Edward Olivares has Been One of the Most Unlucky Hitters in MLB

Statistically, Edward Olivares appears to be struggling, but according to Statcast metrics, he is actually getting very unlucky. Let's examine.
Apr 9, 2024; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Edward Olivares (38)
Apr 9, 2024; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Edward Olivares (38) / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates offense has been very disappointing in recent stretches of games, but they appear to be heating up. They are currently on a three-game win streak, which was continued last night after Edward Olivares broke out of his slump with a go-ahead grand slam. Olivares had not had an extra-base hit since April 9th and had a .160 batting average since April 11th.

These stats do not look very good, but according to Statcast metrics, Olivares has actually been hitting the ball pretty well. His expected batting average is in the 99th percentile at .328, but his actual batting average is only at a .218. He also has an expected slugging percentage in the 86th percentile at .506, but his actual slugging percentage is just at .397.

The expected batting average being over .100 points greater really shows that he is getting unlucky at the plate. The expected part of batting average is a calculation of the probability that a batted ball in play will become a hit. This factors in exit velocity, launch angle, and where it is hit off of the bat. The expected part of slugging percentage is calculated using the same factors as batting average, but to determine the likelihood of extra bases, rather than just a hit in general.

These stats showing how Olivares has been unlucky this season give hope that his slow start is not something that will be consistent all season. He has been a solid bat in the Pirates lineup this season as he has four home runs with 12 runs batted in. He also has an OPS of .679, which includes an on-base percentage of .282 and a slugging percentage of .397. He adds an 18.8% strikeout rate and a 7.1% walk rate.

Edward Olivares is an important piece to the Pirates lineup.

According to Statcast metrics, there are better days in the future for Olivares. Do not lose hope on this hitter as he has been very unlucky this season.