The D-backs offense feels feast or famine. To what extent is that the case?
|Jordan Luplow – LF||Trent Grisham – CF|
|Daulton Varsho – RF||Jurickson Profar – LF|
|Ketel Marte – DH||Jake Cronenworth – 2B|
|Christian Walker – 1B||Luke Voit – DH|
|Buddy Kennedy – 2B||Nomar Mazara – RF|
|Carson Kelly – C||Eric Hosmer – 1B|
|Alek Thomas – CF||Jorge Alfaro – C|
|Jake Hager – 3B||CJ Abrams – SS|
|Geraldo Perdomo – SS||Ha-Seong Kim – 3B|
|Zac Gallen – RHP||Sean Manaea – LHP|
The Diamondbacks were held to just one run last night, the sixteenth time already this year that Arizona has scored once, or been shutout entirely. It feels like the D-backs have tended to score a lot or hardly any. But is it just the case that we perhaps remember those games? Do we forget the times where the offense is neither enjoyably good, nor memorably bad – just mediocre? Below is a chart plotting the percentage of times the Diamondbacks have scored from 0 to 9+ runs so far this season, along with the same figure across all of the major leagues.
It is true the team has been shutout more often than most. However, being a below-average team, in what’s quite possibly the toughest division in baseball, could be a factor there. On the other hand, while most shutouts have been against teams above .500, Arizona has been blanked by the Reds, Pirates and Nationals. The D-backs have scored one run at about the expected rate, but two less often than expected. Interestingly, it is that middle range from 3-5 runs, where Arizona has been found a little bit more often than the average MLB team. It’s then below average at six runs, and again for the real “feast” outing of nine or more runs. Though if you group 7+, the Diamondbacks are very close to the mean (21.7% vs. 21.8%).
Now, let’s do the same thing for runs allowed (below) by the D-backs’ pitching staff. Obviously, the shape of the graph for MLB is going to be exactly the same as for runs scored. But for Arizona, we see a below average rate for runs conceded so far by Arizona at both extremes (0-1 runs, and 8+), but above average in the middle ranges, from two through seven runs. In both cases, we should take into account how the Diamondbacks’ number compare with league average (4.32 runs per game). They score 4.06 and concede 4.61, so you would expect the graph above to skew slightly towards the left, and the one below towards the right.