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Monday, February 04, 2019

Former MLB pitcher Chris Capuano wants to help reinvent the future of the league—through innovation and negotiation

The “true genius” of the machine, per Capuano, is the integrated software that allows for comprehensive analysis using objective data—something more standard workout equipment lacks. “Think iPhone versus the flip phone,” he explained. “You exercise on the machine, the machine then produces data and insights that are automatically fed back in to inform future training sessions. You train again, and basically repeat that process indefinitely.”

Capuano, who underwent two Tommy John surgeries during his career, believes Proteus can help pitchers gain intimate and actionable insights into their bodies. The machine tracks movement to a “sub-millimeter” accuracy and “measures force production, explosiveness, and consistency of movement.” The device’s versatility allows pitchers to replicate their deliveries in whole, ostensibly allowing them to pinpoint potential flaws in their bodies and mechanics before the blemish results in an injury.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 04, 2019 at 08:26 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics

Monday, January 07, 2019

Deep in Winter, Let’s Discuss the Stifling of Starting Pitchers

Can we talk starting pitchers or, more to the point, their ritual sacrifice on the altar of Major League Baseball analytics?

I put this question to Leo Mazzone, the former pitching coach for the Atlanta Braves and the custodian of one of baseball’s greatest rotations of starting pitchers: Greg Maddux, John Smoltz and Tom Glavine, Hall of Famers all.

The 2018 playoffs and World Series offered a parade of twitchy managers yanking their starting pitchers after four innings, summoning a parade of faceless relievers to throw one mind-numbing fastball after another for fractions of an inning.

This is spectacular for the radar gun industry, but is it watchable and good baseball?

I heard Mazzone snorting on the other end of the phone line, no, no and no. “It is an embarrassment and insults the intelligence,” he said. “They are abusing pitchers and calling it smart.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 07, 2019 at 03:47 PM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Analytics’ rise a leading topic at Winter Meetings

Are the analytics a thing now?

Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2018 at 06:08 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics

Saturday, December 08, 2018

Sarris: The next ‘Moneyball’ is already happening all around us, in the Wild West of player development – The Athletic

As you can probably guess, the coaching staff is considered the nexus of this renewed emphasis and investment in developing the best players. Maybe it’s no surprise, then, that the average tenure of today’s hitting coach — 1.4 years — is lower than it’s been at any time in the last 10 years. Things are changing when it comes to getting most out of players, and the major league staff needs to change, too.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 08, 2018 at 07:46 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, pay site, player development

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

The Performance Case for DRC - Baseball Prospectus

Baseball Prospectus has a new batting metric.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 04, 2018 at 06:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics

Friday, November 30, 2018

Trevor Bauer talks very openly about what he thinks Cleveland should do with him

“Ultimately, I think the surplus value on me this year is just way too high. Even with an arbitration raise, you’re probably talking about $15 to $20 million of surplus value.”

“I think of the starters that they were talking about trading—Kluber, Carrasco and me—I think all of us bring a tremendous return,” Bauer said. “So I think you can get a very similar package of players in return in a trade. But I think me and Carrasco have the largest surplus value going into this year.”

“In 2020,” said Bauer, “when my salary raises up to like the $20 million range, then the surplus value isn’t nearly as much. And they’re most likely not going to be able to sign me in free agency, even on one-year deals. So it would make sense to trade me and get some prospects in return.”


Sunday, November 25, 2018

Tangotiger Blog: Prospect Valuation

Although the discussion gets a little off track when they discuss future value unrelated to risk, I nevertheless found the discussion about Craig Edwards’ recent article on prospect value very interesting.

BTW, I agree with Matt Swartz’ opinion about the discount rate being nearer the 10% rate. I also believe Edwards’ surplus values are a little too high because they don’t account for team scouting and player development costs.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 25, 2018 at 09:05 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, prospect value

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Tomase: Overreliance on WAR may have hurt J.D. Martinez in AL MVP vote that’s going to be won by Mookie Betts | WEEI

Take this year’s AL MVP race. Betts led the league in WAR, will win the award, and deserves it. Hard to argue with Trout or Ramirez, either, based on performance, though I’m certainly open to the idea of an MVP coming from a winning team, and not Trout’s sub-.500 Angels.

But there are other deserving candidates whose WAR won’t give them a sniff. Red Sox slugger J.D. Martinez is one of them. For five months, he flirted with the Triple Crown. Because he’s mostly a DH and no better than an average fielder when he does don a glove, he never had a chance, though his 5.9 fWAR is roughly in range of Ramirez.

