Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


Contributors

Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Repoz
Editor - Baseball Primer

Syndicate

Umpiring Newsbeat

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Ball? Strike? It Depends: Is the Pitcher an All-Star?

They would rather not talk about it, but umpires may be just as star-struck as the average baseball fan.

Two researchers looked at the photographic evidence and found that umpires make more errors in favor of All-Star pitchers than pitchers who have never been selected for an All-Star Game — about 17 percent more.

This is a subject umpires are naturally hesitant to discuss….

But the science exists, for anyone who wants to look at it. Every major league stadium is equipped with the Pitch f/x system, which includes strategically placed cameras that record the locations and trajectories of every pitch. The technology provides a record that is difficult to dispute. In the seasons the study covered, 2008 and 2009, umpires earned a B-plus average, at best, in calling balls and strikes.

The researchers — two business school professors, Jerry W. Kim of Columbia Business School and Brayden G. King of Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management — looked at data on 756,848 pitches over 313,774 at-bats in 4,914 games. Some umpires were, unsurprisingly, more accurate than others, but on average they called a strike on 18.8 percent of pitches that were actually out of the strike zone and a ball on 12.9 percent of pitches that were, in fact, strikes.

Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: July 08, 2014 at 07:33 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: umpiring

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

MLB tweaks wording on force plays (at home plate)

Major League Baseball took a formal step Tuesday to clarify a portion of the new rule governing unnecessary collisions between baserunners and catchers at home plate.

In a statement sent to the baseball operations departments for all 30 teams, MLB said umpires have been instructed not to apply Rule 7.13 to force plays at home plate. The directive came several days after Joe Torre, MLB’s executive vice president of baseball operations, said the rules were interpreted incorrectly to overturn an apparent force play in a game between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh.

“A number of questions recently have arisen about the application of Official Playing Rule 7.13 to force plays at home plate,’’ the MLB statement said. “Rule 7.13 was adopted in order to prevent unnecessary collisions at home plate between a runner attempting to score and a catcher attempting to make a tag play on the runner. The Rule as intended has no function or purpose in the context of a force play (i.e., a runner attempting to score from third with the bases loaded). As a result, effective immediately, Umpires will be instructed not to apply Rule 7.13 to force plays at home plate.’‘

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: June 25, 2014 at 11:56 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: platelets, rules of play, umpiring

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Wilson Ramos - A Man With Five Balls

So all a catcher has to do is tell the ump what the count should be and VOILA?!

Leading off the sixth inning of the Nationals’ 9-2 win, Ramos took a ball on a 2-2 pitch. Home plate umpire Scott Barry, according to Ramos, declared the count 3-2. Rangers catcher Chris Gimenez turned and asked, “Isn’t it 2-2?”

“Yeah, Barry replied. “2-2.”

“It’s not 3-2?” Ramos asked Barry.

“No, it’s 2-2,” Barry said.

Ramos shrugged and went back to the at-bat.

 

boteman is not here 'til October Posted: May 31, 2014 at 11:48 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: balls and strikes, nationals, umpiring

Friday, May 23, 2014

Hadricourt: Bullpen mixup a lowlight in Brewers’ loss

Roenicke then went to plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth to make a double-switch and pointed to the bullpen for a lefty. There was no lefty warming up so Duke volunteered to come out, but Roenicke told Culbreth he wanted Smith.

The rules state that a new pitcher can throw no more than eight pitches after taking the mound. Because Culbreth was informed Smith had not been up in the bullpen, he asked Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez if he would agree to more pitches and Gonzalez said no.

Two things I have never seen before - at least I knew what the rule was for number of warmup tosses.  But for the rest of the game, the question of whether or not Duke was eligible to come in the game again was the subject of much debate.  He clearly entered the field of play, but since he was not forced to pitch to a batter before leaving, was he officially in the game?

spike Posted: May 23, 2014 at 04:06 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, brewers, umpiring

Thursday, April 03, 2014

NYT: Brayden King: What Umpires Get Wrong

THIS season Major League Baseball is allowing its officiating crews to use instant replay to review certain critical calls, including home runs, force plays and foul balls. But the calling of the strike zone — determining whether a pitch that is not swung at is a ball or a strike — will still be left completely to the discretion of the officials. This might seem an odd exception, since calling the strike zone may be the type of officiating decision most subject to human foible.

