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

Monday, August 20, 2012

FSB: Lawson: Official Scoring Change

You mean like that grounder to Andrus that should have been ruled an error, then a fielder’s choice…but ended up being called a hit for Jeter?

Honestly, baseball’s official scorers probably deserve to be classified as “invertebrate” for the lack of backbone shown in the face of overwhelming pressure to improve batting averages while simultaneously inflating fielding percentages.  The double laced down the left field line may show up as a line drive in the box score the next day, but all the credit really goes to the third baseman/matador who practically turned 2-dimensional while watching the ball shoot over/under/through his glove.

The problem with a lax attitude about scoring only covers the distance between “correct” and “no integrity”.  Batting averages (and subsequently OBP, OPS, and OPS+) get inflated artificially by E10′s which represent errors on the official scorer.  Sure, fielding percentage represents an outdated means of gauging defensive performance, but the statistic becomes entirely meaningless when officials err on the side of stupid.  More importantly, any defensive metric that uses an algorithm or formula that includes fielding percentage or errors becomes basically useless as well.  Bring rational thinking and a consistent approach back to official scoring, and watch fielding percentage gain back a modicum of respect.

...Maybe it is time for an official scoring change, and by that I mean change the official scorer.

Repoz Posted: August 20, 2012 at 10:46 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, 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. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: August 20, 2012 at 11:18 AM (#4212470)
Honestly, baseball’s official scorers probably deserve to be classified as “invertebrate” for the lack of backbone shown in the face of overwhelming pressure to improve batting averages while simultaneously inflating fielding percentages.


Ironically, one advantage of having a backbone is that it makes you much more flexible than a creature with a hard carapace.
   2. ThisElevatorIsDrivingMeUpTheWall Posted: August 20, 2012 at 11:34 AM (#4212481)
Another job for robot umpire apparently.
   3. Bob Evans Posted: August 20, 2012 at 01:09 PM (#4212564)
E10 s/b an error on the DH IMO.
   4. Harmon "Thread Killer" Microbrew Posted: August 20, 2012 at 01:41 PM (#4212608)
Some actual examples (videos, gifs, names and dates) of these outrageous decisions might have been in order to make this article more effective.
   5. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: August 20, 2012 at 02:25 PM (#4212673)
I accept this thesis without further proof. I once heard the qualifications for official scorer listed as "has a pulse". Sounds about right.

Michael Morse watched his 20-something game hit streak become a 10 game hit streak because of a change in the official scoring a week and a half later. Talk about "upon further review"! Is there no statute of limitations or can we take away some of Babe Ruth's home runs nowadays?
   6. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: August 20, 2012 at 02:30 PM (#4212682)
If MLB ever goes with replay, why not add a fifth umpire to crews: HP, 1B, 2B, 3B and replay official/scorer?
   7. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: August 20, 2012 at 02:51 PM (#4212717)
Michael Morse watched his 20-something game hit streak become a 10 game hit streak because of a change in the official scoring a week and a half later. Talk about "upon further review"! Is there no statute of limitations or can we take away some of Babe Ruth's home runs nowadays?


That was the league, not the OS.
   8. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: August 20, 2012 at 03:07 PM (#4212755)
Of course we could take away Babe Ruth's home runs nowadays. We gave him six extra walks in 1999.
   9. Moeball Posted: August 21, 2012 at 06:56 PM (#4214265)
Was at an Angels game back in April of 1989 against the A's - Storm Davis was pitching for Oakland - he had one of those innings where he got a couple out, but a couple of runners were on, then someone misplayed a ball (was ruled an error), and then several hitters just pounded the ball. The Angels wound up with 6 runs in the inning, all unearned.

Except an inning or two later they announced on the scoreboard that the error got changed to a hit - thus making all of those runs suddenly become earned - from where I was sitting I could see into the Oakland dugout and Storm Davis was just going ballistic. It actually was quite comical. I'm guessing he's not the first or last pitcher to have such a reaction to a change by the official scorer, but it sure was funny to see in person.
   10. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: August 21, 2012 at 07:44 PM (#4214298)
At SABR this year there was an official scorers panel that was pretty interesting. The most relevant thing that got brought up was Stew Thornley mentioning that MLB had issued an edict many years ago that was in effect "if there is any doubt, give the hitter the benefit of the doubt."

Just in general I can't get too worked up about this, as long as the standards are applied consistently across the league, and they seem to be, I'm fine with it.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
TedBerg
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogSchoenfield: Why didn't the Braves win more titles?
(57 - 8:45am, Jul 28)
Last: They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot

SABR - BBTF ChapterWho's going to SABR??
(101 - 8:34am, Jul 28)
Last: Foghorn Leghorn

NewsblogNoble: Tom Seaver expects Derek Jeter to become first unanimous Hall of Fame inductee
(94 - 8:16am, Jul 28)
Last: They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot

NewsblogFull Count » Mike Carp, Felix Doubront and the challenges of player discontent on a struggling team
(9 - 8:10am, Jul 28)
Last: Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-28-2014
(2 - 7:59am, Jul 28)
Last: Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee)

NewsblogGossage on Bonds, McGwire Hall hopes: ‘Are you f–king kidding?’
(107 - 7:55am, Jul 28)
Last: Jeltzandini

NewsblogDodgers and Diamondbacks Triple-A teams involved in wild brawl
(13 - 7:06am, Jul 28)
Last: Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14!

NewsblogTigers Display Focus on 2014; acquire Joakim Soria
(5 - 6:54am, Jul 28)
Last: Cooper Nielson

NewsblogHall of Fame Announces Changes to Voting Process for Recently Retired Players, Effective Immediately
(84 - 6:38am, Jul 28)
Last: Sunday silence

NewsblogOTP - July 2014: Republicans Lose To Democrats For Sixth Straight Year In Congressional Baseball Game
(3292 - 6:14am, Jul 28)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October

NewsblogDJ Short: Maximum stay on Hall of Fame ballot changed from 15 to 10 years
(57 - 6:05am, Jul 28)
Last: Sunday silence

NewsblogFull Count » Mike Carp explains why he requested a trade from Red Sox
(18 - 3:18am, Jul 28)
Last: ellsbury my heart at wounded knee

NewsblogRoger Angell goes into the Hall of Fame
(28 - 12:49am, Jul 28)
Last: bobm

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread- July 2014
(967 - 12:31am, Jul 28)
Last: clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right

NewsblogGiants purchase contract of 2B Uggla
(8 - 12:09am, Jul 28)
Last: Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick.

Page rendered in 0.2432 seconds
52 querie(s) executed