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Archive for July, 2011

July 29, 2011

Football Match Result Database Project: Howard Hamilton of Soccermetrics released his football match database project today.

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Taking the Next Step – Kevin Love ($): At BP, Sebastian Pruiti analyzes the areas in which Kevin Love needs to improve to build on his breakout 2011.

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Game Score (and Crowd-Sourcing): At Fangraphs, Tangotiger proposes 4 different Game Score variants, and asks readers to help determine the weights that properly balance each version.

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The Five Greatest Trade Deadlines in Baseball History: The Platoon Advantage graphs the increasing deadline activity in recent seasons, and ranks the best deadline deals ever.

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Splitting Rickey Henderson in Two: Bill James once said you could split Henderson in two and have two Hall of Famers. At Fangraphs, Matt Klaassen tests whether this is actually true.

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How Often Do Deadline Deals Pay Off?: BP’s Colin Wyers reviewed the data on 180 deadline moves since 1995, and found that very few actually made an impact in a playoff race.

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More fastballs = fewer called strikes: At Sabermetric Research, Phil Birnbaum adds a new wrinkle to the debate about umpires and racial bias.

Winning With Selke Or Hart? ($): HP’s Ryan Popilchak uses GVT to study whether teams should build around high-scoring forwards or defensive-minded ones.

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Greatest Cornerback Tandems of All-Time: In light of a possible Nnamdi Asomugha-Darrelle Revis pairing in New York, The Big Lead’s Jason Lisk looks at other great CB tandems throughout history.

Killing their Team: At the Wages of Wins Journal, Arturo Galletti writes about players who posted the worst Wins Produced numbers.

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Top 100 Aftermath: The BP crew discuss Drew Cannon’s list of the 100 best players in D-I college hoops.

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UZR Outfielder Components, 2006-2010: In a neat graph from Beyond the Box Score’s Justin Bopp, see how many UZR runs the average OF receives from his range, arm, and ability to avoid errors.

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Saving Bonds: Joe Posnanski has a question: where would Barry Bonds’ career rank if he had never taken performance-enhancing drugs?

Beltran and Damon ($): BP’s Jay Jaffe compares the Hall of Fame cases for a couple of former Kansas City outfielders.

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Freddie Freeman Finds His Power Stroke: Also at Baseball Analytics, David Golebiewski uses heat maps to chronicle the adjustments Freeman has made over the course of his rookie season.

The Staggering Implications Of The Pitching Success Of Mitch Maier And His Peers: This is (mostly) a tongue-in-cheek post by Baseball Nation’s Jeff Sullivan, but it is true that position-players have been surprisingly successful over the past 2 seasons when forced to take the mound.

Missing — Joel Pineiro’s Grounders, Control: Baseball Analytics’ David Golebiewski breaks down why Pineiro has been struggling this season.

July 28, 2011

Belichick’s Home for Disgruntled Little Wanderers: CHFF’s Kerry Byrne looks at whether Albert Haynesworth can help the Pats where they really need it — 3rd down D.

NFL Under-25 Organization Rankings ($): FO’s Danny Tuccitto ranks every NFL team based on how they acquire and cultivate young talent.

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Clayton Kershaw — Like a Boss (of the Strike Zone): As Fangraphs’ Carson Cistulli writes, Kershaw is the pitcher who most frequently wins his battles with opposing batters over control of the strike zone.

Adam Dunn’s Historically Bad Season: At the NY Times, B-R’s Neil Paine writes about just how historically bad Adam Dunn’s 2011 has been.

SIERA Mailbag Answers: Fangraphs’ Matt Swartz answers reader questions about the newest edition of SIERA.

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Tango’s Lab – Deconstructing FIP : At The Book, a technical discussion about the run values used in FIP, and the implicit assumptions the stat makes.

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Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – Comparables: Scott Reynolds of The Copper & Blue looks for players statistically similar to the Edmonton prospect.

Panthers up, Raiders down: CHFF’s Adam Dombrolowski uses the Plexiglas Principle to dampen Oakland’s optimism for 2011, while the Panthers are due for some positive regression to the mean.

There’s More Than One Way To Get a Winning Quarterback: The Big Lead’s Jason Lisk looked at how teams acquired their starting QBs (since 1995), and how successful each archetype was.

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Fouls Committed in the NBA in 2007-08: Continuing the theme of foul data, Weak Side Awareness posted a list containing loose-ball, non-shooting, and shooting fouls committed by every player in the NBA in 2007-08.

