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Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Jake Peavy-Dee Gordon rivalry seems to be, um, heating up

Peavy: “I’m not going to lie to you. I was just in the shower thinking about Dee Gordon. #outofcontextTuesday
— Henry Schulman (@hankschulman) September 17, 2014

Dee Gordon has a great sense of humor, texted Peavy a picture of him in towel holding shampoo.
— Alex Pavlovic (@AlexPavlovic) September 17, 2014

Ok then.

Dee Gordon has surpassed all my expectations.  .330 OBP with 62 steals, he’s a fun guy to have around.  The price paid to rent Peavy was steep but he’s been everything they could have asked for.

Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: September 18, 2014 at 02:03 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, giants, please make it stop

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Barry Bonds joins Twitter

Barry L Bonds
@BarryBonds

Just setting up my Twitter. #myfirstTweet

The District Attorney Posted: September 04, 2014 at 10:51 PM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: barry bonds, giants, pirates, social media

After 10 years, Erik Cordier arrives in the big leagues throwing 101-mph heat

Erik Cordier arrived in the big leagues Wednesday, overrun by adrenaline and armed with a triple-digit fastball. He entered the game for the San Francisco Giants in the seventh inning, making his MLB debut doing mop up duty in a 9-2 Giants loss. But mop-up duty quickly turned into a radar-gun wowing performance… He threw 16 pitches that were 100 mph or faster, which, according to Eye on Baseball, ranks Cordier fifth in MLB this season for number of pitches topping 100 mph. And he did it in one inning…

If you’re wondering why you’ve never heard of this fireball-throwing prospect before, there’s good reason. Cordier isn’t a prospect at all. He’s 28 and was drafted in 2004. His journey to the big leagues has been 10 years in the making — including Tommy John surgery, two missed seasons and four organizations…

it wasn’t all good for Cordier on Thursday. He walked a batter and hit another. He didn’t give up any hits or runs, which is promising, but his very first pitch did sail over Buster Posey’s head to the backstop… But 100-mph is the great equalizer. It will raise eyebrows whether you’re a high-school kid, a college draft-pick, a top prospect or even an MLB relief pitcher 10 years in the making.

The District Attorney Posted: September 04, 2014 at 05:01 PM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: erik cordier, giants

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Giants to promote Brett Bochy

Gleeman is not a fan.

The Giants are rolling a family reunion into their September call-ups.

The team plans to purchase the contract of right-hander Brett Bochy, son of manager Bruce Bochy, along with four other additions after Triple-A Fresno plays its season finale on Monday.

The younger Bochy, a 20th-round pick in 2010 out of Kansas, posted a 3.57 ERA in 34 games (two starts), striking out 47 and walking 24 in 53 innings… The 27-year-old underwent Tommy John surgery shortly after the Giants drafted him and has made steady progress over the past four seasons…

This isn’t the first time a Giants manager has had his son on the roster. Bochy’s predecessor, Felipe Alou, managed Moises Alou with both the Montreal Expos and Giants.

The District Attorney Posted: September 02, 2014 at 12:50 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: brett bochy, bruce bochy, giants, minor leagues

Friday, August 29, 2014

Schoenfield: A quick note about awesome Wade Davis

Forget Wade Davis… now I want to vote for Frank Williams for MVP!

Overall, [Wade] Davis has allowed a batting average of .139 and a slugging percentage of .149, giving him an “isolated power” allowed figure of .010. I assumed that would be the lowest ever (minimum 50 innings), but it’s not. A reliever named Frank Williams for the 1986 Giants had an isolated power allowed of .006. In 52.1 innings, Williams allowed 35 hits—just one for extra bases, a double. (He also allowed just one stolen bases while nine guys were caught stealing on his watch ... wow.) The Giants thought so much of his performance they traded him to the Reds in the offseason for outfielder Eddie Milner.

(Williams’ story is interesting but sad. He started one game in his career ... and threw a shutout, as a rookie in 1984. According to this story by Tom Hawthorn of the Toronto Globe and Mail, Williams’ best pitch was a slurve of sorts that he gripped deep in the palm of his hand. You can see from the baseball card photo in that story that Williams threw from a sidearm or three-quarters delivery. He took part in tough-man boxing matches in Idaho in the offseason. After his career ended, he explored his Native American roots, but his life fell apart with drug and alcohol use and the death of his twin brother and he eventually ended up living on the streets of Victoria, B.C., and died in 2009.)

