Fancy Stats mailbag: Nats’ RISP woes, Wizards’ John Wall and Bradley Beal the best back-court tandem?


(Photo by Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

Every week, Neil Greenberg will answer your numbers-based questions.

There was a stretch in late April where the Nationals couldn’t do anything with runners in scoring position.

[T]his was the first time in Expos/Nationals franchise history they went 0-for-16 with runners in scoring position. It’s only the 19th time since 1976 that any MLB club went 0-for-16 or worse with runners in scoring position. (The record since this stat has been recorded is 0-for-19, accomplished by the 1977 Pirates, 2004 Red Sox and 2013 Mets.)

Some of that futility does have to do with strikeouts. As of Monday night’s games, the Nationals were tied for third with the Minnesota Twins for most strikeouts with runners in scoring position.

The five worst offenders (minimum 10 plate appearances):

Player PA SO SO%
Jose Lobaton 18 6 33.3%
Nate McLouth 15 5 33.3%
Ryan Zimmerman 12 4 33.3%
Bryce Harper 21 6 28.6%
Danny Espinosa 33 9 27.3%

Via e-mail: I am really impressed by how John Wall and Bradley Beal have played in the playoffs. Are they the best duo in the postseason so far? – Ethan

Wall has been a dynamo in the postseason and Beal is having one of the best 20-year-old postseason campaigns ever. But the Spurs’ tandem of Manu Ginobili and Kawhi Leonard have been the most dynamic duo on the court (minimum 100 minutes played).

Ginobili and Leonard have a net rating (net points produced per 100 possessions played) of plus-29.2 to go along with an effective field goal percentage – which adjusts for the fact that a three-point field goal is worth one more point than a two-point field goal - of 59 percent. They have also limited opponents to just 43.1 percent eFG% when they are on the court.

Beal and Wall have a net rating of 13.6 in over 200 minutes together.

Have a question ? Send an e-mail to neil.greenberg@washpost.com with the subject line “Ask Fancy Stats” and it might be answered on Tuesday in The Weekly Mailbag.

Neil Greenberg analyzes advanced sports statistics for the Fancy Stats blog and prefers to be called a geek rather than a nerd.
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