BABIP- Batting Average on Balls in Play

Baseball, MLB article at Knup Sports

Batting Average on Balls In Play (BABIP) measures how often a ball in play goes for a hit. A ball is “in play” when the plate appearance ends in something other than a strikeout, walk, hit batter, catcher’s interference, sacrifice bunt, or home run.

Formula for BABIP:

(Hits -Homers)/(At-Bats-Strikeouts-Homers+Sac Flies)

What Does BABIP Do?

Luck plays no part in this stat. Speedy players that can leg out hits will have higher BABIP’s. Line drive hitters will have more balls drop in hit for hitter and have a higher BABIP. Spacious ball parks (Coors Field)will give a better stat line in this area than smaller cozier (Petco Park)ball parks.

An average BABIP is around .300. It does change from year to year.

More from our Sabermetrics and Analytics Library HERE. 

Historical BABIP’s

The highest recrded BABIP goes  to Ty Cobb in the 1911 season for the Detroit Tigers when he finished with a .443 batting average balls in play. In the 1920’s it was Babe Ruth in 1923 with a .423 BABIP. In the last 50 years, in 1977 Rod Carew possessed a .408 average.

2019 BABIP

In this season ,rookie Fernando Tatis, Jr. led all players in BABIP with a .410 average. BABIP can be used to provide some context when evaluating both pitchers and hitters. The league average BABIP is typically around . 300.


About the author– Tom Knuppel has been writing about baseball and sports for a few decades. As an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan he began with the blog CardinalsGM. Tom is a member of the United Cardinals Bloggers and the Baseball Bloggers Alliance. He also maintains the History of Cardinals website. More recently he has been busy at KnupSolutions and the primary writer of many sports at KnupSports and adds content at Sports 2.0. Tom is a retired High School English and Speech teacher and has completed over one hundred sportsbook reviews. He also can be followed on Twitter at tknup.

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