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Baseball jargon: Calculating averages, percentages

by Chris Alcantara. Sports assoc. editor


Ever wonder how baseball and softball players come up with all those averages and percentages? Well, hereís a quick guide to a few common stats.

∑ Batting Average: How often a batter hits safely. Calculation: Take the total number of a playerís hits (singles, doubles, triples, and homeruns) and divide by the number of times the player bats. Round off the result to three decimal places.

Slugging Percentage: How often a batter hits for extra bases (doubles, triples, homers). Calculation: Determine total of bases for a hit (doubles count as two, triples as three, etc.). Then divide the total bases by the total number of at-bats. Round off to three decimal places.

On Base Percentage: The percentage of times a player reaches any base. Calculation: Take the number of hits, walks, and times hit by a pitch and add them together. Then divide it by the total number of at-bats, walks, times hit by a pitch, and sacrifice flys added together. Round off to three decimals places.

∑ Earned Run Average (E.R.A.): How many runs a pitcher allows to score per game on average. Calculation: Since pitchers donít always pitch the whole game, take the number of runs given up and multiply it by nine. Then divide the product by the number of innings pitched. Round off to two decimal places.

∑ Fielding Percentage: How well a defensive player fields his position. Calculation: Add the number of defensive putouts and assists. Divide that by the total number of putouts, assists, and errors. Round off to three decimal places.



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