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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

BA Does A Pretty Good Job

Thanks to BTF for digging up this Sons of Sam Horn thread about Baseball America's 1994 prospect rankings and how that related to the players' subsequent performance. The answer: pretty well:
My general impression is that the two rank orders much pretty well. Seventeen teams are within five spots of their BA ranking. They may match up for the wrong reasons, ie BA thought prospects A, B, C were great, but in reality it’s prospects X, Y, Z who actually were productive, but given the difficulty of the task I’m ok with calling that a basically “correct” prediction without going through each team. I will go through the eleven misses individually though.

For people who like correlations, the correlation of the two rank orders is a surprising (to me anyway) 0.54. I wouldn’t suggest trying to get a drug approved at the FDA with that kind of a correlation, but in the world of baseball statistics that’s pretty good. IIRC, the correlation between year 1 DIPS ERA and year 2 actual ERA is about 0.4.

What this means is that the Dodgers' farm system is likely to produce at least a few major leaguers who are pretty good, although it should be noted in this study that the Dodgers were one of the clubs whose prospects ended up being overrated.

Then there is the case of Paul Konerko, who was the 2nd highest prospect by BB America in 1998. Dodgers sure know how to keep the right prospects.
Todd Hollandsworth? Or Paul Konerko, for Jeff Shaw? And trading Hollandsworth for a half-season of Tom Goodwin? Brilliant.

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