Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

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

Monday, March 26, 2018

Tangotiger Blog: Shift v NoShift Preliminary Statcast Research

Don’t have time right now to read this right now. It looks interesting, though.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 26, 2018 at 12:01 PM | 2 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. Walt Davis Posted: March 26, 2018 at 04:07 PM (#5643342)
Methodological decisions aside, the takeaway is

1. The shift doesn't seem to work against RHB
2. The shift mainly only works really well against LHB with a runner on 1B only
3. Maybe it also works really well against LHB with runners on 1B and 3B -- this was conditional on the quality of the pitcher

In short, the shift makes sense to cover the hole against LHB created by the 1B holding the runner on. Otherwise meh.

The main methodological decision, which I'm not particularly fond of but which there's an argument for, is that he uses wOBA. This continues the odd tradition that teams employ shifts to take away HRs. The results here are at least sensible though -- the shift mainly works only against LHB and only when it covers the big hole at 1B ... which is consistent with the idea that it is employed to reduce production on GB (and maybe some LD) and that its effect on that is quite limited.

The article doesn't seem to get into the history. It shows that the shift is obviously employed a LOT against elite pull LHB (the "Ortiz bias") ... but that's been true since Ted Williams. Ortiz batted against the shift pretty much his entire career. So you take elite pull LHB (who've always faced the shift), add all LHB with runner on 1B and 2B open and you have the magical shift effect that everybody went crazy about a few years ago.

Who'd a thunk it?
   2. cardsfanboy Posted: March 26, 2018 at 05:15 PM (#5643401)
I'm reading through the PDF, I like the way he overcomes the "Ortiz" bias, and he does a good job of explaining the thinking and the methodology.

I do have to question when is the definition of the shift included? I mean are we only looking at plate ending appearances? The Cardinals do not shift on every pitch of a plate appearance, instead they shift based upon what they think is advantageous to them. As an example, a team might only shift on 1-0 counts or 2-0 counts, 2-1 counts where the team feels the hitter is more likely to swing away and not shift on 0-1, 1-1 or 1-2 counts. Is Tango accounting for the count, or just the base/out state and the entire plate appearance based upon where the defense is at the end of the count?

If he's just looking at the final plate appearances, and I'm right that there is a tendency to shift in situations in which the batter has the advantage, then you would almost expect for the batter to have a better wOBA, even if the shift is working.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.



<< Back to main


All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand

BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF


Thanks to
Downtown Bookie
for his generous support.


You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogRoyals looking to build on strong finish to 2018
(3 - 12:25pm, Feb 19)
Last: Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant

NewsblogRob Manfred blames Bryce Harper for going unsigned
(42 - 12:24pm, Feb 19)
Last: Lassus

NewsblogTrevor Bauer Is More Concerned With Being Right Than Being Liked
(5 - 12:23pm, Feb 19)
Last: bfan

NewsblogDenverPost/Saunders: Rockies' Ian Desmond facing big challeng playing center field at Coors Field
(21 - 12:20pm, Feb 19)
Last: Der-K: at 10% emotional investment

NewsblogAlbert Pujols predicts he'll be everyday player at age 39
(32 - 12:03pm, Feb 19)
Last: Rally

NewsblogHow the Mariners are using data, biomechanics and technique to build a better catcher – The Athletic
(3 - 11:54am, Feb 19)
Last: JJ1986

NewsblogJ.D. Martinez: ‘For a DH to win MVP, they’re going to have to walk on water’
(30 - 11:51am, Feb 19)
Last: villageidiom

NewsblogOT Soccer Thread, v.2019
(214 - 11:44am, Feb 19)
Last: spivey

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (February 2019)
(195 - 11:15am, Feb 19)
Last: Lassus

NewsblogOT - 2018-19 NBA thread (All-Star Weekend to Twelfth of Never edition)
(53 - 11:12am, Feb 19)
Last: NJ in NY (Now with Toddler!)

NewsblogThe clock is ticking for pitchers, and there are concerns
(4 - 10:48am, Feb 19)
Last: Rusty Priske

NewsblogBradford: Did Red Sox learn their lesson after Jon Lester mess-up? | WEEI
(1 - 10:46am, Feb 19)
Last: Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer

NewsblogFour teams are in on Mike Moustakas
(44 - 10:42am, Feb 19)
Last: Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant

NewsblogMoreno says Angels have had internal talks on new Trout deal
(2 - 10:09am, Feb 19)
Last: Joyful Calculus Instructor

NewsblogRangers SS Andrus in much different spot with Beltre retired
(1 - 7:09am, Feb 19)
Last: bbmck

Page rendered in 0.2171 seconds
46 querie(s) executed