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. Most doorknobs are on the right side of the doors 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
Randy Jones
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT - December 2016 NBA thread
(1170 - 6:37pm, Jan 19)
Last: If on a winter's night a baserunner

Newsblog2017 Baseball Hall of Fame election results | MLB.com
(180 - 6:35pm, Jan 19)
Last: Morty Causa

Sox TherapySox In The Hall
(8 - 6:30pm, Jan 19)
Last: The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott)

NewsblogOTP 16 Jan. 2017: The ‘honor’ Trumps politics in scheduling Cubs’ White House visit
(1279 - 6:30pm, Jan 19)
Last: PreservedFish

NewsblogWhat the Hall of Fame elections will look like through 2022
(68 - 6:28pm, Jan 19)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogOn the Polo Grounds: When Fans Were Fans
(36 - 6:10pm, Jan 19)
Last: Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB)

NewsblogJosh Hamilton Prepared to Earn Spot on Rangers' Roster
(42 - 5:55pm, Jan 19)
Last: Dan

NewsblogAlex Rodriguez to host CNBC reality show featuring cash-strapped former athletes
(26 - 5:50pm, Jan 19)
Last: Zach

Newsblog2017 San Francisco Giants Top 10 Prospects | BaseballAmerica.com
(1 - 5:39pm, Jan 19)
Last: johnseal

NewsblogRead the open letter Tim Raines wrote after learning he'd been inducted into the Hall of Fame | MLB.com
(12 - 4:50pm, Jan 19)
Last: the Hugh Jorgan returns

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-19-2017
(9 - 3:43pm, Jan 19)
Last: Betts, Bogaerts, and D Price(GGC)

NewsblogOT Gaming: October 2015
(604 - 3:35pm, Jan 19)
Last: No, TFTIO is the puppet

NewsblogOT: January 2016 Soccer Thread
(107 - 2:39pm, Jan 19)
Last: Baldrick

NewsblogBraves zero in on Sarasota County for spring training
(16 - 2:25pm, Jan 19)
Last: DL from MN

NewsblogClass of 2017 awaits call from Hall of Fame | MLB.com
(92 - 9:56am, Jan 19)
Last: SoSH U at work

Page rendered in 0.2931 seconds
47 querie(s) executed