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Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Struggling Javy Baez sounds off on inability to watch video of previous at-bats during games

“To be honest, it sucks because I make my adjustments during the game,” Baez said after collecting three hits in Chicago’s 5-1 win over the St. Louis Cardinals. “I watch my swing. I watch where the ball went, where the contact was. I’m mad. I’m really mad about that we don’t have it.”

Baez is hitting .205 and has struggled for much of the shortened season. Like many players, the 27-year-old normally heads to the replay room to watch his at-bats and make adjustments for his next trip to the plate. But Major League Baseball cracked down on video, and protocols put in place during the coronavirus pandemic all but assured that there would be no way to monitor usage properly. Now players can’t watch their at-bats until after games.

“We didn’t cheat,” Baez said. “We’re not cheating, and we got to pay for all this. It’s tough ... but a lot of players are struggling, too. A lot of stars are struggling, and I’m just one more.

“The way that it is is not the way we play baseball. And I need video to make adjustments and during the game. It doesn’t matter who is there to watch us. It doesn’t matter if we have all the police the MLB wants to send over here.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 08, 2020 at 10:29 AM | 32 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: javier baez, sign-stealing

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   1. The Duke Posted: September 08, 2020 at 10:38 AM (#5975036)
I’m not at all sympathetic. I think there is too much technology. I’ve never thought access to technology during games was a good idea. Javy is in his head. Looking for excuses.

I saw him yesterday leg out three infield singles and two of them were routine grounders. Hard to believe he isn’t hitting .300 with that speed. If he could just put the ball in play more he’d be hitting up a storm
   2. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: September 08, 2020 at 10:41 AM (#5975037)
Yeah, I think a lot of this is using the technology as a crutch. JD Martinez has whined about this as well. Good players adapt. Like the old joke says, if you are struggling take a lighter bat to the plate. You won't hit better but it's easier to carry back to the dugout after you strike out.
   3. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: September 08, 2020 at 10:50 AM (#5975039)
I can completely understand the frustration of not being able to use a tool for making in-game adjustments if the only reason that the tool was banned was another team's cheating.
   4. Howie Menckel Posted: September 08, 2020 at 11:17 AM (#5975043)
a lot of this is talking yourself into a problem.

this sounds just like golfer Rory McIlroy - the best player on Earth, easily, Jan-March 2020.

then when the tour resumed in June, he said he couldn't picture elevating his game in tournaments without galleries to urge him on.

self-fulfilling prophecy has left him very, very mortal ever since.
   5. Zach Posted: September 08, 2020 at 02:19 PM (#5975074)
If it really upsets you, I recommend throwing at a Houston Astro.
   6. . Posted: September 08, 2020 at 05:27 PM (#5975110)
He never should have been able to watch video mid-game in the first place. Golfers and tennis players can't.
   7. Zonk is now Unified Posted: September 08, 2020 at 06:01 PM (#5975125)
Javy has always been streaky...

In any case, my advice to him would be "Just do whatever Ian Happ is doing..."
   8. Walt Davis Posted: September 08, 2020 at 06:17 PM (#5975130)
I find the idea of Javy making in-game adjustments funny on its own. He certainly doesn't make them between games. He's a helluva player and great fun and in the field and on the basepaths his "baseball IQ" is sky high. But at the plate, he is what he is which is ferocious bat speed with little idea of where the pitch is headed and, shall we say, limited plate discipline. The idea that missing that breaking ball by a foot only requires a minor between-PA swing tweak to fix is amusing.

But what the heck, we have splits. He is bad on his first PA vs SP at 715 OPS. This jumps to 837 on his 2nd PA and settles at 811 on his 3rd. The second PA sees a jump in BA from 249 to 301 (!) but then is back to 257 on 3rd PA while power peaks in the 3rd PA. He's sorta standard Javy against RPs (260/300/490). The average hitter improves too of course in 2nd and 3rd PAs but I wonder if that 2nd PA jump is one of the bettter ones or is that typical and he is a rare batter who gets no extra benefit in the 3rd.

The K-rate is kinda fascinating: 30.3% 1st PA, 25.1% 2nd, 23.9% 3rd, 30.9% vs RP. An idea for Javy -- maybe do extra video prep before the first PA.
   9. Icebox Posted: September 08, 2020 at 06:18 PM (#5975131)
Removed for repitition
   10. Misirlou cut his hair and moved to Rome Posted: September 08, 2020 at 06:22 PM (#5975133)
He never should have been able to watch video mid-game in the first place. Golfers and tennis players can't.


Different sports have different rules. Imagine that? Tennis players cannot receive coaching during a match. Should baseball follow that rule as well? Golfers have to self report any infractions or risk getting disqualified. Should baseball players be required to do so?
   11. Best Dressed Chicken in Town Posted: September 08, 2020 at 08:05 PM (#5975158)
Preparation should be done before games. During games, I would like the amount of "coaching," in whatever form it appears, to be limited. Let the players play, and those who are best prepared will come out ahead. No cheatsheets brought onto the field. Fewer timeouts. Coaches/managers can direct strategies, but the players should know, or figure out, how to execute them. Anything that intrudes on the game action diminishes a sport's aesthetics, to varying degrees. Some fans may appreciate coaching, but no one watches the games to see the coaches/coaching.

While we can't see batters watching video, and it doesn't directly interfere with the gameplay, I do have a distaste for it.
   12. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: September 08, 2020 at 08:13 PM (#5975162)
He never should have been able to watch video mid-game in the first place. Golfers and tennis players can't


I think you can make a case that golfers can. Like MLB players they get 4 “at bats” (rounds) and they have a night off between them. They can go and watch as much video during that time as they want.

I’m perfectly content not to allow these guys video though.
   13. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: September 09, 2020 at 08:04 AM (#5975251)
The severed head of Ted Williams is spinning in its cryogenic container at the thought of contemporary hitters "needing" to study hi-def super-slo-mo replay between plate appearances.
   14. The Duke Posted: September 09, 2020 at 08:16 AM (#5975253)
I used to be an avid fan of the Olympics but one year I was watching downhill skiing and they had a segment on about how the fundamental difference between the top 3-5 skiiers in any race was the ski wax they chose for the event. Different conditions required different waxes and they had to guess which wax to use which was hard because conditons change during the course of a run.

I started paying more attention to these segments and sooner or later you conclude the best performances in many sports are the result of new gear (see swimming) or application of gear. I started to lose interest - I only pay attention when someone like usain bolt or michael Thorpe appears. I like watching the decathlon because it’s very nature doesn’t really lead to that kind of issue

The major sports avoided this until recently and baseball has become one of the worst. Remember when we wouldn’t allow aluminum bats because it would corrupt the game. Now we have body armor, the shift, video on the bench, replay, gambling, players with notecards in their pockets, etc. I know time marches on but none of these things have made the game better. I have finally gotten ok with the DH but only because pitcher hitting has become abysmal and the game needs more offense.

When any sport ceases to be about the sport and more about the technology, the sports are in trouble.
   15. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: September 09, 2020 at 09:17 AM (#5975260)
There is something to be said for the idea that sports is more fun for the fan when it's performed at a lesser quality. My father and I used to go to the Golden Gloves boxing when I was a kid. As impressive as the semi-finals and finals always were (we saw some olympians, a couple of guys who became world champions) the early rounds were a lot of fun. You'd get two guys in the ring who had no idea what they were doing and it was just 3 rounds of two guys throwing haymakers at each other. Usually the 3 rounds was just a schedule because what inevitably happened is one poor dude caught one flush on the jaw and went down like a sack of potatoes.
   16. DFA Posted: September 09, 2020 at 09:26 AM (#5975266)
“We didn’t cheat,” Baez said. “We’re not cheating, and we got to pay for all this. It’s tough ... but a lot of players are struggling, too. A lot of stars are struggling, and I’m just one more.


Well, he's not lacking in confidence. I would agree that he shouldn't need to watch in game videos to watch his swing. I mean, hitting coaches are still a thing? Sure a picture is worth a thousand words, but I would figure pre game prep should suffice?
   17. John DiFool2 Posted: September 09, 2020 at 09:47 AM (#5975274)
The severed head of Ted Williams is spinning in its cryogenic container at the thought of contemporary hitters "needing" to study hi-def super-slo-mo replay between plate appearances.


I would not be surprised to see him do just that, when the 25th century Cyborg All-Timers League commences play. I mean, this is a guy who devised the first strike zone heat map in history, long before the likes of Fangraphs did.
   18. Zonk is now Unified Posted: September 09, 2020 at 11:02 AM (#5975306)
I thought the reason MLB/pro baseball stayed away from aluminum bats is because we'd probably end up with a dead 3B or Pitcher in fairly short order... I recall a study on exit velocity showed that the difference was pretty substantial - like 10% or so.
   19. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 09, 2020 at 12:07 PM (#5975325)
“We didn’t cheat,” Baez said. “We’re not cheating, and we got to pay for all this. It’s tough ... but a lot of players are struggling, too. A lot of stars are struggling, and I’m just one more.

Boo Hoo. Is hitting downs across the board? NO.

It's just you. You psyched yourself out.
   20. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: September 09, 2020 at 12:36 PM (#5975334)
Is hitting downs across the board? NO.

