**What are the ratings based on?**

This system has evolved over 26 years and there’s over a man-year of
effort put into it. It’s not trivial. Initially, it was an OBA
type system for hitting and pitching. Then fielding was incorporated.

The newest generation includes situational elements and "chain"
assumptions. In other words, it takes into account how many times certain
situations occur and then translates the situational probabilities into a
rating based on the probability of an outcome on each card. It even takes
into account the fact that some players hit into many double plays or that
if someone is a good clutch hitter. The system is based on how many bases
an event will gain a team. It looks at how often on average situations
will occur and then measures the bases advanced by runners and the batter
based on the outcome.

In the system, a point is awarded for
each base a runner is advanced. So reaching first on a walk, single, or
E1 gets you 1 base. We then looked at average situations occurring to
determine how many bases an outcome impacts. For example, a walk will
move up any forced runner. We sum up the probability of each situation
that advances a runner by the # of runners advancing. For example, a
home run will advance all the base runners. As stated before, we assume
bases empty occurs 49.2% of the time. A runner on first only occurs
22.2% of the time. A home run will give 3 points for any runner on first
so we multiply the probability of this occurring by 3. We do this for
all possible situations to come up with the total bases factor that is
the heart of the rating system.

One other note, the rating system is slightly different for hitters than
pitchers. That's because a hitter's average situational occurrence
(number of runners on base) is independent of his card. Whereas, a
pitcher's average situational occurrence is dependent on his card. That
is, a batter can't influence the outcome of the preceding batter, but a
pitcher influences all outcomes as long as he's on the mound.

Defensive ratings, speed, steal, wild pitch, passed balls, hold and balks
are all taken into consideration by the ratings.

**How have your teams done?
**My partner (Wineman) and I have had 95 teams over 21 seasons. Our
winning percentage is .534. This includes 58 teams in the very tough NLD
live draft leagues.

We have 55 playoff teams (58%) and 12 Champs (22% of playoff teams)

Only 14 teams have finished below .500.

**Are the Ratings perfect?
**First off, let me say that this rating
system isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty good at sorting guys into ranges
where they can be compared. Ratings within a few points (20-30) of each
other mean the players are basically equivalent and you have to look at
what makes them different to decide which one you want. In the 2003
season stats we added injury adjusted ratings (thanks for the suggestion
Luckyman!) and listed averages adjusted for the percentage of the time a
clutch opportunity occurs.

**How does defense affect the ratings?
**Yes, fielding effects the ratings, but,
obviously, not the hit ratings. We figure the probability of the results
from the X Chart, figure out how often it's going to happen, apply the
factors for the bad results (or good in the cas of DPs) and then
subtract that from the hit factors. Stealing and running are also
factored into the overall (and L and R ) ratings in similar fashion.

**How do you account for player's
performance against both sides?
**I currently use 70/30 ratio for hitters and a more complicated
method for pitchers that takes into account if they are better or worse
against lefties or righties. The percentage calculation for pitchers is
more complicated and depends on whether the pitcher is better against
RHB or LHB.

Yes, ballpark effects are taken into account, but, by default, I do the ratings using average of all parks.

Overall Rating - Sum of Starting Lineup points –( 9* the average pitcher rating)

The Average pitcher rating is:

(Aver Start rating) * %of anticipated starter innings + (Avg Rel rating)*(1-%of anticipated starter innings)

Start rating is computed by entering the anticipated number of starts for each starter and calculating the average from there.

Relief Ratings take into account how often a RP is expected to pitch. This is to compensate for the way Hal will (over) use setup and closers.

The starting lineup points take into consideration platoons on a 70/30 ratio.

Injury adjusted ratings are used in the calculation. These ratings are adjusted assuming a "standard" backup.

Bench is not considered.

**How accurate are the team ratings?
**Team ratings are a rough guide unless I know details about the
division and league. The margin of error is probably around 200 points. There are so many variables that go into how a
team performs in relation to their rating. The biggest is how tough is
the division. Given the unbalanced nature of the schedule this is a huge
factor.

Will improving my team rating always give me a better team?

Can you win without the ratings?

Clearly you can. I just think it takes a lot more time and experience to really understand who's a bargain and who's not without them. An important factor is to know how to put a team together. The ratings are going to help the less experienced players, especially those who are not very familiar with SOM, much more than the experienced guys.

**What if you didn't answer my question?
**Email me at