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What Is Ops in Baseball? What No One Told You

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If you aren’t a seasoned baseball viewer, you’ll find it hard to follow the game. It contains terminologies that only regular consumers can understand. For example, the concept of ops will not sound familiar if you’re watching the game for the first time. To avoid getting lost, we’ll explain the meaning of ops in baseball.

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Origin of Ops

spotcovery-What Is Ops in Baseball? What No One Told You
A baseball game. Source: Photo by Pixabay

Ops which is “On-base Plus Slugging” is a metric used to measure batting performance. It’s a combination of on-base and slugging statistics. It captures how well a batter got to the base safely and the power behind their hit.

For example, if a player’s ops is .800, it means that he got to the base 8 times and hit for power twice out of 10 times. This stat is important because it tells scouts and coaches about a player’s ability compared to the others. 

That said, ops in baseball also take into consideration other statistics like strikeouts, plate appearances, slash lines and walks. 

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Calculating Ops in Baseball

An explainer on baseball statistics. Video Credit: KevDawgSports

When watching a baseball match, you want to be able to keep up with the numbers as the commentators dish them out. To do this, you have to know how to calculate ops. It’s simple. Do the following:

Add the on-base percentage and the slugging percentage and divide the outcome by two. A high ops in baseball means that the player is a good hitter. They typically reach ops on .800, with an average player having between .700 and .800. A below-par hitter in Major League Baseball (MLB) will score below the stated mark.

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A Good Ops in Baseball

In 2023, the average ops was .734 reaching a high of .758 in the last five years. A player who gets anything around this is considered a good hitter. Some reach .800, a commendable effort for an MLB player and there are a few who’ve hit 1.000, the gold standard of the game.

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On Base Percentage

This should sound easier than ops in baseball. It’s the number of times a player has reached the base, every time they are on the plate. For example, a player who gets to base 34 times in 100 appearances has a base percentage of .340.

Slugging Percentage

Slugging percentage is more complicated compared to base percentage. It only takes into account hits. Further, when counting, you should singles count as one, doubles are multiplied by 2, triples by 3 and home runs by 4. The outcome is added and divide by the total number of bats. A good slugging percentage ranges from .400 to .550. 

We hope that the next time you’re watching baseball, you’ll be able to understand ops and related terminologies. It’ll take you time but the more you watch, the more you’ll master the rules and the game.

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