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Brilliant Bartolo: BtB’s Lucas Apostoleris offers a detailed breakdown of Bartolo Colon’s PITCHf/x data from 2011 thus far.

Ervin Santana’s No-No : David Golebiewski of Baseball Analytics breaks down Santana’s stuff during yesterday’s no-hitter.

About Zach Wheeler…: Clay Davenport discusses his translated stats for the Mets’ newest acquisition.

The Odds Behind Seattle’s Losing Streak: Fangraphs’ Jesse Wolfersberger calculates the probability of the Mariners’ recent 17-game losing streak. (See also: Tangotiger’s thoughts)

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In case you haven’t noticed, David Ortiz is slumping: Baseball Analytics’ Bill Chuck looks at the pitches Ortiz has struggled the most with over the past 32 games.

Rasmus The Blue Jay: THT’s Jeffrey Gross projects what Rasmus’ future might hold, now that he’s been traded to Toronto.

July 27, 2011

Goals From Fast Breaks – The 2010/11 Premier League Rankings: At Soccer By The Numbers, Chris Anderson breaks down the EPL teams who did the greatest amount of their scoring on fast breaks.

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Jered Weaver BABIP Analysis: From Josh Weinstock and BtB, a very detailed analysis of Weaver’s PITCHf/x data.

2011 NFL Free Agent Tracker: PFR has a master list of free agents, along with their career and 3-year Approximate Value totals, that is constantly updated to reflect new signings.

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Boeheim’s Zone ($): At BP, John Gasaway tries to separate myth from reality with regard to Jim Boeheim’s vaunted 2-3 zone D.

Meals and default calls: Tangotiger had an interesting idea regarding Jerry Meals’ (apparent) blown call last night — umps should base calls on probability. If a runner is out 99% of the time in a given situation, the ump should err on the side of history — assume the out unless he can confirm a missed tag.

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Ichiro Suzuki — Bad Luck, Or Bad Age?: Fangraphs’ Bradley Woodrum wonders whether Ichiro’s 2011 decline is age-related or luck-related.

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Tango’s Lab – Relief advantage on inherited/bequeathed runners: At The Book, Tangotiger lays out a simple way to account for the fact that when a reliever allows an inherited runner to score, the RA (in addition to the ER) gets assigned to the previous pitcher.

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Using (Bad) Luck To Your Advantage: A Retrospective: Early in the season, Roto Hardball’s Michael Barr identified positive regression-to-the-mean candidates by comparing their xBABIPs to their actual BABIPs… Now he looks back at whether the predicted improvements actually happened.

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The Short and Simple SIERA Primer: SIERA in 500 words or less, courtesy of Fangraphs’ Steve Slowinski.

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Neftali Feliz Missing His Spots: Baseball Analytics’ David Golebiewski uses pitch-level data to explain Feliz’s struggles this season.

Kinsler, Henderson, and the “Ideal Leadoff Man”: Rickey Henderson is typically considered the ideal leadoff man, but as Fangraphs’ Matt Klaassen writes, a player like Ian Kinsler can be a great leadoff man even if his style isn’t quite Henderson-esque.

Dan Haren, Jered Weaver have high work factor, could be due for a late-season slide: At ESPN, AJ Mass uses Tangotiger’s estimated pitch counts to find pitchers who are laboring more than they have to (and as a result could wear down late in the season).

Dustin Pedroia Closing Gap With Jose Bautista … Or Isn’t: As Baseball Nation’s Marc Normandin writes, depending on where you get your stats, Pedroia is either in Jose Bautista’s rearview mirror for the WAR crown… or nowhere close.

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The 2011 Pittsburgh Pirates Have Thrived Despite Middling Stats: As the WSJ’s Carl Bialik notes, a great deal of Pittsburgh’s surprising 2011 performance seems to be unsustainable.

Three non-existent statistics that emphasize a player’s importance to the team: Ouriel Daskal of Soccerissue.com dreams up 3 hypothetical stats that could improve soccer analysis.

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CONCACAF Club/League Coefficients, 2011-07-26 version: Soccermetrics’ Howard Hamilton released his preseason club and country coefficients for the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League.

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More on whether QualComp matters: Arctic Ice Hockey’s Gabe Desjardins followed up on Dirk Hoag’s research about how much a player’s Corsi and +/- are impacted by his quality of competition.

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Role Players: HP’s Matthew Coller looks at the teams that got the most and least GVT out of their “role players” in 2011, and ranks the best and worst role players of the year.

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Ranking the top 10 prospects in the NFL ($): At ESPN, Aaron Schatz and Bill Barnwell unveil the top 10 of their annual prospect rankings.

Measuring the Mankins Impact: CHFF’s Kerry Byrne looks at the Patriots’ 2010 data to see how much impact Logan Mankins made when he returned from his holdout. Did the Pats overpay to keep him?

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Against the top NBA defenses, Derrick Rose was the tops: Ball Don’t Lie’s Kelly Dwyer writes about the fact that Derrick Rose ruled the top defenses in 2011.

Basketball on Paper WAR and the Best Peak Regular-Season Players Since 1978: BBR’s Neil Paine creates an NBA version of WAR using Dean Oliver’s stats, then ranks the players whose peaks were most impressive.

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Shooting & Loose Fouls Drawn in the NBA in 2007-08: Weak Side Awareness continues to bring the data — this time on fouls drawn in 2008.

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Trust and perception rule the legacy: TrueHoop’s Zach Harper with a meditation on clutchness and how the perception of a player can change whether fans think he’s a choker or a hero.

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Cross-Gender Similarity: Awesome idea from BP’s Kevin Pelton — feed WNBA stats into the SCHOENE projection system, and see which NBA players come out as the top comps.

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The Mystery of Jered Weaver: BP’s Tommy Bennett wonders why Weaver’s ERA is perpetually better than his FIP would predict, and how is he able to induce so many pop-ups?

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The Best He’s Ever Been: Don’t look now, writes River Avenue Blues’ Mike Axisa, but CC Sabathia is currently in the best 7-start stretch of his career.

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What MLB Team’s Off-season Investments Look Good?: BtB’s Bill Petti looks at the ROI provided by each team’s 2010-11 free agent signings. Also: For more Petti, read Dave Gershman’s interview with Bill today.

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Making the comparison – Mike Trout: Unlike the scout who compared Trout to Mickey Mantle, THT’s Jeff Moore tries to find realistic historical comps for the Angels’ phenom.

Prospectus’ 17 Favorite Midseason Trades: BP’s staff picked their 17 favorite summer swaps in baseball history.

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Dustin Pedroia under the ‘scope: Bill Chuck of Baseball Analytics presents two sets of heat maps for Dustin Pedroia — before and during his current 34-game on-base streak.

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wOBA by base state: At The Book, Tango looks into a wOBA tweak that is dependent on the base-out situation.

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The Pirates and Indians win with cheap relief ($): At ESPN Insider, Dan Szymborski examines the relationship between the salaries a team spends on its bullpen and the WAR that bullpen produces.

The 10 Most Egregious Cy Young Award Snubs of All Time (at Least on Paper): Seamheads’ Mike Lynch lists the most indefensible Cy votes according to a mix of Win Shares Above Bench and WAR.

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Trades made by World Series winners: Do WS winners have a history of making significant moves at the trade deadline? ESPN’s Mark Simon and Jeremy Lundblad did the research.

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Oliver production notes: At THT, Brian Cartwright explains some of the mechanics behind the Oliver Projection System’s forecasts.

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July 26, 2011

Grantland on Deadline Lessons, Childhood Simulations: A couple of Grantland baseball articles of note this afternoon — Jonah Keri’s seven lessons from trade deadlines past, and Michael Weinreb’s ode to an obscure tabletop baseball board game he played in his youth.

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Worst 20 Team Adjusted Corsi Ratings: You’ve seen the best, but now The Puck Stops Here brings you the players whose Corsi ratings were the worst after adjusting for teammates.

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Kyle Orton is Available, and Teams Should Be Calling Now: As TBL’s Jason Lisk writes, Orton has gone from overrated to underrated. History says Orton will produce better over the next 5 years than Kevin Kolb or a rookie top-5 pick at QB.

Timing is everything for Georgia Tech: Georgia Tech’s option offense is so unique that they have a great built-in advantage when facing an opponent who only had 1 week to prepare. Unfortunately, as Josh Parcell of ESPN Stats & Info points out, the downside to this is that opponents who have longer to prepare fare much, much better against the Jackets.

Under-28 players on HOF career tracks ($): Writing for ESPN Insider, BBTF’s Dan Szymborski uses projected ZiPS WAR to set the odds that today’s young stars will make the Hall of Fame.

Hey, Doug Fister: At Don’t Bring In The Lefty, Lucas Apostoleris gives a thorough PITCHf/x scouting report on Fister.

