A few notes on the home run derby participants

When Pedro Alvarez hits the ball in the air, it goes far. That’s not too tough to tell just by watching him hit. And players who strike baseballs so forcefully with a piece of wood that they land farther than if the average human — OK, the average, really gifted MLB human –batted them usually end up in an annual contest that puts such power on display.

Among those other contestants — David Wright, Michael Cuddyer, Bryce Harper, Robinson Cano, Prince Fielder, Yoenis Cespedes and Chris Davis — Alvarez hits the ball the farthest on average.

In fact, according to Baseball Heat Maps, when Pedro Alvarez hits the ball in the air, he hits it farther than anyone in baseball does. The average distance of Alvarez’s homers and fly-balls is 315.82 feet, which is a hair above second-place Carlos Gonzalez‘s 315.10-foot average.

The rest of tonight’s hitters’ average HR+FB distance:

  • Davis: 313.01 (4th in MLB)
  • Harper: 307.63 ft. (8th)
  • Cespedes: 296.91 ft. (26th)
  • Cano: 295.65 (35th)
  • Fielder: 292.48 (51st)
  • Wright: 290.20 ft. (71st)
  • Cuddyer: 286.42 ft. (101st)

Chris Davis, his rippling forearms grasping the bat and wad of chew making his lower lip protrude beyond the limits of his face, is entering as the major league leader in home runs, with 37. Yeah, 37 bombs. That’s obviously going to boost certain stats, ones like BABIP, home run/fly-ball ratio, isolated power and really everything other power stat. Let’s focus on HR/FB% and ISO.

Davis sits at 35.6 percent for his HR/FB rate, but Alvarez, despite hitting 13 fewer homers, is barely behind, at 32 percent.

Here is a table with each player’s home run and power stats:

Player HR HR/FB% ISO HR+FB DIST.
Bryce Harper 13 23.2 0.259 307.63
Chris Davis 37 35.6 0.402 313.01
David Wright 13 12.5 0.203 290.2
Michael Cuddyer 16 20.8 0.239 286.42
Pedro Alvarez 24 32 0.266 315.82
Prince Fielder 16 13.6 0.190 292.48
Robinson Cano 21 21.6 0.229 295.65
Yoenis Cespedes 15 13.6 0.195 296.91

Completely unbiased prediction: Chris Davis defeats Pedro Alvarez in finals.

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By tyle23r

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