What Is Drs In Baseball


A defensive metric established by The Fielding Bible, an organization managed by John Dewan, that evaluates individual players as above or below average on defense, is Defensive Runs Saved (DRS). Baseball Info Solutions data is utilized as an input, and players are measured in “runs” above or below average, similar to UZR. Because DRS is measured in runs, it is easy to compare a player’s defensive contributions to his offensive ones (wRAAor similar statistics). FanGraphs claims a high number of fielding estimates performed using this approach, all of which were quantified in runs above average.

Stolen Base Runs Saved (Catchers/Pitchers) is a stat that measures two things.

When infielders turn double plays, rather than getting one out on the play, they are credited with rGDP– Double Play Runs Saved (2B/SS).

RHR– HR Saving Catch Runs Saved gives the outfielder 1.6 runs for every home run that is robbed by the pitcher.

  • When compared to the typical player at his position, DRS– Total Defensive Runs Saved reflects how many runs a player saved or harmed his team on the field in a given season.
  • For more information on defensive measures in general, please check ourOverviewsection of this document.
  • What is the purpose of DRS?
  • Because you can’t see and recall enough plays in a year to have a decent idea of how well a player compares to his or her opponents, even your eyes won’t be very effective at evaluating defensive performance.
  • Using run value defensive data, such as DRS, you can get the most accurate assessment of a player’s defensive worth currently available and estimate how much a player’s defense has contributed to his team’s victory.
  • DRS is as simple to read as it is to calculate, but it is more difficult to compute than to read.
  • A player with a +5 DRS at third base signifies that he or she is five runs better than the typical third baseman.

First and foremost, because DRS is calculated relative to positional average, you must take into consideration the fact that some positions are more difficult to play than others.

If you prefer DRS, you might include it in the adjustment and obtain a DEF that is based on DRS.

The statistic is somewhat reliable once you get to one- and three-year samples, but defensive performance is very unpredictable, so you need a large quantity of data for the metrics to be really helpful in their current form.

In general, DRS isn’t ideal since it doesn’t take into account shifts or positions, and it can’t measure everything properly all of the time, but it’s still one of the most effective solutions available.

Many other reasons exist for why they might not be telling you the whole picture, and theOverviewsection goes into great length about them.

An easy approach to assess a player’s defensive competence level is to use the following shorthand: es. DRS scores may be classified into the same main categories as UZR scores:

Defensive Ability DRS
Gold Glove Caliber +15
Great +10
Above Average +5
Average 0
Below Average -5
Poor -10
Awful -15

Several Points to Keep in Mind: Are you looking for further information on how DRS is calculated? You may learn more about their approach by visiting the Fielding Bible, which has a full essay explaining it in detail. In order to calculate its outcomes, DRS makes use of Baseball Info Solutions (BIS) data. Please keep in mind that this data was generated by human scorers, which means that it is likely to include some errors due to human intervention. We will never have completely correct defensive statistics until StatCast data is made available to the public; human error is unavoidable when recording fielding locations by hand, no matter how thorough the scorers are in their work.

When it comes to approach (e.g., the usage of “zones” for analyzing defensive success rates), DRS and UZR are equivalent in both aspects of outcomes and methodology.

Despite their apparent disparities, the differences between the two systems are less significant than they appear at first glance: Both methods are attempting to accomplish the same goal—estimating a player’s defensive worth in terms of “runs.” Both systems rely on hit location and type data from Baseball Info Solutions to accomplish this aim.

For example, Defensive Runs Saved calculates the Plus/Minus system on a rolling one-year basis, but UZR calculates the difficulty rating of each play based on data collected over multiple years.

(Source: The Fielding Bible.) Listed below are some further reading resources: What is the difference between UZR and Plus/Minus?

The FanGraphs +/-, RZR, and New Fielding Stats – FanGraphs +/-, RZR, and Defensive Runs Saved Clarification – FanGraphs

Defensive Runs Saved – Wikipedia

Defense Runs Saved (DRS) is a baseball statistic that quantifies the amount of runs a player saves or costs his club on defense as compared to the average player on the field. Any positive figure indicates that the player is above average, and the top fielders often fall into the 15–20 area for the season. Baseball Info Solutions invented the statistic, and the data necessary to calculate it became accessible for the first time in 2003, according to the company.


