Recently, I read an article on Fangraphs about microeconomic theory, which linked strand rate to team ISO, and combined this with OBP to analyze offence. A thought then occurred to me: If a team scores more runs when ISO increases and OBP remains constant, would the same apply between batters on the same team?
Maybe not the most eloquent way to state this idea, but let me give an example. Take Denard Span and Delmon Young. When Span gets on base, he has the 2, 3, and 4 hitters to drive him in. Last year, Hudson, Mauer, and Morneau had ISOs of .105, .141, .274 respectively. Young had Hardy (.126), Punto(.063), and Span(.084) batting behind him. This meant that Span’s OBP of .328 was probably worth more than Young’s .333, because he was more likely to score. This is the main reason I feel Delmon is undervalued. In this Moneyball culture, slow, poor-fielding corner outfielders with a .325 career OBP are not highly sought after. But playing in left field, Delmon’s poor D is at least manageable, and hitting #7 means his low OBP is not as big a deal as it would be in the middle of the order. Along with this, his .195 ISO increases the relative value of the OBP of the 4,5,6 hitters in front of him, and that also adds to his value.
Please feel free to criticize my argument, call me an idiot, whatever, I will take any feedback I can get. I have read this site for about a year and a half but just joined yesterday, and this is my first post. I would love for someone more statistically inclined to look into the effects of the ISO of a batter on the relative value of the OBP of those hitting before him, and vice-versa.