Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
A little old, but I finally have time today to do this stuff. (h/t Roberto)
• Title: “Wonderful Ignorance”; subtitle: “The Past Is Always Going To Be With Us”
• Bill discusses SABR’s beginnings. It was smaller, allowing for more personal interaction, and more populated by “eccentrics”. He reminds us that founder Bob Davids was reluctant to publish more than one article every two years about statistical analysis in the SABR Journal. He says that of SABR’s 70 members at the time, only himself, Pete Palmer, and Dick Cramer were statistical analysts. He feels that to an extent, SABR still reflects this emphasis on non-statistical research.
• He has an amazingly mixed metaphor about how sabermetrics is like connecting a power cord, or a hose, or a string, across oceans, or maybe lava, from the surface to the core of a planet, which is made of bricks. I dunno. His ultimate point is that sabermetrics is not about producing numbers per se, but rather about using them to answer questions.
• Bill points out that sabermetrics was easier back in the day, when even basic questions had not yet been studied. Nonetheless, “there will never be any shortage of ignorance.” He believes the LOOGY is an example of said ignorance, as he had previously explained.
• Bill discusses the structure of a front office. He explains that the front office is divided into two virtually separated sides, business and baseball operations. Business has some say in baseball ops, but the converse is not true. Baseball ops is divided into scouting, field operations, and office management.
• Scouting in turn is divided into amateur, pro and international. Scouting is necessary because MLB competition is so much better than college or high school; also, scouts learn essential personal information about players.
• Field ops is divided into minor league, major league, and field staff. “Much more of our time is focused on minor league operations than major league operations.” This is because there are more minor league teams, and also because the money goes out a little at a time, rather than in “big buckets.”
• Office management is divided into department heads, financial management, information systems, and decision-making.
• Baseball ops talks to business regarding two subjects: spending money/budgeting, and public relations (e.g., Drake Britton’s DUI was the subject of “several meetings” with PR).
• Bill regrets that Craig Wright and another friend who “had sabermetrics on his business card in the 1980s” never got shots at being GMs. “There were two major battles that went on this winter that I was completely on the losing side of, and that’s fine. I don’t expect the Red Sox to do everything I think they should do. But I’m treated with respect.” Bill speculates that his friends in the 1980s weren’t treated with respect, and responded emotionally. Bill advises anyone who wants to work in MLB not to “run too hot.”
• Bill explains that the exuberant Nick Punto is the type of player who “works really well” when you’re winning, but not so much when you’re losing.
• Bill feels that an “all-bullpen” strategy would work, but hasn’t been used yet because it isn’t enough by itself to turn around a bad team. It could—and perhaps is—being adopted incrementally.
• Re: the former popularity of the bunt/current popularity of the LOOGY: “People are very, very bad at judging intuitively relative values.”
• “I’m old and running out of energy, and I just don’t have the energy to do the Red Sox work and do the writing the way that I hope that I might.”
• Bill applies the Law of Competitive Balance to player happiness. It’s good to treat players well, but doing so will in turn increase the standard of what it takes to make the player happy. One has to “stay ahead of the curve.”
• Bill explains that there are many practical problems with grooming knuckleballers: it’s hard to coach them, bring them into minor league games and otherwise get them work, etc.
• Bill doesn’t believe that teams have better information available to them than the public, because the public simply is so much larger a group. “You’re always going to be ahead of us.”
• “We spend many, many, many, many more hours trying to manage the clubhouse than we do trying to manage the team.” He points to last year’s Red Sox as an example of why.
for his generous support.
You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.
: OTP 2016 May 2: The Anti-Moneyball Election
(901 - 3:38am, May 04)Last:
: Kate Upton Reveals Engagement to Justin Verlander at 2016 Met Gala | Bleacher Report
(23 - 2:32am, May 04)
Last: Cargo CultistNewsblog
: Baseball close to canceling Puerto Rico trip because of Zika concerns
(17 - 2:27am, May 04)
Last: Cargo CultistNewsblog
: OMNICHATTER 5-3-16
(156 - 1:47am, May 04)Last:
Bite Man makes baseball fun againNewsblog
: OT: NBA Playoffs Thread 2016
(1095 - 1:38am, May 04)Last:
: Bryce Harper signs biggest endorsement deal for MLB player
(10 - 1:29am, May 04)
: OT: Wrestling Thread November 2014
(1536 - 1:05am, May 04)Last:
: OT: Soccer March/April 2016
(828 - 12:33am, May 04)Last:
: 10 Degrees: Is a juiced ball causing MLB's large home run spike? - Yahoo Sports
(49 - 12:20am, May 04)
Last: Walt DavisNewsblog
: The Braves Play Taxpayers Better Than They Play Baseball
(26 - 12:11am, May 04)
Last: Walt DavisHall of Merit
: Most Meritorious Player: 1992 Ballot
(17 - 12:11am, May 04)
Last: Tubbs is Bobby Grich when he flys off the handleHall of Merit
: Most Meritorious Player: 1992 Discussion
(16 - 12:07am, May 04)
Last: Tubbs is Bobby Grich when he flys off the handleSox Therapy
: Three Questions: May 2016
(19 - 12:02am, May 04)
Last: Infinite Yost (Voxter)Newsblog
: To learn about himself, Ben Cherington decided to teach - The Boston Globe
(17 - 10:30pm, May 03)
: Ot: 2015-2016 NHL Thread
(249 - 10:13pm, May 03)Last: