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07-08

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7

Skewed Left: Fixing a Hole Where the Votes Came In
by
Zachary Levine

03-27

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0

Skewed Left: History Repeats Itself
by
Zachary Levine

02-25

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4

Skewed Left: Indians Get a Head Start
by
Zachary Levine

02-12

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14

Skewed Left: Quoth PECOTA "Nevermore"
by
Zachary Levine

02-05

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2

Skewed Left: It Was the Best of Times... Emphasis on Was
by
Zachary Levine

01-28

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15

Skewed Left: Favorite PECOTA Comps
by
Zachary Levine

01-14

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11

Skewed Left: Just Once Before I Die...
by
Zachary Levine

01-07

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5

Skewed Left: An Astro for the Ages
by
Zachary Levine

12-18

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10

Skewed Left: Padres Can't Play It Safe
by
Zachary Levine

11-20

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10

Skewed Left: Saving on Stanton?
by
Zachary Levine

11-13

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0

Skewed Left: Fixing Awards Season
by
Zachary Levine

11-10

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5

Skewed Left: Rarefied Rookie Relief
by
Zachary Levine

10-31

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19

Skewed Left: Those Lucky Red Sox
by
Zachary Levine

10-16

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9

Skewed Left: The Molina Mind-bender
by
Zachary Levine

09-29

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0

Skewed Left: All Games Are Equal Except For These
by
Zachary Levine

09-17

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5

Skewed Left: How to Change Things When Change is Hard
by
Zachary Levine

09-11

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2

Skewed Left: It's Not a No-Hitter 'til _____
by
Zachary Levine

09-05

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4

Skewed Left: The Billy Beane Famous-Old-DH Gambit
by
Zachary Levine

08-28

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21

Skewed Left: A Three-Hour Tour
by
Zachary Levine

08-21

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4

Skewed Left: Saber Seminar One Year From Now
by
Zachary Levine

08-14

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16

Skewed Left: Where Have All The Suspensions Gone?
by
Zachary Levine

07-31

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1

Skewed Left: The Nomar Garciaparra Trade Turns Ten
by
Zachary Levine

07-25

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4

Skewed Left: The Mismatched Incentives of Draftees and Their Agents
by
Zachary Levine

07-15

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4

Skewed Left: What Is An All-Star Pitcher?
by
Zachary Levine

07-09

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7

Skewed Left: What the CBA Says About the All-Star Game
by
Zachary Levine

07-03

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16

Skewed Left: The Ingrained, Misguided, 162-Game Schedule
by
Zachary Levine

06-26

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3

Skewed Left: Which Position Players Make the Best Pitchers?
by
Zachary Levine

06-19

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2

Skewed Left: The Missing Mound Charge
by
Zachary Levine

06-12

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1

Skewed Left: The Wisdom of Pinch-Hitting with Pitchers
by
Zachary Levine

06-05

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17

Skewed Left: The Economics of the Singleton Extension
by
Zachary Levine

05-29

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7

Skewed Left: What We've Learned About Replay
by
Zachary Levine

05-22

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1

Skewed Left: Dallas Keuchel Defies his Destiny
by
Zachary Levine

05-13

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21

Skewed Left: How Much Losing Jose Fernandez Hurts
by
Zachary Levine

05-08

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2

Skewed Left: The Five Teams That Don't Have to Play by (All of) the Rules
by
Zachary Levine

05-01

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0

Skewed Left: Staying Alive in the Independent Leagues, 2014 Edition
by
Zachary Levine

04-24

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9

Skewed Left: The Squandered Promise of the Diamondbacks Rotation
by
Zachary Levine

04-18

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4

Skewed Left: How Service Time Dictates Top Prospect Promotions
by
Zachary Levine

04-10

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7

Skewed Left: The Surprising Sameness of Justin Upton
by
Zachary Levine

04-03

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11

Skewed Left: The Revolving Door Rankings
by
Zachary Levine

03-27

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11

Skewed Left: PECOTA vs. Vegas
by
Zachary Levine

03-20

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7

Skewed Left: Where Are All the Australian Position Players?
by
Zachary Levine

03-13

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25

Skewed Left: The Good and the Bad News About Instant Replay's Spring Trial
by
Zachary Levine

