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Milwaukee Brewers: Too Much Reliance on the Long Ball?

MILWAUKEE, WI - MAY 27: Lorenzo Cain #6, Jesus Aguilar #24, and Christian Yelich #22 of the Milwaukee Brewers celebrate after Aguilar hit a home run in the third inning against the New York Mets at Miller Park on May 27, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WI - MAY 27: Lorenzo Cain #6, Jesus Aguilar #24, and Christian Yelich #22 of the Milwaukee Brewers celebrate after Aguilar hit a home run in the third inning against the New York Mets at Miller Park on May 27, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Over the past few years it has been said that the Milwaukee Brewers have an over-reliance on the home run, and because of that they are too streaky to be successful. Let’s take a look at the Milwaukee Brewers’ stats when it comes to runs scored via the home run this year vs. National League playoff teams the last few years.

The Guillen Number

The Guillen Number is a statistic first introduced by Joe Sheehan of Baseball Prospectus. It attempts to measure the level of dependence a team has on the home run ball. It is simply the number of runs scored by a team through home runs divided by the number of runs scored. The higher the Guillen number and the higher their rank, the more reliance a team has on the home run.

How are the Brewers doing this year?

In 2018, through August 15th, the Milwaukee Brewers are fourth in Major League Baseball when it comes to their Guillen Number with a 45.56. This is also first in the National League. The other current division leaders in the National League have a much lower number. The Braves have a 37.54 and are 21st overall. The Diamondbacks are at 37.08 and 23rd in all of baseball and the Cubs are at 33.68 and 27th.

What about previous National League playoff teams

In 2017, the Rockies, Diamondbacks, Cubs, Nationals and Dodgers represented the National League in the playoffs. None of these teams had a number in the top five in Major League Baseball. Only one team had a number in the top ten and that was the Dodgers in 10th with a number of 44.68. All the other playoff teams were in the middle of the pack or lower.  The highest Guillen number among the NL playoff teams was 44.68.

In 2016, the Cubs, Nationals, Dodgers, Mets and Giants represented the NL in the playoffs. The Mets were the only playoff team to crack the top five at number two, but no other playoff team made it into the top ten. In fact, the Giants were ranked 29th that year. The highest number that year among NL playoff teams was the Mets at 51.12.

In 2015, the Cubs, Pirates, Cardinals, Mets and Dodgers represented the NL in the playoffs. That year, three teams, the Cubs, Mets and Dodgers made it into the top 10, with the Dodgers just cracking the top five. The highest number that year among NL playoff teams was the Dodgers at 44.53

What does it mean for the Brewers?

Only two NL playoff teams made the playoffs with a Guillen number ranking in the top five overall. Of the fifteen teams that made the playoffs over the last three years, eight of those teams ranked 13th of lower.

Next. Is it time for Brewers fans to panic?. dark

In summary, most playoff teams don’t have an over-reliance on the home run ball in order to score runs. It’s pretty obvious that the Milwaukee Brewers do.

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