Back to Davis. The lowest isolated power figures going back to 1957, from the Baseball-Reference.com Play Index:

1. Williams, .006
2. Davis, .010
3. Jim Johnson, 2008 Orioles, .016
4. Kevin Cameron, 2007, .023
5. Rob Murphy, 1986 Reds, .024

The District Attorney Posted: August 29, 2014 at 11:51 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: frank williams, giants, history, royals, wade davis

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

FG: A Good Reason To Watch Yusmeiro Petit Pitch

All he needs is two Petit fours!

[Yusmeiro] Petit has appeared in 33 games for the Giants in 2014, which is one more major league game than he’d seen in the past five seasons combined.

Petit was once a top-100 prospect, and he has been around for so long that he was part of the 2005 trade that sent Carlos Delgado from the Marlins to the Mets, but he’s also been DFA’d at least twice, including by the Giants last year, and lost on waivers from Arizona to Seattle another time. For a three year stretch between 2010-12, he threw exactly 4.2 big league innings, and he spent all of 2011 in the Mexican Leagues before the Giants took a flyer on him as a non-roster guy in January of 2012…

if you happen to find yourself with nothing to do at 3:45 p.m. Eastern on Thursday, you should take the time to check out Petit’s start against the Rockies anyway, for one simple reason: Petit, an otherwise nondescript pitcher of little repute, might just break a major league record for pitching dominance. 38 times in a row, hitters have stepped to the plate, and 38 times, they’ve failed to reach base. The record of 45… [was] set by the White Sox’s Mark Buehrle when he followed up a perfect game with 5 1/3 spotless innings in his next start.

Obviously, Petit isn’t a great major league pitcher, or, usually, even a good major league pitcher. But he’s had his moments — last year, he came within a strike of a perfect game — and for the last month he’s been the right combination of good (13 K, 0 BB) and lucky (every batted ball going to a fielder). On Thursday against a bad Colorado team, he’ll just need to keep it going through the third inning to set a new record. It won’t be as impressive as Buehrle’s perfect game, of course, since it wasn’t done all at once, and it might not even be remembered beyond this week if he does it. It’s still worth keeping track of. After all, it’s not every day you see a pitcher threaten to retire more hitters in a row than anyone, ever.

The District Attorney Posted: August 27, 2014 at 11:31 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, yusmeiro petit

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Fangraphs: Cameron | Tim Lincecum: Now a Reliever, Maybe Needs to Close

Dave Cameron suggests that Lincecum should close because he pitches better with the bases empty.

*facepalm*

Lincecum’s splits suggest that perhaps the best way to “fix” him is to let him pitch with the bases empty as often as possible, which means starting the inning and not cleaning up after others. And there’s only one role in the bullpen that is generally afforded that luxury; the closer.

Yoenis Cespedes, Baseball Savant Posted: August 26, 2014 at 12:23 PM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: giants

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Bochy not ready to announce Lincecum decision

Opening Day thru June 20: 15 GS, 82.7 IP, 4.90 ERA
June 25 (no-hitter) thru July 22: 5 GS, 38 IP, 0.95 ERA
July 25 thru August 23: 6 GS, 24.7 IP, 9.49 ERA

I have no idea what to make of this. (Or, for that matter, of Lincecum’s pic on his B-R page.)

Who will start [for the Giants] Thursday? “TBA.” [Manager Bruce] Bochy has talked to Dave Righetti and Brian Sabean, but he won’t announce anything until after he gets a chance to talk to Tim Lincecum…

[Yusmeiro] Petit is off-limits anyway after throwing 4 1/3 yesterday, and he probably won’t be used tomorrow, either. That means we’ll almost certainly have to wait to see if Petit extends an amazing streak. He has retired 38 consecutive batters, seven short of Mark Buehrle’s MLB record…

If Petit is moved to the rotation, Bochy would slide Juan Gutierrez or Lincecum into the long relief role…

“Timmy really takes it so hard,” Bochy said. “He feels like he let everybody down … he’s taking it extremely hard.”

The District Attorney Posted: August 24, 2014 at 07:16 PM | 62 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, tim lincecum, yusmeiro petit

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Giants plan to protest bizarre loss at Wrigley

A light rain began in the top of the fifth inning, with the Cubs leading 2-0… Then the drizzle turned violent… The Cubs grounds crew had to act swiftly. In their haste, they rolled out the tarp at a bad angle, causing large portions of the infield to be as poorly covered as Jane Fonda in “Barbarella.”...

