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John Lackey in Fenway Park

Posted by Andy on December 14, 2009

45409100910_Red_Sox_at_AngelsReports suggest that John Lackey is about to sign a contract with the Boston Red Sox.

Much has been made in recent years of Lackey pitching in Fenway Park, where he has by far the worst numbers of his career. Check out his splits by ballpark. These are offensive stats against Lackey:

I Split G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR BB SO SO/BB BA OBP SLG OPS TB BAbip tOPS+
Angel Stadium of Anaheim 112 3101 2819 325 729 140 10 72 223 592 2.65 .259 .319 .392 .711 1105 .303 98
Rangers Ballpark in Arlington 16 394 353 61 105 21 0 13 33 82 2.48 .297 .365 .467 .832 165 .355 131
Turner Field 1 25 23 2 7 1 0 1 1 6 6.00 .304 .360 .478 .838 11 .375 132
Oriole Park at Camden Yards 7 199 187 20 50 10 1 4 10 39 3.90 .267 .307 .396 .702 74 .317 95
Fenway Park 9 240 220 41 69 19 2 8 17 37 2.18 .314 .371 .527 .898 116 .349 148
Comiskey Park II 8 221 202 30 57 8 2 11 14 29 2.07 .282 .330 .505 .835 102 .279 129
Great American Ballpark 1 24 21 3 3 0 0 1 1 4 4.00 .143 .250 .286 .536 6 .125 50
Jacobs Field 6 163 136 17 29 8 0 2 19 27 1.42 .213 .323 .316 .639 43 .248 80
Comerica Park 4 108 93 10 21 7 0 2 14 18 1.29 .226 .333 .366 .699 34 .260 96
Kauffman Stadium 3 87 83 6 25 4 1 1 2 15 7.50 .301 .318 .410 .727 34 .358 102
Dodger Stadium 5 109 97 8 21 4 0 1 6 28 4.67 .216 .290 .289 .578 28 .294 63
Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 6 164 151 23 40 5 2 5 8 33 4.13 .265 .313 .424 .737 64 .307 104
Yankee Stadium 8 231 207 23 60 16 0 6 16 40 2.50 .290 .354 .454 .808 94 .333 124
Shea Stadium 1 27 20 3 6 2 0 0 6 6 1.00 .300 .444 .400 .844 8 .400 139
Network Associates Coliseum 15 400 364 32 81 20 0 5 28 71 2.54 .223 .284 .319 .603 116 .262 68
Chase Field 1 28 25 1 5 0 0 0 3 9 3.00 .200 .286 .200 .486 5 .313 39
PNC Park 1 25 24 5 8 0 0 1 0 4 .333 .333 .458 .792 11 .368 118
Safeco Field 14 378 348 39 97 11 1 7 18 71 3.94 .279 .316 .376 .692 131 .327 93
AT&T Park 2 60 57 6 15 5 0 1 2 12 6.00 .263 .300 .404 .704 23 .318 95
Estadio Hiram Bithorn 1 26 25 4 7 0 0 1 1 5 5.00 .280 .308 .400 .708 10 .316 96
Tropicana Field 4 114 106 22 32 4 1 4 7 24 3.43 .302 .342 .472 .814 50 .354 125
SkyDome 8 213 196 19 46 9 1 4 10 43 4.30 .235 .280 .352 .632 69 .278 75
Nationals Park 1 31 29 2 6 0 1 1 2 6 3.00 .207 .258 .379 .637 11 .227 75
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/14/2009.

Of particular interest is the final column, tOPS+, which basically shows the share of the total offense against Lackey. It shows that, for example, he has pitched very well in Dodger Stadium, Network Associates Coliseum, and SkyDome (isn't that called the Rogers Centre now?) His worst mark is at Fenway Park.

Now, of course, there is one big factor here that we cannot forget. For much of Lackey's career, the Red Sox have been a very good team. More pitchers than not from the last several years have worse numbers against the Red Sox than against most other teams.

The Angels and Red Sox have played each other a few times in the playoffs recently and there was much speculation that the Angels tried to set up their rotation to avoid having to pitch Lackey in Fenway for fear that he would do poorly. How much does that have to do with the ballpark vs. the Red Sox offense? Will it be different for Lackey when he himself wears red socks?

This entry was posted on Monday, December 14th, 2009 at 1:44 pm and is filed under Splits. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

3 Responses to “John Lackey in Fenway Park”

  1. I was searching through the last decade of Red Sox starting pitchers to see if there were any parallels and the only conclusion I came to was that the vast majority of Red Sox SPs in the aughts were either home grown or acquired from NL teams. The best I could come up with is that David Cone has a career tOPS in Fenway of 118 and a tOPS of 98 in his one season with the Sox. So not much usefulness there.

  2. For what it's worth, in 2008 and 2009, his OBA is less than .200 at Fenway (10 for 57) so maybe he has learned to pitch there, or, maybe it's just the small sample size.

  3. (And by OBA, I meant "opponents' batting average", sorry for the unclear abbreviation).