View Full Version : ESPN's Beane Count

The Voice of IH
08-16-2012, 09:05 AM

I was messing around, looking for top Cy Young contenders listings, when I stumbled upon this section of ESPN's website. It has some really cool rankings, one of which is called the Beane Count named after Billy Beane.

The page says that it was created by (former) ESPN writer Rob Neyer (he works for SB Nation now) and it takes into account Home Runs hit, walks drawn, home runs allowed and walks allowed.

The rankings in both leagues are curious. Though the formula does not rank the teams 1-8 perfectly, it does manage to separate the contenders to the non contenders extraordinarily well. In the National League rankings, they are completely separated. The American League also (except it has Angels way down at the bottom, but at the same time the Angels are six games out of the division. They are really close to the wildcard).

Has this been discussed here before? I searched it but found nothing. What are you thoughts on it? I have always been under the impression that walks kill pitchers, and dead pitchers equals dead teams. Home runs seems obvious also.

I can't find the formula to get the final numbers right now however, I'll keep looking though.

EDIT: After further review it looks like it is just taking the rankings of each team and adding them together. At the bottom it says summing the rankings. I missed that on first glance.

08-17-2012, 07:33 AM
For playing half of our games in the GASP, I'd say our pitchers have done an outstanding job limiting home runs. 6th in the NL is great considering the Cardinals are the only team who has given up less home runs that doesn't play in a cavernous ballpark.

The Voice of IH
08-29-2012, 08:17 PM
I was kind of hoping to get people's take on this.

08-29-2012, 10:35 PM
It's a supposed shortcut for the same basic stuff that we care about when we look at more complex metrics. Do the same list by wOBA and it would be a little bit more accurate. But homers and walks get you pretty far by themselves in that they are significant components of success and teams vary by them quite a bit.

cincinnati chili
09-01-2012, 02:10 AM
I used to read Neyer a lot, and I remember the column where he busted it out. I think he was just clowning around really. I'm guessing if he thought the stat would be maintained by ESPN ten or so years later, he would have refined it.

As said above, walks and homers are major components of runs scored, but the "Beane Count" is missing a lot of components. Neyer knows this. Neyer worked for Bill James and learned a lot from him.