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Monday, March 06, 2017

Statcast and the Future of WAR | FanGraphs Baseball

I’ve argued about this for 20 years. The MVP question and the best player question are two entirely different things. Using WAR for either conflates the two. Why not transform WAR into a purely contextual answer (value) and continue to define results in runs and wins based on outcome and then use Statcast probabilities as a scouting tool for the best player question? In my mind, using Statcast as the inputs on an improved 20/80 scouting scale and apportioning all the components properly would be a wonderful upgrade to what’s done now. It would also put teams on a better path for projections as they will be able to better quantify aging patterns in a more realistic way.

This tension between what happened, how it affected the scoreboard, and how much credit to give to players for things they don’t control is a difficult thing to resolve. And now that we’re getting even more granular metrics about a player’s contribution to outcomes, these questions are going to continue to be relevant. Knowing the guys at MLBAM on a personal level, I’m pretty comfortable with the fact that they’ll handle these questions thoughtfully, and if (or when?) they do produce an MLB.com WAR model, it will be with all of these questions answered as well as they feel they can.

But while Statcast holds a lot of promise for improving the pitching and defensive sides of the components, getting ever-more granular hitting data might force us to again ask what we want WAR to be, and what the goal of the model is. There is no obvious right answer here, and that’s one of the reasons there will always be multiple ways of calculating WAR.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 06, 2017 at 01:48 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: statcast, war

Mike Gimbel’s video of RPA vs. WAR plus 2017 predictions.

Mike Gimbel’s video was made on February 28th. It contains criticism of the WAR formula(s), using a comparison of results from the 2016 season and an analysis of all 30 MLB teams going into the 2017 season.

caiman Posted: March 06, 2017 at 09:49 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: mlb, rpa, sabermetrics, war

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Sabermetric Research: How should we evaluate Detroit’s defense behind Verlander?

Phil Birnbaum puts Joe Posnanski’s criticism of WAR into his intellectual hopper.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 29, 2016 at 07:08 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: cy young, justin verlander, rick porcello, sabermetrics, war

Sunday, November 27, 2016

A Bit More on WAR | Joe Posnanski

Joe Posnanski follows up on his earlier article about Porcello and Verlander.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 27, 2016 at 09:27 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, war

Porlander and Vercello | Articles | Bill James Online

Bill James weighs in on Verlander vs. Porcello.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 27, 2016 at 09:26 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: sabermetrics, war

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Miller—Going to WAR—The mystery of Robbie Ray

Speaking as someone who spent a couple years of his life working on a WAR system before WAR was cool, too many people put too much credence in WAR. Too many don’t put enough. It’s something nice to look at and works well for a lot of different questions. Despite what some think, even with the advances in technology, it will always be just a reflection of reality. And that’s OK.

“One might assume.” One might assume that, if Martin Perez’s WARs are 1.8, 1.8 and 1.9 (as they were in 2016), that Martin Perez is a 1.8- or 1.9-win pitcher. But we’ve already seen, with Ray, that one model of WAR can be wildly misleading. We’ve seen, in fact, that two can be. It’s not much of a leap to think even three could be, all at once, and in all the same ways, especially for unique players such as Zach Britton or Yadier Molina or David Ross or for players on the extremes.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 23, 2016 at 08:00 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, robbie ray, sabermetrics, war

Monday, November 21, 2016

Murray Chass: Trout selection raises question

The voters should be congratulated for their diligence, hard work and perceptive thinking in selecting the m.v.p.s and compiling their ballots. I suppose it’s the modern way of performing this onerous chore. Why think when you can just copy names from a list already computed elsewhere?

Why not change the name of the award from m.v.p. to W.A.R. Lord?

The point is there is more to a player’s value to his team than simple statistics. Certainly statistics play a large role in a player’s value to his team, but so do other factors, not all of which can be measured with numbers.

As good as Trout might have been, the Angels could have finished last without him. Could the Red Sox have won the A.L. East title without Betts or Ortiz? Could the Astros have contended without Altuve, the Blue Jays without Donaldson, the Orioles without Manny Machado?

Did any of them contribute more than the others in ways that were not quantifiable? I don’t know; I lost too much of the season to make a judgment. But did the voters, who presumably watched closely all season, consider other factor, or did they decide to take the easy way out and not go to war with W.A.R.?

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 21, 2016 at 09:52 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: mike trout, murray chass, mvp, war

 

 

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