It rained all of 15 minutes but the damage was done. The next four hours involved more activity than an ant farm, with several dozen bags of clay dumped and spread over the infield to no avail…. the last 90 minutes of the delay involved one man and one rake… After a final check of the field and meeting with both managers just after 1 a.m. Chicago time, [crew chief Hunter] Wendelstedt waved off the game…

Rule 4.12… covers suspensions. There are only six conditions by which a regulation (official) game can be suspended rather than called. One of the conditions describes a “light failure or malfunction of a mechanical field device under control of the home club. (Mechanical field device shall include automatic tarpaulin or water removal equipment).”

The problem: the Cubs don’t use a mechanical tarp, and precedent had been set on July 23, when the Yankees couldn’t get their manual tarp on the field in time following a sudden rainstorm and were awarded a 2-1 victory over the Texas Rangers after 4 ½ innings.

Here’s one more snippet from the official rules, under the notes section of Rule 4.12: “If a game is halted by weather, and subsequent light failure or an intervening curfew or time limit prevents its resumption, the game shall not be a suspended game. If a game is halted by light failure, and weather or field conditions prevent its resumption, the game shall not be a suspended game. A game can only be considered a suspended game if stopped for any of the six reasons specified in Rule 4.12(a).”

The District Attorney Posted: August 20, 2014 at 10:29 AM | 94 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, giants, rain delays

Tarp troubles lead to long delay, shortened game

Can’t say I blame the Giants and their fans for being frustrated by this…

Spahn Insane Posted: August 20, 2014 at 10:10 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, giants

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Fresno Grizzlies ‘TMNT Night’ featured a cosplay wedding proposal

I’ve heard of the Splendid Splinter, but this is ridiculous!

The Fresno Grizzlies minor league baseball team flooded the Internet in the past couple weeks leading up to their “TMNT Night,” which by all accounts was a rousing success. There were Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-themed jerseys and hats, the Turtles even showed up in person, free pizza was given away, the team mascot dressed up like Splinter. Good times were had by all.

In fact, it was even a life-changing night, as two TMNT superfans GOT ENGAGED ON THE FIELD.


Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Hunter Pence gets burned by Mets Fans

There’s another half dozen or so at the link, including the ones from an earlier game.

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There’s another half dozen or so at the link, including the ones from an earlier game.

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Today’s final game of the Giants-Mets series was a day game, and Pence’s biggest enemies brought the heat in the form of mild accusations on neon signs. They’re attacking your card-shuffling ability, man. Say something!

Pence has two homers and seven RBI in the first three games of this series, so the burns may not be working. They’re still pretty brutal, though.

I love this. Kudos to you, Mets fans. That’s some quality mild joshing.

There’s another half dozen or so at the link, including the ones from an earlier game.


Monday, August 04, 2014

Matt Cain out for season, Giants say

Cain is unAbel.

The Giants right-hander will have bone chips in his right elbow removed next Monday in San Francisco. He is expected to be sidelined for about three months, but should be healthy in time for spring training.

“It’s been frustrating for him,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “Matt’s been battling this for a while. It’s time. He could keep trying to push it but it’s inevitable, it looks like. Let’s have this done and get him ready for spring training.”

Cain hasn’t pitched since July 9 and was put on the disabled list July 21. He saw three doctors, all of whom recommended surgery. Cain played catch on Friday to test his elbow one last time but was not optimistic about returning, saying the bone chips were unlikely to shift into a more tolerable position.

Cain will fail to reach 30 starts for the first time as a full-time big leaguer.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 04, 2014 at 05:29 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, injury, matt cain

Friday, August 01, 2014

Giants Designate Dan Uggla, Tyler Colvin

Thus ends Colvin’s Saberhagening.

The Giants have designated [Dan] Uggla and [Tyler] Colvin for assignment, tweets Alex Pavlovic of the Mercury News…

Uggla struggled mightily in his short time in San Francisco, failing to register a hit in 12 plate appearances while striking out six times (to go with three errors in the field). Of course, that is a continuation of his difficult time this year and last in Atlanta. Since the start of 2013, the 34-year-old has slashed .171/.291/.326 over 694 plate appearances, racking up 217 strikeouts along the way.

