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Old 03-25-2019, 11:27 PM   #1
waittilnextyear
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Edited MLB Ballpark Factors for OOTP 20

Hey everyone. If you're anything like me, the "ritual" of setting up a new game/save can be pretty...well...ritualistic. There are so many things to check and consider and to try out. Jumping the gun and starting your "good save" before getting everything just so is best avoided. lol

One of the things I found worth tinkering with was ballpark factors. The standard game comes with some issues, I feel, in this regard. For one, some of the parks that are known to be band boxes (Guaranteed Rate Field, Oriole Park at Camden Yards...to name a couple) come with fairly low HR park factors, even less than average in some cases. Others that play quite large (Comerica Park, for example) can be off in the opposite sense. Another issue is the proliferation of "1.000" modifiers which I take to mean that they might not have much data to go on--for doubles and triples--rather than so many parks play exactly average to 3 decimal places. You'll notice that Chase Field, for example, is significantly underpowered in the XBH department compared to real life. Thirdly, I've never quite been able to determine this for sure, but the game might use "halved ballpark factors," which are what you'd use to neutralize a player that only plays half his games there. These "halved ballpark factors" are commonplace on websites like FanGraphs. Certainly, you wouldn't want to use "halved ballpark factors" for the stadium itself because it plays all of its games there.

As for the methodology, I have relied heavily on a website called StatCorner. Most of the data collection and heavy lifting was already done for me thanks to this interesting website. I present you the explanation behind these data: http://www.statcorner.com/exp_HandedParkFactors.php

Because StatCorner either gives you the option to do 2007-present or go year-by-year, I aggregated ballpark factors from 2017 and 2018 in a spreadsheet to split the difference between one season being not quite enough data (imo) and many older years maybe not being so relevant anymore. I feel that two years is a pretty significant slice of data (~36k plate appearances per park).

These data are not halved.

I also applied league average FB/GB rates along with park-specific rates in order to transform batting averages given on StatCorner as balls in the air or balls on the ground into one unified batting average. Of course, these data are broken down by splits because many parks play quite differently for lefty batters and righty batters. The potential exists within these data to break doubles and triples down by lefty and righty batter splits in the future, but the game doesn't yet have that option, fwiw. Yet.

As for how to best represent the data, I'm gonna go old school and just type it right into this post. That way I don't have to worry about broken links/deleted spreadsheets etc. Apologies if this isn't your preferred format, but it's not a ton of work to do this data entry.


BAL (Oriole Park at Camden Yards)
AVG LHB: 0.999
AVG RHB: 0.997
Doubles: 0.878
Triples: 0.842
HR LHB: 1.070
HR RHB: 1.155

BOS (Fenway Park)
AVG LHB: 1.155
AVG RHB: 1.125
Doubles: 1.248
Triples: 1.090
HR LHB: 0.770
HR RHB: 1.010

NYA (Yankee Stadium)
AVG LHB: 0.915
AVG RHB: 1.002
Doubles: 0.894
Triples: 0.707
HR LHB: 1.372
HR RHB: 1.203

TBA (Tropicana Field)
AVG LHB: 0.939
AVG RHB: 0.955
Doubles: 0.884
Triples: 1.104
HR LHB: 0.940
HR RHB: 0.950

TOR (Rogers Centre)
AVG LHB: 1.046
AVG RHB: 1.014
Doubles: 1.129
Triples: 0.987
HR LHB: 0.980
HR RHB: 1.040


CHA (Guaranteed Rate Field)
AVG LHB: 0.921
AVG RHB: 0.977
Doubles: 0.910
Triples: 0.905
HR LHB: 1.149
HR RHB: 1.095

CLE (Progressive Field)
AVG LHB: 1.096
AVG RHB: 1.003
Doubles: 1.126
Triples: 0.719
HR LHB: 1.105
HR RHB: 0.985

DET (Comerica Park)
AVG LHB: 0.993
AVG RHB: 1.056
Doubles: 0.990
Triples: 1.378
HR LHB: 0.959
HR RHB: 0.980

KCA (Kaufmann Stadium)
AVG LHB: 1.088
AVG RHB: 1.024
Doubles: 1.114
Triples: 1.297
HR LHB: 0.820
HR RHB: 0.800

MIN (Target Field)
AVG LHB: 1.037
AVG RHB: 1.070
Doubles: 1.073
Triples: 1.126
HR LHB: 0.971
HR RHB: 1.077


HOU (Minute Maid Park)
AVG LHB: 0.950
AVG RHB: 0.941
Doubles: 0.895
Triples: 0.915
HR LHB: 1.051
HR RHB: 1.081

LAA (Angel Stadium of Anaheim)
AVG LHB: 1.003
AVG RHB: 0.956
Doubles: 0.872
Triples: 0.751
HR LHB: 1.014
HR RHB: 1.065

OAK (Oakland Coliseum)
AVG LHB: 0.969
AVG RHB: 0.991
Doubles: 1.051
Triples: 1.440
HR LHB: 0.884
HR RHB: 0.859