As of the conclusion of the 2019 Major League Baseball season, shortstopAndrelton Simmons holds the record for the most Defensive Runs Saved in a single season with 40 saves in 2017. Matt Kemp, while playing center field for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2010, established the record for the fewest Defensive Runs Saved in a season by allowing the team to score 33 runs. With 202 Defensive Runs Saved in his career, third baseman Adrián Beltré holds the record for the most such saves. Shortstop for the New York Yankees in the past Derek Jeter holds the distinction of being the poorest fielder ever measured by DRS; from 2003 until the conclusion of his career, he amassed a total of -162 Defensive Runs Saved throughout his career.

Fielders with great defensive range are able to make plays that the majority of players would not have the opportunity to make otherwise.

For the period 2002 to 2019, the table below displays a comparison between the top 10 shortstops ranked by fielding % and the top 10 shortstops ranked by number of defensive runs saved.

For the purpose of calculating Defensive Runs Saved, points are either added or deducted from the fielder’s rating for each ball hit, based on whether or not the fielder makes the play.

A ball hit to the center fielder, for example, is predicted to be caught 30% of the time, and if it is caught, the fielder receives 0.7 points for his or her efforts. 0.3 points are deducted from the center fielder’s total if the ball is not caught.

Top 10 Shortstops (2002-2019)

Defensive Runs Saved (Shortstops) Fielding Percentage (Shortstops)
Andrelton Simmons Jimmy Rollins
Adam Everett J.J. Hardy
Jack Wilson Andrelton Simmons
Brendan Ryan Trevor Story
Troy Tulowitzki Paul DeJong
J.J. Hardy Jhonny Peralta
Clint Barmes Francisco Lindor
Brandon Crawford Carlos Correa
Nick Ahmed Royce Clayton
Cesar Izturis David Eckstein


  1. In “Frequently Asked Questions regarding Plus/Minus and Runs Saved”, fieldingbible.com provides answers to frequently asked questions. Slowinski, Steve (October 26, 2012)
  2. Archived from the original on October 26, 2012. (February 15, 2010). “DRS”.fangraphs.com. Johns, Greg (October 26, 2012)
  3. Archived from the original on October 26, 2012. (October 25, 2012). “Ryan wins Fielding Bible Award in the short form”.MLB.com (in English). On October 26, 2012, the original version of this article was archived. Simon and Mark are two people that have a lot in common (July 9, 2012). In the words of ESPN.com, “Surprise! Why Chipper rates good on D.” On October 26, 2012, the original version of this article was archived. “Baseball-Reference.com Position Player WAR Calculations and Details.” Sports Reference. Retrieved 1 February 2018
  4. ‘Major League Leaderboards » 2010 » All Positions » Fielding Statistics”.FanGraphs. Retrieved1 February2018
  5. ‘Major League Leaderboards » 2017 » All Positions » Fielding Statistics’.FanGraphs. Retrieved1 February2018
  6. ‘What is a Fielding Percentage (FPCT)? | Glossary.’ Major League Baseball. Retrieved1 February2018
  7. ‘What is a Fielding Percentage (FPCT)? |

Stat to the Future: Defending and dissecting Defensive Runs Saved

What WAR is and how it works were discussed in a previous part, which was effectively defined as giving run values to plays and rewarding players for generating these runs. Offensively, it’s straightforward: a single is worth a certain number of runs, a double is worth an even greater number of runs, and so on. When it comes to defense, the situation is quite different. In this installment of Stat to the Future, we’ll take a look at Defensive Runs Saved, which serves as the foundation of the defensive component of the rWAR formula.

The error of errors

In order to correct the problems with traditional statistics used to measure defense, such as mistakes and fielding %, DRS was created. Matt Kemp and Kevin Kiermaier are Exhibit A in this case. This past season, Kiermaier made six mistakes and had a fielding percentage of.976, whereas Kemp made only one error and had a fielding percentage of 993%. Clearly, something is wrong: the eye test can tell you that Kiermaier is a better fielder than Kemp, despite the fact that Kemp is a better fielder than Kiermaier.

Kiermaier has far more range, allowing him to make plays on balls that are significantly further away.

Of course, balls that are more than 20 feet away from Kiermaier are more difficult to make a play on than balls that are more than five feet away from Kemp, and vice versa.

DRS is an effort to resolve the dilemma of not rewarding players for making tough plays when they can and brutally penalizing them when they are unable to accomplish so.

