Sabermetrics: Additional Revisions to Magnum Start Value

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CHICAGO, IL - JULY 25: Carlos Rodon
CHICAGO, IL - JULY 25: Carlos Rodon /
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Sabermetrics formula Magnum Start Value revisions to give better gauge on a pitcher’s performance. With revision, expect better value given to elite performance.

Over the past couple of months, many of you have been reading about my sabermetric formula entitled Magnum Start Value (MSV). It’s purpose is to enhance the statistic Quality Start, which has been commonly used around the game for several decades. On top of that others have attempted to improve the aforementioned stat and produced Ultra Quality Start, Mega Quality Start, and Dominant Start. Neither provides the ability to analyze several different aspects of a pitchers start the way MSV does, and that is why I am going to improve it once again.

As previously mentioned, MSV is going to be improved and here is how it will be done. First, look at designated outcome number two. There is a scenario in which a pitcher can post a higher score than he would in outcome number three. Given he would need to throw 8.2 innings and allow five or less BB+H combined, but the more I look over these studies the more I realize a hurler who pitches a complete game should get the higher score. And it shouldn’t matter how many hits and walks he allows.

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Speaking of that, there is a simple way to alter this aspect of MSV so that the complete game is protected regardless of how many men reach base. It is quite simple honestly, all I need to do is add another variable which I will label “b”. The number assigned to it will be 1.17, and will be discussed later in this article.

Now as you have been reading, hits and walks are a large part of MSV. While I may have eluded to the fact that they are meaningless outside of a bonus, that is no longer true effective immediately. Up until now, the only way a ceiling becomes relevant when using the aforementioned stats is if a pitcher allows five or less BB+H combined.

Here is where things are going to change. From this point forward, not only will a pitcher need to allow five or less BB+H to obtain a bonus, the lone way any hurler can pick up a Magnum Start is to keep his walk and hit total at nine or below. That includes all outings, and if the hurler does not meet that requirement he does not attain a Magnum Start regardless of innings pitched or earned runs allowed.

Well, since you know the changes here is the new formula!

changes effective 7/31/17

(a) 1.213

(b) 1.17

*(1) 7 to 7.2 IP: 2.5

(x) Add 0.5 if a pitcher gives up five or less BB+H

Multiply (a) into total if (x) occurs in 7.2 IP

*(2) 8 to 8.2 IP: 4.75

(y) Add 0.75 if pitcher gives up five or less BB+H

Multiply (b) into total if (y) occurs in 8.2 IP

*(3) Complete Game/9 IP: 6.5

(z) Add 1.5 if pitcher gives up five or less BB+H

Multiply (a) into totals if (z) occurs

E: 1.345 (this aspect of the formula is calculated irregardless)

* These are designated as outcomes, which combine the distance a pitcher goes in a start along with allowing two earned runs. No hurler can throw less than the allotted innings and qualify for a Magnum Start.

Always round decimals to the nearest hundredth

Moving forward, for those who don’t remember what variable “e” indicates it references the amount of errors made behind a pitcher while he is on the mound. All you do is multiply (the number 1.345 is always in the calculus) by the amount of defensive miscues made. For example, if there are two errors made it is two times 1.345. You could add them as well. Once calculated, you subtract the number from the combined total of walks and hits. In the case that this variable drops a hurlers’ BB+H combo below either required threshold, that starter can still qualify for a Magnum Start or its bonus.

The final point I would like to make regarding MSV is that intentional walks and batters who’ve hit by pitch have never been involved. There is a specific reason for that, and it is quite simple. If a pitcher hits a batter it means he is pitching inside which is good because you don’t want to be throwing out over the middle of the plate. On top of that the intentional walk comes from the dugout, so it doesn’t make sense to penalize the starter for that free pass.

Given this is a bit off topic, some of you may be wondering why I use baserunners instead of runs scored in some instances, however there is a reason for that. Take the White Sox contest against the Cubs on July 27 at Guaranteed Rate Field. Cubs starter Jon Lester allowed two earned runs, however both were on solo home runs. Other than that, only three men reached base in the seven innings he was on the mound. A start such as that should be rewarded, considering the amount of elite pitchers that throw a significant amount of home runs throughout a season.

Next: White Sox Need Consistency from Carlos Rodon

Overall, MSV is starting to take shape. There will be an upcoming article that is going to add statistical categories to MSV, but it does not impact the formula in any way. However, expect them to give those analyzing MSV the ability break down the results in a more valuable way, which will be essential to its long term goals. Make sure to stick around, as there is much more to come.

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