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(ESPN)   Jayson Werth: Get off my lawn. MLB analytics departments: We agree, move the second baseman off the grass, possibly the shortstop too   ( espn.com) divider line
    More: Dumbass, Major League Baseball, World Series, Jayson Werth, Howard Eskin Podcast, Famer Goose Gossage, Baseball, Washington Nationals, super nerds  
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736 clicks; posted to Sports » on 10 Aug 2018 at 2:35 PM (8 days ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



33 Comments     (+0 »)
 
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2018-08-10 12:59:15 PM  
Overpaid man yells at cloud.
 
2018-08-10 01:15:02 PM  

Cagey B: Overpaid man yells at cloud.


And doesn't understand one iota about what the advanced metrics mean or what they're used for.
 
2018-08-10 01:26:14 PM  

Trivia Jockey: Cagey B: Overpaid man yells at cloud.

And doesn't understand one iota about what the advanced metrics mean or what they're used for.


I especially enjoyed his argument that fans want to see bunting against the shift and not home runs.
 
2018-08-10 01:35:06 PM  
You could have just learned to hit the other way.  Lead with the hands, dammit!
 
2018-08-10 02:44:10 PM  
img.fark.netView Full Size
Werth: "Just put computers out there."
The Jetsons did it.
 
2018-08-10 02:55:04 PM  
Maybe he should try not to suck
 
2018-08-10 03:04:48 PM  
It has made some things shiatty but overall I don't see it as a negative.

Though managers should be worried, they no longer do anything a laptop can't do better.
 
2018-08-10 03:10:27 PM  
Since my son is one of them there super nerds in a major league front office, I'm getting a real kick out of Jason Werth and his opinions about...
 
2018-08-10 03:18:33 PM  
All the "super nerds" have done is show that the old strategy you prefer is ineffective.  If you want a team to play your way, it'll lose.
 
2018-08-10 03:22:51 PM  

Myria: All the "super nerds" have done is show that the old strategy you prefer is ineffective.  If you want a team to play your way, it'll lose.


I think Werth actually understands this. He's arguing that it's ruined the game, which I can sympathize with. It's not unlike the three-point shot taking over the NBA. We know it's the way to win the game, but maybe the game should be changed. Not to punish those who are succeeding, but because it's a game and should adapt to changing strategies to maintain competition.
 
2018-08-10 03:35:08 PM  
"I bet yer analytics didn't see this coming."
img.fark.netView Full Size
 
2018-08-10 03:36:47 PM  
Normally I'm anti-whiner and someone who has peaked and fallen is definitely considered a whiner. But I do think there is something here....that the stat-focused mindset has made baseball much more boring. I don't watch as much baseball as I used to and that would be the same regardless of whether stats overtook the game, but when I do watch, I absolutely dread the moment that starter gets taken out of the game. My god...it becomes a friggin snooze-fest. strikeout, strikeout, hit into shift, strikeout. It becomes horrible entertainment. But I get it - it's the strategy that makes sense. It's just happens to be boring as balls.  When you compare that to literally any other major sport it's no wonder kids don't watch baseball.

As it stands, MLB has a rule that forces any pitcher to stay in the game for an out barring injury. At the least they could expand that to two outs. And I don't see why it's such blasphemy to consider a rule requiring at least three players (excluding the battery) on either side of an imaginary line from home through second base.That's how fielding was done for 100 years anyways! Hits = interesting to watch. Grounding into a shift = boring.
 
2018-08-10 03:47:52 PM  
Players who CAN bunt well should bunt against heavy shifts often.

Players who CAN'T bunt well shouldn't bunt in any situation.

Nothing pisses me off more than seeing the first two players reach in the 9th off a closer who doesn't have it, then "conventional wisdom" says sacrifice bunt and watch a guy who can't bunt pop out and give the struggling closer something to work with.
 
2018-08-10 03:50:58 PM  

dukeblue219: Myria: All the "super nerds" have done is show that the old strategy you prefer is ineffective.  If you want a team to play your way, it'll lose.

