Rockies' Base Running Prowess Atop The Majors

Over at FanGraphs, the good people there introduced a new stat called Ultimate Base Running (UBR). It's somewhat akin to one portion that goes into Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR). It's an advanced statistic, so head on over there (via the link) to learn all about the stat.

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Basically, it rates how well a player runs the bases. However, it doesn't include steals or caught stealing. It's more about tagging up, going from second to third on a fielder's choice, etc. So remember that when looking at Dexter Fowler as the team's top base runner this season. Yes, he's looked awful stealing this season, but everything else he has done on the paths has been better than everyone else.

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But FanGraphs followed up with another evaluation to see if there is a correlation between base running skills and runs scored. The results say no when looking at sample size of 2002-2011. The Red Sox had the worst base running scoring over that period but have scored the second most runs. However, if we look at the Rockies they have the second-best base-running score (59.0) and have scored the fifth-most runs.

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How have the Rockies done that? Matt Holliday led the pack with a 14.0 Bsr, followed closely by Clint Barmes at 12.2 (so when he wasn't popping up all the time, he knew how to run the bases while there). Dexter Fowler leads all active Rockies at 8.6.

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Make what you will of this stat, but it certainly puts a different light on some players.

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