Leaderboarding: Who was tops at taking the extra base?
It's base-running day here at EOB, so this episode of Leaderboarding is devoted to that very skill.
It's time for the next installment of "Leaderboarding," which is a totally made-up gerund!
When we undertake leaderboarding we provide you the page-viewer with a quick look at which players or teams led all comers in certain categories during the 2013 regular season. The rub is that you're not going to see any commonplace stuff like, say, RBI, ERA or stolen base leaders. Rather, these are going to be less familair but still illuminating kinds of statistical bestowals that maybe don't get enough of our attention.
In today's episode -- and in keeping with today's Eye On Baseball theme (see the "Bronze Cleat" links at the top of this page) -- we're going to focus on base-running. Specifically, we're going to count down the top 10 performers of 2013 when it comes percentage of extra bases taken. Per God's own Baseball-Reference.com, this is the percentage of time a runner advances at least two bases on a single or three bases on a double. It's a good gauge of not only a player's raw speed on bases, but also his instincts and how well he reads the ball off the bat. As well, it sheds light on the base-running tool beyond what the stolen base total tells us. It's also a measure we leaned heavily upon in determining the aforementioned Bronze Cleat winners for 2013.
And now, in the resplendent team colors of the overall leader, your top 10 for the 2013 season ...
Yes, Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates above all, and kudos to the Rangers for landing three players in the top 10. Also worth noting is that phenom Bryce Harper (57 percent) would have made the list, but, alas and alack, he fell just five plate appearances shy of qualifying status. Surprises? How about the presence of Jose Bautista. "Joey Bats" can steal a bag every now and then -- 44 career thefts -- but the slugger isn't someone who leaps to mind when we think of plus base-runners. Elsewhere, no surprise to find the blazing likes of Mike Trout on here.