Brad Lidge, Velocity and Trevor Hoffman: Fangraphs’ Eno Sarris writes about Brad Lidge — with his fastball dipping to 89 MPH, he needs his slider to be as sharp as, say, Hoffman’s change was if he wants to stay in the bigs.

5+ Seasons Since 1973 With 200+ IP and ERA+ >=120: From B-R, a list of the pitchers (since 1973) who had the most seasons with at least 200 IP and a 120 ERA+.

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Let’s Make a Deal: The Cleveland Indians are a good test case for the pros and cons of building a team through trades, writes Grantland’s Rany Jazayerli.

Which Goals Matter? The High Value of Transition Play in the Premier League: Chris Anderson of Soccer By The Numbers continues his look at the relative value of different goal types.

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Ravens Shedding Some Feathers: With Baltimore cutting Derrick Mason and Willis McGahee, Drive-By Football’s Keith Goldner looks at their expected points and efficiency statistics from recent seasons.

Ranking the top 25 prospects in the NFL, Nos. 11-25 ($): At ESPN Insider, Aaron Schatz and Bill Barnwell present the first installment of their annual NFL prospect rankings.

Roethlisberger’s Ranking: The Big Lead’s Jason Lisk gives an overview of why Ben Roethlisberger is such a divisive figure in the world of QB rankings.

Has the NBA Salary Cap resulted in greater competitive balance?: From The Courtside Analyst, a look at whether the NBA’s competitive balance has actually improved during the salary cap era.

How Tyreke Evans’ Game Changed: Evans’ effectiveness was down quite a bit in 2011, and Tom Ziller of Sactown Royalty uses shot tendency data to show a big reason why.

Types of Fouls Committed & Drawn in the 2007 NBA: At Weak Side Awareness, some raw player data on fouls of various types (loose-ball, non-shooting, shooting) drawn and committed during the 2007 season.

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A Season for the Ages: Fangraphs’ Chris Cwik looks back on the statistical insanity of Barry Bonds’ fearsome 2004 season, when he walked 232 times (120 of which were intentional).

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2011 Free Agents that have Already Earned their Money: BtB’s Bill Petti lists the 2010-11 free agents who, through just 60% of the season, already have Fangraphs WAR-estimated valuations equal to or better than their 2011 salaries.

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Bochy Wins the Close Ones: At BP, Geoff Young puts the close-game performance of the 2011 Giants — and other Bruce Bochy-led teams — in historical context.

How does Karstens do it?: At the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Brian O’Neill sabermetrically analyzes the 2011 campaign of Jeff Karstens, whose FIP (4.42) is almost double his ERA (2.28).

MLB Pitchers with Best Stuff: Bobby Aguilera of the Baseball Reality Tour ranked pitchers’ stuff according to Fangraphs’ Pitch Value metrics.

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2011’s Best, Worst Breaking Ball Hitters: David Golebiewski of Baseball Analytics lists the players with the best and worst wOBAs this season vs. sliders and curveballs.

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July 25, 2011

Abe Lincoln Votes For: At Bill James Online, Bill looks at his DIPS-esque “Abe Lincoln Scores” for pitchers, and lists the Abe Lincoln Cy Young winners for each season since 1900.

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The theory behind advanced hockey analysis: Some advanced hockey stat theory/basics from Kent Wilson and theScore’s Houses of the Hockey.

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A Resource-Centric Model for NCAA Football Success (Part I): At FO, Kevin Haynes researches the degree to which college football success is determined by a school’s resources.

Suns use history as reason to avoid rebuilding: The Suns conducted a study and found that teams who stalled at the Conference Finals, then tore up their roster, fared worse than teams who reloaded on the fly. At SI’s Point Forward, Zach Lowe attempted a quick check on their research.

Leaderboards of Pleasure – 7/25/11: From Fangraphs, Carson Cistulli’s latest NERD rankings identifies teams and players you (as a stathead) will enjoy.

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Fastball Velocity and Phil Hughes: At Roto Hardball, Eno Sarris projects Hughes’ second-half ERA using his fastball velocity data.

The most average team: THT’s Dave Studeman points out that, by several measures of “averageness”, the Blue Jays have been almost perfectly .500 all season long.

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Coaching Trees & Training Camps: SportsDelve’s Andrew McKillop concludes his series on NFL Coaching Trees, and updates his historical NFL training-camp location data.

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Breakout Or Fakeout?: There’s a Stat For That chronicles teams that “broke out” since 1980… How many actually kept the gains in future seasons?