Welcome to the True AVG report! This will be a frequent post outlining the results of the True AVG models on the site which can be found in the MLB Range of Outcomes as well as the free Binomial Projections model. The goal of these posts is to look into the numbers and find large outliers between production and regression. We can use that to take advantage of them in sports betting markets and daily fantasy sports.
Underlined phrases and words have links for extra information! All underlined players have a link to their Fangraphs page for ease of research!
What is MLB True AVG?
True AVG is a regressed metric based on batting average allowed for MLB starting pitchers. You can use it for finding pitchers that have had their results affected either positively or negatively by factors of luck. Basically, we are trying to take luck out of the equation and find what pitchers “truly” deserve. Similar to the predictive xHR/9 stat which I developed to leverage luck in home run deviations, True AVG has been built to be an intuitive way to assess realistic outcomes for pitchers. For more info, check out this video.
Recap from yesterday's post: Models got back on track yesterday with strong results from the top and bottom marks. The lowest True AVG went to Dylan Cease against the Giants. Subsequently he pitched five innings with no runs and four strikeouts. Meanwhile, the highest True AVG belonged to Matthew Liberatore. He didn't give up any home runs, but allowed five runs on seven hits with just three strikeouts.
MLB True AVG notable results
Starting things off we have Brandon Woodruff with the lowest True AVG available. His mark of .112 is the best we have seen so far and comes against one of the weakest opponents in the league, the Pirates. Obviously this is a spot to prioritize. Although he will certainly be popular, you will want to find leverage elsewhere.
On the other side of that game we find the highest True AVG going to Zach Thompson. Granted, his season long stats are well in line with expectation, but his recent sample looks considerably worse. His 2.51 ERA is well below his xFIP of 4.91 and his BABIP and LOB rate are certainly going to regress. His matchup with the Brewers is difficult as well, as they are a top 10 team in wRC+ and ISO against RHP. Look to attack Thompson in DFS and take the unders on his props.
Significant deviations to consider
- The largest positive deviation on the day sits with Carlos Carrasco against the Rangers. It's been a season long trend of Carrasco getting unlucky and that has been especially so in the recent sample. Indeed, his 7.66 ERA and 3.54 xFIP are a whopping 3 runs apart! Likewise, his .385 BABIP and 65% LOB rate are both completely unsustainable. The Rangers are a league average matchup with an above average strikeout rate. Considering all of this and the fact that Carrasco has fantastic strikeout rates and upside, this is a spot to prioritize and look for help from regression.
- Finishing up we have the largest negative deviation going to Tyler Wells! This is a strong spot to attack considering nearly every factor. His opponent, the Twins, are a top five offense in baseball and top three in wRC+ against RHP in the recent sample. Likewise, Wells has been running hot in BABIP, LOB rate, and home run rate and is primed for corrections in all three. All of this on top of a low strikeout rate and low groundball rate means you should start with the Twins in all formats.