I think Werth actually understands this. He's arguing that it's ruined the game, which I can sympathize with. It's not unlike the three-point shot taking over the NBA. We know it's the way to win the game, but maybe the game should be changed. Not to punish those who are succeeding, but because it's a game and should adapt to changing strategies to maintain competition.


The idea that it "ruins" the sport is just dumb. Yeah it changes things, but it has never been static.

It is only about 15 years since these advances analytics began to be widely embraced by MLB (there was some beforehand but broad acceptance only really stated after Beane's success). The players entering the Majors now will be the first ones brought up under advanced analytics. I wouldn't be surprised to see significant shifts over the next decade or two as the statistics keep advancing, the development catches up, and the statistics change from that.
 
2018-08-10 03:54:45 PM  

HotWingConspiracy: It has made some things shiatty but overall I don't see it as a negative.

Though managers should be worried, they no longer do anything a laptop can't do better.


They can probably still tell which players had too much to drink the night before and need a quick bump before their next at bat.
 
2018-08-10 03:55:48 PM  

broomballwilson: Normally I'm anti-whiner and someone who has peaked and fallen is definitely considered a whiner. But I do think there is something here....that the stat-focused mindset has made baseball much more boring. I don't watch as much baseball as I used to and that would be the same regardless of whether stats overtook the game, but when I do watch, I absolutely dread the moment that starter gets taken out of the game. My god...it becomes a friggin snooze-fest. strikeout, strikeout, hit into shift, strikeout. It becomes horrible entertainment. But I get it - it's the strategy that makes sense. It's just happens to be boring as balls.  When you compare that to literally any other major sport it's no wonder kids don't watch baseball.

As it stands, MLB has a rule that forces any pitcher to stay in the game for an out barring injury. At the least they could expand that to two outs. And I don't see why it's such blasphemy to consider a rule requiring at least three players (excluding the battery) on either side of an imaginary line from home through second base.That's how fielding was done for 100 years anyways! Hits = interesting to watch. Grounding into a shift = boring.


Can't say I agree with any of this. Also to clarify, the rule is a pitcher must face at least one complete at-bat, not necessarily one out.
 
2018-08-10 03:59:19 PM  

dukeblue219: He's arguing that it's ruined the game


In what way?  Specifically...
 
2018-08-10 04:03:15 PM  

dywed88: The idea that it "ruins" the sport is just dumb. Yeah it changes things, but it has never been static.

It is only about 15 years since these advances analytics began to be widely embraced by MLB (there was some beforehand but broad acceptance only really stated after Beane's success). The players entering the Majors now will be the first ones brought up under advanced analytics. I wouldn't be surprised to see significant shifts over the next decade or two as the statistics keep advancing, the development catches up, and the statistics change from that.


Agree.  If you ask people like Werth what's actually different on the field, they will struggle to tell you.  There isn't much...A couple infield shifts per game maybe, teams opting to try to steal fewer bases, fewer sacrifice bunts maybe.  It really hasn't changed that much.

The big effect of advanced analytics isn't in on-field strategy, it's in player/talent evaluation.  Teams do use this data in a major, major way to decide which players they want and which players they don't.  But I really don't see how players like Werth can argue against that.
 
2018-08-10 04:34:26 PM  

Trivia Jockey: dukeblue219: He's arguing that it's ruined the game

In what way?  Specifically...


That there's less on-field strategy and less variety in the game. Fewer doubles, stolen bases, opposite field hits, etc. More strikeouts and home runs. There's less action in general, even if there are more home runs. All of the strategy has been removed to the front-office and computers rather than players and coaches.

As a fan I find it less fun to watch a game that has more strikeouts, walks, and home runs. I'd rather watch a game with stolen bases, ground balls, squeezes, and lots of singles and doubles and triples.

