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Monday, August 13, 2018

Fangraphs: Jackie Bradley, Jr. and the Error Rule

To summarize:

1. The MLB rules state that the part of the error rule about ordinary effort is an objective standard.

2. The part of the error rule that says it’s all dependent on the judgment of the official scorer establishes a subjective standard.

3. Statcast is more 1. than 2.

IMO the standard of “ordinary effort” applies to any part of the fielding process, not the sum total. If a fielder gets an extraordinary jump, runs with extraordinary speed on an unusually efficient route, and then botches the catch, it doesn’t matter that ordinary effort wouldn’t have put him in position to make the catch. A fielder in position to make the catch will, in ordinary effort, make the catch. Failing to catch it, after getting into position, is an error. Failing to get into position to make the catch - through ordinary effort - is not an error.


Thursday, July 26, 2018

J.D. Martinez’s Defense? What The Numbers Really Say

The graphics are goofy; the videos are useful; the conversation is fantastic. A moderate-depth piece from Alex Speier on why some advanced defensive metrics aren’t advanced enough.

“Statcast data has changed the way that internally teams are doing defensive evaluations,” Stern told Martinez. “But to the best of my knowledge, I don’t think very much of that is public, so it hasn’t really changed any of the public-facing numbers that people have access to.”

Martinez had heard similar feedback last year after he was traded from the Tigers to the Diamondbacks. With Detroit, Martinez had graded as well below-average. After his trade, UZR and DRS offered favorable numbers for his work. Martinez recalled a conversation with Arizona head of analytics Mike Fitzgerald in which he discussed the disparity.

“My [UZR] has always been a negative in the outfield,” recounted Martinez. “Then I go to Arizona and my [UZR] is positive. I go, ‘What’s the difference?’ He said, ‘Now we’ve got you positioned right.’ ”


Monday, July 23, 2018

PBS American Masters: Ted Williams

Showing tonight, at 9 PM local time for me. YMMV; check your local listings. (EDIT: link to online version here, h/t to Jim Furtado. Link says the video expires 8/20/18.  -vi)

In honor of the centennial of Baseball Hall of Famer Ted Williams, American Masters presents a new biography of the Boston Red Sox player who may have been the greatest hitter who ever lived.


 

 

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