Position Gold Glove Winners Fielding Bible Winner DRS Leader
C Martin Maldonado (22 DRS), Tucker Barnhart (11 DRS) Martin Maldonado (22 DRS) Martin Maldonado (22 DRS)
1B Eric Hosmer (-7 DRS), Paul Goldschmidt (10 DRS) Paul Goldschmidt (10 DRS) Joey Votto (11 DRS)
2B DJ LeMahieu (8 DRS), Brian Dozier (6 DRS) DJ LeMahieu (8 DRS) DJ LeMahieu (8 DRS)
3B Nolan Arenado (20 DRS), Evan Longoria (11 DRS) Nolan Arenado (20 DRS) Nolan Arenado (20 DRS)
SS Andrelton Simmons (32 DRS), Trevor Story (11 DRS) Andrelton Simmons (32 DRS) Andrelton Simmons (32 DRS)
LF Marcell Ozuna (11 DRS), Alex Gordon (9 DRS) Brett Gardner (17 DRS) Brett Gardner (17 DRS)
CF Byron Buxton (24 DRS), Ender Inciarte (5 DRS) Byron Buxton (24) Byron Buxton (24 DRS)
RF Mookie Betts (31 DRS), Jason Heyward (18 DRS) Mookie Betts (31 DRS) Mookie Betts (31 DRS)
SP Zach Greinke (4 DRS), Marcus Stroman (5 DRS) Dallas Keuchel (9 DRS) Dallas Keuchel (9 DRS), Tyler Chatwood (9 DRS)
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Exceptions were made for Eric Hosmer (-7 DRS), Dallas Keuchel (9 DRS), and Tyler Chatwood (9 DRS), but everyone else who was unanimously voted the greatest defender at their position was also rated as an excellent defender by the Defense Ratings System.

Calculating DRS

“It’s tough,” as Run-DMC once put it. Defensive Runs Saved DMC, or was it something else? I’m getting ahead of myself. DRS is determined by an organization known as The Fielding Bible, which accumulates and publishes defensive data for players on a season-by-season basis for the purpose of determining their effectiveness. Additionally, the Fielding Bible produces books of the same name, in which they describe their process for generating their metrics, but most of their material is available on their website.

  • Batted balls are evaluated by the BIS based on the direction in which the ball is hit, the distance traveled by the ball, the speed with which the ball leaves the bat, and the type of batted ball (line drive, fly ball and so forth).
  • Based on how players perform on that percentage, DRS awards players credit for their contributions.
  • Suppose a shortstop makes a play on that ball around 25 percent of the time, which is a reasonable assumption.
  • He gets.75 if he makes the play, which is basically the credit for making it as opposed to the credit for not making it, as there isn’t any expectation that a player would make the play in this case.
  • A misplay on the play results in Simmons being charged with -.25 times the number of bases allowed on the play, which is -.50 bases allowed on the play in this instance.
  • Finally, DRS use run expectation to estimate how many runs a saved base at a position is worth: for a shortstop, this figure is approximately.76 runs per saved base at the position.
  • In this scenario, if Simmons makes the play, he is accountable for.9375 times.76 or.71 runs saved, or -.50 times.76 or -.38 runs saved if he is unable to complete the play, and he also enables the runner to progress to second base.

A completely average defense will have a Plus/Minus score of zero, indicating that they are ideal. Defenders who are above average will have a score greater than zero, and defenders who are below average will have a score less than zero.

The rest of DRS

In DRS, the plus/minus score is the most important component, and it serves as a good representation of the basic theory that behind it: giving runs to players depending on how well they perform in comparison to an average defense. However, DRS does not store all of the Plus/Minus runs; instead, it is made up of the following components:

  • In DRS, the plus/minus score is the most important component, and it serves as a good representation of the overall theory that behind it: awarding runs to players depending on how well they perform in comparison to an average defensive player. Despite this, DRS does not store all of the Plus/Minus runs
  • Instead, it is made up of the following components:

With the exception of catchers, Plus/Minus accounts for the most bulk of a player’s defensive rating. DRS provides run values to defensive plays, which may subsequently be compared side-by-side with offensive run values to get WAR (Wins Above Replacement). The Defense Run Value System (DRS) is not the sole method for assigning run values to defense. Don’t you just adore the way a story ends?

Stat To The Future: UZR, the DRS cousin you didn’t know that stats had

No, it is not a case of déjà vu. The last time we spoke about DRS, a defensive statistic that assigns run values to defensive plays and awards players credit depending on how important each play they make was, we talked about how to improve your DRS. Using UZR, a defensive measure that assigns run values to defensive plays and awards players credit depending on how useful each play they make was, we’ll be talking about run defense this week. Don’t be concerned, everything will make more sense afterwards.

