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# Bargain Shopping: Dollars Per Run

After recently going through some of the younger Athletics salaries and realizing the production the A's are getting for bargain prices, it got me to thinking about the importance of taking a player's salary situation into account.

Is there some way to figure out just how valuable having a player like Huston Street or Bobby Crosby on your team? Talent that is young, cheap and produces at the major league level. I wondered if there was some metric or way to measure how much of a bargain certain players are.

Since I'm not exactly a mathematician or statistician, I enlisted the help of Richard Brian Wade from the SportsBlog Beyond the Boxscore.

He worked out a calculation using VORP from Baseball Prospectus compared to salary. VORP is described as:

Value Over Replacement Player. The number of runs contributed beyond what a replacement-level player at the same position would contribute if given the same percentage of team plate appearances. VORP scores do not consider the quality of a player's defense.

So Richard put this equation together to try and figure out who were the best bargains in baseball this year:

( Games Played / 162 * Salary ) / VORP

An example of how it works:

Brian Roberts has a VORP of 51.6, and a salary of \$390,000. The Orioles have played 87 games.

( 87 / 162 * 390000 ) / 51.6 = \$4,059.00 Per Run

So then, who tops this list so far in 2005?

Here is the Top 20 position players in Dollars Per Run or DPR.

1 Brian Roberts, BAL
2 Miguel Cabrera, FLO
3 Travis Hafner, CLE
4 Jason Bay, PIT
5 Morgan Ensberg, HOU
6 Chase Utley, PHI
7 Felipe Lopez, CIN
8 Jhonny Peralta, CLE
9 Bill Hall, MIL
10 Joe Mauer, MIN
11 David Wright, NYN
13 Kevin Mench, TEX
14 Clint Barmes, COL
15 Jorge Cantu, TBA
16 Ryan Church, WAS
17 Carl Crawford, TBA
18 Bobby Crosby, OAK