David Wright vs. Derek Jeter: By the Numbers

By_The_Numb3rsSabermetrics have become a major part of the game, primarily since Billy Beane based his team off the idea in the early 2000’s.  Although they do not tell the entire story of the game, they give fans insight into how the game works.  Some sabermetric statistics are more confusing than others, and some make no sense at all.  But there are certain ones that do help the fans understand how good a player is.  They help fans rank players, and compare them to one another.  This wee, the captains of both New York baseball teams will be compared.  Of course, David Wright and Derek Jeter do not play the same position, so that was taken into account for the comparison.  I will cover the period from 2004 on, which is the time span in which both players have been in the big leagues.

Batting Average: Batting average is calculated by the number of hits a player gets, divided by the number of at bats a player has in a season.  However, just because a player steps up to the plate does mean it classifies as an at bat.  At bats do not count if a player walks, makes a sacrifice fly/hit, reaches base on a catcher’s interference, is replaced by another batter, or if the inning is ended while he is still at the plate.  Since 2004, Wright has had 1,558 hits and 5,172 at bats, which gives him a .301 batting average.  Jeter on the other hand has a total of 1,170 hits and 5,744 at bats giving him a batting average of .308.

Winner: Derek Jeter

On Base Percentage: On Base Percentage, or OBP for short, is calculated by adding up the total number of hits, walks, and hit by pitches, and then dividing them by at bats, walks, hit by pitches, and sacrifice flies.  Wright leads all third basemen in OBP since 2010, and has a career .382 OBP, while his cross-town rival, Jeter, has a OBP in the same time span of .374.

Winner: David Wright

Total Bases: Total bases are calculated by adding singles, two times the number of doubles, three times the number of triples, and four times, and the number of home runs.  This may sound a bit odd, but it does make sense.  Singles, doubles, triples, and home runs are all base hits, and you multiply the number of them a player has by the amount of bases they would need to touch on their way to getting the hit.  In his career, Wright has 2,619 total bases, while Jeter has just 2,491.

Winner: David Wright

WAR: WAR, or Wins Above Replacement, is one of the most useless and confusing statistics in baseball.  The WAR of a player determines how many more, or less, wins a team would have had if the player were not on the roster.  So, if someone has a positive WAR, that means their team benefited from them playing.  However, if a player were to have a negative WAR, it means that their team could have won more games without them.  Since breaking in to the Majors in 2004, Wright has a total WAR of 46.9.  As for Jeter, he has a total 31.2 WAR during the same period

Winner: David Wright

Baseball statistics can be used one of two was: to help fans understand the game better and/or to mess with their heads.  Throughout the year, some helpful statistics have come into action.  However, there are also many confusing statistics such as Rdp, which is the “number of runs better or worse than average the player was at avoiding grounding into double plays” as described by baseball-reference.com.  But by just looking at every statistic, it becomes much easier to compare players to one another, and determine who is better.  Clearly, as shown above, David Wright is a better player, statistically, than Derek Jeter.  And for anybody who still thinks that these numbers were cherry picked, and that there is no way that they are true, look at both players WAA, Wins Above Average, and you will clearly see the difference between the two New York captains.

10 comments for “David Wright vs. Derek Jeter: By the Numbers

  1. April 2, 2014 at 8:29 am

    It would of been more fair if you compared Jeters first nine seasons with Wrights to get a more comprehensive evaluation.

    • Dan Kolton
      April 2, 2014 at 8:33 am

      I was trying to show the comparison of the players within the same years. I know there is an age difference, but the game has changed over the past few years, and I did not want that to interfere with the stats and evaluation of these players.

  2. eraff
    April 2, 2014 at 8:32 am


  3. eraff
    April 2, 2014 at 8:40 am

    I’m not at all attached to Derek Jeter, but he may be the best Short Stop who has ever played. Measurable Stats, “Eye Test”.

    Jeter, Ripken, Honus Wagner… add just another name or two— that’s an interesting conversation.

    • Dan Kolton
      April 2, 2014 at 11:17 am

      Don’t forget about A-Ro before he was a Yenkee

      • eraff
        April 2, 2014 at 1:06 pm

        Good point Dan!

  4. Chris F
    April 2, 2014 at 11:52 am

    Well, Im glad we settled that. I think Wright is better than Cabrera and Jeter combined!

  5. pete
    April 4, 2014 at 8:12 am

    How does Jeter have less total bases than hits? He has over 3000 hits.

  6. John Shernan
    July 23, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    if Wright played in the yankee ball park his numbers would be much better with that short right field

  7. Billy Mac
    March 24, 2016 at 12:08 pm

    Yeah, how about a stat that can differentiate between ballparks when considering player stats? Now that would be someone doing their homework. For example, how many more HR would David Wright have if 50% of his RF fly outs were HR like Derek Jeter’s have been?

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