SEA (T-Mobile Park)
AVG LHB: 0.936
AVG RHB: 0.947
Doubles: 0.920
Triples: 0.963
HR LHB: 1.051
HR RHB: 1.011

TEX (Globe Life Park in Arlington)
AVG LHB: 1.093
AVG RHB: 1.095
Doubles: 1.093
Triples: 1.394
HR LHB: 1.109
HR RHB: 1.020


ATL (SunTrust Park)
AVG LHB: 1.003
AVG RHB: 1.043
Doubles: 0.986
Triples: 0.787
HR LHB: 0.930
HR RHB: 0.840

MIA (Marlins Park)
AVG LHB: 0.944
AVG RHB: 0.969
Doubles: 0.853
Triples: 0.955
HR LHB: 0.890
HR RHB: 0.744

NYN (Citi Field)
AVG LHB: 0.920
AVG RHB: 0.865
Doubles: 0.861
Triples: 0.741
HR LHB: 0.930
HR RHB: 1.000

PHI (Citizens Bank Park)
AVG LHB: 0.925
AVG RHB: 0.942
Doubles: 0.957
Triples: 0.963
HR LHB: 1.286
HR RHB: 1.330

WAS (Nationals Park)
AVG LHB: 1.076
AVG RHB: 1.026
Doubles: 1.058
Triples: 0.713
HR LHB: 0.911
HR RHB: 1.110


CHN (Wrigley Field)
AVG LHB: 1.022
AVG RHB: 0.987
Doubles: 1.026
Triples: 1.282
HR LHB: 0.840
HR RHB: 1.150

CIN (Great American Ball Park)
AVG LHB: 0.918
AVG RHB: 0.926
Doubles: 1.056
Triples: 1.114
HR LHB: 1.241
HR RHB: 1.149

MIL (Miller Park)
AVG LHB: 0.972
AVG RHB: 0.979
Doubles: 1.076
Triples: 0.941
HR LHB: 1.260
HR RHB: 1.040

PIT (PNC Park)
AVG LHB: 1.031
AVG RHB: 1.057
Doubles: 1.030
Triples: 0.973
HR LHB: 0.991
HR RHB: 0.762

STL (Busch Stadium)
AVG LHB: 0.997
AVG RHB: 1.016
Doubles: 0.927
Triples: 0.888
HR LHB: 0.980
HR RHB: 0.815


ARZ (Chase Field)
AVG LHB: 1.097
AVG RHB: 1.023
Doubles: 1.164
Triples: 1.687
HR LHB: 1.009
HR RHB: 1.151

COL (Coors Field)
AVG LHB: 1.182
AVG RHB: 1.166
Doubles: 1.245
Triples: 1.907
HR LHB: 1.160
HR RHB: 1.170

LAN (Dodger Stadium)
AVG LHB: 0.964
AVG RHB: 0.993
Doubles: 1.001
Triples: 0.534
HR LHB: 1.155
HR RHB: 0.956

SDN (Petco Park)
AVG LHB: 1.009
AVG RHB: 0.966
Doubles: 0.999
Triples: 1.049
HR LHB: 0.870
HR RHB: 0.955

SFN (Oracle Park)
AVG LHB: 0.999
AVG RHB: 1.053
Doubles: 1.002
Triples: 1.251
HR LHB: 0.604
HR RHB: 0.750
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Old 06-15-2019, 07:20 AM   #2
Klew1986
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How have these turned out in the game? Have you noticed a difference?
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Old 06-30-2019, 12:58 PM   #3
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Any major difference?
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Old 07-01-2019, 07:57 PM   #4
waittilnextyear
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Klew1986 View Post
How have these turned out in the game? Have you noticed a difference?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poonox24 View Post
Any major difference?
I actually haven't played enough to tell. Been playing PT mostly. I plan on giving it a closer look this summer, but for anyone who has been using these and feels inclined to post stats, that would be helpful.
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Old 07-18-2019, 02:17 AM   #5
waittilnextyear
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I got around to running some sims with these custom ballpark factors. Here is the result. The bottom line summary is I think they work well and would recommend them to anyone that wants ballparks to play true to character.

The methodology
Using the most updated OOTP build with standard rosters and LIVE player ratings. The only roster edit I made was to sideline both Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton for an equivalent period of time that they've missed in real life because I thought they could significantly alter the data set otherwise. Injuries were on and I left all settings at default.

I input the custom ballpark factors from the OP and also set the in-game stat modifiers according to real life stats through July 7th. Then, I simmed to July 7th. I ran a total of 3 sims and averaged the data. In the sims, I ended up focusing on each home team's performance in its home ballpark in terms of: 2B/G, 3B/G, HR/G, R/G, and batting average.

I then compiled the corresponding real life data through July 7th and compared it with the sims.

