Projection Models Newsbeat
Friday, December 19, 2014
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Dan talks about ZiPS.
In this episode of the Enterprise Tech Cast, Blue Hill Chief Research Officer Hyoun Park and ESPN’s Dan Szymborski discuss how Dan got started in building statistical models and built the ZiPS player projection system. Anybody who wants to learn to develop an ongoing projection and forecasting system, and wants practical insights and how-to’s should listen to this podcast. Also, we stray off the enterprise path and discuss baseball free agency, including whether Pablo Sandoval is actually the right choice for the Red Sox.
Sunday, October 19, 2014
After posting the original articles on JAVIER, I knew I would have to update these values after the season, which would provide an opportunity to build some improvements into the system.
As a refresher, JAVIER is a minor league hitting evaluation system that uses basic statistics and finds comparable players in history. It uses each player’s minor league walk, strikeout, and isolated power numbers and compares them to the league average, turning them into z-scores. These z-scores are then compared across minor league data spanning back to 1978. Read the previous description for a full understanding.
Before my prospect system got all fancy and had an official name, it only included walk and strikeout rate. The previous update added the name JAVIER, but more importantly isolated power as a means of differentiating between sluggers and slap hitters. This time I added speed, age adjustment and regression to league average elements. The productive, average, and bust categories still exist, but I instead use an average VORP approach to rank the players.
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Wait til next year. Forever.
And here’s where Cubs fans should find optimism; by BaseRuns expected record, the Cubs have played like a .500 team this year. Their expected record is actually better than that of the first-place Kansas City Royals, in fact, and is not far off from what the teams contending for the NL wild cards are putting up….
This isn’t a great team, of course, but the only reason the Cubs are in the mix for a top pick again next summer is because they’re 28th in both clutch hitting and clutch pitching this season. They haven’t hit well when it mattered and their pitchers haven’t kept important runs from scoring, so despite average overall performance, they’ve lost eight more games than expected.
So why is this good news? Because clutch performance has basically no predictive value, and the historical record of teams that dramatically underperformed their BaseRuns expected record in one year shows that these teams often improve dramatically in the next year. Right now, the Cubs are 53 points of winning percentage below expectations…
t might not have shown up in the standings yet, but even without the wave of prospects that are on the way, this team has performed like a roughly average Major League team. Add in some expected production from a few of the young kids and likely a significant free agent addition or two, and the Cubs are going to be everyone’s sleeper pick next year. But it won’t just be prospect hype and a big name addition. This is a decent team that is a lot closer to winning than their current record suggests.
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