Page rendered in 0.1176 seconds
53 querie(s) executed
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand
Thursday, April 03, 2014
THIS season Major League Baseball is allowing its officiating crews to use instant replay to review certain critical calls, including home runs, force plays and foul balls. But the calling of the strike zone — determining whether a pitch that is not swung at is a ball or a strike — will still be left completely to the discretion of the officials. This might seem an odd exception, since calling the strike zone may be the type of officiating decision most subject to human foible.
In research soon to be published in the journal Management Science, we studied umpires’ strike-zone calls using pitch-location data compiled by the high-speed cameras introduced by Major League Baseball several years ago in an effort to measure, monitor and reward umpires’ accuracy. After analyzing more than 700,000 pitches thrown during the 2008 and 2009 seasons, we found that umpires frequently made errors behind the plate — about 14 percent of non-swinging pitches were called erroneously.
Some of those errors occurred in fairly predictable ways. We found, for example, that umpires tended to favor the home team by expanding the strike zone, calling a strike when the pitch was actually a ball 13.3 percent of the time for home team pitchers versus 12.7 percent of the time for visitors….
Baseball insiders have long suspected what our research confirms: that umpires tend to make errors in ways that favor players who have established themselves at the top of the game’s status hierarchy. But our findings are also suggestive of the way that people in any sort of evaluative role — not just umpires — are unconsciously biased by simple “status characteristics.” Even constant monitoring and incentives can fail to train such biases out of us.
Technologically, Major League Baseball is in a position, thanks to its high-speed camera system, to enforce a completely accurate, uniform strike zone. The question is whether we, as fans, want our games to be fair and just, or whether we are compelled to watch the game because it mimics the real world, warts and all.
As usual, MLB addresses a trivial non-problem while ignoring a much bigger one. This is a must-read article.
You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.
Newsblog: Nats Fan in Colorado Shows Support with Curly W BEARD
(1 - 10:22pm, Jul 23)
Last: Coot Veal and Cot Deal's cols=“100” rows=“20”
Newsblog: OTP - July 2014: Republicans Lose To Democrats For Sixth Straight Year In Congressional Baseball Game
(2856 - 10:21pm, Jul 23)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October
Newsblog: As shifts suppress offense, time has come to consider a rule change
(74 - 10:19pm, Jul 23)
Last: Bunny Vincennes
Newsblog: OMNICHATTER 7-23-2014
(35 - 10:18pm, Jul 23)
Last: boteman is not here 'til October
Newsblog: CSN: Enough is enough — time to move on from Ryan Howard
(34 - 10:13pm, Jul 23)
Last: Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama
Newsblog: OT: Monthly NBA Thread- July 2014
(846 - 9:56pm, Jul 23)
Last: chris p
Newsblog: Goldman: Eliminating the shift a bandage for a phantom wound
(9 - 9:53pm, Jul 23)
Newsblog: George "The Animal" Steele Mangles A Baseball
(129 - 9:44pm, Jul 23)
Last: Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge
Newsblog: OT: The Soccer Thread July, 2014
(362 - 9:41pm, Jul 23)
Last: I am going to be Frank
Newsblog: Rubin: deGrom for NL rookie of the year?
(34 - 9:41pm, Jul 23)
Last: Walt Davis
Newsblog: Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-23-2014
(20 - 9:07pm, Jul 23)
SABR - BBTF Chapter: Who's going to SABR??
(74 - 8:40pm, Jul 23)
Newsblog: Cameron Maybin Suspended 25 Games
(14 - 8:28pm, Jul 23)
Newsblog: Korea's Hanwha Eagles have robots for fans who can't attend
(6 - 8:26pm, Jul 23)
Newsblog: 2015 Competitive Balance Lottery Results
(5 - 8:10pm, Jul 23)