Colvin, meanwhile, owns a meager .225/.270/.384 line in 148 plate appearances on the season.

The District Attorney Posted: August 01, 2014 at 03:22 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: dan uggla, giants, transactions, tyler colvin

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Full Count » Sources: Red Sox agree to deal sending Jake Peavy to Giants for minor leaguers

Hopefully what the Red Sox received in exchange will help them in the future.

Edit: MLB Trade Rumors reports:

The Giants have acquired Jake Peavy from the Red Sox, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman tweets. The Red Sox will receive pitching prospects Edwin Escobar and Heath Hembree, ESPN’s Buster Olney tweets.

Not a great haul, but two lottery ticket lefties.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 26, 2014 at 11:46 AM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, jake peavy, red sox, trades

Giants purchase contract of 2B Uggla

So much to like from this article.  It’s like they are trolling me.

Dan Uggla needed a fresh start. The San Francisco Giants needed a healthy second baseman who could step in and produce.

Well, at least one of them will get what they needed.

Uggla will cost the Giants only $500,000. The Braves are responsible for the $18 million he’s guaranteed over the rest of this season and next season.

You know the sport is flush when a team will plunk down a cool half mil to sign a player after another team is willing to eat 18 mil to never see him again.

Bochy said he’s hoping Uggla can pull off a turnaround similar to the kind Pat Burrell and Jeff Francoeur did after signing with San Francisco in the middle of recent seasons.

Dare to dream!  Francoeur hit .194/.206/.226!  If only!

Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: July 26, 2014 at 05:31 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dan uggla, desperation, giants

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

SB Nation: The Many Crimes of Mel Hall

So if you thought the Chad Curtis story wasn’t creepy enough, there is the Mel Hall story.

“Mel Hall loved sex. Sex is what drove him,” said McMillan. According to a high school teammate, Hall impregnated two girls by the time he was a high school senior. The best guess of Texas authorities for the number of children he eventually sired is eight.

McMillan added, “He was a young guy who made a lot of money real fast, and he wanted to buy his way through life.”

So that was Mel Hall: a disappointment as a player, a tall tale, a caricature of a narcissistic athlete untethered from reality by sudden fame and fortune, a guy who did everything in excess. No, he probably wasn’t someone you wanted to be close with, but he filled up column space and kept things interesting over 162 games.

So when Hall started showing up to the ballpark with 15-year-old Jennifer Diaz, the most common reaction was one of amused curiosity.

The tabloid news show “A Current Affair” did a story on the odd couple. When Jennifer sat in the family section with players’ wives 10 and 20 years older than her, his teammates teased him for picking up his fiancée at Toys “R” Us. The organization, in a portion of their 1991 team yearbook devoted to players and their significant others, even included a picture of Mel and Jennifer at a school prom. No one blinked, at least publicly. It was all part of Mel Hall being Mel Hall….

The first time Hall had sex with Jennifer, her father was asleep on the sofa several feet away. After it was over, the 15-year-old cried. Decades later, she testified that Hall told her it was OK because he would marry her once she turned 18.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 15, 2014 at 01:27 PM | 360 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, giants, indians, mel hall, sexual assault, statutory rape, yankees

Monday, July 14, 2014

Giants’ battery of Bumgarner, Posey provide charge heading to All-Star break

Posey and Bumgarner became the first battery to hit grand slams in the same game, driving in every run of an 8-4 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks.  [...]

Players and coaches credited Posey for stirring a slumping group with his fifth-inning slam. The catcher was more impressed by Bumgarner, who also hit a grand slam April 11.

“You’re just kind of shaking your head,” he said. “I was asking Rags (pitching coach Dave Righetti) how many pitchers have hit two in one season.”

The answer is two, in the entire history of major league baseball. Bumgarner joined Tony Cloninger, who hit two in one game against the Giants in 1966. Bumgarner joined Posey in giving the Giants two grand slams in the same game for just the third time in their San Francisco era.

bobm Posted: July 14, 2014 at 07:47 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, grand slam

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

San Francisco Giants considering ban on culturally insensitive attire

The proposed policy, which is still in the working stages, could potentially say that fans who wear culturally insensitive attire to games or use culturally insensitive language could be asked to stop by Giants security or potentially be asked to leave the stadium.

Staci Slaughter, Giants senior vice president, communications, and senior advisor to the CEO, said the Giants have policies about obscene language and offensive signs.

