The MEIPosted: June 11, 2011
For those of you who have been tuning in to college baseball recently, you may have noticed a stat we are tracking. It is called the MEI or Morgan Ensberg Index. This stat tracks the number of “Freebies” that teams give up each game. Coach Kevin Hazlett of Mesa Junior College in San Diego introduced me to the idea of “Freebies.” It has changed how I view college baseball games.
What is a Freebie?
The idea is simple. Don’t allow your opponent an extra base without getting an out. Freebies come in many forms, but the MEI tracks five of them.
3. Stolen Bases/Wild Pitches
4. Hit By Pitches
The MEI is Born
Just before the regionals, I presented this idea to the guys in the “Truck.” The truck is the large container that you will see in parking lots sometimes. It is a command center where the producer, director, and every other person involved with putting a show together is located. The response was positive and they said, “Let’s do it!”
How Does it Work?
To calculate the MEI, add together the five variables for each team. The team that has the lowest number will be the team that is expected to win.
Let’s look at three examples from the Super Regionals on June 10, 2011.
Notice the totals of each game. The teams in yellow are the teams that won their games. Each of those teams had a lower MEI than their opponents.
How to Use the MEI
This stat is not 100%. It is less likely to be this accurate at the Major League level. That is because Major Leaguers play a more consistent brand of ball. However, this is a very accurate stat for college baseball. Use this stat as a barometer to help you understand which team is giving themselves the best chance to win.
How do we make this better?
Play around this a little bit and see if it makes sense. If you would like to add a stat like “Wild Pitches” then go for it! This is a good base, but it doesn’t mean that it is a finished product. We have to constantly track its accuracy and see if it makes sense over time.