2011 in Review: Vertical Vector Charts

I figure it's time to update some of my old visualizations with new 2011 data. First up, vertical vector charts.

2011pitchervectors500

Click to enlarge.

Like last time, each white vector corresponds to a single player. The angle of each vector is mapped to the player's GB/FB distribution, where 100% groundballs would be a flat horizontal line, 100% flyballs would be a vertical line, and 50/50 would be at a 45° angle. Since 8 of every 9 batted balls Brad Ziegler allowed were grounders, his vector is almost parallel to the ground. And because Guillermo Moscoso let batters hit 2 flyballs for each groundball, his vector has the steepest angle on the team.

The length of each line corresponds to FIP-, which is a reversed version of FIP+ so that it matches up with most pitching stats. Since the scale is reversed, 100 is the league-average FIP, 90 is a FIP that's 10% better than the league average, 120 is 20% worse, and so on. Long story short, the length of the line is mapped to the quality of the pitcher. Longer line, worse pitching.

Now, I know that it makes the chart run contrary to what you might expect—a longer line doesn't mean better pitching performance, but the opposite. I did it so that batter performance would be consistent with this chart below. Longer lines mean better batting production.

2011battervectors500

We're gonna miss you, Willingham.

Notes:

  • The cutoff I used for pitchers was 20 innings. Sorry, Dallas. For batters, I took everyone who had 100 PAs or more.
  • League average (for both pitchers and batters, naturally) is exactly the same as the vector for Coco Crisp. 1.24 GB/FB, 100 wRC+/FIP-.
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