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The only thing missing from this analysis is that batters, given more time to recognize pitches, will still aim their swing for optimal loft, in the expectation that a large percent of fly balls will go out of the yard, only now with even greater success. To compensate for the disadvantage being added to the pitchers, I feel that batters must be hobbled a bit by a less lively ball. True sluggers should still be able to hit the ball out of the park, but average players should find a slightly softer ball works better for them with a line drive swing, which (when contact is perfect) will still occasionally result in a home run but more often with a base hit.
 

 

I can get behind that.

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I don't think trying to pull that one would be any more effective.  

You might get a few more singles to fall in, but that's not really "action". Batters will still be swinging for the fences, K'ing 25% of the time, baserunners will still be largely station to station,

What I would add to this discussion is that a lot of fans focus on the shift and other ways teams have tried to use data to better position fielders based on where hitters are more likely to hit the b

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The comment from a current MLB pitcher is fairly obvious. It’s the meat in the tweet that’s more interesting. Trevor’s proposal instead of throwing darts at different rule changes, open up MLBAM and lift app restrictions so more young people will stumble upon the content.

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The comment from a current MLB pitcher is fairly obvious. It’s the meat in the tweet that’s more interesting. Trevor’s proposal instead of throwing darts at different rule changes, open up MLBAM and lift app restrictions so more young people will stumble upon the content.

I'm under no illusions that our proposed rule tweaks will "make more young people watch baseball on TV". For me, it's just about restoring some of the historical balance between pitchers and hitters, between strikeouts and balls in play, and making it a little more pleasant for me to watch. I'll gladly admit that I have a self-interest here. :)

 

I think May could make these suggestions without denigrating those efforts -- nothing here is mutually exclusive with what I wrote above:

 

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The comment from a current MLB pitcher is fairly obvious. It’s the meat in the tweet that’s more interesting. Trevor’s proposal instead of throwing darts at different rule changes, open up MLBAM and lift app restrictions so more young people will stumble upon the content.

 

But then they won't be soaking people for money RIGHT NOW!  What kind of crazy business ideas are you high on where investment in your future is important?

 

Silly person.

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I'm under no illusions that our proposed rule tweaks will "make more young people watch baseball on TV". For me, it's just about restoring some of the historical balance between pitchers and hitters, between strikeouts and balls in play, and making it a little more pleasant for me to watch. I'll gladly admit that I have a self-interest here. :)

 

I think May could make these suggestions without denigrating those efforts -- nothing here is mutually exclusive with what I wrote above:

 

https://twitter.com/IamTrevorMay/status/1383626320077234178?s=20

I’m with ya. I just stumbled upon the discussion and thought it was interesting to post here while we were talking about it. It’s no surprise that a current MLB pitcher would be against something that gives him a slight disadvantage.

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I’m with ya. I just stumbled upon the discussion and thought it was interesting to post here while we were talking about it. It’s no surprise that a current MLB pitcher would be against something that gives him a slight disadvantage.

Pitchers whose command is impeccable will probably view a change like mound distance as "sure, let's compete." Pitchers with wandering command from one day to the next will be more outspoken. :)

 

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Pitchers whose command is impeccable will probably view a change like mound distance as "sure, let's compete." Pitchers with wandering command from one day to the next will be more outspoken. :)

Actually, I wouldn't expect any active players to support these changes. They have no real interest in restoring the balances between pitching/hitting, and between strikeouts/balls in play -- just a self-interest to keep doing what they are doing. (Some may benefit more than others from the changes as you note, but I wouldn't expect that level of reflection, at least not yet.)

 

Which is another reason why MLB has to collect data on these proposals in the minors first -- not that I expect players will buy-in once they see the data, but they may drop their reflexive opposition if the data shows the changes are generally benign for the players themselves.

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Actually, I wouldn't expect any active players to support these changes. They have no real interest in restoring the balances between pitching/hitting, and between strikeouts/balls in play -- just a self-interest to keep doing what they are doing. (Some may benefit more than others from the changes as you note, but I wouldn't expect that level of reflection, at least not yet.)

 

Which is another reason why MLB has to collect data on these proposals in the minors first -- not that I expect players will buy-in once they see the data, but they may drop their reflexive opposition if the data shows the changes are generally benign for the players themselves.

