The Boston Red Sox are heavy favorites to represent the American League in the World Series. There are several reasons why no one should be surprised if Boston punches their ticket to the big dance. However, by using sabermetrics, it is possible to prove why the Red Sox have a legitimate shot at winning the World Series.
Sabermetrics is used to calculate in-game activity while measuring hitting and pitching performances. Instead of looking at a pitcher’s earned run average, which is how many runs that pitcher has personally allowed per nine innings, sabermetrics can use an equation to look at what a pitcher’s future ERA will be. Using sabermetrics is a great way for teams to build a contender because it is using statistics that will show current talent while also displaying the potential of a specific player in future games.
How has Boston taken advantage of this relatively new idea to calculate baseball statistics?
The Red Sox are first in the majors in on-base plus slugging (.792), which is calculated by adding on-base percentage plus slugging percentage. Using this statistic, baseball analysts can figure who the best overall hitters in baseball are. The reason for this is because on-base percentage is a way to determine how frequently a batter reaches base. Meanwhile, slugging percentage can measure the power of a hitter by taking their total bases and dividing it by their at-bats. If a player or a team has a good OPS it means they are not only getting on base consistently but also displaying well-rounded power.
David Ortiz has a .956 OPS, which ranks fourth in the AL. It is certainly incredible that he still manages to remain at the top of the league every year in three major hitting categories. Not to mention, his batting average for an entire season rarely disappoints.
Since Boston has such a solid OPS, they also lead the majors in runs batted in. Obviously, it is a big reason why they have the best record in baseball.