
Joakim Soria7.23.10.6991.92.7
John Axford6.32.80.6921.62.3


Hong-Chih Kuo's failure to appear on the latter table was not due to any failure on his part, but due to a failure on the part of his team, the Dodgers, to fully leverage his performance.

Kuo's performance, in and out of context, is shown in the table below.

Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
Hong-Chi Kuo
56
5.11.70.7481.6
2.1
3.01.60.6540.71.0


Kuo stepped his performance up in context. He just didn't play in as high a context as the players on the previous table. To translate Kuo's 2010 performance back into traditional stats, Kuo appeared in 34 save situations: he earned 21 holds, 12 saves, and had 1 blown save. I'm comfortable calling that the best performance by a relief pitcher in 2010.

Designated Hitter
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Jim Thome8.15.21.3


Finally, here are the best at three oft-forgotten positions that can nevertheless matter: pitcher offense, pinch hitting, and pinch running.

Pitcher Offense
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Yovani Gallardo1.51.20.7


Pinch Hitter
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Chris Heisey1.20.50.4


Pinch Runner
eWins eLosses eWOPA
Jerry Hairston Jr.0.20.00.1
Dewayne Wise0.20.00.1


Noteworthy Players of 2010

Finally, let's take a look at some players who had noteworthy 2010 seasons.

MVP Catchers
The 2010 National League Rookie of the Year was Buster Posey. Two years later, he would be named National League Most Valuable Player

Prior to Posey, the last catcher to win an MVP award was Joe Mauer in 2009.

The next table compares the start of Posey's and Mauer's careers.

I am writing this in early 2014, so I only have data, so far, on Buster Posey's career through 2013, his third full season (he missed most of 2011 with an injury) and his age-26 season. For comparison, I compare this to the first three full seasons of Joe Mauer's career, which takes us through Mauer's 2007 (age 24) season.

Buster Posey Joe Mauer
Experience Games pWins pLoss Win Pct. pWOPA pWORL Games pWins pLoss Win Pct. pWOPA pWORL
170.30.40.407-0.1
-0.0
353.02.60.5360.30.6
210812.710.40.5501.1
2.0
13112.011.50.5090.71.6
3454.34.10.5150.2
0.5
14015.812.40.5612.13.2
414819.112.70.6023.1
4.3
10910.89.90.5210.81.7
514815.013.30.5300.8
1.9
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
THRU 1ST 3 FULL SEASONS45651.440.80.5585.2
8.7
41541.636.40.5333.97.0


Last Hurrahs
Finally, 2010 was the final season for two great centerfielders who hit a combined 1,023 home runs and won a combined 18 Gold Gloves.

The career records of Ken Griffey, Jr. and Jim Edmonds, as measured by Player won-lost records, are compared in the final table below.

Ken Griffey Jr. Jim Edmonds
Season Games pWins pLoss Win Pct. pWOPA pWORL Games pWins pLoss Win Pct. pWOPA pWORL
198912714.915.30.493-0.2
0.9
199015519.919.00.5110.2
1.6
199115420.316.60.5501.8
3.2
199214218.016.40.5230.7
2.0
199315620.516.70.5511.8
3.4
181.82.10.456-0.2-0.0
199411115.312.20.5551.5
2.7
948.88.80.498-0.20.5
1995729.58.30.5350.7
1.5
14118.915.10.5562.23.5
199614019.214.80.5652.2
3.6
11412.213.60.473-0.70.4
199715721.916.10.5772.9
4.4
13317.114.70.5371.12.4
199816122.819.10.5441.8
3.5
15420.118.00.5291.12.6
199916023.418.20.5632.5
4.2
556.16.60.482-0.30.3
200014520.017.10.5391.1
2.6
15221.314.50.5943.04.5
200111112.712.90.496-0.3
0.8
15022.215.60.5873.04.6
2002706.67.60.462-0.6
-0.0
14420.114.80.5752.33.7
2003535.45.50.498-0.1
0.4
13717.814.30.5541.62.8
20048311.89.00.5671.3
2.1
15323.514.00.6274.56.0
200512817.617.10.506-0.0
1.2
14221.714.60.5973.34.6
200610914.113.20.5150.2
1.2
10913.812.10.5330.71.6
200714417.417.70.495-0.7
0.5
11611.212.90.465-1.0-0.1
200814316.615.60.5160.1
1.4
11012.411.30.5230.41.3
20091179.89.40.5120.1
1.1
2010331.72.70.385-0.5
-0.3
867.97.10.5270.30.9
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER RECORDS2,671339.3300.70.53016.5
42.0
2,008256.8210.10.55021.239.5




All articles are written so that they pull data directly from the most recent version of the Player won-lost database. Hence, any numbers cited within these articles should automatically incorporate the most recent update to Player won-lost records. In some cases, however, the accompanying text may have been written based on previous versions of Player won-lost records. I apologize if this results in non-sensical text in any cases.

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