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What WAS Wrong With Jake Peavy?

Baseball Intellect, in a story posted just after the game last night--what a novel idea--notes the mechanical differences between peavy's recent starts (before last night) and his previous form in San Diego. The verdict? Barely noticeable changes may make a big difference... In any event, he sure looked like they guy we traded for last night

Baseclogging

Last year, when there was NOT a man on on second, runners on first scored 42.6% of the time on a double. When there was a guy on second, runners from first scored 45.3%. You read that right, there is no such thing as clogging the bases.

LIFE Magazine: Goodby To Some Old Baseball Ideas

Google has swallowed up LIFE magazine into its library, making one of the first pieces of sabermetrics from Branch Rickey available for all to see. (h/t: BBTF)

Scoops aren't just chips anymore

The Fielding Bible's John Dewan takes a look at first baseman "scoops" the last two years. Guess who ranks highly this season?

BP's SABR Night at the Cell (PDF)

Come out and watch the White Sox battle the Oakland A’s on Tuesday June 2nd. We would like to offer specially priced tickets to any fans interested in learning about new and innovative baseball statistics pioneered by a cutting edge group of baseball analysts, Baseball Prospectus. White Sox Assistant General Manager Rick Hahn will also participate in the pregame seminar which will take place from 4:00 p.m.-5:30 p.m. in US Cellular Field’s Conference and Learning Center. Following the seminar, members of Baseball Prospectus will be available for further discussion in the Patio Party Area before the game. Space for the event will be extremely limited so make sure to place your order as soon as possible.

Hitting where the ball is pitched : A Pitch F/X Study

I looked for a number to quantify the amount to which a hitter responds to the location of a pitch. Here's what I've done. Using gameday hit locations I calculated the trajectory of every batted ball, varying from -45° (down the LF line) to 45° (down the RF line); then I rescaled the trajectory value to have it varying from -1 to 1 (this made life easier for me in the following calculations).

Sabermetrics Night at US Cellular

[Baseball Prospectus is] tentatively planning a Sabermetrics Night with the Chicago White Sox, to be held during their series against the Oakland A’s that will run from Monday, June 1st through Thursday, June 4th. The night will consist of a pre-game talk and tickets to the game. There are a few seating options we are considering, and we want your input as we make our decision as to where to hold the event at US Cellular Field.

Shane Battier: The No-Stats All-Star -- NYT Mag

Long article by Moneyball's Michael Lewis in the NYT Magazine on Shane Battier, the Houston Rockets, baseball vs. basketball, selfishness in statistics, and advanced (proprietary) metrics in the game of basketball. Lots of good parts, too many to quote, really.

Introducing: Batting Assists and Batting Blocks

It’s very simple: record the number of times that a batter moved a runner over who will eventually score, but that he did not get credit for an RBI. The leader in 2008 is: Justin Morneau, with 73 Batting Assists. (Can you guys think of a better name?) There were 65 runners that he moved into scoring position (by hit or out) that scored in a subsequent at bat. And there were 8 runners that scored while he was batting (by out), of which he did not get an RBI. How about if a batter does NOT advance a runner even one base (or worse, gets him doubled off)? The MLB leader in 2008 was: Jeff Francoeur with 319 runners who were blocked. I’ll call these Batting Blocks. Finally, the leaders in the ratio between Batting Assists to Batting Blocks is: Joe Mauer. The league average ratio is 1 assist per 5 blocks. Mauer had 69 assists and 170 blocks. In "Linear Weights speak", he was +29, followed by Ichiro and Carlos Guillen at +22. On the bottom side, we have Francoeur and Corey Hart at -21. Since 1993: the leader is Barry Bonds at +258 and Derek Jeter at +231. At the bottom of the pile is Tony Batista at -128.

Defense at 2B/3B

When a player moves to 2B from 3B, or vice versa, their defensive performance remains relatively stable. There’s just no data to support the idea that second base is a premium defensive position and third base is not. While there are different skills necessary to succeed at each position (arm strength being more important at 3rd, range more important at second), the pool of players who can succeed at one is mostly made up of the same pool of players that can succeed at the other. This is because the population of both positions is made up almost exclusively of players who were deemed inadequate for shortstop. At one time, second baseman and third baseman were both called the same thing - bad defensive shortstops. From there, they were separated into 2B and 3B pools, but the evidence suggests that the crop of players who end up at 3B are better overall players than their 2B brethren. Why? I have a few theories, and we’ll get into those tomorrow.

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