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So, Conor Gillaspie improved his HR output from 4 to 8 going from a generous offensive ballpark (San Jose) to a tough one (Richmond). It's not a big transformation, and he certainly doesn't look like he's ever going to be a big power hitting threat, but it seems like real improvement. Would I be remiss in hoping for a poor man's Bill Mueller?
Interesting. The first one I thought of was Jeff King, as he's always stuck in my mind ever since I first saw his '94 Topps baseball card. Back then I just scratched my head and wondered how often something like that happened, but now I know!
The standard comparison is that OOTP provides depth and customization and a stronger statistical model. BM provides a much friendlier user experience and sims faster.
It all comes down to what you value more.
I'm going to miss Broshius, and I hope he does well outside of baseball.
On another topic entirely - is there a way to subscribe to any of these BP blogs individually? I've tried to find one and have been unsuccessful. I get the regular BP feed, but that just links the main articles for me.
I dunno - a large part of me hesitates to shake the finger at my fellow humans for finding patterns everywhere. It's sort of what we do.
I guess the real question is, at what point does this information add to my enjoyment of the game as a fan? It's clear that is does for some here, but I suspect that it may not for many fans.
I think you touched the key issue, Will, when you said people like stories. They do like stories, and that's what sports media has always thrived on (thank you Roon Arledge!).
Advanced statistics tell a story, too, whether the authors writing the articles are trying to or not. Currently, the narrative for sports revolves around finding inspiration to do great feats, or overcoming adversity, or working hard to achieve things men with greater talent had failed to do. And those are some damn good stories, because anyone can climb into it. They lift, elevate, and inspire, and that's half the reason people watch these sports. Or how they've been conditioned to watch them, at any rate.
The advanced statistics right now tell a different story. They tell the audience that some things can't be overcome. Sometimes reality is harsh, sometimes a man with a good work ethic still fails. There are limits to human achievement. What you dream of may not be possible to achieve. That's not the only stories they tell, but that's some of the big ones.
I think those are all important truths - I also don't think people like them. If you want people to understand baseball more deeply, you need to place them in a narrative that people will enjoy. Right now, we don't do that. I also have no idea what that narrative would be. Maybe its fantasy baseball, but I think that's a niche market, too. A little larger, I guess.
Ultimately, I don't think it matters. This could just be a Sisyphean task - none of the important truths that we espouse with the statistics were really unknown to baseball. The smart people always knew them, but they pitched a story to the fans that drew crowds. That sort of how it is with our culture - we want entertainment more than knowledge. We won't learn unless we're entertained. Maybe it's the fate of this stuff to always be a niche, I dunno. It can't hurt to try.
I recall Orel Hershiser giving a rationale for pickoff throws that had little to do with actually catching the runner. His reason? Throwing to first gave him a little more time to think and plan out how he was going to approach the hitter at the plate.
I feel like I've learned a good bit from your submissions, Brian, and I'm looking forward to buying the best simulation game ever one day.
Ah, gotcha. That makes sense. Thanks! This was a fun read. :) I ended up telling my wife all about it over lunch.
Just curious, but does basing his walk rate off his horrible 2007 season give us a good benchmark? As I recall, Lee was relatively stingy with walks prior to that year anyway. Are the changes as significant if his career rates are considered?
San Fransisco 7/154 2/1
As a Giants fan, I\'ve been slowly changing my view of Cain. I still love him, but Lincecum is clearly the elite stuff which I always wanted Cain to be.
I\'m not completely against trading Cain, but I think doing so this year would be very premature. Bumgarner and Alderson are great, but neither is ready to step in and replace Cain right now. Bumgarner is all kinds of awesome, but there\'s no reason to rush him right now, and trading Cain would make that a big temptation.
Cain will still be a great deal next year, and the Giants will have a far better idea of what they need at that time. The Giants rotation beyond Lincecum and Cain isn\'t the strength many of us Giants fans wish it would be right now, and trading Cain would be a mistake.