03-06

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42

Skewed Left: The Art of Explaining Baseball
by
Zachary Levine

02-27

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13

Skewed Left: What it Means to Move Off Catcher
by
Zachary Levine

02-13

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9

Skewed Left: Fun with 2014 PECOTA Comparables
by
Zachary Levine

02-06

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7

Skewed Left: The Truth About One-Day Contracts
by
Zachary Levine

01-30

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18

Skewed Left: Saying Goodbye to Lance Berkman
by
Zachary Levine

01-23

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3

Skewed Left: Bobby Abreu, the Phillies, and Other Reunions That Might Make Sense
by
Zachary Levine

01-16

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5

Skewed Left: The Historical Precedent for an A-Rod Comeback
by
Zachary Levine

01-07

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21

Skewed Left: What the 1936 Hall of Fame Ballot Tells Us About Today's
by
Zachary Levine

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The changes made to this year's All-Star Game voting may have been rushed, but they also may be the answer.

In a way, the institution of the much-debated and occasionally-mocked USA vs. the World format for the All-Star Game did exactly what it was supposed to do. And yet in many others, the announcement of the first ever starting lineups under this format last night only underscored how sloppily this was put together and how much there is to clean up for 2018.

There were few changes since the previous round of voting with Xander Bogaerts over Carlos Correa on the world team being the only verdict that carried any drama last night. But in case anyone missed it: here are the starting lineups, which were announced in the first of two prime time broadcasts, the second with the pitchers and reserves coming tonight.

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March 27, 2015 6:00 am

Skewed Left: History Repeats Itself

0

Zachary Levine

An offseason filled with sugestions of change following another year of stifled offense brings about a familiar feeling.

What’s troubling baseball, though, is a fear: People may admire good pitching, but how long will they pay to see it?Joseph Durso, The New York Times, May 1968

Managers have come up with new strategic concepts. The main difference is that they now platoon their pitchers... Fresh pitchers keep streaming in. Once upon a time a hitter could adjust to a pitcher after he’d come to bat a couple of times and the pitcher was beginning to tire. Now they get no chance to tire and the hitter has no opportunity to adjust. The game has become one-sided. –Former Yankees All-Star shortstop Tony Kubek, July 1968

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February 25, 2015 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Indians Get a Head Start

4

Zachary Levine

Are the Indians early start times a roundabout way to keep from losing viewers late during long games?

If the Cleveland Indians discovered the fix—or more accurately, the workaround—to baseball’s pace of game problem, they did it by accident.

In a move that didn’t make too many waves on Lake Erie, even in our slowest month for baseball news, the Indians will shift five home games from the usual weekday start time of 7:10 p.m. to the special time of 6:10 p.m. The games are all Mondays, Tuesdays or Wednesdays and all on or before May 13.

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February 12, 2015 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Quoth PECOTA "Nevermore"

14

Zachary Levine

PECOTA seems to always underestimate the Orioles. Another last-place finish is projected, but is it justified?

As far as February traditions go, it’s moving right up there with rural Pennsylvanians’ abuse of a groundhog and LL Cool J mailing in his Grammy hosting duties. Every year as teams prepare to load up the trucks for spring training, PECOTA gives the Orioles a nice sendoff with a last-place prediction.

It doesn’t matter if they won the year before. And in the small sample size of the last four years, all of which have featured a last-place projection in Baltimore, it doesn’t seem to preclude their winning the division, as they turned last-place outlooks into first-place finishes in both 2012 and 2014.

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February 5, 2015 6:00 am

Skewed Left: It Was the Best of Times... Emphasis on Was

2

Zachary Levine

PECOTA says the Phillies are headed for the worst record in baseball, just four years after having the best. It turns out that's pretty rare.

When it comes to collapses—and the big ones, like from the very top to the very bottom—the 1998 Florida Marlins are the brand name standard. They won the 1997 World Series, and after disposing of Kevin Brown, Bobby Bonilla, Moises Alou and Charles Johnson, finished a major league worst 54-108 the very next year.

