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November 28, 2009
Hit Luck - 2009

Which batters were the luckiest and unluckiest in terms of batting average on balls in play?

There were 284 batters who received 300 or more PA this year. Here are the ten luckiest. These guys had far more hits than they should have based on their career BABIP. Carlos Beltran leads the way...if his balls in play had fallen at his career rate of .307, he would have put up a slash line of .286/.382/.449. However, they fell in at a .353 rate, which spiked his OPS by 84 points to .325/.415/.500. Another Met was second, as David Wright managed a ridiculous .400 BABIP, even higher than his impressive .350 career rate.

Some other notable players who were particularly lucky in 2009 include Torii Hunter, Hanley Ramirez, Joe Mauer (although he would have been fantastic even without any extra luck), Kendry Morales, and Miguel Tejada.

1.Carlos Beltran308.353.307.325/.415/.500.915.286/.382/.449.831.084
2.David Wright535.400.350.307/.390/.447.837.271/.359/.401.760.077
3.Ben Zobrist501.330.284.297/.405/.543.948.264/.377/.499.875.072
4.Juan Uribe398.330.290.289/.329/.495.824.259/.301/.455.755.069
5.Felipe Lopez604.360.323.310/.383/.427.810.279/.356/.389.745.065
6.Jason Bartlett500.368.330.320/.389/.490.879.290/.362/.452.814.065
7.Aramis Ramirez306.331.295.317/.389/.516.905.288/.363/.479.842.063
8.Rajai Davis390.366.332.305/.360/.423.784.277/.335/.387.722.061
9.Michael Bourn606.367.333.285/.354/.384.738.259/.330/.352.682.056
10.Craig Counsell404.321.292.285/.357/.408.766.260/.336/.378.714.052

And here are the unlucky guys. These guys could have been expected to hit much better if they had been able to match their career BABIP. Kelly Johnson wins the "unluckiest player" title as he could have been expected to hit .276/.349/.459 if his balls in play fell at his career .313 rate. Unfortunately for Kelly, they only fell in at a .249 rate so his slash line was a meager .224/.303/.389, and as a result he lost his second base starting job.

Some other players who were unlucky in 2009 and can be expected to improve significantly in 2010 are Andruw Jones, Curtis Granderson, Grady Sizemore, Jay Bruce, and Carlos Quentin.

275.Jimmy Rollins672.253.295.250/.296/.423.719.286/.330/.472.802-.083
276.Ian Kinsler566.245.293.253/.327/.488.814.292/.361/.538.900-.085
277.Willy Taveras404.278.326.240/.275/.285.559.281/.313/.332.645-.086
278.Geovany Soto331.251.310.218/.321/.381.702.261/.358/.439.797-.095
279.Carlos Guillen277.267.325.242/.339/.419.757.286/.376/.476.853-.096
280.Jason Varitek364.238.304.209/.313/.390.703.256/.353/.451.804-.101
281.Jason Giambi293.230.303.201/.343/.382.725.251/.383/.445.829-.104
282.Ken Griffey Jr.387.222.292.214/.324/.411.735.266/.368/.477.845-.110
283.Garrett Atkins354.247.311.226/.308/.342.650.278/.354/.407.761-.111
284.Kelly Johnson303.249.313.224/.303/.389.692.276/.349/.459.808-.115

Download the data for 2009 here: Hit Luck 2009.

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