“We are considering expanding the policy to be more explicit about culturally insensitive signs and articles of clothing,” she told USA TODAY Sports
“I don’t want to overstate where we are,” she added. “We haven’t finalized the language. We are still in the process of revising it.”

The proposed policy comes after an incident at a Giants game last month when two Native Americans approached a group of men who were passing around a fake headdress to tell them it was disrespectful. One of the Native Americans asked for the headdress and then declined to return it. Security was called and the Native Americans were detained but not arrested. The incident occurred on Native American Heritage Night…

“It is not acceptable for anyone to wear blackface anymore,” said Jacqueline Keeler, a founder of Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry. “So why is it acceptable for fans to come to stadiums dressed in redface? The clowning of our culture must stop.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 09, 2014 at 11:58 AM | 114 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, insensitivity, native americans

Monday, July 07, 2014

Former minor leaguer preparing to sue MLB for minimum wage

He was drafted in the 5th round of the 2004 Major League Baseball draft, early enough in the then-50 rounds that it came with a $160,000 signing bonus.

Broshuis is now a lawyer compiling data and evidence for a class action suit against Major League Baseball and Commissioner Bud Selig. He started with three players in February, suing the Miami Marlins, the San Francisco Giants, and the Kansas City Royals, along with MLB and Commissioner Selig.

Slowly over the course of the next two months, Broshuis had 32 plaintiffs, and all 30 Major League teams are defendants. His law firm, Korein Tillery, based in St. Louis, is known for bringing huge class action suits, and just won reinstatement of an $11 billion verdict against Big Tobacco.

The suit he is bringing asks for minimum wage during the baseball season, plus overtime compensation. He notes that players aren’t paid during the long off-season, even though they are expected to do extensive workouts.

Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: July 07, 2014 at 06:40 PM | 50 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, lawsuits, minimum wage

Thursday, July 03, 2014

538: Keri: The Giants Clustered Their Luck

With that win, they improved to 42-21. A year after stumbling to a 76-86 record, the Giants owned the best record in baseball. They’ve been terrible ever since. San Francisco has lost 16 of its last 21 games, the worst record for any major league team during that time…Few could have predicted such a sharp and sudden drop. But one indicator did suggest that regression was coming, sooner or later: cluster luck.

In a late-May Grantland column, I wrote about the concept of cluster luck as a way to explain how a series of good (or bad) events coming one after another can propel or punish a team:

Joe Peta, a former Wall Street trader, presented cluster luck in his book, Trading Bases. Essentially, the concept boils down to this: When a team’s batters cluster hits together to score more runs and a team’s pitchers spread hits apart to allow fewer runs, that’s cluster luck. Say a team tallies nine singles in one game. If all of those singles occur in the same inning, the team would likely score seven runs; if each single occurs in a different inning, however, it’d likely mean a shutout.

clusterunluck leads to, ...well, you know…

Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 03, 2014 at 03:15 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: clusterluck, giants

Selig permits A’s to leave Oakland, prompts last minute deal

If you don’t get them a new stadium, the A’s might move to Pocatello, Idaho.

The Athletics and Oakland appeared headed for a last-minute deal Thursday morning after the A’s owner informed city and county leaders that he had received permission from baseball commissioner Bud Selig to immediately move the team outside Oakland unless a deal was approved.

The stunning revelation was made by Athletics co-owner Lew Wolff in a 10 p.m. e-mail to officials, in which he wrote: “I was informed tonight that Commissioner Selig, due to the possibility of not having the hearing and vote that we were purported to receive from the JPA, that we will immediately be allowed to seek a temporary or permanent location outside the city of Oakland.”

The e-mail prompted city and county officials to immediately restart negotiations to keep the A’s in Oakland, and a new deal was being discussed Thursday morning by the 8-member board of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority.

Oakland city councilman Noel Gallo, who was initially opposed to the proposed 10-year lease proposal, said city, county and baseball leaders were on the phone hammering out a deal overnight.

“I think this agreement will be fair,” he said. “It might not be perfect, but I think it’ll be good for Oakland and the region in the long run.”

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 03, 2014 at 01:11 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, bud selig, giants, relocation, stadium, stadium deals

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Purdy: Why Tim Lincecum Is Our Elvis

ko

The Bay Area needs no new summer theme park thrill rides. It still has Tim Lincecum.

