Baseball Stats You Need to Know
In the modern era of baseball we’re in today there are a lot more statistics than the basic ones most fans may be used to like Earned Run Average, Runs Batted In, and Batting Average; some of which can be very confusing to someone hearing or seeing them for the first time. To help you understand them a little bit better, we’ve put together a list of all the standard statistics recorded in today’s game of baseball! So, sit back, relax, and brush up on your baseball knowledge!
Assist (A): An assist is awarded to a fielder who touches the ball before a putout is recorded by another fielder. Typically, assists are awarded to fielders when they throw the ball to another player — but a fielder receives an assist as long as he touches the ball, even if the contact was unintentional.
Caught Stealing Percentage (CS%): Caught stealing percentage refers to the frequency with which a catcher throws out opposing baserunners who are trying to steal. This statistic is found by dividing the number of catcher caught stealing’s a catcher has by total stolen-base attempts, either successful or unsuccessful, against that catcher.
Double Play (DP): A defensive baseball play that results in two outs.
Error (E): A mistake in fielding the baseball by the defense that allows a batter to reach base or a base runner to advance.
Fielding Percentage (FPCT): The total number of putouts and assists by a defender divided by the total number of chances they are given in the form of putouts, assists and errors.
Innings Played (INN): The number of outs that occur while a player is in the field and dividing that number by three.
Out (O): An out occurs when the umpire rules a batter or baserunner out. When three outs are recorded in an inning, a team’s half of the inning, or their turn at batting, ends. The most common ways batters or runners are put out are by strikeouts, fly outs, tag outs, and force outs; however, there are many, somewhat rarer, ways an out can occur.
Outfield Assist (OFA): When an outfielder throws the ball into the infield and an out is recorded as a result of the throw.
Passed Ball (PB): When a catcher cannot hold onto a pitch that, according to the official scorer’s judgement, he should have, and at least one runner moves up on the bases as a result.
Putout (PO): A fielder is credited with a putout when he is the fielder who physically records the act of completing an out; whether it be by stepping on the base for a force out, tagging a runner, catching a batted ball, or catching a third strike. A fielder can also receive a putout when he is the fielder deemed by the official scorer to be the closest to a runner called out for interference.
Total Chances (TC): The number of opportunities a player has to record an out on the playing field.
Triple Play (TP): A defensive baseball play that results in three outs.
At-bat (AB): When a batter reaches base via a hit, error, or fielder’s choice, or when a batter is put out on a non-sacrifice play, the batter is credited with an at-bat.
Batting Average (AVG, BA): This statistic is found by dividing total hits by total at-bats. For instance, if a player has 3 hits in 10 at-bats, their batting average would be .300.
Caught Stealing: This occurs when a runner attempts a stolen base but is ultimately tagged out before reaching the next base.
Double (2B): When a player hits the ball safely in fair play and gets to second base.
Extra-base Hit (XBH): Any hit that is not a single. So, doubles, triples and home runs.
Games Played (G): A player is credited with a game played if they make an appearance in the game, at any point.
Grand Slam (GSH): When a batter hits a homerun with all other bases occupied. This scores four runs, and a batter is awarded four RBI’s.
Ground into Double Play (GIDP): When a batter hits a ground ball that results in more than one out on the bases.
Groundout to Flyout Ratio (GO/AO): This statistic is obtained by dividing the total number of ground balls converted into outs (this does not include bunts), by the total of all fly balls converted into outs. This is a stat for both pitchers and hitters.
Hit-by-Pitch (HBP): When a batter is struck by a pitched ball without swinging at it. The batter is awarded first base as a result.
Hit (H): When a batter hits a ball into fair play that does not result in an out, error or fielder’s choice.
Home Run (HR): When a batter hits a ball into fair play and scores on the play without being put out or without the play resulting in an error. Typically, home runs are balls hit over the outfield fence in fair play. A ball that hits the foul pole in the air is also considered a home run.
Intentional Walk (IBB): When the defending team elects to walk a batter on purpose, putting them on first base instead of letting them hit.
Left on Base (LOB): A baserunner is said to be left on base or stranded when the half-inning ends, and he has not scored or been put out.
On-base Percentage (OBP): How frequently a batter reaches base per plate appearance. Reaching base in this instance only includes hits, walks and hit-by-pitches.
On-base Plus Slugging (OPS): Adding on base percentage and slugging percentage. This stat is considered one of the best stats to evaluate hitters.
Plate Appearance (PA): A batter’s turn at the plate. Each completed turn batting is considered a plate appearance.
Reached on Error (ROE): When a batter reaches base due to a defensive error.
Run (R): A run is awarded to a player when they cross the plate to score a run for their team.
Runs Batted In (RBI): A batter is credited with a run batted in when the result of his plate appearance is a run being scored without there being an error or double play being made.
Sacrifice Bunt (SH): When a player is successful in their attempt to advance runners on base at least one base with a bunt. When a sacrifice bunt is successful, this does not count against a player’s batting average or on base percentage.
Sacrifice Fly (SF): A sacrifice fly occurs when a batter hits a fly-ball out to the outfield or foul territory that allows a runner to score. The batter is given credit for an RBI. (If the ball is dropped for an error but it is determined that the runner would have scored with a catch, then the batter is still credited with a sacrifice fly.)
