Sabermetric Glossary: OBP, SLG, OPS

by Ryan Rigato | Guest Writer |

On-Base percentage, or OBP, is a statistic used to measure how often a player reaches base safely divided by his number of plate appearances. It is an important statistic for determining how well rounded a batter is at the plate. It is commonly referred to as the second statistic in a “triple slash line” (BA/OBP/SLG). The exact formula for OBP is

H + BB + HBP / AB + BB + HBP + SF

The league average OBP for each position last season:

Catcher .314
First Base .338
Second Base .316
Third Base .314
Shortstop .314
Left Field .320
Center Field .325
Right Field .335
Designated Hitter .342
MLB Average .321

Slugging Percentage, which is referred to as SLG, is a statistic used to measure the power of a hitter. It is calculated by simply dividing the total bases by number of at-bats (TB / AB). Slugging percentage is used to determine the amount of power each batter shows at the plate. Slugging percentage is often seen as the third item in a “triple slash line” (BA/OBP/SLG). League average for slugging percentage, based on position, is shown below:

Catcher .390
First Base .439
Second Base .378
Third Base .391
Shortstop .370
Left Field .409
Center Field .406
Right Field .429
Designated Hitter .431
MLB Average .399

This formula is a quick and easy way to combine both OBP and SLG into a number that shows how well rounded a batter is at the plate (OBP+SLG). It is usually best to compare this number to league averages at each position for the best results. The league average for OPS last year is shown below:

Catcher .704
First Base .778
Second Base .694
Third Base .705
Shortstop .684
Left Field .729
Center Field .731
Right Field .765
Designated Hitter .773
MLB Average .720

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