The overlap of UZR/DRS

Both UZR and DRS are primarily concerned with evaluating the likelihood that a play will be made on a batted ball, assigning a run value to a batted ball, and awarding or penalizing a player for making or missing a play, respectively, on a batted ball. A hit ball is caught 25% of the time, and that batted ball is valued 0.6 runs on average, then a defender who makes the play earns 0.6 times (1-.25) = +.45 runs worth of points, and if he misses it, he is punished -.15 points on the scoreboard.

  1. Both UZR and DRS make use of the same dataset, which is the batted ball data from Baseball Info Solution. Balls are classified by the Bureau of Industrial Statistics (BIS) based on their quality of touch, spray, height, and kind. Runners are given run credit for a variety of other actions during a game, such as throwing the ball in to throw out runners or prevent runners from advancing, as well as for turning double plays in both UZR and DRS.

To put it another way, think of UZR and DRS as two kids playing with Legos to construct a helicopter: they both utilize the same materials and are seeking to achieve the same goal, but they are going about it in very different ways.

Different strokes for different folks

So why do UZR and DRS have such a strong disagreement on these guys?

Player DRS (2017) UZR (2017)
Kyle Seager -2 6.2
Miguel Cabrera -8 3.3
Justin Turner 6 -1.1

UZR rates Seager and Cabrera as above-average defenders in 2017, but Turner is rated as below-average, although DRS rates them as above-average defenders. Clearly, there is a significant difference of opinion here. Although there are various causes contributing to the disparity, arguably the most significant is that UZR employs larger “buckets” than DRS, which is the largest difference. DRS and UZR do their computations by categorizing batted balls into “buckets,” which are groups of batted balls that are similar in nature and are grouped together.

However, as Mitchel Lichtman, who performs UZR calculations for FanGraphs, explains, DRS’s data from BIS is not always precise enough to warrant the size of the buckets that DRS uses, so there is a trade-off with both metrics.

In the long run, however, these disparities are more or less balanced. Here are the same three players as previously, but this time I’ve included their DRS and UZR numbers from the last three years to give you a better idea of their performance.

Player DRS (2015-2017) UZR (2015-2017)
Kyle Seager 14 12.4
Miguel Cabrera -10 6.5
Justin Turner 18 16.1

When it comes to DRS and UZR, the values for Seager and Turner are considerably more in sync with one another, despite the fact that Cabrera portrays a controversial image defensively. DRS assesses penalties and credits for hit balls on which many fielders may make a play in a different manner than UZR, which could explain Cabrera’s discrepancies. Whenever a ball may be fielded by either of two players, and both players fail, DRS penalizes each of those players more severely than UZR If either player succeeds, the player earns more credit with DRS than they would receive with UZR in the same situation.

The difference between the best and worst qualifying players in 2017 was 59 DRS, although the difference between the best and worst player in UZR was just 33.8 DRS.

Cabrera, who has a very limited range, may choose to protect the bag and allow Kinsler to dive for balls in all directions as Cabrera watches.

Cabrera is unable to do so due to his age and limited range, and as a result, DRS penalizes him more severely than UZR.

All in how it’s used

This is due to the tiny differences between DRS and UZR: some sabermetricians prefer the small differences of UZR to the small differences of DRS, while others prefer the small differences of DRS to the small differences of DRS. It is not an objective measurement in which one metric is clearly superior to the other, but rather a subjective question of personal choice. UZR and DRS are also utilized in the calculation of their respective versions of WAR: UZR is used in the calculation of fWAR for FanGraphs and DRS is used in the calculation of rWAR for Baseball Reference, among other things.

Than some, saying “.gif” with a harsh G sound is preferable to accurately pronouncing it; to others, it is just a matter of personal preference.

2021 MLB Player Defensive Stats

PitchersC1B2B3BSSLFCFRFLoading Pitcher Defensive StatsDefensive Stat GlossaryDRSDefensive Run Saved (DRS) is a measure of a player’s defense in “runs” above or below average, and it is calculated using nine major methodologies detailed in DRS Breakdown.RangePosRates a player’s success at turning batted balls into outs based on where he is positioned and his

Stats All, Folks: The pros and cons of Defensive Runs Saved – and how do the Orioles fare?

