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When Is A Small Sample Size No Longer Small?

Eric Seidman at Fangraphs has a nice article summarizing research on when sample sizes become (somewhat) reliable for hitters. The research suggests that the following stats begin to stabilize with the corresponding number of plate appearances: 50 PA: Swing % 100 PA: Contact Rate 150 PA: Strikeout Rate, Line Drive Rate, Pitches/PA 200 PA: Walk Rate, Groundball Rate, GB/FB 250 PA: Flyball Rate 300 PA: Home Run Rate, HR/FB 500 PA: OBP, SLG, OPS, 1B Rate, Popup Rate 550 PA: ISO Did not stabilize by 650 PA (the cutoff): BA, BABIP The underlying work was done by a well respected analyst who goes by the handle Pizza Cutter at the Statistically Speaking blog. His research on pitchers is here.

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