Unhittable

A common mistake made by baseball fans is to call a pitcher unhittable when that pitcher is not Matt Thornton. His stuff is the best in baseball, and today, he demonstrated why his fastball is truly unhittable. Thornton entered the ninth inning to face three very accomplished hitters in Grady Sizemore, Shin-Soo Choo, and Travis […]

Bill Simmons on Sabermetrics

This is an early favorite for the most important Sabermetric article of the year. Simmons is easily the most popular sports columnist in America, and it’s great to see him back to being the voice of the fan.

Best PITCHf/x Pitch of 2009

Over at Baseball Analysts, I tried to find what pitchers had the best fastballs, breaking balls, and off-speed pitches using using velocity, movement, and location as my parameters. I thought it might be interesting to look at individual pitches as well. By my methodology, the best pitches are well-located fastballs in hitter’s counts. Randy Wolf, […]

Everyone loves a linky

Only three links to share today but that’s just because I feel that this video starring Jim Bowden and friends needs to be viewed by as many possible eyeballs as soon as possible. Your eyes will also be soothed by Jayson Werth’s new beard. As for an actual analytical piece about baseball, Mike Podhorrzer uses […]

Defending Brady Anderson

I could write a book about Brady Anderson. I feel terrible for the guy. It’s not that we’re accusing him of having taken steroids. I have no problem speculating. Joe Posnanski wrote a piece where he compiled lists of players we strongly suspect used, players who probably used, and players who adhered to “fair play.” […]

More on WAR

Earlier this year, it seemed like every other week FanGraphs was improving its stats section. So I’m anxious to see what David Appelman has in store for the new season comes, as I’m sure his projects have been building up. But first, I had some thoughts on the already-existing WAR. My main philosophical problem with […]

Linkadink

I believe my introduction is allowed to be unrelated to baseball, so I submit the funniest YouTube clip I saw today. It’s real and it’s spectacular. As for baseball, Dan Shaughnessy, scourged by the taint of Sullivan Patrick. Or something like that. I’m not so good at the phrases of turning. And TSJC at RAB […]

The Best Stuff On Earth

I’ve been looking at a pitcher’s “stuff” using pitchf/x data recently, and here’s how I would rank the top five starters of 2009 by stuff: 1. Clayton Kershaw 2. Brett Anderson 3. A.J. Burnett 4. Felix Hernandez 5. Zack Greinke Kershaw might be a step above the field. Relievers 1. Matt Thornton 2. Jonathan Broxton […]

Got Those Links

The staff at THT Live has decided to crew up and start slinging links. Pat Andriola told me that he thinks we have the muscle to knock off Tommy “Prince K” Bennett, Rob “Avon” Neyer, and BBTF (the entire New-Day Co-Op) . I told him we got our thing, but it’s just part of the […]

What’s the matter with relievers?

Take it away, CHONE: PlayerInningsERARARMike Gonzalez493.675Brandon Lyon643.666Rafael Soriano523.296Billy Wagner373.415 So the Red Sox trade for Billy Wagner, with Wagner agreeing on the condition that they not pick up his option. However, he allows them to offer him arbitration, apparently not understanding how type-A status will put him in the Juan Cruz class. Well, the Braves […]

Online pitchf/x tools

RZ provides a rundown of all the online pitchf/x goodies out there, and reveals a new one by Joe Lefkowitz that I highly recommend, though it’s still a work in progress. As RZ describes it, it’s useful for those “who don’t have a MySQL database and are good at working with Excel data.”

A look at arm ratings

Using 2006-2008 data, I ran a regression using UZR’s ARM rating per 150 games as my dependent variable against the three Z-Scored arm ratings on Tangotiger’s Fans’ Scouting Report-accuracy, strength, and release-and using the number of ballots as my weights. Fans can explain about 10% of the variance in an outfielder’s ARM runs per 150 […]

Criminals of WAR

I’m not going to single anyone out, since we’re all guilty of abusing FanGraphs’ Wins Above Replacement metric. But I’ve been seeing cases pop up where it’s getting out of hand. So I’ve set up a few guidelines for how to go about using WAR responsibly. Do not break these rules, or I may call […]

Joe Girardi Facts

Joe Girardi costs his team 97% in Win Expectancy per game. The other 3% is the bridge to Mariano! Teh eighth inning!!! President Girardi replaces Secretary of State Clinton with AP History student because he “likes the matchup with North Korea better.” (Keith Law) Joe Girardi is the reason the band MGMT abbreviated its name, […]

McCarverism

I just heard Tim McCarver throw out this beauty, and felt it should be shared with the masses: “I said it was Izturis who didn’t get the bunt down last year. It was actually Manny Aybar. Excuse me, Erick Aybar, not his younger brother Manny who plays for Tampa Bay.”

Pitcher hitting

Just a reminder, it’s important. A significant amount of a pitcher’s value is tied to his ability to hit, which we have a pretty good idea how to measure. Yet for some reason we leave hitting production out of our pitcher valuations. So I’ll add StatCorner’s pitching runs above average, hitting runs above average using […]

Hit by pitches and pitchf/x

The ability to get hit by a pitch is an under-appreciated skill, perhaps to an even greater extent than the ability to draw walks. I’ve always felt that simple HBP per plate appearance leaderboards captured the best Biggios in the game, but in a needless effort to complicate things, I decided to bring a crude […]

The Rays’ historic infield

After noticing Jason Bartlett’s ridiculous .327 batting average, I got to thinking whether he and Ben Zobrist were having the best season ever for any two middle infielders on the same team. According to Fangraphs, Zobrist has been worth 7.2 Wins Above Replacement (WAR), while Bartlett has been worth 4.6. Those numbers rank them No. […]

FJM reunites for a day

Over at Deadspin, Ken Tremendous, Dak, and Junior are hosting the FJM Reunion. I feel like it’s a holiday, only scrappier.

Fastball Rankings

Earlier in the week, Mike Fast linked to some hack’s attempt to measure a pitcher’s stuff. Over at The Book Blog, poster CDM (Chris Moore) posted a ranking of the top fastballs in the game based on velocity, movement, and location. It’s an awesome data presentation that’s definitely worth checking out. I look forward to […]