Welcome back to the world of statistics. All right, folks, that concludes our year-long examination of the analytical side of baseball. Sabermetric statistics for hitters and pitchers have been extensively addressed in the previous editions. But now it’s time to go a bit out of hand. Today, we’ll take a look at some advanced fielding measures, notably Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) (DRS). The likes of Dan Connolly, for example, are not fans of sophisticated defensive measures. In order to get around this, I’m slipping in this narrative when he’s on vacation.

  1. Mum is the word of the day.
  2. Befor we go into the mechanics of what this metric is, let us consider why it may be more valuable than traditional fielding data and how it is calculated.
  3. Unfortunately, some of them can be seriously faulty.
  4. A play might be ruled an error by one official scorer while another would call it a base hit by another.
  5. Yet another significant issue is that there are several bad defensive plays that are not classified as mistakes.
  6. Consider the following scenario: I’m a major league baseball player who is playing center field.
  7. If anything were to be hit a few feet to my left or right, or behind me or in front of me, there’s a good possibility I wouldn’t even be able to get near enough to the ball to put a glove on it.
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Basically, any ball that was thrown in my way would land in my lap unharmed.

That is an extreme case, to be sure, but it illustrates the fundamental issue in the way mistakes are shown.

What is Defensive Runs Saved and how does it work?

It’s a positive or negative figure that indicates how many runs a fielder has saved his club — or lost his team — with his defense over the course of the season.

To begin, how successfully (or poorly) does a fielder convert balls in play into outs is evaluated.

To establish this, anytime a ball is placed into play, it is compared to all other balls that have been put into play in previous seasons that have had the same speed, position, elevation, and other characteristics.

If the fielder did not make the play, the analysts look at how often that sort of play would result in an out rather than a base hit, as well as how many runs the offensive club would score as a result of the error.

As I consider how I ended myself in this situation, a hitter smashes a fly ball to medium-deep center field, which I catch on my way home.

Historically, most center fielders would be able to make that type of play with relative ease.

As a result, Defensive Runs Saved would subtract some points from my final score as a result of my error.

Infielders, for example, are evaluated based on their ability to field bunts and convert double plays, outfielders are evaluated based on their ability to throw out runners, and pitchers and catchers are evaluated based on their ability to prevent stolen bases.

A score of +5 indicates excellent performance, whereas anything less than 0 indicates below average performance.

Now, Dan is legally compelled me to point out that Defensive Runs Saved has its own set of disadvantages, which I will do.

Consider the following scenario: a hitter hits a regular grounder to the location where the third baseman would ordinarily be positioned — except that the team is employing a Chris Davis-type shift, with the third baseman stationed near second base.

In addition, DRS is unreliable in tiny samples of data.

A one or two games might have a significant impact on the results.

There are a variety of factors at play that might cause variations in results.

Runs saved by the Orioles and by the defense What can we infer about the Orioles’ defense from DRS data?

Depending on how you look at it, the Orioles’ defense has experienced a precipitous fall over the past three seasons.

Every Oriole who played at least 500 innings at a position had a positive DRS, with the top two being shortstop J.J.

Since then, according to DRS, things have only gotten better.

After heroic performances by third baseman Manny Machado (+14 DRS) and catcher Caleb Joseph (+9), the Orioles were hampered by subpar defense at the outfield corners, notably Gerardo Parra, who has a negative DRS in his first two months with the team.

Machado (+13) was the team’s top performer once again, with first baseman Chris Davis (+8) also shining brightly.

Defense-wise, the Orioles are off to another slow start this season, according to DRS metrics.

As previously stated, however, a sample size of two months is insufficient to reach conclusive conclusions.

Again, these figures should not be taken as gospel. However, they are intriguing to think about. Furthermore, they imply that the Orioles’ recent reputation as a great defensive club may not be entirely accurate in this instance.

Defensive Statistics

Don’t put your faith in the baseball gods. They detailed defense using high-tech data and computations that appeared to be beyond the comprehension of mortals. Not just once, but several times. They repeated the process a half-dozen times, with each statistic being distinct from the others. The acronym DRS, FRAA, OAA, Rtot/TZTFR, UZR, and SDI were all created each time a new acronym was created (which combines TZ, DRS, RED, UZR, and DRA). Which statistic is the most appropriate for the situation is determined by the question you are attempting to answer.

When comparing teams, there are no modifications necessary.

