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Automate the Strike Zone

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#81 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 12:45 PM

 

NO! There has to be a point where the game remains a true game. And umpires are part of the game. They already have went too far with the instant replay. It's always been accepted that each umpire has his own zone. Some are low ball umpires some have a large outside corner, few have a large inside corner. If someone is calling the ball on the black consistently, being surprised by that third strike means you expected him to change it just for you. Players aren't perfect, managers aren't perfect, and umpires are not perfect. Years ago my son took a called third strike on a pitch that was on the low end of the strike zone. Or lower, to end the game. On the way home he was furious. I asked him if he was aware "Cookie" was a low ball ump? He said he certainly was aware, and that "Cookie" had always been not only a low ball ump, but a big call ump. So I said why are you mad? You knew that when you went up there. It's an adjustment to the game, same as playing two steps in when Buxton is up.

 

After all, we all want a Yankees fan named Phil Cuzzi calling a nice XBH foul in a playoff game. That is what we want?

 

The sole purpose of umpiring is to get the call correct. That is true in the NBA, NFL, MLB, etc. Anything we can do to improve the odds of this is important.

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#82 bizaff

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 03:49 PM

 

After all, we all want a Yankees fan named Phil Cuzzi calling a nice XBH foul in a playoff game. That is what we want?

 

The sole purpose of umpiring is to get the call correct. That is true in the NBA, NFL, MLB, etc. Anything we can do to improve the odds of this is important.

To me, this is the quintessential example of why we must do better in all aspects.The official call did not reflect the reality of what happened.This is an umpire manipulating the outcome of the game - be it intentionally or unintentionally - which they have no business doing.

 

Blown ball/strike calls make pitchers pitch more than they should need to, or batters see fewer balls than they have a right to.This has a real effect on the outcome of games.

 

"It all evens out in the end."Of course it does - by definition one team benefited and the other is hurt by it.It does NOT necessarily average out for a team in a game.. or a series.. or a week.. or a month.. or a season.A standard distribution shows every individual event is not average.

 

Take umpiring to the extreme - get rid of them completely.Go back to the origins of the game, and how kids often play growing up.Let the teams on the field figure it out.Why don't we do this?Because you want an impartial and fair third party with no investment in the outcome of the game to settle disputes.What's more impartial and fair than automated systems?

Edited by bizaff, 03 August 2017 - 03:54 PM.

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#83 h2oface

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 04:15 PM

 

I'm saying that conditions should be the same for all players. I don't see how you can get more fair than that.

 

The zone should be the same zone for all players. When you base it on the body parts of each player - the same body parts, to establish an equal zone - percentage wise based on each particular body height - you have created conditions that should be the same for all players. I don't see how you can get more fair than that.

 

I think it is an interesting idea, for sure. I just don't think it creates a fair zone for all players. It seems to me that the advantage is to the pitchers, anyway, the bigger the zone gets, as per height. It has to be harder to pitch to Altuve and a squeezed zone, than Judge, and the massive zone. It really is a different discussion.... the zone change. Whatever the zone, all instantaneous tools should be used to get it correct.

Edited by h2oface, 03 August 2017 - 04:17 PM.


#84 bizaff

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 05:00 PM

For the sake of example, more on the set height/size strike zone:

The strike zone of Jose Altuve (5ft 5 in) is smaller than that of Jon Rauch (6ft 11 in) - that's an 18 inch spread.If you center the zone between those two (which isn't average, but it's the probably the best case for batters), a player is up to 9 inches away from the average zone.They don't need to adjust that whole height, since you're only taking the area between the knees and armpits.. let's say that's half (in reality it's worse as it's not at the waist, it's at the armpits and knees).A tall/short player needs to adjust their swing vertically up to 4 inches to deal with a batter-independent strike zone.That seems pretty significant.That moves the strike zone from the knees down to the shins, or the armpits up to the shoulders.


Now the pitchers - assume the strike zone is as it is today.If a pitcher releases around 55 feet from home plate and has to adjust 4 inches for different players, they need to adjust the angle of the delivered pitch by about half a degree.That's a pretty tiny adjustment.They need to deal with wind which already affects it in that neighborhood (best source I could find - https://jmcdonaldmed...ffect-baseball/), and they "calibrate" that out with warmup pitches every inning.

A batter-independent strike zone would least affect an average sized batter, but would hamper anyone not of average size, far worse the less "average" the batter is.The adjustment a pitcher has to make today in a batter-dependent strike zone is half a degree, which they already do.

 

I can't see a world I'd ever support a batter-independent strike zone.

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#85 nicksaviking

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 05:56 PM

Baseball from it's very inception, was created for humans.  In the field, behind the plate and in the stands.
 


Yeah, and humans like new technology, even back then. If the steam engine could have called balls and strikes they would have had one plopped behind home plate in every ballpark in America. People went nuts for the steam engine. But even more than technology, people like things being fair, equal and accurate.

At the game's inception, umpires called balls and strikes out of neccessity, obviously if they had the technology they would have used it; baseball wouldn't be the sole institution that would eschew it.

No one laments the loss of blacksmiths any longer.
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#86 h2oface

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 01:18 PM

 

But even more than technology, people like things being fair, equal and accurate.

At the game's inception, umpires called balls and strikes out of neccessity, obviously if they had the technology they would have used it; baseball wouldn't be the sole institution that would eschew it.

 

 

The playoffs sure do expose the umpiring inadequacies! This whole trained acceptance of the close call bothers me the most. The perfect pitch that is called a ball. The perfect take that is called a strike. Those are the ones that bother me the most. Those are the ones that cheat the players so unfairly. The ones that are so obviously called wrong, they just show how ridiculous it is to let humans take their best guess on each pitch. But the close ones....... the trained eye of a batter or the exquisite command of the pitcher... what makes the player standout...... is robbed by letting the umpire take his best guess. The umpires work hard to be accurate to the best of their ability..... they have a pure intention (right? never pompous and tainted by personalities), but they are still taking a guess. A trained, educated guess, but still a guess. We all see it (if the networks and MLB have the guts to show us) in real time as it happens. Touch pads are here to stay in swimming. Line review is here to stay in tennis. MLB needs to quit dragging its feet.

 

And, if I may tangent a bit.... just a little bit...... How about that dead ball call missed in Game 5 of Cubs/Nationals in last night's game 5 of the NLDS. And the umpires just missed it. Didn't know the rule to enforce? Didin't see the bat hit Wieters? 2 runs for the Cubs. I don't have a horse in this race, but I so hate to see the game cheated. If Karma is watching.... the Cubs will be taken out by the Dodgers, as the Cubs were gifted wrongly this tainted victory. When will MLB get rid of "not reviewable" designations. If it needs reviewed, and we have the way to do it, DO IT. Get it right. And the balls and strikes? YES! Use the tech to stop the humans from guessing, and to often, guessing wrongly.

 

https://www.cbssport...game-5-vs-cubs/

Edited by h2oface, 13 October 2017 - 01:24 PM.

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#87 Sconnie

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 02:32 PM

 

So what do you do in lower levels of baseball like say little league?  Does the strike zone get higher and higher for each level you go?  I highly doubt kids age 9 would have the same strike zone as Major League players.  

tee ball?