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04-18

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4

Baseball Therapy: Reliably Stable (You Keep Using That Word)
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-11

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7

Baseball Therapy: Whatever Happened to Predictability?
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-04

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5

Baseball Therapy: Stop Shifting (So Much)
by
Russell A. Carleton

03-28

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14

Baseball Therapy: Let's Fix the Pace-of-Play Problem
by
Russell A. Carleton

03-22

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3

Baseball Therapy: The Secret Powers of the Foul Ball
by
Russell A. Carleton

03-14

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11

Baseball Therapy: Bring Back Ball Four
by
Russell A. Carleton

03-07

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2

Baseball Therapy: Is Defense Slump-Proof?
by
Russell A. Carleton

02-28

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7

Baseball Therapy: Baseball Needs Some New Words
by
Russell A. Carleton

02-21

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7

Baseball Therapy: Is Win Probability Broken?
by
Russell A. Carleton

02-15

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4

Baseball Therapy: Taking the Weirdness Out of Baseball
by
Russell A. Carleton

02-08

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3

Baseball Therapy: The Minor League Milestone Chart
by
Russell A. Carleton

02-01

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9

Baseball Therapy: Blame it on the Plane
by
Russell A. Carleton

01-24

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1

Baseball Therapy: Let's Dig Into These Tunnels
by
Russell A. Carleton

01-17

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8

Baseball Therapy: What Does Batter/Pitcher Matchup Data Tell Us?
by
Russell A. Carleton

01-11

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10

Baseball Therapy: Grinding On Grounders
by
Russell A. Carleton

01-04

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26

Baseball Therapy: The Bullpen of My Dreams
by
Russell A. Carleton

12-23

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9

Baseball Therapy: Worrying About the Money
by
Russell A. Carleton

12-13

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5

Baseball Therapy: The Questions We Can't Answer
by
Russell A. Carleton

12-09

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7

Baseball Therapy: The New CBA, By The Numbers
by
Russell A. Carleton

11-30

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3

Baseball Therapy: The 26th Man
by
Russell A. Carleton

11-17

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2

Baseball Therapy: Can a Closer be Worth $100 Million?
by
Russell A. Carleton

11-08

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2

Baseball Therapy: The Million Dollar Pillow Fight
by
Russell A. Carleton

11-01

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0

Baseball Therapy: I Don't Know What You'll Do Next Summer
by
Russell A. Carleton

10-25

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4

Baseball Therapy: Stop, Miller Time.
by
Russell A. Carleton

10-18

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4

Baseball Therapy: Getting to the Bottom of the Barrel
by
Russell A. Carleton

10-12

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9

Baseball Therapy: Cy Young Catchers
by
Russell A. Carleton

10-05

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3

Baseball Therapy: How Much Is Theo Epstein Worth?
by
Russell A. Carleton

09-27

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2

Baseball Therapy: Bullpen Contagion
by
Russell A. Carleton

09-20

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6

Baseball Therapy: Is The American League Just Better?
by
Russell A. Carleton

09-13

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3

Baseball Therapy: Should MLB Go For the Gold?
by
Russell A. Carleton

09-07

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2

Baseball Therapy: Stop Blaming the September Call-Ups!
by
Russell A. Carleton

09-01

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6

Baseball Therapy: Let's See if We Can Get a Handle on Zach Britton's Cy Young Case
by
Russell A. Carleton

08-23

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3

Baseball Therapy: If I Had A Million Dollars
by
Russell A. Carleton

08-16

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29

Baseball Therapy: Rage Over Roids
by
Russell A. Carleton

08-09

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1

Baseball Therapy: Learning A New Position Is Free
by
Russell A. Carleton

08-03

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4

Baseball Therapy: What Would 7-Inning Baseball Look Like?
by
Russell A. Carleton

07-26

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8

Baseball Therapy: Growing Zobrists
by
Russell A. Carleton

07-19

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4

Baseball Therapy: The Pink Elephant Effect
by
Russell A. Carleton

07-06

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7

Baseball Therapy: ...Although I Have No Idea How We'd Measure That
by
Russell A. Carleton

06-28

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2

Baseball Therapy: Dollhouses and Sandboxes
by
Russell A. Carleton

05-31

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3

Baseball Therapy: The Knee
by
Russell A. Carleton

05-24

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4

Baseball Therapy: Framing the At-Bat
by
Russell A. Carleton

05-11

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8

Baseball Therapy: The Even Slightly More Convincing Argument Against the Shift
by
Russell A. Carleton

05-03

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10

Baseball Therapy: The Pretty Good Case That the Shift Doesn't Work
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-27

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7

Baseball Therapy: Can Teams Come Back From a Comeback?
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-19

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17

Baseball Therapy: The One About Exit Velocity
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-12

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5

Baseball Therapy: Somebody Is Finally Trying to Kill the Traditional Closer Role
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-07

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1

Baseball Therapy: Go Ahead, Call It a Comeback
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-05

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8

Baseball Therapy: Someone's Not Paying Attention
by
Russell A. Carleton

03-29

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7

Baseball Therapy: It Worked Last Time
by
Russell A. Carleton

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What does StatCast's latest offering tell us about the hitters who launch bombs and the pitchers who serve them up?

