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Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Editor - Baseball Primer


Technology Newsbeat

Monday, August 29, 2016

Lasers in the outfield—Infield isn’t only place where defense is shifting

When it comes to positioning their outfielders, the Yankees literally keep the information under their hats. Before each game, bench coach Rob Thomson, responsible for the outfield defense, gives Gardner, center fielder Ellsbury, right fielder Hicks and rookie outfielder Aaron Judge an index card with precise locations for each opposing hitter.

Those locations are determined by a proprietary computer program developed by the Yankees’ analytic squad, headed by David Grabiner. It takes a multitude of factors—among them the hitter’s power, his tendency to pull or not pull the ball, and his career history against the Yankees’ pitcher that night—and spits out a spray chart which places the outfielder in the optimal position to make a play.

“We have analytical assessments that show specifically where guys hit the ball,” a Yankees staffer told “I mean, it shows us exactly where guys hit the ball just about every time. And it’s hitter/pitcher specific, based on pitch velocity and location. Positioning is based on a lot of factors, including the speed of the defender.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 29, 2016 at 10:29 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: defense, sabermetrics, technology

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Baseball’s Union Remains Wary Of Wearables - Vocativ

Just wait until the cyborg revolution starts!!

“It’s not really the technology itself—it’s all, in theory, great,” Colorado Rockies reliever and team union rep Adam Ottavino said. “I think we’re always a little bit scared of giving away too much of ourselves.”

The Zephyr Bioharness and the Motus elbow sleeve (the two approved devices) log heart and breathing rates and a pitcher’s workload and strain, respectively. They’re permitted so long as the data does not stream live and is instead stored for post-game retrieval. But even if it’s not available to be streamed live, collecting players’ biometric data raises a lot of questions.

New York Mets outfielder Curtis Granderson is a Major League Baseball Players’ Association representative and holds a senior leadership position in the union. He says: “It’s a matter of how much access will we have to it?’ How much [access] will the team have to it? What will be done with it?”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 09, 2016 at 08:35 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: mlbpa, technology, wearables

Sunday, August 07, 2016

Swiping a Screen Rather Than Flip a Page in Baseball -

The St. Louis Cardinals are one club that has not quite fully adopted the iPads. Cardinals reliever Matt Bowman said much of the team’s bullpen information was relayed orally. And if he has a question, he will refer back to the bullpen coach, Blaise Ilsley.

“So he’s sort of our iPad in that sense,” Bowman said.

Baltimore Orioles Manager Buck Showalter said he would check an iPad in the dugout occasionally, sometimes when a new pitcher entered the game. But perhaps memory, at least Showalter’s, is one thing the iPads can’t trump.

“If you’re referring to that a lot when you’re out here, you haven’t done your homework,” Showalter said. “I usually have it, believe it or not, stored upstairs.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 07, 2016 at 08:15 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: technology

Monday, July 18, 2016

MLB stars don’t want to see robot umps

Full title at Sporting News Rage against the machines: MLB stars don’t want to see robot umps

Sporting News asked several All-Stars and found, overwhelmingly, that the game’s best players do not want to see a change, for a variety of reasons. Here is what they had to say.

The law of unintended consequences is always in play. Worth a read.

Bote Man Posted: July 18, 2016 at 01:24 PM | 40 comment(s)
  Beats: robots in baseball, technology, umpiring



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