Let’s take a look at some defensive statistics that a baseball fan for the Arizona Diamondbacks discovered on the internet (me).

Fielding Runs Above Average (FRAA) is at Baseball Prospectus.

(FRAA) is reliant on putouts, assists, and situational modifications to function properly. It makes no consideration for fielder position or batted ball statistics. The latest current chart I could find was for the year 2019. There were a total of 63 players. Kole Calhoun was ranked sixth. The following is an excerpt from the screen: Baseball Prospectus is a publication that publishes information about baseball prospects.

Outs Above Average (OAA) is at Baseball Savant.

The odds of catching the ball are determined by two factors: “How far did the fielder have to run?” and “How much time did he have to get to the ball?”. There is a leaderboard, and you may check for Diamondbacks who have made at least 10 fielding efforts on the field. Furthermore, it gives other information in addition to OAA, such as the predicted success rate for catch attempts and the success rate. Nick Ahmed and Tim Locastro got the greatest overall achievement ratings in 2020. The following is a screenshot of the screen.

For outfielders, Statcast data is provided at Baseball Savant.

In Statcast, the number of outs and chances for each bin are displayed after balls-in-play are classified into “bins” based on how tough it is to properly field them. It is not included in this list since it represents the easiest 5 percent of balls in play. Here is a link to the leaderboard for catching fish. The following is an excerpt from the screen: Savant in the Game of Baseball Another table contains more information if you require it. Comparing outfielders to a “average” fielder, you may examine how far an outfielder went in the first 1.5 seconds (respond), the second 1.5 seconds (burst), and the distance deducted from the distance traveled by taking an indirect path (route).

The following is a screenshot of the screen.

Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR) is provided at Fangraphs, and Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) is provided at Fielding Bible.

To improve the accuracy of measuring defensive prowess, both UZR and DRS use several complicated modifications. The links to the player leaderboards are UZRandDRS. The URL to Team DRS is here. The following is a snippet of the Diamondbacks’ UZR leaderboard. On the online screen, there is a button that says ‘MORE,’ which may be clicked to show the whole table. Each player has a distinct line for each position in which he has participated in the game. Jacoby Lambis, for example, is displayed in the chart with a 4.7 UZR/150 in 83 innings at first base, then farther down in the table is shown with a 17.5 UZR/150 in 16 innings at third base.

FanGraphs UZR throws out plays that feature a shift in the middle of them.

UZR gives components — for outfielders, these are range, error, and arm; for infielders, these are range, error, and double plays; and for pitchers, these are range, error, and double plays.

In spite of the fact that both receive their data from BIS and employ very similar algorithms (particularly in the Plus/Minus calculation), DRS contains batted ball timing data, but UZR does not.

At Baseball Reference, DRS is used to compute Wins Above Replacement (WAR). This page outlines the inputs to DRS that are based on their location:

  • Corner infielders: plus/minus, double plays, bunt fielding, GFP/DME
  • Middle infielders: plus/minus, double plays, GFP/DME
  • Outfielders: plus/minus, double plays, GFP/DME
  • Outfielders: a plus/minus, outfield throws, GFP/DME for the outfielders
  • GFP/DME for catchers
  • Plus/minus for pitchers
  • Baserunning prevention
  • Bunt fielding
  • GFP/DME for pitchers
  • Plus/minus for catchers
  • Plus/minus for catchers.

The DRS was revised in advance of the 2020 season. ‘PART’ is a feature of the new system. During shifting plays, players are given credit based on where they were standing at the time the ball was struck. Three statistics have taken the place of “Range and Positioning Runs Saved.” “Air, range, and throwing runs have all been saved,” says the narrator. Following is a snippet from theKetel Marte’s DRS page. As the figure illustrates, infield defense and outfield defense are distinct. The Fielding Bible is a resource for fielding professionals.

SABR Defensive Index (SDI) is provided at SABR.

Silver and Gold Glove Awards are given out by SDI. Access to the 2013 Excel file, which includes the text of formulae used to compute SDI, may be obtained via the link provided on this webpage. In addition to three zone measurements (Total Zone (TZ), Defensive Runs Saved (DRS), and Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR)), the SDI formulae now contain two play-by-play metrics (Runs Effectively Defended (RED) and Defensive Regression Analysis (DRA), which are calculated on a per-game basis. If I knew where to go for data that was more current than 2013, it would be really helpful.

The following is an example of what the Excel file looks like: SABR

Defensive statistics are provided at Baseball Reference.

