by Mike Rogers

Over the past couple of months, I’ve been filling any down time I’ve had (within reason) to importing and quantitatively evaluating college hitters. After about 3-4 weeks of constant tweaking, deciding what works and what doesn’t, I finally started to settle in to a system that analyzed what I felt were the key points to hit on – however, I’m still not 100% satisfied with the results.

Thus far, I’ve got the 2007 and 2008 numbers inputted into an excel spreadsheet (that’s too big to upload to google docs as-is, so I’ll have to do some more copy/pasting and get it up on google docs or edit grid). The things that I’m tracking are:

Isolated Power (IsoP)
Strikeout and Walk percentages (K/PA, BB/PA  — Note: PA’s are estimated since I don’t have Reached On Error results)
A Speed Score that resembles the one Bill James invented many years ago (before I was born).
Stolen Base Runs (SB*.22)-(CS*.33)
Weighted On Base Average

In addition to this, I’m using the Park Factor numbers from Boyd’s World (invaluable tool in my analysis). This allows me to use the Total Park Factor (TPF), which is the park factor of all the stadiums in which a college team played in over a 3 year stretch (much more reliable to use the 3 year stretch than the single year park factors due to their vast fluctuations year-to-year — especially in college baseball). In turn, I’ve used this to park-adjust all of the hitting statistics to give me park adjusted Average, OBP, Slugging %, Isolated Power, and wOBA. I also got the average wOBA for each conference and then averaged the park factors for each conference and got an Average Park Adjusted wOBA (APAwOBA?) for each of the conferences I tracked. Using this and a players Park Adjusted wOBA, I’ve calculated a Runs Above Average total versus their conference peers.

What I plan I doing in my next post (maybe two posts), is looking at the Padres 2008 draft. The Pads took 21 college players, 16 of which are among the 1988 entries into my system thus far. Of the 5 I don’t have, one was a Division 2 college player and the other 4 were from smaller schools who weren’t in conferences I tracked. The ones that I did track, and have 2 seasons worth of data for, are the SEC, ACC, Big East, Big West, Big 10, Big 12, Pac 10, Mountain West, and Conference USA. I would like to add in the other conferences (like the Mid American, for instance), but some of the data is missing and that’s not as straight-forward of a process, but it’s not impossible either.

However, having 2 years of data and 16 Padres 2008 draft picks, I think is a decent starting point for a possible two-part breakdown of the hitters they’ve selected. I’ll hope to have the first 8 college hitters the Padres selected up Thursday night or Friday afternoon.