I know the game changes, and that's fine. But there are ways the game can be adjusted and has been adjusted before. The spit ball was ditched because it wasn't fun to watch pitchers dominate 1-0 games. The mound was lowered for similar reasons. Steroids were banned because people didn't like it the other way around either. I think keeping defenders in their general area of the field is a decent way to keep baseball baseball without being too onerous or invalidating over a century's worth of statistical records and history.
 
2018-08-10 04:37:57 PM  

Trivia Jockey: Agree.  If you ask people like Werth what's actually different on the field, they will struggle to tell you.  There isn't much...A couple infield shifts per game maybe, teams opting to try to steal fewer bases, fewer sacrifice bunts maybe.  It really hasn't changed that much.


I think you're generally right, that the sky isn't falling here. But there are certain things teams have toyed with that do genuinely change the game in a deep way. The first thing comes to my mind is Tampa starting games with relief pitchers for an inning to guarantee they get through the opponent's best hitters with their best pitcher. Then they hand it to a "starter" for 5 innings and bring in another reliever timed for a trip through the top of the order.

It makes logical sense. But it doesn't feel right, does it?
 
2018-08-10 04:45:20 PM  

dukeblue219: Trivia Jockey: Agree.  If you ask people like Werth what's actually different on the field, they will struggle to tell you.  There isn't much...A couple infield shifts per game maybe, teams opting to try to steal fewer bases, fewer sacrifice bunts maybe.  It really hasn't changed that much.

I think you're generally right, that the sky isn't falling here. But there are certain things teams have toyed with that do genuinely change the game in a deep way. The first thing comes to my mind is Tampa starting games with relief pitchers for an inning to guarantee they get through the opponent's best hitters with their best pitcher. Then they hand it to a "starter" for 5 innings and bring in another reliever timed for a trip through the top of the order.

It makes logical sense. But it doesn't feel right, does it?


Tradition merely for tradition's sake is kind of silly.  Plus, in this example, the designation of a "starter" versus a "reliever" is a fairly arbitrary one.  The baseball doesn't care what kind of pitcher throws it, and the hitter largely doesn't care, either.
 
2018-08-10 04:47:02 PM  

dukeblue219: Fewer doubles, stolen bases, opposite field hits, etc. More strikeouts and home runs. There's less action in general, even if there are more home runs.


I don't think the shift in this direction (no pun intended) is as stark as you suggest, but point taken.

I also want people to keep in mind that all these changes in thinking/strategy are to accomplish one singular goal: scoring more runs.  Scoring runs is exciting.  Winning is exciting.
 
2018-08-10 06:00:42 PM  

Dafatone: Players who CAN bunt well should bunt against heavy shifts often.

Players who CAN'T bunt well shouldn't bunt in any situation.

Nothing pisses me off more than seeing the first two players reach in the 9th off a closer who doesn't have it, then "conventional wisdom" says sacrifice bunt and watch a guy who can't bunt pop out and give the struggling closer something to work with.


I'd like to add: it's ok that there are guys who can't bunt. Bunting big league pitching is hard. Very very very hard.
 
2018-08-10 06:03:36 PM  

dukeblue219: Myria: All the "super nerds" have done is show that the old strategy you prefer is ineffective.  If you want a team to play your way, it'll lose.

I think Werth actually understands this. He's arguing that it's ruined the game, which I can sympathize with. It's not unlike the three-point shot taking over the NBA. We know it's the way to win the game, but maybe the game should be changed. Not to punish those who are succeeding, but because it's a game and should adapt to changing strategies to maintain competition.


One of these for when the basket goes in?

fat.gfycat.comView Full Size
 
2018-08-10 06:12:01 PM  
"We're creating something that's not fun to watch. It's boring. You're turning players into robots. They've taken the human element out of the game."

Soon.

img.fark.netView Full Size


img.fark.netView Full Size


encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.comView Full Size
 
2018-08-10 07:03:47 PM  

SiriusClown: "We're creating something that's not fun to watch. It's boring. You're turning players into robots. They've taken the human element out of the game."