Rtot, commonly known as TZTFR, is a measure of a team’s defensive effectiveness. Generally speaking, Total Zone Total Fielding Runs is considered to be the most all-encompassing defensive metric for study that takes into account both historical and contemporary data. It may be found by clicking here. For each position, Rtot data, as well as extra information, is presented at two levels (team and player) (in this case second base). Following are snippets of text from the lengthy webpage. Baseball-Related Phrases In order to determine the defensive worth of certain players (in this example Ketel Marte), I may consult the player value table and the dWAR column to see how well he defends in comparison to a replacement player.

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Following are snippets of text from the lengthy webpage.

Make good use of them.

Trust Me, It’s Really Not That Hard: DRS and UZR

Hello, there. It’s been a long since we’ve seen each other. It’s been two, maybe three site redesigns since I’ve been up here, if not more. Neat.) Nico approached me and asked if I could explain how advanced defensive statistics operate and how they are generated. I agreed. Anyone who is unfamiliar with my work may find out more about it here. I was previously a writer at AN and am now employed at Baseball Info Solutions, the company that created DRS. A great deal of misunderstanding and misinformation exists, and I would welcome the opportunity to clear things up for everyone.

  • I’ll attempt to keep things basic and on a conceptual level as much as possible, with as little arithmetic and numbers as I can manage.
  • The capacity to make more plays and record more outs than previously possible.
  • Josh Reddickha has tremendous range in right field, which means he’ll be able to get to balls that most other right fielders will be unable to reach.
  • We can’t, however, depend just on whole numbers and binary data such as yes or no.
  • Do you think the typical third baseman would have been able to turn that ball into an out?
  • A line in the ground can’t be drawn between everything on one side of the line that is 100 percent attainable and everything on the other side that is 100 percent not reachable.
  • This is accomplished by breaking apart all hit balls and categorizing them according to their position on the field as well as the amount of time it took the ball to get there.

(Click here to watch the animated gif.) This was from the start of the 7th inning of the 7th inning on June 30th of this year versus Allen Craig (2:12:30 on MLB.TV, for the curious).

It’s a difficult game to play.

Say that groundballs hit to that zone of the field with that batted ball speed are only converted into outs 20 percent of the time, which is a conservative estimate.

What exactly does this mean?

Fielders even receive a small amount of positive credit on the simple plays, because no play is done perfectly 100 percent of the time without making a single error in the process.

If Donaldson misses the throw, he will receive 0.02 points.

That’s all there is to it.

Advanced defensive metrics might appear dense and bewilderingly difficult at times, but in reality, this is virtually all there is to it when it comes to them.

This technique is particularly advantageous in that it does not take into consideration things like dives, spins, or any of that Jeter-esque aesthetic stuff.

0.80 points were awarded.

0.80 points were awarded.

The figure obtained by keeping a running count of every play for every fielder throughout the course of a season, adding up the plays when he recorded an out and removing plays in the same manner when an out was not recorded, is known as the Basic Plus/Minus.

Given the fact that the former are almost always less-damaging singles, and the latter are more likely to go for extra bases, an outfielder who allows two balls to drop in front of him should be penalized fewer points than an outfielder who allows two balls to drop behind him, assuming all other factors are equal.

  • This is referred to as Enhanced Plus/Minus by DRS.
  • In sabermetrics, there is a notion referred to as the 24 base/out states.
  • Bases can be built in eight different ways: bases empty, man on first, guy on second, guy on third, men on first and second, players on first and third, people on second and third, bases loaded, and bases loaded with a person on first.
  • In an inning, we can have eight base states multiplied by three out states (zero, one, or two).
  • If we look back through baseball history, we can determine the number of runs that have been scored from each one of the base/out statuses all the way through to the finish of an inning.
  • This is referred to as run expectancy since it informs us the worth of each base/out state in terms of runs without having to rely on what happens next.
  • We can simply compare these states since we know what they are worth in each of them.

Jed Lowriedives can’t get a hold of it, and the ball ends up in the outfield in left field.

It appears that, according to this run expectation matrix, there is a +0.649 run differential between the prior condition and the current position, indicating that the failed move was worth the exact opposite: -0.649 runs.

DRS’s Plus/Minus Runs Saved can be found on Fangraphs in the “rPM” column, which stands for “runs per minute.” For the majority of fielders, this constitutes the majority of their ultimate DRS score.

