Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Bruce Miles: No longer wonky, Baseball Prospectus way cool these days

Why Everything You Know About Propeller-Heads Is Wrong.

Silver was a former Baseball Prospectus author and the driving force behind the PECOTA forecasting system that makes up the heart of the book.

Now he’s a rock star.

“Well, it’s hard to make sabermetrics any more cool than it already is — after all, millions of American teenagers use a picture of Bill James in Terminator shades as their smartphone wallpaper — but I think Nate may have managed it,” Ken Funck, a current BP author, related to me in an email interview. “I think his success, and the attention it received, went a long way towards demonstrating the validity of using statistical methods to forecast results.

“Baseball results are harder to forecast than election results — which is, of course, a large part of its appeal — so I hope no one expects me to predict every team exactly right this year.”

...“Any baseball fan who pays attention to something like a PECOTA projection is most likely quite passionate about the game, and one of the great things about baseball is its ability to spawn discussion and disagreement,” Funck said. “We’ve all sat on bleachers, couches or barstools arguing with our friends over whether the White Sox can compete with the Tigers this year, or how good Anthony Rizzo will be.

“PECOTA also has an ‘opinion’ on those topics, but unlike our friends, PECOTA is impersonal and dispassionate. Merely reading a PECOTA projection, especially one that you don’t agree with, doesn’t make you feel like you’re having a conversation. Instead, you can feel like you’re being lectured by some know-it-all blowhard, especially if you buy into the stereotype of baseball analysts as math geeks with spreadsheets who’ve never played and rarely watch the game.

“... That’s why I try to make the point in most conversations I have about PECOTA, or about baseball metrics in general, that they are not the end of the discussion. They’re really the beginning of the discussion.”

...“Our authors and editors do their best each year to make the Annual not just an invaluable reference, but an entertaining read,” Funck said. “Can that help debunk the propeller-head stereotype? Sure it can, and I think it does for most people that read our books or our website, or who meet us in person. No one who listened to the “Up and In” podcast would have ever confused Kevin Goldstein and Jason Parks for humorless stat-heads. I’d be shocked if anyone that met me described me that way.”

Repoz Posted: March 03, 2013 at 10:20 AM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: sabermetrics

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: March 03, 2013 at 11:08 AM (#4379693)
millions of American teenagers use a picture of Bill James in Terminator shades as their smartphone wallpaper

ROFL.
   2. The District Attorney Posted: March 03, 2013 at 04:16 PM (#4379868)
Bill James in Terminator shades
Someone please photoshop this.
   3. I Am Not a Number Posted: March 03, 2013 at 05:21 PM (#4379887)
Silver was a former Baseball Prospectus author

He still is a former Baseball Prospectus author.
   4. Juilin Sandar to Conkling Speedwell (Arjun) Posted: March 03, 2013 at 05:53 PM (#4379893)
Bill James in Terminator shades

Someone please photoshop this.

It's a handle waiting to happen!
   5. SG Posted: March 03, 2013 at 06:21 PM (#4379896)
Someone please photoshop this.


Here you go.
   6. The District Attorney Posted: March 03, 2013 at 06:42 PM (#4379902)
amazing
   7. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: March 03, 2013 at 07:36 PM (#4379908)
#5....Awesome...to the power of like a billion.

millions of American teenagers use a picture of Bill James


Eh, I'm so old that millions of teenagers used the picture of Farrah Fawcett...

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Andere Richtingen
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOTP 11 December, 2017 - GOP strategist: Moore would have 'date with a baseball bat' if he tried dating teens where I grew up
(1792 - 3:56pm, Dec 14)
Last: Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant

NewsblogJack Morris, Alan Trammell elected to Hall | MLB.com
(218 - 3:54pm, Dec 14)
Last: Rally

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-14-2017
(4 - 3:54pm, Dec 14)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogDerek Jeter Was Once the Captain. But Now He’s the Apprentice. - The New York Times
(28 - 3:52pm, Dec 14)
Last: fra paolo

NewsblogTaking Back the Ballparks - Mariners voting thread
(15 - 3:51pm, Dec 14)
Last: Greg Pope

Newsblog2017 MLB Rule 5 Draft results | MLB.com
(25 - 3:46pm, Dec 14)
Last: Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad)

Hall of Merit2018 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(383 - 3:25pm, Dec 14)
Last: Dr. Chaleeko

NewsblogYou should be very skeptical of claims the Royals lost over $60 million the last two years - Royals Review
(2 - 3:25pm, Dec 14)
Last: Steve Parris, Je t'aime

Sox TherapyA Container of Milk, A Loaf of Bread and a Dude Who Can Hit Home Runs
(21 - 3:24pm, Dec 14)
Last: Nasty Nate

NewsblogAngels trade for Tigers' Ian Kinsler
(20 - 3:11pm, Dec 14)
Last: LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim

NewsblogOT - NBA 2017-2018 Tip-off Thread
(1994 - 3:03pm, Dec 14)
Last: smileyy

Gonfalon CubsLooking to next year
(341 - 2:53pm, Dec 14)
Last: Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington

NewsblogMets agree to two-year deal with Anthony Swarzak
(14 - 2:41pm, Dec 14)
Last: snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster)

Hall of Merit2018 Hall of Merit Ballot
(28 - 1:39pm, Dec 14)
Last: Rob_Wood

NewsblogWhat new Mets regime sees in Matt Harvey for last ride | New York Post
(4 - 1:04pm, Dec 14)
Last: Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb

Page rendered in 0.1866 seconds
47 querie(s) executed