Some advanced stats make a case for Martinez, such as his weighted runs created (170, 3rd), base-out runs added (73.36, 1st), win probability added (5.4, 3rd) and . . . there’s no need to lose ourselves any further in those weeds.

“There’s no need to lose ourselves any further in those weeds”? The **stats** he uses ignore defense and baserunning.

WAR isn’t perfect. While I agree people shouldn’t simply use WAR to rank players for award voting, Tomase’s case is extremely weak and unconvincing.

Wins Above Replacement—all
1. Betts • BOS 10.9
2. Trout • LAA 10.2
3. Chapman • OAK 8.2
4. Ramirez • CLE 7.9
  Lindor • CLE 7.9
6. Snell • TBR 7.5
7. Bregman • HOU 6.9
8. Sale • BOS 6.9
9. Martinez • BOS 6.4
10. Verlander • HOU 6.3

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2018 at 08:54 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, j.d. martinez, war

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Reverse Platoon Splits – Before and After | RotoValue

So overall, it seems that even players who show a pronounced reverse platoon split tend to show a more normal platoon split over the rest of their careers.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 31, 2018 at 10:26 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, sabermetrics

Monday, October 29, 2018

An overreliance on analytics did not determine the outcome of the World Series – The Athletic

Somewhere​ along the line, the word​ analytics​ became​ a boogeyman, ready to​ be blamed for​ all that​ ails baseball.​​ In this World Series in particular, there’s the idea that the Dodgers made too many decisions by the binder instead of the gut. It’s a weird idea.

“Throw away the numbers and let your eyes tell you everything you need to know,” said broadcaster John Smoltz during Game 5. Smoltz, in particular, has been talking about problems he sees in the sport today, and earlier this year he came out in favor of rule changes that would blunt the use of analytics in decision-making.

Smoltz was not alone.

MLB Radio’s worst host/**analyst** doped chimed in as well.

There, of course, were others.

 

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2018 at 11:31 AM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, pay site

Friday, October 26, 2018

Second-Guessing World Series Matchup Decisions Isn’t Always the Right Call - The Ringer

Ben Lindbergh sheds a little light on stuff we don’t know. The gap between team proprietary data and what public analysts have is only getting bigger. In the short term it’s good for smart teams when it helps them win. When they lose, however, front offices will then have to fend off even bigger, angrier mobs calling for their heads.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 26, 2018 at 09:45 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Baseball Therapy: The Openers Are Coming, The Starters Are Fine - Baseball Prospectus

The reason we’ll have a glut of openers soon is the same reason we’ve had any sort of strategic breakthrough in the game. There are ways we’ve been trained to think of the game that aren’t actually true. Over 50 years of pitcher usage, we slowly grew to believe there was only one sort of starting pitcher, and we were taught things about when and how long they could pitch. We were lulled into thinking things had always been this way. They hadn’t.

And yes, there will be plenty of complaining about The Opener and how it supposedly disrespects the foundational commandments of the game (and how things were different in the 1970s). What’s funny is that The Opener is actually a riff on an idea from 50 years ago, updated somewhat to account for the realities of the present day. You just need a little bit of historical perspective to understand how and why it happened, and that in some ways it’s a case of “nothing new under the sun.”

The starter isn’t dead. We’ve just (re)discovered their actual nature. There are two types of starters we’ve been trying to fit into one box.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 24, 2018 at 11:39 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Magic dust, spin rates and buy-in: How the Astros make good pitchers even better - The Washington Post

“Every team has an analytics department, and this is no knock on the Twins, but seeing the time [the Astros] put in and the scouting reports you’re given, it’s like, ‘Whoa.’ It’s a different level,” Pressly said. “You kind of see, ‘Wow, if I just pitch a little more to this percentage instead of that percentage I can have some better results.’ When I came over here, they were like, ‘Look, your curveball is your best pitch. Everyone tells you your best pitch should be your fastball. But with the amount of spin you have on the ball, you need to throw that more, and it will set up your fastball even more.’ ”

Luhnow described the acclimation process into the Astros’ philosophy as more of a two-way street: “It’s really, ‘Tell us about your repertoire, your experience.’ It starts with them telling us what they’re trying to accomplish every time they go in. And then it’s us: ‘Let’s start with the basics. This is what we love about you. Let’s keep doing this.’ Are there areas maybe we can try something? Sure. But they’ve got to want to do it.”

Added Manager A.J. Hinch: “The beauty of what we have going on right now is there’s an immediate buy-in when guys come over, because of some previous success stories. … Our analytics team, our front office does a great job of providing information, providing thoughts, ideas. But it circles back to the player. I always credit the player, because he has to be the guy — he is the guy with the ball in his hand.”

