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

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

N.Y. Times: Schwarz: Professor Puts a Face on the Performance of Baseball Managers (RR)

Either this is an elaborate April Fools gag…or Wooly Willy has a major lawsuit on its hands!

Many of the numbers that measure the performance of hitters, pitchers and fielders are familiar to every fan. But now attention is being turned to a genus of baseball creature rarely examined through statistics: the manager, who sets the lineups, calls for hit-and-runs and otherwise turns the cranks of in-game strategy.

Aside from won-lost records, few metrics quantify what these men actually do and the tendencies they exhibit. But an associate professor of statistics at Swarthmore College is trying to set that right, quite literally putting a face on managerial performance.

The mathematician, Steve C. Wang, applied a method called Chernoff faces, in which data points in many dimensions are presented in a form that people react to more intuitively: the human face.

While reams of categorical data can be imposing and hard to parse, translating the differences among them into facial characteristics can communicate distinctions with striking clarity. By turning rates of bunting, stealing and pinch-hitting into hair sizes, nose shapes and smile widths, Dr. Wang used a kind of statistical Mr. Potato Head to portray the spectrum of managerial characteristics in a way that intrigued even the skippers themselves.

Repoz Posted: April 01, 2008 at 04:12 AM | 4 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: fantasy baseball, 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. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: April 01, 2008 at 05:07 AM (#2726064)
So this ISN'T about Farnsworth?
   2. Slinger Francisco Barrios (Dr. Memory) Posted: April 01, 2008 at 01:15 PM (#2726139)
Dr. Wang used a kind of statistical Mr. Potato Head

Don Zimmer would surely suffice as a real-world example, then.
   3. Sean Forman Posted: April 01, 2008 at 01:28 PM (#2726148)
Does anyone really find chernoff faces useful? I find myself saying, OK, the noses are sacrifices, all right let's compare the noses. OK, one's a little bigger, what does that mean. etc. etc.
   4. Super Creepy Derek Lowe (GGC) Posted: April 01, 2008 at 01:46 PM (#2726157)
I'm still waiting for a link to Schwarz's excellent stats vs. scouts roundtable discussion

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Dingbat_Charlie
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - November 2014
(1009 - 4:08am, Nov 24)
Last: sardonic

NewsblogOTP Politics November 2014: Mets Deny Bias in Ticket Official’s Firing
(4242 - 3:05am, Nov 24)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogRed Sox trying for mega-free agent double play: Panda and Hanley - CBSSports.com
(78 - 2:48am, Nov 24)
Last: Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site

NewsblogKemp drawing interest, raising chance he's the Dodgers OF dealt - CBSSports.com
(30 - 1:16am, Nov 24)
Last: akrasian

NewsblogOT: Wrestling Thread November 2014
(57 - 12:31am, Nov 24)
Last: Rowland Office Supplies

NewsblogOT: NFL/NHL thread
(8650 - 11:54pm, Nov 23)
Last: Random Transaction Generator

NewsblogAstros interested in Robertson: source | New York Post
(18 - 11:31pm, Nov 23)
Last: RMc is a fine piece of cheese

NewsblogBraves shopping Justin Upton at a steep price | New York Post
(36 - 11:16pm, Nov 23)
Last: spike

NewsblogMatthews: Cashman sleeps on the street, says all is quiet on the free-agent front
(24 - 10:50pm, Nov 23)
Last: JE (Jason)

NewsblogPirates DFA Ike Davis, clear path for Pedro Alvarez - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
(21 - 10:13pm, Nov 23)
Last: zonk

Hall of MeritMost Meritorious Player: 2014 Ballot
(10 - 9:09pm, Nov 23)
Last: MrC

NewsblogPablo Sandoval leaning toward Red Sox, to decide next week — Padres have highest offer, all offers on table (including SF Giants’) - John Shea
(32 - 9:04pm, Nov 23)
Last: the Hugh Jorgan returns

NewsblogMike Schmidt: Marlins' Stanton too rich too early? | www.palmbeachpost.com
(31 - 6:53pm, Nov 23)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogOT:  Soccer (the Round, True Football), November 2014
(451 - 6:43pm, Nov 23)
Last: JuanGone..except1game

NewsblogCashman in wait-and-see mode on retooling Yanks | yankees.com
(22 - 6:14pm, Nov 23)
Last: ReggieThomasLives

Page rendered in 0.1773 seconds
52 querie(s) executed