In research soon to be published in the journal Management Science, we studied umpires’ strike-zone calls using pitch-location data compiled by the high-speed cameras introduced by Major League Baseball several years ago in an effort to measure, monitor and reward umpires’ accuracy. After analyzing more than 700,000 pitches thrown during the 2008 and 2009 seasons, we found that umpires frequently made errors behind the plate — about 14 percent of non-swinging pitches were called erroneously.

Some of those errors occurred in fairly predictable ways. We found, for example, that umpires tended to favor the home team by expanding the strike zone, calling a strike when the pitch was actually a ball 13.3 percent of the time for home team pitchers versus 12.7 percent of the time for visitors….

Baseball insiders have long suspected what our research confirms: that umpires tend to make errors in ways that favor players who have established themselves at the top of the game’s status hierarchy. But our findings are also suggestive of the way that people in any sort of evaluative role — not just umpires — are unconsciously biased by simple “status characteristics.” Even constant monitoring and incentives can fail to train such biases out of us.

Technologically, Major League Baseball is in a position, thanks to its high-speed camera system, to enforce a completely accurate, uniform strike zone. The question is whether we, as fans, want our games to be fair and just, or whether we are compelled to watch the game because it mimics the real world, warts and all.

Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: April 03, 2014 at 02:59 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: general, umpiring

 

 

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Harry Balsagne, anti-Centaur hate crime division
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogCameron Maybin Suspended 25 Games
(1 - 3:51pm, Jul 23)
Last: Joyful Calculus Instructor

NewsblogCSN: Enough is enough — time to move on from Ryan Howard
(7 - 3:50pm, Jul 23)
Last: PreservedFish

NewsblogChase Headley traded to New York Yankees from San Diego Padres - ESPN New York
(136 - 3:50pm, Jul 23)
Last: Nasty Nate

NewsblogJeff Francoeur's Teammates Prank Him, Again
(5 - 3:48pm, Jul 23)
Last: snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster)

NewsblogOTP - July 2014: Republicans Lose To Democrats For Sixth Straight Year In Congressional Baseball Game
(2803 - 3:48pm, Jul 23)
Last: The Good Face

NewsblogCowboy Monkey Rodeo taking the Minors by storm
(15 - 3:40pm, Jul 23)
Last: boteman is not here 'til October

NewsblogOT: The Soccer Thread July, 2014
(329 - 3:37pm, Jul 23)
Last: puck

NewsblogPadres’ Offense May Go Down as Worst Ever
(84 - 3:32pm, Jul 23)
Last: Ron J2

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-23-2014
(12 - 3:28pm, Jul 23)
Last: RoyalsRetro (AG#1F)

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread- July 2014
(836 - 3:01pm, Jul 23)
Last: cmd600

NewsblogRubin: deGrom for NL rookie of the year?
(28 - 2:52pm, Jul 23)
Last: KT's Pot Arb

NewsblogAs shifts suppress offense, time has come to consider a rule change
(63 - 2:35pm, Jul 23)
Last: TerpNats

NewsblogFSAZ: D-backs cut off McCarthy’s cutter controversy
(28 - 2:02pm, Jul 23)
Last: Barry`s_Lazy_Boy

NewsblogTony Oliva turns 76; Gardenhire: 'He should be in hall of fame'
(53 - 1:48pm, Jul 23)
Last: Ulysses S. Fairsmith

NewsblogSportsNet: Kawasaki: ‘A monkey never cramps’
(6 - 1:30pm, Jul 23)
Last: A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose)

Page rendered in 1.0160 seconds
63 querie(s) executed