In some comment section recently, me and some other dude were arguing about luck, BABIP, clutch hitting, Jim Skaalen, and whether any of these things exist and/or are effective. At some point, it occurred to me that while we all talk a lot about the A's BABIP, and we all talk a lot about the A's hitting with RISP, I haven't seen any numbers on the A's BABIP with RISP. To me, that's an interesting thing to look at. So I did.
In 770 ABs with RISP, the A's have 196 hits (14 of them HRs) and 147 Ks. They have 27 sac flies (weirdly, four of them belong to Eric Chavez, tied with Daric Barton for the team lead in sac flies with RISP.) Thusly, dividing 182 by 636, we get the A's BABIP with RISP...and it's .286. Compare that, if you will, to the A's BABIP overall: .307. That's a 21-point difference.
That doesn't tell us a lot beyond the fact that less of the balls our hitters put into play fall into play with RISP. That's interesting to know, but let's take a look at our divisional rivals to see their BABIP/RISP.
So what's the Angels BABIP/RISP? In 723 ABs with RISP (somehow, fewer than the A's have had), the Angels have 192 hits (23 of them HRs) and 145 Ks. They have 23 sac flies. Their BABIP/RISP comes out to .292. Compare this to the Angels' overall BABIP: .288. The Angels aren't any more or less lucky with RISP, at least not in a significant way.
Now for the Rangers BABIP/RISP. In 806 ABs with RISP they have 223 hits (19 of them HRs) and 132 Ks. They have 30 sac flies. The Rangers' BABIP/RISP is .298. Better than ours, and better than the Angels. But compare it to their overall BABIP: .313. Like the A's, the Rangers are less lucky with RISP. Their overall BABIP is six points higher than ours, and their BABIP/RISP is 12 points higher than ours.
Lastly, the Mariners have a BABIP/RISP of .275. Not that far behind ours, but noticeably far behind the Rangers (23 points behind.) They have an overall BABIP of .281. Like the Angels, not too much variance there.
OK, so let's leave the division and just look at a couple of the best teams in the AL: the Yankees have a BABIP/RISP of .292, the Red Sox have a BABIP of .310, and I need to go cook dinner. Someone tell me what any or all of this means.
[Note: It's also important to be aware of how many actual at-bats even occur with RISP. The A's have the second most in the division behind the Rangers, with significantly more at-bats than the Angels, but we're basically tied with the Angels for second in the division with hits. That's a problem, but I doubt it's surprising to any of us.]