The fruit is beginning to ripen on the StatCast vine. Today’s secret word is “barrel.” Not the wooden vessel suitable for storing wine, but a well-struck batted ball. Think, “he barreled that one up.” The nice thing about StatCast is that we now have data on how hard a player actually hit a ball, which solves for one of the great laments of batting stats throughout history. Sometimes you hit the ball dead on the nose and the shortstop makes an amazing catch. The batter did everything right and, for his efforts, he's now 0-for-1. (Worse, the guy after you dinks a little dying quail that just happens to go over the second baseman’s head and gets a hit.)

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October 12, 2016 6:00 am

Baseball Therapy: Cy Young Catchers

9

Russell A. Carleton

It may seem crazy, but there might be an argument to be made for a catcher--yes, a catcher!--deserving Cy Young votes.

It’s been an interesting year in baseball and in general (and it’s not over!). Maybe I’m getting a little ahead of myself, but I’m personally looking forward to seeing what happens in the voting in November. The Cy Young voting. (Is there another vote thing going on?)

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What would a replacement-level valuation system for front offices even look like?

The Cubs really like their president, Theo Epstein, and according to reports just gave him 50-ish million reasons to like them back. On top of that, they also gave his friends (general manager Jed Hoyer and senior vice president of scouting Jason McLeod) a few million reasons each to stick around the North Side as well. The thing about Epstein’s contract is that, if it truly is for five years as reported, it puts his average annual salary at $10 million. That’s impressive, and it’s starting to look like a real major-league player’s salary, despite the fact that Epstein has pitched a total of zero innings this year for the Cubs.

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Does an ugly blown save hurt a bullpen long after that game is lost?

It’s been a tough September in San Francisco. That even-year magic that should have been carrying the Giants to their fourth World Series title in the last seven years seems to have left AT&T Park (our own Rob Mains has all the gory details).

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Well? Is it? Do you think it is? You tell me, pal.

The year 2003 feels like a very long time ago for me. I had just moved into my first “big person” apartment (which is now six addresses ago, depending on how you count things) in Chicago (two cities ago). My wife was still my girlfriend (our long-distance year), and my little brother graduated from high school. In more important news, it was the last year in which the National League compiled a winning record against the American League in interleague games. That year, the Senior Circuit got the better of 137 of the 252 games conducted between representatives of the two leagues. Since then, the American League has run off a string of 11 (and likely to be 12 in a couple of weeks) seasons in which they have emerged victorious.

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The fantasy of Real, Serious Baseball in the Olympics comes with some costs. Let's talk through the details.

Remember the Olympics?

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Measuring the full effects of a 40-man dugout on September races.

And then there were 40.

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When it comes to figuring out just how good and just how valuable the Orioles closer has been, mere 4,000-word articles aren't good enough.

*sigh*

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What's the best way to spend money, given what we know right this minute?

A few years ago, I had a conversation with my brother. We were talking about (surprise!) baseball, but then his finance degree started talking. He pointed out to me that baseball is actually a really bad business model to be trapped in. The majority of your costs are fixed. You will be paying them, no matter what. Unlike the NFL, MLB contracts are largely guaranteed, so once a team signs a big expensive free agent, they are on the hook for paying him, sometimes on the hook several years into the future. On the other side, a lot of the revenue sources that teams have traditionally counted on (attendance, concessions, merchandise)—items that even in the age of huge TV contracts and regional sports networks being big feeders of the bottom line are still important—are variable. Fans usually come out to support a winner and a lot of times it’s hard to know how good you’ll be in three years. Will there be enough revenue to cover the cost of that fancy new second baseman? Teams aren’t completely operating in the dark when it comes to budgeting, but unlike a lot of other industries where if demand slows down, you can simply slow down production (and save money that way), baseball doesn’t let you do that.

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One of the greatest high schoolers ever turned into one of the greatest major leaguers ever. How much credit could PEDs even *theoretically* deserve?

We live in a time that will likely be remembered by some—unofficially, of course—as the Steroid Era in baseball. Beginning in the 1990s when offensive production and reported uses of steroids, some later confirmed, went way up. With the publishing of the Mitchell Report in 2007, which detailed oodles of allegations against players that they used performance enhancing drugs, including anabolic steroids. Even now, 20ish (gulp) years removed from those halcyon days when flannel was a thing, they’re apparently still around. We still see players testing positive for the use of PEDs, even though everyone knows that there’s a testing program in place.

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Searching for a cost to multi-positional experimentation.

I’m about to commit a cardinal sin of writing. I’m going to spend the first part of this article telling you all the reasons why you shouldn’t believe the second part of this article. I’m going to lay out a pretty good case (if I do say so myself) that I’m an idiot and that I shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near a database. And then I’m going to do it anyway.

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A seemingly simple solution would have dramatic unforeseen consequences? Well, I'll be.

There are apparently certain things in life that you don’t want to last for more than four hours. They might be fun for the first half-hour, but after a while it just gets dangerous for your health and you should call a doctor. Of course, I’m talking about baseball games, and for the past few years, MLB has talked about ways in which they could make the game go a little bit faster and wrap up in a shorter amount of time.

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