We’ve gotten over it Joey Gallo It is an anomaly in baseball.
It delivers a lot of value – it’s twice the Gold Glover and can hit 30+ times at home while sleeping from the left side of the board. But at the same time, he is one of the most frustrating players in the game, especially for Yankees fans.
Already just a career .206 entered this year, he’s only made 0.18 with his first 10 games. His base percentage, a strength he has, is 0.294 – 38 points less than his OBP career. His hit is the same as his hit rate, because he doesn’t have an extra base hit, or RBI, this year. His career SLG? .484.
It hardly achieves a clip above the career average, but it is not nearly enough for such drastic changes in its numbers.
So we ask, why are the numbers so hideous?
Well, it’s easy to make fun of her Aaron BonHe’s right – Gallo was very unlucky.
Boone said Gallo “hit some balls” and was “a little unlucky” ahead of Saturday’s win over the Baltimore Orioles.
In fact, he did fire some balls, although the stat sheet doesn’t show an extra base hit.
Gallo is currently ranked 77y Percentage of severely affected (50 percent), and in 95y Percentage in barrels per ball milled (22.2 percent).
But this is where things get interesting, and where Boone makes his case on top of that.
Thanks to Baseball Savant, we can see the average hit expected, which is a measure that combines the ball hit’s exit and the launch angle, and people smarter than us can calculate the probability of hitting it.
Since Gallo was hitting the ball hard, but good for people, Gallo’s current xBA is 0.234. While .234 isn’t a great BA (it’s the league average, actually), that’s 96 points higher than its average now. His -0.096 difference between his actual BA and his xBA makes it 35y The “unlucky” hitter in baseball.
Now, we cannot calculate the “expected base percentage” for two reasons:
1) It is nothing.
2) He had 29 knockouts. Six hits in 29 AB give him a score of .206 BA, but seven hits add up to .241. It’s literally impossible to hit a .234 with just 29 knockouts.
We’ll be practical though (that’s Joey Gallo we’re talking about), give him a two-hit for his season based on his lack of luck – this frustrates xOBP (my stats, pretty flawed) to .343 – we’ll need this in a bit.
Maybe you are bored, because the hit rate of 0.234 is still not great. But let’s get into the fun stuff.
Gallo currently owns .223 wOBA—that’s a base-weighted average. To explain this as if I’m writing “Analytics for Dummies” it’s the base percentage that takes additional baseline results into account (while OBP takes into account if reached the base). But its xWOBA is .406. This is the seventh lowest in baseball, and the .406 wOBA would have been the sixth best mark in baseball last year.
This is where it gets really good. Even more interesting, the expected Gallo slowdown is – wait for it – 0.612!
First of all, this could have been the second best slowdown in baseball last year. Second, this is a negative difference of 474 points. This easily makes him the worst player in the sport.
Last Wednesday he hit a ball with xBA from 0.980 – it was a pop up game. On April 10, he had a racquetball with 0.90 xBA. This, too, was a popup. This is all direct evidence of the phrase “it hits hard, just right for the people.”
I know it sounds different, but this is by no means a defense of Gallo – he has been a disappointment since the day he set foot in New York. It wasn’t what the Yankees had hoped for when they got it from the Texas Rangers.
Gallo’s hatred is understandable. No matter how you break down those analyzes and try to make him look good, he’s simply not a player you want when you just need a basic hit. This is why the average multiplication will Always Being an important statistic, no matter how advanced the analytics are. He will always be frustrated, and he will always be a deeply flawed hitter.
And sometimes, it’s better to be lucky than to be good.
But if Gallo hadn’t had the misfortune, he would probably be one of the most productive players on the Yankees right now. Seriously, who wouldn’t take a .234/.343/.612 slash?
Of course the results are the results and they are not acceptable. But these impenetrable numbers are not sustainable, and Gallo will produce (the way the Yankees want him) eventually.
However, it should happen soon, because bad luck can only buy a lot of time – you can’t win the division in April, but you can certainly lose it.