A prominent example of this is BIS’ Good Fielding Plays/Defensive Misplays (GFP/DME) system, in which BIS’ video scouts identify both good and bad fielding plays and organize them into predetermined descriptive groups.

Those categories that do not duplicate items already in Plus/Minus are transformed to runs above/below average in a similar manner, and then included.

There’s also a mechanism in place that rewards players for converting double plays.

Catchers and pitchers are lauded for their ability to keep the running game under control.

Double plays, bunt fielding, GFP/DME are all things that corner infielders are good at.

Middle infielders Outfielders: plus/minus, outfield throws, GFP/DME, and other statistics Catchers are responsible for the following: pitcher handling, baserunning prevention, bunt fielding, GFP/DME PITCHERS: Plus/Minus, baserunning prevention, bunt fielding, GFP/DMEF, plus/minus.

For the time being, I’ll attempt to avoid answering some of the more often asked questions I’ve encountered.

In this entire context, we’re talking about theoretical runs that have been determined on an average of their results.


The second baseman still made a poor decision, and what occurs after that is inconsequential.

Just to put it another way, what is the difference between DRS and UZR?

Both derive their data from BIS and employ fairly similar algorithms (particularly in the Plus/Minus calculation).

Not only that, but first basemen are underrepresented since Plus/Minus does not take scooping skill into consideration.

When a first baseman records an out on a terrible throw, BIS’s video scouts will flag it as one of the Good Fielding Plays, which will then be taken into account in the calculation.

What about night and weekend shifts?


In a subsequent step, DRS goes around and calculates runs over average on each shift individually, on a team-wide basis.

It seems like hanging on to runners would limit their range, doesn’t it?

In order to compute each individual first baseman play with a runner on first, DRS subtracts all of them from the total.

I’m a glutton for punishment, to put it mildly. What if I wish to read more than the recommended amount? There are extensive techniques for DRShere (under the Plus/Minus tab) and UZRhere (under the Plus/Minus tab).

Know Your Stats: Defensive Runs Saved (DRS)

In 2016, my colleague, Connor O’Brien, published a series of articles on getting to know your sabermetrics numbers. I wanted to continue his efforts to bring you more statistics that many baseball front offices feel are crucial in player assessment by bringing you more numbers from his sources. The terms ERA+ and xwOBA have already been discussed in my section of the series. One of the reasons that no one understands how to accurately forecast defense is because defense may be quite unexpected.

These are the ones that we should certainly avoid using: fielding percentage and errors.

Here’s an extract from it to give you an idea of what I’m talking about: “Platinum glover,” says the narrator.

Simmons had a total of 41 DRS throughout that year.

Simmons’ fielding % in 2013 was.981, which was worse than Reyes’ fielding percentage this year.

As a result, I’ll take Fangraphs’ explanation since it is more simple than Baseball Reference’s, however both are extremely comparable and it is OK to use either site’s figures when analyzing defensive run differential.

The other statistics are rARM (runs saved by your arm), rGFP (runs saved by strong fielding plays), and rPM (runs saved by your pitching machine) (plus or minus runs saved).

I’ll attempt to give you an example to help you understand how it works, but I strongly advise you to read Fielding Bible’s explanation for more information.

Let us suppose that Juan Lagares creates a play that is consistent with what we have come to expect from him.

That would imply the 78 percent of center fielders fail to make that play in their careers.

When Lagares makes this play, he would receive a basic rating of 1.56 (which is equal to.78 multiplied by the average amount of bases the hitter receives, which is two).

Considering that just 22 percent of center fielders make this play, we multiply the negative 0.22 by the amount of bases the hitter accrues as a result of the error.

He would be assessed a basic rating of -0.88.

If you want to know how to calculate negative ratings, multiply the percentage of the play that is being made by the number of bases the player reached on that play.

A position factor is assigned to each position.

Consequently, his bonus would be 1.56*0.56, which is equal to 0.8736.

Once again, the piece from the Fielding Bible that I referred to above is an excellent resource to consult when discussing this issue.

Every position has a different method of calculating the overall number of defensive runs saved.

Shortstops and second basemen preserve more runs by turning double plays than any other position on the field, and they can save more runs in either direction.

DRS is a very new statistic that is still in the process of being refined.

According to my estimation, the future of defense will most likely be dominated by Statcast.

While it is presently limited to outfielders, I anticipate it will expand to include additional positions in the future to provide us with more data with which to evaluate players.

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