Doubles per game
I noticed right away the ballparks that perform as doubles havens bore that out in the sims. For example, you have Fenway Park (2.53 2B/G in sims vs 2.43 2B/G in the real life 2019 season), Coors Field (2.60 2B/G vs 2.47 2B/G), PNC Park (2.45 2B/G vs 2.30 2B/G) all playing pretty true to form. The average percent difference for all 30 parks was 13%. In other words, the difference was about as big as the difference between 70 and 80 doubles per park per half-season. Given the relatively small data set (3 sims) and the difficulty of predicting 2019 stats from prior data in the first place, I thought it was a good result overall. I'm not seeking perfect statistical fidelity anyway, but I just want the ballparks to play to their real life character.

Triples per game
Triples are among the most rare occurrences in baseball and it makes a good deal of sense that the percent difference was the highest among all stats recorded at about 48%. In other words, the difference was about as big as a park having 6 triples vs 9 triples in a half-season of play. Even so, I was heartened to see parks that are known for triples being among the best triple-producers: Kauffman Stadium (0.46 3B/G in sims vs 0.32 3B/G in the real life 2019 season), Wrigley Field (0.22 3B/G vs 0.24 3B/G), Chase Field (0.32 3B/G vs 0.24 3B/G), Coors Field (0.39 3B/G vs 0.44 3B/G), Oracle Park (0.19 3B/G vs 0.22 3B/G). Another thing that you can notice is the deviations aren't all in the same direction, which I think is a good thing--meaning the source of the variation is probably statistical noise (injuries, random number fluctuations etc) rather than an underlying systematic error in the park factors. Coors Field underperformed despite a robust 1.907 ballpark factor for triples. Kauffman Stadium overperformed, even with a much lower 1.297 ballpark factor for triples.

Home runs per game
With the sudden upward trajectory in homers in real life due to juiced balls and other factors, I really didn't know what to expect here. That said, the percent difference when considering all 30 parks was pretty much in line with doubles, at 14%. In other words, the difference was about as big as a park producing 80 homers vs 70 homers per team per half-season. The biggest deviants on the too many HR side were: (oddly) Comerica Park (+52%), Guaranteed Rate Field (+34%), Yankee Stadium (+34%), Chase Field (+30%), Citizens Bank Park (+20%). On the too few HR side: SunTrust Park (-34%), Citi Field (-22%), Oakland Coliseum (-20%), Rogers Centre (-16%). Interestingly, it seems there is a bit more correlation here between the direction of the variance and the type of park factor. The positive outliers above (except for the Tigers) all have favorable ballpark factors for home runs; the negative outliers (except for the Blue Jays) have homer-suppressing park factors. My suspicion is that the SunTrust Park factors are somewhat suspect because there wasn't a lot of historical data to base that on and the Braves have swung from extreme rebuild to having a potent offense in a short period of time. An extreme rash of injuries in real life may provide some explanation for why the Yankees hit more home runs in sims, but remember that Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton were accounted for by deactivating them both. There may be something a bit off in a systematic way, but, in any case, most of the deviations (for both homer-friendly and homer-unfriendly parks) are pretty small and somewhat random: Dodger Stadium (+1.7%), Marlins Park (+1.2%), Fenway Park (-4.5%), Kauffman Stadium (+4.5%), Great American Ball Park (-0.6%), Miller Park (+6.8%), PNC Park (-4.7%), Petco Park (+5.1%), Oracle Park (-9.8%), Busch Stadium (+12.5%).

Runs per game
As one might expect, given that runs are more common occurrences than doubles, triples, or home runs, the data were more robust here probably due to sample size. The average percent difference was about 9%. The simulated teams that outscored their real life counterparts by the most: Padres (+32%), Tigers (+27%), Indians (+19%), Giants (+16%), D'Backs (+15%), and Blue Jays (+13%). This list mostly reads like a list of doormat teams in 2019 rather than having anything to do with ballpark factors. Most of these teams have offense-lowering ballpark factors so that wouldn't explain these offensive explosions. My hunch is that OOTP's ratings aren't properly capturing just how putrid some of these teams really are this year, so they tend to do better in the sims. Teams that are doing significantly worse than their real life counterparts: Mets (-24%), Braves (-14%), Mariners (-13%), A's (-12%), Marlins (-11%), Rays (-10%), Rockies (-9%). Again, looks like a mixed bag with deviations not having a correlation to ballpark factors.

Batting average
The last stat I'll mention here is batting average. This was the most well-reproduced item in the sims judging by the 6% difference versus real life. There was no difference for any of the teams greater than 15%. Both the Giants and Blue Jays were +15% despite relatively neutral ballpark factors. The Padres were +14%. Once again, it appears that there's no systematic errors going on and these deviations are due to statistical noise.

Overall
The authentic modifiers from the 2019 season held up pretty well. Summing up all of the stats mentioned for the simmed results across all 30 teams: 50.86 2B/G, 5.02 3B/G, 40.63 HR/G, 140.6 R/G, .255 AVG, .328 OBP. Doing the same for the 2019 real life data: 49.69 2B/G, 4.76 3B/G, 39.02 HR/G, 138.8 R/G, .254 AVG, .326 OBP. The sims were just a tiny touch more offense-friendly, but I'd hesitate to lend that significance with only 3 sims and with the differences being so small.
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