With the announcement coming down just last night that Fangraphs has added splits to their stat pages, I thought it would be fun to look at interesting 2009 splits for each likely member of the 2010 Yankees. I will look at hitters now, and address pitchers later today. I will likely expand on some of these over the next few weeks. Remember, when you do splits, you are essentially splitting the sample, such that small sample size caveats apply.

Jorge Posada

Home: wRC+ : 167

Away: wRC+: 101

For those that are not aware, wRC+ is the Fangraphs version of OPS+, and is likely a better measure because it corrects the OBP/SLG weighting problem inherent to OPS. Regarding Posada, I was surprised to see how stark his home-road splits were, considering that he is a switch hitter and is not a dead pull hitter. He certainly made use of the short porch, notching a 271 wRC+ when batting as a lefty and hitting the ball to right field.

Mark Teixeira

Grounders: .187/.187/.214

Fly Balls: .327/.320/.991

Liners: .747/.747/.939

According to Fangraphs, league average in these categories:

Grounders: .231/.231/.253
Flies: .217/.212/.602
Liners: .727/.723/.974

Teixeira did significantly better than average on flies and worse than average on grounders. The ground ball data suggests he needs to keep the ball in the air, but I wonder about the flyball data. It may be possible that shots that would qualify as liners in other parks are being ruled flies when they clear the wall in Yankee Stadium, such that much of his power is being shifted from the liner category to the fly ball category.

Robinson Cano

Low Lvg. FB% 30.2

Med Lvg. FB% 34.1

High Lvg. FB% 48.1

The more important the situation, the more likely Robbie was to hit a fly ball. This strengthens my belief that he is trying to do too much in those spots. It is important to note that players only have 60-80 high leverage at bats a year, such that the sample is small. As such, take this more of an observation of what happened last year than something that necessarily represents a trend.

Derek Jeter

ISO to Left: .105

ISO to Center: .082

ISO to Right: .278

Almost all of Jeter’s power was to the opposite field. That is a startlingly large split in power, and was a greater dichotomy than that in Jeter’s career ISO.

Alex Rodriguez

Low Lvg. HR/FB: 20.3

Med Lvg. HR/FB: 21.1

High Lvg. HR/FB: 45.5

A-Rod hit flyballs with about the same frequency in all situations. However, when the game was on the line, he took the ball out of the ballpark with much greater frequency. Unclutch, indeed.

Nick Johnson

Low Lvg. BB/K 1.02

Med Lvg. BB/K 1.29

High Lvg. BB/K 1.42

Johnson did will in high leverage spots overall, but I found his increased patience in those spots fascinating. When the situation was important, Johnson became more likely to strike out, but also more likely to take a walk.

Nick Swisher

Home ISO: .168

Away ISO: .316

Most of Swisher’s power came on the road, despite the New Yankee Stadium being a homer haven. If he can maintain something close to his road performance while bumping his home power a bit, he could find himself at 35 or more home runs.

Curtis Granderson

Home HR/FB: 8.9%

Away HR/FB: 15.7%

Granderson simply did not get much bang for his buck on fly balls in Comerica. His road numbers were significantly better than his home numbers, particularly against lefties, giving hope that he might return to the superstar that he was in 2007 once he gets out of the large ballpark in Detroit.

Brett Gardner

wRC+ v. L 115

wRC+ v. R 93

Gardner actually played fairly well against lefties. If he continues that and Granderson is not able to turn it around against lefties, might Randy Winn become the platoon caddy for Granderson rather than Brett?

Randy Winn

wRC+ v. R 102

wRC+ v. L -9

Of course, if Winn cannot turn this around, he will not be caddying for anybody. He has pretty solid career numbers against lefties, so this seems to be an anomaly, but he did hit significantly fewer line drives and more fly balls against lefties, both bad signs.

8 Responses to “Interesting Splits: Yankee Hitters”

  1. This is an awesome post.  (Quote)

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  2. FanGraphs gets better and better every single day.  (Quote)

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  3. Nice article…those Granderson splits suggest a very nice season for him in 2010. I’m curious what were Tex’s GB/FB splits batting LH and RH? I assume the same?!  (Quote)

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    Moshe Mandel Reply:

    More grounders as a righty than a lefty.  (Quote)

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  4. Phenomenal post. After reading, I went over there to peruse the splits some more and was looking at Jeter’s career splits. I noticed a couple of things:

    GB/FB to Left is 9.82 and to Right is 0.94
    FB% to Left is only 7.9% but he has a HR/FB of 37.8%

    So his lower ISO on hits to LF is probably the result of more grounders (lower slg%) to the left side, but when he does get the ball in the air it has a greater chance of being a HR than his flyballs to center and right. I thought it may have been a product of smaller samples, but his hit distribution is pretty much even: 517-519-512 (LF-CF-RF).

    I don’t know if any of this was actually noteworthy, but it did catch my eye and I was wondering your thoughts. Does Jeter really have more power to right? Or, is the higher GB rate to left really just the result of his propensity of trying to go the other way all of the time?  (Quote)

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    Moshe Mandel Reply:

    Very interesting. Basically, he goes the other way well, and when he pulls and hits it in the air, he is putting a charge into the ball. This kind of stuff is really great in confirming/uncovering scouting points.  (Quote)

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  5. wRC+ v. R -9?

    Shouldn’t that be vs L.? Wow I didnt really comprehend how historically bad his 09 numbers were till just now  (Quote)

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    Moshe Mandel Reply:

    Yeah, thanks for the correction. he was historically bad against lefties. Worst line against lefties since the 50’s, I believe.  (Quote)

    [Reply To This Comment]

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