They were the Wild Card, though, and not to reignite a discussion of whether that means they truly went best to worst, what the Phillies are capable of doing this year is a best-to-worst in its purest sense.

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January 28, 2015 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Favorite PECOTA Comps

15

Zachary Levine

The author takes a look at some of the names PECOTA comes up with as comparisons to certain players, from the odd to the interesting.

Happy PECOTA Day, which, barring any last-minute surprises, will culminate in the release of our 2015 projections early this afternoon. ! I didn’t get you anything, but it’s the thought that counts.

Last year was my first time putting together the list of favorite PECOTA comps—you can read the introduction and disclaimers there—and doing it for a second time proved once again to be a really fun exercise. You get to see where it’s scariest (fun debut year, Masahiro Tanaka, here’s a Jeremy Bonderman comp), where it’s the most tantalizing (Joey Gallo: Giancarlo Stanton) and of course where it’s the most unintentionally racist (Koji Uehara: Takashi Saito).

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How much value does the Brewers Timeless Ticket promotion really hold?

The Milwaukee Brewers are asking you to guess when you’re going to die.

Not so explicitly, and this isn’t one of those carnival games where if you get it right within a year you walk away with the stuffed Scooter Gennett. But that’s the grim math behind what was a really fun promotion that was publicized yesterday after a relatively quiet October announcement.

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January 7, 2015 6:00 am

Skewed Left: An Astro for the Ages

5

Zachary Levine

Craig Biggio is a well-deserving Hall of Famer and the first Astro to be enshrined, but it's odd that he may not even be the best player eligible for Cooperstown on his Astros teams.

Fifty-three years into a lifespan that’s included—to various degrees of infuriation—one decade of infantile ineptitude, two more of talent and teases, another of almost-excellence and a most recent of putridity, the Houston Astros have their first Hall-of-Famer.

Other Hall of Famers have played for the Astros – Nolan Ryan and Joe Morgan, who had significant time in Houston, did, as did some forgotten Astros and Colt .45s like Robin Roberts, Nellie Fox and now Randy Johnson—he of two months service.

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December 18, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Padres Can't Play It Safe

10

Zachary Levine

Why the Padres taking on a high-risk veteran like Matt Kemp and the Dodgers playing it safe with Yasmani Grandal makes perfect sense.

When you're the Padres, relaxed in an offseason hibernation that dates back several color schemes, your first splash of the offseason isn't supposed to look like the Matt Kemp trade.

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November 20, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Saving on Stanton?

10

Zachary Levine

Just how much does backloading Giancarlo Stanton's contract help the Marlins?

That the Marlins are backloading Giancarlo Stanton’s contract in order to go out and sign players now is a nice story. It might also be true—there’s fair reason to doubt it, given the Marlins’ dubious history when it comes to spending—but giving him $6.5 million in 2015 rather than the $25 million average annual value of the deal frees up space to make a better run in 2015.

And Stanton is saying all the right things. At his Wednesday press conference, the takeaway line was “We’ve got to trust that we are all in it to win it,” a trust that seemed to be all but gone when Stanton was sniping at his own front office after the post-2012 liquidation sale.

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November 13, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Fixing Awards Season

0

Zachary Levine

The timing of the baseball awards creates a few issues, is there a better way to do things?

It’s probably more this year than most years, but every time an award comes out this awards season, we’re realizing more and more that we’ve entered disclaimer season.

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November 10, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Rarefied Rookie Relief

5

Zachary Levine

Dellin Betances may not have racked up the saves, but that hasn't stopped voters from giving Rookie of the Year votes to a non-closer, something that rarely happens.

Dellin Betances very well could, at a few minutes after 6 p.m. Bronx Time, post the highest finish ever in the Rookie of the Year voting for a middle reliever.

He won’t win. Jose Abreu will win and very well could receive all 30 of the American League’s first-place votes to join Mike Trout and Evan Longoria as the only unanimous AL MVPs since the Jeter-and-Nomar back-to-backs of the mid-1990s.

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