I thought it was. Now, I doubt this is the main reason.
   21. The Gary DiSarcina Fan Club (JAHV) Posted: September 09, 2020 at 12:44 PM (#5975335)
There is something to be said for the idea that sports is more fun for the fan when it's performed at a lesser quality. My father and I used to go to the Golden Gloves boxing when I was a kid. As impressive as the semi-finals and finals always were (we saw some olympians, a couple of guys who became world champions) the early rounds were a lot of fun. You'd get two guys in the ring who had no idea what they were doing and it was just 3 rounds of two guys throwing haymakers at each other. Usually the 3 rounds was just a schedule because what inevitably happened is one poor dude caught one flush on the jaw and went down like a sack of potatoes.


I think this is selectively true. I find college football and basketball more entertaining than the pro versions. I find high level women's volleyball much more entertaining than men's volleyball; the power of the swings and jumping ability of the men make rallies far too rare.

I think I'd probably agree for baseball, but I simply don't watch much between the level of youth baseball and major league baseball. I would guess that more balls are being put in play, which I'd enjoy.
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 09, 2020 at 01:06 PM (#5975339)

I thought it was. Now, I doubt this is the main reason.


R/G is 4.7, down slightly from 2019 (4.83), but higher than the 10 previous years. OPS is .745, down slightly from 2019 (.758), but higher than 9 of the 10 previous years.
   23. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: September 09, 2020 at 02:11 PM (#5975361)
There is something to be said for the idea that sports is more fun for the fan when it's performed at a lesser quality. My father and I used to go to the Golden Gloves boxing when I was a kid. As impressive as the semi-finals and finals always were (we saw some olympians, a couple of guys who became world champions) the early rounds were a lot of fun. You'd get two guys in the ring who had no idea what they were doing and it was just 3 rounds of two guys throwing haymakers at each other. Usually the 3 rounds was just a schedule because what inevitably happened is one poor dude caught one flush on the jaw and went down like a sack of potatoes.

I agree with this 100%. I like watching college baseball and the South Atlantic League because the fielders don't make 99.99% of plays perfectly. Much less predictable.
   24. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: September 09, 2020 at 03:59 PM (#5975383)
I would not be surprised to see him do just that, when the 25th century Cyborg All-Timers League commences play. I mean, this is a guy who devised the first strike zone heat map in history, long before the likes of Fangraphs did.
Yeah I was going to make the same point. My money would have been on Williams being absolutely in the vanguard of video usage/study if he'd been around.
   25. Hysterical & Useless Posted: September 09, 2020 at 05:26 PM (#5975406)
Ted Williams would've studied video of his at bats while he was out in left field if they'd let him.
   26. Jobu is silent on the changeup Posted: September 09, 2020 at 06:03 PM (#5975413)
I think this is selectively true. I find college football and basketball more entertaining than the pro versions.
Totally agree with respect to basketball. The 7-foot dorks in the NBA who never play will hit a 3 if you leave them open. In a normal year, the good teams play 100 games and it (reasonably) shows in the effort level. I can appreciate the skill, but for me it isn't enjoyable. In college, the players and fans care about tonight's game. Teams have actual strengths and weaknesses. Sign me up.
   27. McCoy Posted: September 09, 2020 at 06:15 PM (#5975414)
Watching low quality sports is horrible.
   28. McCoy Posted: September 09, 2020 at 06:17 PM (#5975415)
There's something to be said for watching a young Boy Jackson or Herschel Walker shred high school defenses but that's because you're watching an other worldly talent in its infancy.
   29. McCoy Posted: September 09, 2020 at 06:29 PM (#5975418)
I got to watch Stefon Diggs in college and v everybody said he had talent to go pro. But he played on a crappy team that played largely crappy teams. It was not entertaining.
   30. dejarouehg Posted: September 09, 2020 at 08:54 PM (#5975449)
I think Javy's whining is embarrassing, though not nearly as embarrassing as some of the pitches he chases.

I'm a big fan but don't this is a lame excuse for a .247 OBP and a BB/K ratio of 7:55.
   31. Cowboy Popup Posted: September 09, 2020 at 09:36 PM (#5975475)
I got to watch Stefon Diggs in college and v everybody said he had talent to go pro. But he played on a crappy team that played largely crappy teams. It was not entertaining.

That's hardly a great example. Diggs played when MD couldn't keep a QB upright for more than a couple games in a row. The 2012 game against WVU, where I think he scored 3 TDs and gave me the first hints that WVU might not have a great defense that year, was wildly entertaining. I still remember that game primarily because of the show Diggs put on. Most college teams, even the really bad ones, don't go through 10 QBs in 3 years.
   32. McCoy Posted: September 10, 2020 at 07:48 AM (#5975530)
The argument was that low quality teams playing produce a more exciting product. Holding up Diggs era MD football is a great example of that not being true.

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