Game Score is a pitcher stat that measures a starting pitcher’s performance in a specific game.
After searching for a box score of a game, many times you can find how many pitches a hurler tossed in the game and then you will find the Game Score. This measures the effectiveness of the pitcher.
Game Score Calculation
Start with 50 points-Add 1 point for each out recorded (or 3 points per inning)- Add 2 points for each inning completed after the fourth- Add 1 additional point for every strikeout
Remove 2 points for each hit allowed- Remove 4 points for each earned run allowed
Remove 2 points for each unearned run allowed- Remove 1 point for each walk allowed
(This formula was created by Bill James). there is a slightly different formula created by Tom Tango.
To get a perfect game score, a pitcher would get 114 points and that is a perfect game with all out as strikeouts.
To date, there have been four 20 strikeout games and here are the Game Score(s) for each one:
- Kerry Wood Game Score was 105 on May 8, 1998
- Roger Clemens Game Score of 97 on Sept. 18, 1996
- Roger Clemens 97 April 29, 1986
- Max Scherzer 87 on May 11, 2016
Not all games are created equal. Wood threw a one-hitter but a shutout and the others gave up runs in their game.
Here is the Game Score chart used at FanGraphs:
You Should Watch 90-100
Above Average 50-60
Below Average 40-50
It i not uncommon for a starting pitcher to get a zero. Someone getting bombed early and possibly allowing double digit runs as was the case twice for Jason Marquis and and 2006 St Louis Cardinals. Nolan Ryan has the highest cumulative Game Score in history with 46.252 and Bob Gibson (61.0)along with Pedro Martinez (61.2) sport the highest career game score.
Game core does a better job in picture a pitching performance than Quality start which we will discuss on a different article in this Baseball Spotlight Library of Sabermetrics and Analytics.
About the author– Tom Knuppel has been writing about baseball and sports for a few decades. As an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan he began with the blog CardinalsGM. Tom is a member of the United Cardinals Bloggers and the Baseball Bloggers Alliance. He also maintains the History of Cardinals website. More recently he has been busy at KnupSolutions and the primary writer of many sports at KnupSports and adds content at Sports 2.0. Tom is a retired High School English and Speech teacher and has completed over one hundred sportsbook reviews. He also can be followed on Twitter at tknup. Feel free to contact Tom at [email protected]