Single (1B): When a player hits the ball safely in fair play, and only gets to first base.
Slugging Percentage (SLG): The total number of bases a player records/reaches per at bat. This statistic only includes hits and does not include walks or hit-by-pitches.
Stolen Base (SB): When a baserunner successfully advances to the next base while the pitcher is delivering the ball to home plate.
Stolen-base Percentage (SB%): The player’s number of successful stolen bases divided by their amount of stolen base attempts.
Total Base (TB): The total number of bases reached by a batter through their number of hits. Single – 1 total base, Double – 2 total bases, Triple – 3 total bases, Home Run – 4 total bases.
Triple (3B): When a player hits the ball safely in fair play and gets to third base.
Walk (BB): When the pitcher throws four balls to a batter before throwing three strikes, the batter gets to go to first base automatically.
Walk-off (WO): This occurs when the home team takes the lead in the bottom of the ninth inning or in extra innings to win the game.
Appearance (APP): When a pitcher enters the game and faces at least one batter, he is credited with an appearance.
Balk (BK): Any pitching motion that is against the baseball rules, resulting in any runners on base advancing one base.
Batters Faced (BF): The total number of plate appearances against a certain pitcher.
Blown Save (BS): When a relief pitcher, typically the closer, enters a game in a save situation and allows the tying run to score.
Complete Game (CG): When a pitcher pitches the entire game for their team no matter how long the game lasts they are credited with a complete game.
Earned Run (ER): Any run that scores against a pitcher without the play resulting in an error or passed ball.
Earned Run Average (ERA): The number of earned runs a pitcher allows per nine innings. This is the most commonly accepted statistic for evaluating pitchers.
Flyout (AO): When a batter hits the ball in the air and the opposing defender catches it before it hits the ground or fence.
Games Finished (GF): When a pitcher is the last pitcher to pitch in the game for their team, provided they were not the starting pitcher.
Games Started (GS): When a pitcher is the first pitcher to throw a pitch for their team in a game, they are credited with a game started.
Groundout (GO): When a batter hits a ball on the ground to a fielder who then records an out by throwing to or stepping on first base, the pitcher is credited with a groundout.
Hold (HLD): When a relief pitcher enters the game in a save situation and maintains his team’s lead for the next relief pitcher, while recording at least one out. This can only happen if one of two situations occur: 1) He enters with a lead of three runs or less and maintains that lead while recording at least one out. 2) He enters the game with the tying run on-deck, at the plate or on the bases, and records an out.
Inherited Run (IR): Any baserunner who is already on base when a relief pitcher enters the game.
Innings Pitched (IP): The total number of innings a pitcher remains in a game. Each of the three outs in an inning are recorded as one-third of an inning.
Loss (L): When a run that is charged to a pitcher ends up being the go-ahead run for the opposing team (given that the opposing team never gives up that lead), the pitcher is credited with a loss.
Number of Pitches (NP): The total number of pitches a pitcher throws in a game.
Pickoff (PK): When a pitcher throws a ball to a fielder, who eventually puts out or assists in retiring an opposing baserunner. This happens between pitches.
Quality Start (QS): When a starting pitcher pitches at least six innings and allows three earned runs or fewer, this is known as a quality start.
Relief Win (RW): Any win by a pitcher who was not the starting pitcher is considered a relief win.
Save (SV): When a relief pitcher finishes a game for the winning team while doing one of the following three things; 1) Enter the game with a lead of no more than three runs and pitch at least one inning. 2) Enter the game with the tying run in the on-deck circle, at the plate or on the bases. 3) Pitch at least three innings.
Save Opportunity (SVO): Any time a relief pitcher either records a save or a blown save.
Save Percentage (SV%): The percent of times a pitcher records a save when given a save opportunity. Calculated by dividing a pitcher’s total number of saves by their total number of save opportunities.
Shutout (SHO): When a starting pitcher pitches the entire game and does not allow the opposing team to score.
Strikeout (SO, K): The throwing of three strikes in one plate appearance. This normally retires the batter and counts as one out. However, it is possible to strike out and still reach base, if the catcher drops the strikeout pitch.
Unearned Run (UER): Any run that scores due to an error or passed ball.
Walks and Hits Per Inning Pitched (WHIP): The sum of a pitcher’s walks and hits, divided by their total innings pitched.
Wild Pitch (WP): When a pitcher throws a pitch that is so errant, or wild, that the catcher is unable to control it, and as a result at least one baserunner advances on the bases.
Win (W): A pitcher is credited with a win when they are the pitcher of record when their team takes the lead for good. A starting pitcher must pitch at least 5 innings (in a 9-inning game) to be credited with the win.
Winning Percentage (WPCT): This statistic is calculated by dividing a pitcher’s total number of wins by their total number of decisions (wins plus losses).
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading through this list of baseball statistics and that they’ve helped in furthering your knowledge of the game of baseball. As the game continues to grow and change, so will the statistics that are used to evaluate players and teams. Now that you’re an expert in baseball statistics, use your newly found knowledge to go check out how your favorite players and teams are doing statistically!
This article was originally published on August 14, 2020, and has been updated with new information.