atlanticleague.com


Atlantic League stolen bases on the rise

One of the experimental rules implemented in the Atlantic League for the 2023 season has been a directive that a pitcher may only disengage from the pitching rubber once during an at-bat. At the Major League level, pitchers are allowed two disengagements. A disengagement would include a pitcher making a pickoff attempt at any base, faking a pickoff, or otherwise stepping off the rubber with the batter in the batter’s box.

If there is a runner at first and the pitcher throws over in an effort to pickoff the runner, that counts as a disengagement. If the pitcher throws over a second time during the same at-bat, the runner must be called out on the pickoff attempt or the pitcher will be charged with a balk and the runner advances.

How has that affected stolen bases in the Atlantic League in 2023?

Historically, over the first 24 seasons of the ALPB, base runners have been successful on 74.5 percent of stolen base attempts. There have been 22,744 stolen bases and 7,787 caught stealing over the first 24 years. That comes out to a rate of 0.91 stolen bases per game, or less than one-half of a stolen base per team per game.

In 2021, base-stealers’ success rate peaked at 81.7 percent. The lowest rate of successful steals came in 2003 when only 66.8 percent of base thieves were successful.

The stolen bases per game rate topped out at 1.18 per game in the Atlantic League’s inaugural year in 1998 and again in 2000. In 17 of the ALPB’s first 24 years, stolen bases averaged less than one per game.

But with the new single disengagement rule, stolen bases and the success rate are both at all-time highs.

In 2023, Atlantic League baserunners are called safe on 82 percent of stolen base attempts, successfully swiping 1,209 bases while only being caught 265 times. Likewise, the per game rate of stolen bases is at an all-time high of 1.29 thefts per game.

Stolen base rates in the Atlantic League had been on the rise over the last several years. In 2022, base stealers stole 1.17 bases per game with a .800 success rate. The 2022 Gastonia Honey Hunters set the Atlantic League record with 305 stolen bases and accounted for nearly 20% of all swipes in the ALPB (19.8%). Goose Gozzo’s club was successful on 79.6% of stolen base attempts.

In 2023, Lancaster is leading the way with 147 stolen bases (1.55 per game) and the Barnstormers are succeeding on 83 percent of their steals. York is right behind the Barnstormers with 137 steals and a league-best 88.96% success rate. The Revs have swiped 137 and been caught just 17 times. York has the top two base thieves in the league with Tomo Otosaka leading the way with 35 followed by Trey Martin with 32. Martin has been cut down just twice while Otosaka has been tossed out five times.

While the previous league-high for stolen base success was 81.7 percent in 2021, this year, eight of the 10 Atlantic League clubs are swiping bases at over 80 percent. Only Southern Maryland (78%) and Spire City (75%) are below the 80% threshold.

Has the single disengagement rule increased offensive productivity in the Atlantic League? The numbers would seem to indicate it has.

 



Search Archive »




Browse by Year »

2024
2023
2022
2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015

Browse by Month »

April 2024
March 2024
February 2024
January 2024
December 2023
November 2023
October 2023
September 2023
August 2023
July 2023
June 2023
May 2023
April 2023
March 2023
February 2023
January 2023
December 2022
November 2022
October 2022
September 2022
August 2022
July 2022
June 2022
May 2022
April 2022
March 2022
February 2022
January 2022
December 2021
November 2021
October 2021
September 2021
August 2021
July 2021
June 2021
May 2021
April 2021
March 2021
February 2021
January 2021
December 2020
November 2020
October 2020
September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015