Welcome to From The Upper Deck, my blog about RSL and soccer in general. I have a lot of passion for the beautiful game. I am just a fan that likes to sit in the upper deck and take it all in.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Season in Review- Plus/Minus

By Charles Barnard

As the emotion starts to die down from the shellacking that RSL received at the hands of the Galaxy, I can return to my look at the end of year stats. This off-season could be one of the most important in club history. Because of this it is even more important to look at these stats as we as a fan base try to figure out what changes we would like to be made.


Today I want to look at the plus/minus stat. This is a stat that has been popular in hockey for years. Recently it has also become a very popular stat to analyze in basketball as well. This stat has also started to make its way into soccer circles. Basically you take the amount of goals scored while a particular player is on the field and subtract the amount of goals given up. With this stat you can get a sense of how well the team played overall while a particular player was on the field.


I feel it is important to include minutes when looking at this stat. It is much more impressive if a player is +5 while playing 500 minutes than if they played 1,000 minutes. To better show this I calculate how much a player’s plus/minus number went up (or down) every 90 minutes played. I also find it interesting to look at the goal differential of the team when the player was off the field which I show in the +/- w/o category. As you will see below, this is also a vital piece of information.


At a point of reference, RSL as a team had a goal differential of +15 this past season. This is the third best goal differential in club history.


I broke the table up between the forwards/midfielders and the defenders to make it a little bit easier to compare and contrast.


Min. Played
+/-
Plus/Minus per 90
+/- w/o
Beckerman
2520
21
0.75
-6
Grabavoy
2711
18
0.60
-3
Plata
1927
16
0.75
-1
Morales
2645
13
0.44
2
Mulholland
1987
10
0.45
5
Saborio
1148
8
0.63
7
Garcia
1191
6
0.45
9
Jaime
261
6
2.07
9
Velasquez
222
4
1.62
11
Gil
1365
1
0.07
14
Findley
764
-1
-0.12
16
Sandoval
633
-1
-0.14
16
Stertzer
273
-2
-0.66
17
Grossman
532
-2
-0.34
17





Beltran
2393
14
0.53
1
Schuler
2154
11
0.46
4
Wingert
2537
10
0.35
5
Borchers
2856
10
0.32
5
Salcedo
800
6
0.68
9
Maund
432
4
0.83
11
Mansally
655
2
0.27
13
Balchan
233
0
N/A
15

Kyle Beckerman is easily the one player that jumps out the most. The team was +21 when he was on the field. On the other hand, the team was -6 in the time that he did not play. The difference between those two numbers are incredible!


Another player that really stands out to me is Sebastian Jaime. The team was a +6 in the 261 minutes that he played. Even though he did not score a goal, the team was extremely effective when he played.


On the flip side of things is Luis Gil. RSL was only a +1 in the 1365 minutes that he played. That means in the 1695 minutes that he didn't play this season RSL was a +14.


Among the defensive players, I was surprised to see Aaron Maund was a +4 in the limited amount of playing time that he played. Carlos Salcedo also had impressive numbers when you think he was a -2 after the first 30 minutes he played this season.

What stats stand out to you when looking at the table above?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Season in Review- Minutes Per Conceded Goal

By Charles Barnard


In part one of my look at the end of year statistics for RSL I took a look at my Minutes per Team Goal (MpTG) stat. In part 2 I want to take a look at the defensive side of the ball. To do this, I look at Minutes per Conceded Goal (MpCG). This is basically the opposite of MpTG. I am looking at how many goals the team gives up while a particular player is on the field and then compare that against how many goals were given up when that player was not on the field.

For a point of reference, RSL as a team gave up a goal every 71 minutes this past season. Here is a look at the RSL defensive players.


PlayerMinGoals MpCGMin not playedGoals MpCGDifference
Wingert25373376.88523687.17-10.29
Beltran23933470.386675133.4-63.02
Schuler21542779.789061275.54.28
Borchers28563679.3320436811.33
Salcedo800810022603172.927.1
Mansally655972.7824053080.17-7.39
Balchan233123328273874.39158.61
Maund432761.7126283282.13-20.41



The number that really jumps out out to me was how well Carlos Salcedo played this past season. Now remember, the first match that he played was when he had to come in off the bench cold in San Jose. The Earthquakes went on to score two times late to get the draw. I think everyone would say Salcedo was put into a difficult position in that match. If you only look at the last 779 minutes that he has played (throwing out that SJ match) his numbers look even better. At that point the team would only be giving up a goal every 130 minutes when he was in the match.

Rich Balchan’s numbers are also impressive. He had a nightmare of a match down in Chivas but besides that he had outstanding numbers during the limited time he played.

On the flip side I was somewhat surprised with Tony Beltran’s numbers. Statistically last year he was RSL’s best defender. This year the team played really well those few games that Beltran did not play.

This season I also kept track of MpCG for all field midfielders and forwards. Here are those numbers.


MpCGMpCG (not on field)
Saborio76.579.6
Plata80.275.5
Findley84.876.53
Garcia8574.76
Sandoval70.3380.9
Jaime130.575.6
Beckerman86.954
Mulholland70.997.55
Morales82.659.29
Grabavoy82.1558.17
Gil85.3173.7
Velasquez55.581.09
Stertzer54.681.97
Grossman59.1184.27

I was very surprised to see how well the numbers were for Sebastian Jaime. He ended up playing 261 minutes and during that time RSL only gave up 2 goals. I am not sure how much of that can be attributed to Jaime, but it has been talked about how good he is on defending set pieces. Perhaps there is more to this number than meets the eye.

It really should come as no surprise that Kyle Beckerman comes out looking really good in these numbers. Also like when we looked at MpTG, this is another area that shows the value of Ned Grabavoy.

One number that did pop out to me was that of Luke Mulholland. The RSL defense was much poorer when Mulholland was on the field compared to when he was off.