Last summer I discovered that espn.com provides stats for what it calls “park factor”, which for purposes of this post means the ratio between the number of runs scored at a ballpark in any given season divided by the number of runs scored by said ballpark’s occupant (and its opponents) in away games that same season. I wrote a post last June which evaluates each park’s park factor for the five years ending with the 2011 season.
As we approach the 2013 season (and the 2012 stats have long been in), it seems like a good time to update my earlier post incorporating the 2012 season. Without further ado, here are the average park factors for all major league ballparks over the last six season (or less for the five ball parks that have opened more recently).
1. Coors Field (Rockies) 1.301
2. The Ballpark at Arlington (Rangers) 1.148
3. Chase Field (Diamondbacks) 1.134
4. Fenway Park (Red Sox) 1.131
5. U.S. Cellular Field (White Sox) 1.111
6. Wrigley Field (Cubs) 1.086
7. Camden Yards (Orioles) 1.080
8. New Yankee Stadium (2009-2012) 1.066 [Old Yankee Stadium, 2004-2008, 1.002]
9. Great American Ball Park (Reds) 1.057.
10. Comerica Park (Tigers) 1.044.
11. Kauffman Stadium (Royals) 1.018
12. Rogers Center (Blue Jays) 1.010
12. Miller Park (Brewers) 1.010
14. Citizens Bank Ballpark (Phillies) 1.008
15. Marlins Park (2012) 1.005 [Sun Life Stadium, 2007-2011, 1.038]
16. Nationals Park (2008-2012) 0.998 [RFK Stadium, 2005-2007, 0.892]
17. Minute Maid Park (Astros) 0.986
18. Target Field (Twins, 2010-2012) 0.983 [Mall of America Field (the Metrodome), 2005-2009, 0.966]
19. Turner Field (Braves) 0.978
20. Progressive Field (Indians) 0.960
21. Angels Stadium 0.939
22. PNC Park (Pirates) 0.936
22. Busch Stadium (Cardinals) 0.936
24. Oakland Coliseum (A’s) 0.919
25. AT&T Park (Giants) 0.917
26. Dodger Stadium 0.915
27. Citi Field (Mets, 2009-2012) 0.904 [Shea Stadium, 2004-2008, 0.886]
28. Tropicana Field (Rays) 0.889
29. Safeco Field (Mariners) 0.864
30. Petco Park (Padres) 0.808
The rankings didn’t change much from last year. Among last year’s ten best hitters’ parks, U.S. Cellular Park, where the White Sox play, was apparently a great place to hit in 2012, moving it up two slots. New Yankee Stadium was apparently not a great place to hit, moving it down two slots. Coors Field improved on its status as far and away the best hitters’ park in MLB.
The Marlins’ new park, which looked like a great place to hit in late June of last year, turned out to be only a little better than average for the full season — we’ll have to see how it plays over the next few seasons.
The Royals’ Kauffman Stadium moved up two slots, and the Phillies’ Citizens’ Bank Park fell two slots. The Astros’ Minute Maid Park also fell two slots. The Twins’ Target Field was a hitters’ park for the first time in its three year history, jumping it up four slots. The Pirates and Giants and their respective opponents scored a lot more runs on the road in 2012, causing both PNC Park and AT&T Park to drop three slots.
With another year in the books, the Mets’ Citi Field is developing into as much of a pitchers’ park as the old Shea Stadium. San Diego’s Petco Park remains the worst place to ply one’s trade as a major league hitter, but Seattle’s Safeco Field narrowed the gap considerably.