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: It was a clean sweep in the deviations for the Models last night. Patrick Corbin finished with just two earned runs in 5.1 innings pitched against the Padres. Likewise, Arihara went six innings pitched with just four hits allowed and three strikeouts.
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
Leading off with the best True AVG we have Max Scherzer. This season has, in nearly all regards, been more of the same for Scherzer. Granted, his home run rates are too low on the season long side, but outside of that he's been the ace we all expected. While we should expect more home runs in the near future his upside mitigates that damage. He's got a matchup with the Yankees and will likely strikeout 12 hitters and give up a home run to Aaron Judge. Overall you'll certainly want to prioritize him in all formats.
Moving along to the Worst True AVG there are a couple worth considering but we will look at Cole Ragans. This is one of those situations where we are looking at a bad pitcher but in this instance we expect him to get notably worse. Ragans is a chode with a walk rate higher than his strikeout rate and a low groundball rate as well. All of that combined with a BABIP too low and you've got a powder keg. He's facing the Twins who are a tad below league average against LHP but with above average power. In sum, the Twins make for a great focus in DFS and you'll want to avoid Ragans in all formats.
Significant deviations to consider
- By far the largest positive deviations go to Noah Syndergaard up against the Reds. While the ceiling no longer remains for Thor after his surgery, he's still a serviceable back of the order arm. That said, his BABIP is far too high in the recent sample and we should expect some better results. His matchup with the Reds is advantageous as well, but nothing insane as their wRC+ is an 86 and their strikeout rates are average. In conclusion this is a good spot for Syndergaard to find some positive regression so look to leverage the overs in his props.
- Lastly on the report is the largest negative deviations which belong to Luis Cessa facing the Phillies. Cessa is converting from the bullpen into a spot starter and it's going to be rough. His BABIP, LOB rates, and home run rates are all due to large corrections. Likewise, he hasn't given up a run in the recent sample and his xFIP is close to 4.00. Facing the Phillies is a neutral proposition in terms of wRC+9 but they do have strong power upside. The best plan here is to grab the power bats from the Phillies and take the unders on Cessa.