Greetings from a windy, cold and rainy Pullman, Washington, the site of the 101st Apple Cup, or as people have been referring it over here (mostly me) the Crapple Cup.
Anyway, we'll get some more linkage posts up in the near future, but I wanted to post something from Kansas City Star columnist Joe Posnanski.
I know we've posted stuff on here from him here before and we will again. Personally, I think he's one of the best general sports columnists in the business today. You can check out his columns from the Star HERE and he is also writing weekly for Sports Illustrated.
But Posnanski is also writing a personal blog, which you check out HERE. I check it frequently.
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Anyway, this latest post discusses baseball statistics, specifically the batting average, home runs and RBIs. And basically he talks about why they are flawed.
This isn't new thinking. As a baseball fan, you'd have to be living under a rock if you haven't heard about the work of Bill James or the Society for American Baseball Research. These guys have worked diligently on finding better statistical measures for player production from hitting to pitching to defense along with overall team consistency and production. Many local blogs like the USS Mariner and Lookout Landing have embraced this thinking for a long time.
Major League Baseball writers? Maybe not as much. Why? Well, as Posnanski points out, most writers are of a certain age and they were brought up with the traditional baseball stats like batting average or ERA as the be all and end all. He is, or at least was, one of them. But if you read his post, you will see that his thinking has changed with the times.
Anyway, thinking sabermetrically and different statistical analysis is something that cannot be ignored. Many teams are employing people to do this kind of work. James does some work for the Red Sox. One of the main knocks against Bill Bavasi was apparent lack of use of these numbers. Though he later said he did have Mat Olkin doing that work for him. Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik has already said he is putting together a "statistics department" in the organization.
So anyway after the lengthy lead-in for this post, please feel free to click HERE and read it and do so with an open mind. It's pretty good stuff.