Soon.

[img.fark.net image 259x194]

[img.fark.net image 240x210]

[encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com image 241x209]


In that game could the robots fight after a close play?
 
2018-08-10 08:32:34 PM  

dywed88: SiriusClown: "We're creating something that's not fun to watch. It's boring. You're turning players into robots. They've taken the human element out of the game."

Soon.

[img.fark.net image 259x194]

[img.fark.net image 240x210]

[encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com image 241x209]

In that game could the robots fight after a close play?


Not fisticuffs. But you could power up your pitcher and greatly injure the batters. Robots also suffered over clocking damage.

Now I wish they would bring back Mutant football and hockey.
 
2018-08-10 09:48:05 PM  

Trivia Jockey: dukeblue219: Fewer doubles, stolen bases, opposite field hits, etc. More strikeouts and home runs. There's less action in general, even if there are more home runs.

I don't think the shift in this direction (no pun intended) is as stark as you suggest, but point taken.

I also want people to keep in mind that all these changes in thinking/strategy are to accomplish one singular goal: scoring more runs.  Scoring runs is exciting.  Winning is exciting.


Not really.

Scoring more runs being your goal is like making lots of money being your goal. You can do it in a way that makes millions of people happy or you can do it in a way that sucks.

For example, everyone likes high-scoring basketball, too, but no one likes watching the Rockets, even though they scored more than everyone last season.

When everyone basically "solves" a sport, it's time to change up the rules.

Baseball is already the slowest and simplest sport to manage.
 
2018-08-10 10:00:54 PM  

SiriusClown: dywed88: SiriusClown: "We're creating something that's not fun to watch. It's boring. You're turning players into robots. They've taken the human element out of the game."

Soon.

[img.fark.net image 259x194]

[img.fark.net image 240x210]

[encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com image 241x209]

In that game could the robots fight after a close play?

Not fisticuffs. But you could power up your pitcher and greatly injure the batters. Robots also suffered over clocking damage.

Now I wish they would bring back Mutant football and hockey.


There was a game on the PSX that a friend had where after a play at a base the two robots would fight and if the runner lost he was out, if he won he was safe.
 
2018-08-11 01:26:30 AM  

dywed88: SiriusClown: "We're creating something that's not fun to watch. It's boring. You're turning players into robots. They've taken the human element out of the game."

Soon.

[img.fark.net image 259x194]

[img.fark.net image 240x210]

[encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com image 241x209]

In that game could the robots fight after a close play?


You're thinking of Base Wars if you're thinking NES.
 
2018-08-11 02:12:39 AM  

Tyler Perry's Tyler Perry Fark Account: dywed88: SiriusClown: "We're creating something that's not fun to watch. It's boring. You're turning players into robots. They've taken the human element out of the game."

Soon.

[img.fark.net image 259x194]

[img.fark.net image 240x210]

[encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com image 241x209]

In that game could the robots fight after a close play?

You're thinking of Base Wars if you're thinking NES.


It has been like 20 years since I played it and we only played it a few times since we could only play in the living room (where the console was hooked up) when his parents and brother were out. So I don't even remember what it looked like. We used the N64 and SNES in the games room and I know there was a PSX hooked up in the living room (with original controllers, no sticks). It is possible that there was an NES too that I just do not remember.
 
2018-08-11 03:07:44 AM  

Trivia Jockey: dywed88: The idea that it "ruins" the sport is just dumb. Yeah it changes things, but it has never been static.

It is only about 15 years since these advances analytics began to be widely embraced by MLB (there was some beforehand but broad acceptance only really stated after Beane's success). The players entering the Majors now will be the first ones brought up under advanced analytics. I wouldn't be surprised to see significant shifts over the next decade or two as the statistics keep advancing, the development catches up, and the statistics change from that.