...

“The key principle,” Cole said, “was using a lot of the data and information they have to discern what is your strength. So you have a pitch that looks great on the charts, and then you have the [video]. … It’s not like they were reinventing the wheel. They were just showing me what I did well and then allowed me to just attack.”

“I don’t think it’s a secret,” Morton added. “It’s not something where they put you in a chamber, and they push a button and you come out a new pitcher. You’re the pitcher you are, with the tools you have, and they give you suggestions on how to utilize your stuff a little bit better. … For people to say, ‘Oh they must be doing something illegal or special — because why aren’t [other teams] doing it?’ Well, they haven’t caught up yet.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2018 at 10:33 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, astros

Tuesday, October 09, 2018

Nick Cafardo: Red Sox manager Alex Cora went against analytics in Game 3 — and the result was spectacular

Alex Cora managed it. It’s that simple.

He saw that what he had drawn up wasn’t working. As much as he loved and believed in the lineups in the first two games, he had left two of the hotter hitters of the past couple of weeks on the bench. So even though Brock Holt and Rafael Devers had horrific numbers against Luis Severino, he put them in the lineup anyway.

This was one of those nonanalytic moments. Cora simply had a feeling, a Joe Morgan hunch, that the two lefthanded hitters would do something significant. And he was right. Man, was he right. As in 16-1 right and a 2-1 lead in the series with the possibility the Red Sox could win the clincher Tuesday.

 

Jim Furtado Posted: October 09, 2018 at 01:43 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, red soxs

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

‘Cold Hard Cash’: How Brian Cashman played the long game and used analytics to transform the Yankees’ culture – The Athletic

Some great stuff about the Yankees, including a mention of an old Usenet baseball legend.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 03, 2018 at 05:32 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, brian cashman, yankees

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

Has baseball analytics killed the art of hitting?

Moments after being doused in celebratory suds last Wednesday, a soaked Christian Yelich was slapping on headphones and a microphone, settling in for a post-game interview. The 26-year-old National League MVP candidate and his Milwaukee Brewers had just beaten the St Louis Cardinals and booked their place in Major League Baseball’s playoffs which start on Tuesday.

It was a strange time for MLB Network personalities to get into a hitting discussion, but the hosts insisted on knowing Yelich’s thoughts on one of baseball’s newer stats: “the vertical angle at which the ball leaves a player’s bat after being struck,” also known as launch angle.

The stat is at the core of a debate concerning a philosophical shift in hitting. Over the past several seasons, hitters have increasingly abandoned the more traditional, contact friendly, line-drive swing, in favor of a riskier method that sends balls high into the air as often as possible. The chances of a home run increase but so do the chances of striking out. This during a time where hitters are already facing a never-ending stream of hurlers who hit 95mph or more on the radar gun and tally up strikeouts.

More or less the same thing we’ve seen millions of time- but usually not written for a British audience….

QLE Posted: October 02, 2018 at 09:33 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, hitting, yes, another of these columns

Friday, September 28, 2018

How Alex Cora changed the culture of the Red Sox regarding analytics

Knowledge is power.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 28, 2018 at 03:28 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, joey cora, red sox

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Baseball Statisticians Unveil New Analytics Model Measuring Precise Amount Of Joy They Suck From The Game

Saying the breakthrough would change baseball statistics forever, the Society Of American Baseball Research unveiled a new analytics model Friday that measures the precise amount of joy their work sucks from the game.

Master of the Horse Posted: August 25, 2018 at 03:37 PM | 152 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, bill james, theonion

Friday, August 24, 2018

The Braves traded into their strengths

But it wasn’t just happenstance. Gausman was a calculated upgrade for the Braves, who were also rumored to be in on Chris Archer at the deadline. Archer wound up with the Pirates for a significant cost while Alex Anthopoulos and his team grabbed Gausman for relatively cheap. But Gausman’s profile, and how that profile matched what Atlanta already had, surely helped Atlanta decide it wasn’t worth the price to pony up for Archer. Not when that profile could provide some hidden value.

If you don’t know what I mean, here’s Gausman’s 2018 batted ball profile:

2018: GB% 47.6% FB% 31.6%

And since he’s gotten to Atlanta, those numbers have actually improved:

with ATL - GB% 50.7% FB% 26%

The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: August 24, 2018 at 08:01 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, braves, trades

Monday, August 20, 2018

What did David Price change? – The Athletic $

Eno Sarris does David Price’s homework.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 20, 2018 at 08:06 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: analytics, david price, red sox

 

 

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