 

They have some interest in the long-term stability of the game.  It's unlikely the flagging support and interest changes their bottom line, but it might.  And balance in hitting/pitching is vital to stemming the tide on the game's interest levels publicly.

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  • 3 weeks later...

There is a fourth true outcome. Boredom!  Moving the mound back would maybe/likely cause more baseballs to be struck, but in this era they would be either HR’s of fly balls. HR’s while productive get more blasé by the day. As would 14-7 games. What’s really missing is action plays, but these have been deemed analytically non productive. (And for all I know, they may be). But by nor bunting, stealing, hitting behind a runner, and hit and running, an essence of the game is removed. Simply accepting that these strategies are non productive may make mathematical sense. But it still removes an element of the game that used to exist. Strategy! It’s becoming a possibility that good math, and good entertainment are not one and the same thing? 

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14 hours ago, Platoon said:

There is a fourth true outcome. Boredom!  Moving the mound back would maybe/likely cause more baseballs to be struck, but in this era they would be either HR’s of fly balls. HR’s while productive get more blasé by the day. As would 14-7 games. What’s really missing is action plays, but these have been deemed analytically non productive. (And for all I know, they may be). But by nor bunting, stealing, hitting behind a runner, and hit and running, an essence of the game is removed. Simply accepting that these strategies are non productive may make mathematical sense. But it still removes an element of the game that used to exist. Strategy! It’s becoming a possibility that good math, and good entertainment are not one and the same thing? 

Perhaps if hitters are better able to make regular contact the analytical emphasis might wane?  I get the sense that part of this is different than basketball where it just makes sense to never shoot long 2s and only 3s, because in baseball your likelihood of getting K'd is so high right now that the best way to overcome that is to aim for the most direct route of scoring.  If hitters have a better chance to make better contact, perhaps the emphasis on homeruns would peel back a bit because the chances of stringing hits together is significantly better.

Just spitballing.

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  • 1 month later...
13 hours ago, Vanimal46 said:


Mind boggling stat. 

If you follow that thread, the Senior Data Architect for MLBAM chimes in and says there are measurement/classification issues with the data Parker was likely using. (Basically, pre-2020 there were some likely outs which weren't getting their angles/directions recorded correctly by Statcast, so pre-2020 averages based on angle/direction are artificially high. Parker cited proprietary TruMedia data but they were likely using Statcast angles/directions as a source?)

Here's the more reliable data, on his recommendation:

 

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2 minutes ago, Dodecahedron said:

Statcast was mistaking popups with grounders before 2020?  Is that what he is saying?  

Sheesh.   

No, I think there were more balls that just didn't have angle/direction recorded before 2020 ("untracked batted balls"). So if you look at pre-2020 Statcast data, be aware that it's not complete in that regard.

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1 hour ago, spycake said:

No, I think there were more balls that just didn't have angle/direction recorded before 2020 ("untracked batted balls"). So if you look at pre-2020 Statcast data, be aware that it's not complete in that regard.

Gotcha.  I'm wondering how this will affect defensive metrics.  

(Also, Sheesh).

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10 minutes ago, Dodecahedron said:

Gotcha.  I'm wondering how this will affect defensive metrics.  

(Also, Sheesh).

It shouldn't matter -- sounds like it just didn't record some of the easier plays those years. At the MLB level, nobody's metrics are particularly affected either way by those plays.

And most metrics use other sources for their data anyway.

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13 hours ago, spycake said:

It shouldn't matter -- sounds like it just didn't record some of the easier plays those years. At the MLB level, nobody's metrics are particularly affected either way by those plays.

And most metrics use other sources for their data anyway.

Having a gap will create inaccuracies.  If a certain stadium's setup had a gap that made it impossible to categories 20% of the LF position's plays, for example, the numbers will simply be not accurate.  It's not that there was less measurable data, it's that there was data that wasn't measured.

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8 hours ago, Dodecahedron said:

Having a gap will create inaccuracies.  If a certain stadium's setup had a gap that made it impossible to categories 20% of the LF position's plays, for example, the numbers will simply be not accurate.  It's not that there was less measurable data, it's that there was data that wasn't measured.

Nothing stadium or even position specific here. Seems to just be certain batter ball types that were likely outs anyway.

And defensive metrics are just estimates of defensive value relative to the average player. You could probably remove every infield pop-up from the data set and it wouldn’t change anyone’s defensive value, because no MLB players are accumulating value above or below the average player from infield pop-ups.

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