Agree.  If you ask people like Werth what's actually different on the field, they will struggle to tell you.  There isn't much...A couple infield shifts per game maybe, teams opting to try to steal fewer bases, fewer sacrifice bunts maybe.  It really hasn't changed that much.

The big effect of advanced analytics isn't in on-field strategy, it's in player/talent evaluation.  Teams do use this data in a major, major way to decide which players they want and which players they don't.  But I really don't see how players like Werth can argue against that.


It's on the field in the form of min/maxxing at the plate.  Strikeouts are way up with homers, resulting in more binary gameplay.  Vlad had his team HoF induction at the stadium tonight.  449 career home runs, career OPS+ of 140, career .319 average but didn't walk all that much because he was super aggressive at the plate, never had more than 100 strikeouts in a season and averaged 74 Ks.  Exciting baseball player to watch, creating a dynamic game with dynamic situations due to his style of play.  Fast forward 10 years and we have Mike Trout, hits for more power(but the same 162 game HR avg), and averages 150 Ks per year, fitting with the new style of boom or bust.  Fun to watch at times, but it feels dirty watching the best player in baseball strike out like he's Adam Dunn, and a player of that athletic ability is leaving outs on the field by not putting more balls in play(which is to say he could be better).

And, of course, that kind of min/maxxing has translated to many more players on many more teams, all of whom are lesser players than Trout, which means more terrible at bats with less entertaining plays.  That's the direction the analytics have taken the game by altering in-game strategy directly and through player selection, and it's not so fun to watch, to be honest, much like watching the NBA played on the perimeter with no recourse available for the defense given the current offensive friendly rules
 
2018-08-11 11:20:29 AM  

bhcompy: Trivia Jockey: dywed88: The idea that it "ruins" the sport is just dumb. Yeah it changes things, but it has never been static.

It is only about 15 years since these advances analytics began to be widely embraced by MLB (there was some beforehand but broad acceptance only really stated after Beane's success). The players entering the Majors now will be the first ones brought up under advanced analytics. I wouldn't be surprised to see significant shifts over the next decade or two as the statistics keep advancing, the development catches up, and the statistics change from that.

Agree.  If you ask people like Werth what's actually different on the field, they will struggle to tell you.  There isn't much...A couple infield shifts per game maybe, teams opting to try to steal fewer bases, fewer sacrifice bunts maybe.  It really hasn't changed that much.

The big effect of advanced analytics isn't in on-field strategy, it's in player/talent evaluation.  Teams do use this data in a major, major way to decide which players they want and which players they don't.  But I really don't see how players like Werth can argue against that.

It's on the field in the form of min/maxxing at the plate.  Strikeouts are way up with homers, resulting in more binary gameplay.  Vlad had his team HoF induction at the stadium tonight.  449 career home runs, career OPS+ of 140, career .319 average but didn't walk all that much because he was super aggressive at the plate, never had more than 100 strikeouts in a season and averaged 74 Ks.  Exciting baseball player to watch, creating a dynamic game with dynamic situations due to his style of play.  Fast forward 10 years and we have Mike Trout, hits for more power(but the same 162 game HR avg), and averages 150 Ks per year, fitting with the new style of boom or bust.  Fun to watch at times, but it feels dirty watching the best player in baseball strike out like he's Adam Dunn, and a player of that athletic ability is leaving outs on the field by not putting more balls in play(which is to say he could be better).

And, of course, that kind of min/maxxing has translated to many more players on many more teams, all of whom are lesser players than Trout, which means more terrible at bats with less entertaining plays.  That's the direction the analytics have taken the game by altering in-game strategy directly and through player selection, and it's not so fun to watch, to be honest, much like watching the NBA played on the perimeter with no recourse available for the defense given the current offensive friendly rules


I wouldn't say Trout could be better. His higher K rate is largely a function of selectiveness. Taking more pitches gets you deeper into counts and results in more at bats that end without a ball in play (K or BB).

That selectiveness results in his ridiculous OBP. OBP is literally how many times you don't get out. So he's maximizing his not making outs.
 
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