The biggest change in the update is how we handle fielding percentage. Up until this point, we have always used the raw fielding percentage (unless the player appeared in fewer than 20 games at a position).
As most of you know, fielding percentages have improved over time due to better equipment, better official scoring, better fields, etc.
We have decided to use the same method we use elsewhere to address normalized fielding, namely the Log5 algorithm. Four factors will be taken into consideration:
* Fielder's raw fielding percentage (adjusted downward if he played in fewer than 20 games at the position)
* The league average at the position for that fielder's season
* The league average at the position for the batter's season
* The league average at the position for the pitcher's season.
Each player has a "normalized" fielding percentage in the Player Search. It is based on the fielder, his league average, and the historical average at the position. This is the same way we represent our other normalized values (OPS#, ERA#, etc.)
The fielding percentage portion of the Fielding grade is now based on this normalized fielding percentage. This is also what's used in the new salary formula.