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 and True AVG tables. 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 the previous slate's post: Out of the three positive regression candidates only Patrick Sandoval saw no improvements. Meanwhile, Pablo Lopez allowed just four hits (.188 BABIP) and two runs with four strikeouts while Daniel Lynch went five innings with no runs and just two hits.
Below you'll find a recap of the DFS and Betting models. These models are powered by True AVG and other powerful metrics! so, If you are enjoying the True AVG report, you should try out a subscription to the site for access (Find an option here!).
MLB True AVG notable results
The best overall True AVG belongs to Reid Detmers. Earlier in the year, Detmers was a consistent negative regression candidate with a bad True AVG, so his place at the top of the list is really interesting. He got sent down at one point and reintroduced a slider that has been an immense help in the majors. Granted, he has some home run luck that will wear off, but his strikeout rates and upside are fantastic. He's got a matchup with the Twins who are slightly below average against LHP. It's unlikely that Detmers will be highly owned, so make him a priority to gain leverage in DFS.
Meanwhile, the worst overall True AVG goes to Logan Webb. With a high BABIP and low strikeout rates, this is a case of a bad pitcher likely to continue being bad. Granted, we can see some positive regression for LOB rates and home run rates, but not enough to make him a significantly better pitcher. All of that said, he's facing the Pirates and their 73 wRC+ against RHP so we shouldn't expect a meltdown. This is a spot to avoid both Webb and his opponent and find ceiling games elsewhere.
Significant deviations to consider
- The largest positive deviations go to Lucas Giolito up against the Tigers. The recent sample has been very unlucky for Giolito with his BABIP and LOB rates way too high. Likewise, his ERA is over three runs higher than his xFIP which signals positive regression on the horizon. His opponent, the Tigers, have just a 51 wRC+ against RHP and got shut out by a significantly worse pitcher yesterday. You won't be getting an ownership discount, but you should make Giolito a priority in DFS contests today and hit his overs in the prop markets.
- The largest negative deviations are for Jesus Luzardo who has to deal with the Braves. Granted, the recent sample is just one game, but it continues a trend from the longer sample. Luzardo has benefitted greatly from luck in BABIP while being mostly normalized elsewhere. Meanwhile, he's going up against the Braves who have a 121 wRC+ against LHP though with below average power. Overall, this is an interesting spot where we should expect Luzardo to get hit around. However, because of the lack of power potential, the Braves aren't a priority. Look to take the under on Luzardo's strikeout props and use a couple Braves bats as a secondary stack in GPPs.