The Giants’ pitcher, who has been spectacularly up and down in terms of success over the past few seasons, was at the very peak of his freaky-geeky powers Wednesday at AT&T Park.

His fastball worked. His off-speed stuff worked. His hipster-hurler mojo worked, like, totally. And after nine innings of all that, Lincecum had thrown a no-hitter against the San Diego Padres – his second no-hitter against them in the past two seasons.

And what about all of Lincecum’s games between those two no-hitters? In those 28 starts, Lincecum allowed 164 hits in 173 1/3 innings of pitching – with 11 victories and 10 defeats.

This explains why, every time he takes the mound, Lincecum is an adventure. None of us ever knows exactly what we’re going to get. Although clearly, the man needs to face the Padres more often. And not just because they are statistically the weakest hitting team in the Major Leagues. Lincecum also banged out two hits himself Wednesday against San Diego pitching.

... As it is, he merely joins the short list of 28 pitchers with two or more no-hitters. Oddly, that list includes far more players who are not in the Hall of Fame (Johnny Vander Meer, Don Wilson, Jim Maloney, et al) as those who are. However, if Lincecum ever pitches a third no-hitter, he will join the enormously small club of legends from the modern era who’ve done so – Bob Feller, Sandy Koufax and Nolan Ryan. With Lincecum’s other credentials as a two-time Cy Young winner and two-time World Series champ, a third no-hitter would surely have him sniffing Cooperstown.

So when does he face the Padres again?

Mike Krukow, the former Giants pitcher and current broadcaster, has called Lincecum “a gift to the Bay Area.” Wednesday, he was the gift that kept on giving us his patented package of you-never-know-what-will-happen-next. It’s why people will continue to line up and ride the Lincecum ride. You never want to miss what might be around the next curve.

Repoz Posted: June 25, 2014 at 10:49 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: giants

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Jordan Ellenberg: The Author of How Not to Be Wrong Explains How He Was Wrong

As Horatio Prim once (okay a lot more) said: “Odds bodkins!”

When you write a book called How Not to Be Wrong, you ought to expect to be fact-checked a little. And one of the virtues of the new, data-driven journalism currently in vogue is the habit of going back and checking one’s own old stuff. We’re not supposed to avert our gaze from the howlers in our old columns. We’re supposed to find the mistakes and learn from them.

Overall, my record’s not too bad. Mathematicians over 30 have continued to make major theoretical advances. My criticism of Jonah Lehrer’s scientific sloppiness is looking pretty good. And Stephen Wolfram never did become the world’s most prominent and revolutionary scientist.

But there were some mistakes, too. Here are the three biggest.

Barry Bonds isn’t going to break the home run record. Bonds had 39 home runs in the 88 games making up the first half of the 2001 season, putting him on pace for a record-breaking 72 homers for the year. But I knew the theory of regression to the mean, which reminds us that the league leader in home runs at midseason is likely to have been both good and lucky, and thus isn’t apt to maintain his league-leading pace. Historically, typical league-leaders only hit two-thirds as many home runs in the second half as they did in the first. If that trend held in 2001, Bonds would finish the season with 61 home runs.

In fact, he increased his pace, ending up with 73 home runs and the all-time season record. My reasoning wasn’t bad. It’s just that I’d neglected the possibility that there was another factor besides natural ability and luck that was working in Bonds’ favor.

Thanks to Bill Petti.

Repoz Posted: June 14, 2014 at 04:43 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, history, sabermetrics, steroids

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Miracles: John D’Acquisto on Dr. Frank Jobe, UCL surgery & Jefferson Airplane

“Do you have a job,” Dr. Kerlan says, very concerned about your answer.


“Yeah,” you reply earnestly, snapping back for a moment, fighting the inevitability of this conversation’s direction as best you can, “Starting pitcher for the San Francisco Giants.”


“No, John,” Dr. Jobe interjects, “That’s not what he means.” Dr. Kerlan repeats himself.


“Do you have a job? There’s only a 40% chance you’ll ever throw a baseball again.”


Dr. Jobe and Dr. Kerlan detail the nuances of the surgery. You don’t hear a damn thing for five minutes.


“You may never play baseball again” is the only phrase playing in your mind right now on an endless, somber loop.


All the joy within you dies, and you start to cry.

djordan Posted: June 12, 2014 at 09:48 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, john d'acquisto, mlb

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