Category Archives: Paid Content

Top Guns

Today’s list focuses on catchers throwing out would-be base stealers.

The list of the 10 catchers with the highest caught-stealing percentage is dominated by catchers from the 1950s and 1960s, when, home runs were less frequent, speed was a bigger part of Japan’s game and nearly a fifth of the runners on first base were trying to steal as opposed to less than a 10th in the 1990s.

Of the 10 catchers on the list, four first appear in the data in the 1950s and four in the 1960s and are heavily represented by Osaka area teams.

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Top 10 time

This is the start of the payoff of something I’ve been working toward for the last 30 years: a comprehensive analysis of players throughout Japanese pro baseball history.

It’s been a hard slog the last month or so, but the efforts have born fruit in a method to put all those seasons into a kind of even basis for comparison through applying Bill James’ Win Shares to old data.

I’ve had broad estimates based, but lacked the data needed to make reasonable run and home run adjustments, as well as catcher’s records against base stealers, and batting records with runners on base and in scoring position to fine-tune them as well as I could.

But with that now in hand, and a new system to generate them that is vastly more efficient, we’ve got some fun stuff.

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