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Sabermetrics??? Please Humor An Old Man!

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Was checking out the stats at ESPN.com and noticed another category of stats. I clicked on it and up comes a whole new way to look at player statistics!?!?

Hokie Pete!!!

I lost interest in the Tigers in the late 90's and just starting following them again this year. This sabermetric thing is a whole new understanding of stats to me.

Can someone(s) explain it to me? who developed it? why this different breakdown of stats? what advantages? disadvantages?

Why do you like it? Don't like it?

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Each day, I send out around the majors reports, which feature news, commentary, rumors and stats. To sign up for the free mailing list, send a blank message to subscribe@baseballimmortals.net

more info at site ... good luck

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http://www.baseball1.com/bb-data/grabiner/manifesto.html

The Sabermetric Manifesto

By David Grabiner

I. What is sabermetrics?

Bill James defined sabermetrics as "the search for objective knowledge about baseball." Thus, sabermetrics attempts to answer objective questions about baseball, such as "which player on the Red Sox contributed the most to the team's offense?" or "How many home runs will Ken Griffey hit next year?" It cannot deal with the subjective judgments which are also important to the game, such as "Who is your favorite player?" or "That was a great game."

... this is a long article .... go to site for the rest of it ...

:classic:

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This manifesto left out one important point:

V: Proper Message Board Behavior For Saberheads

Sabermetrics offer an objective opinion based solely on factual statistical imformation. Sabermetrics are never wrong. No situation exists where the validity of any sabermetric theory may be questioned. If you are a believer in sabermetrics then you are smarter than any other baseball fan. You should thumb your nose and talk down to any non saber plebe that would dare to disagree. As a saber, you are better than these people. If someone does not subscribe to a sabermetric outlook of baseball they are of a lesser intellect. . Additionally, major league managers are idiots who consistently err for not using sabermetrics in the dugout. As a sabermatician, you know more about baseball than the average major league manager

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Originally posted by Hongbit

This manifesto left out one important point:

V: Proper Message Board Behavior For Saberheads

Sabermetrics offer an objective opinion based solely on factual statistical imformation. Sabermetrics are never wrong. No situation exists where the validity of any sabermetric theory may be questioned. If are a believer in sabermetrics then you are smarter than any other baseball fan. You should thumb your nose and talk down to any non saber plebe that would dare to disagree. As a saber, you are better than these people. If someone does not subscribe to a sabermetric outlook of baseball they are of a lesser intellect. . Additionally, major league managers are idiots who consistently err for not using sabermetrics in the dugout. As a sabermatician, you know more about baseball than the average major league manager

You obviously cut out the last part which read "There are no intangibles in sabermetics. None. Absolutely none. If you think that intangibles exist then you have no business watching baseball".

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Intangibles may exist, but do they have much of an effect on a baseball team's performance?

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Speaking of Sabers, we lost a great one this week, as Doug Pappas died of heat stroke on his family vacation at 43. He was great at getting in depth to the business of the game and exposing Selig's lies. RIP Doug.

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Originally posted by BiggieG

Was checking out the stats at ESPN.com and noticed another category of stats. I clicked on it and up comes a whole new way to look at player statistics!?!?

Hokie Pete!!!

I lost interest in the Tigers in the late 90's and just starting following them again this year. This sabermetric thing is a whole new understanding of stats to me.

Can someone(s) explain it to me? who developed it? why this different breakdown of stats? what advantages? disadvantages?

Why do you like it? Don't like it?

Moneyball is a good start, great book whether you agree or not. Also, I would check out http://www.baseballprospectus.com .

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So, then, the logical conclusion is that baseball is neither a game or a sport, but rather a science.

Makes perfect sense in today's world of foggy thinking.

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Intangibles may exist, but do they have much of an effect on a baseball team's performance?

Yes. Using a recent example, do you think Pudge's contributions to the Marlins last year and the Tigers this year are limited only to what can be measured?

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Originally posted by Hongbit

This manifesto left out one important point:

V: Proper Message Board Behavior For Saberheads

Sabermetrics offer an objective opinion based solely on factual statistical imformation. Sabermetrics are never wrong. No situation exists where the validity of any sabermetric theory may be questioned. If you are a believer in sabermetrics then you are smarter than any other baseball fan. You should thumb your nose and talk down to any non saber plebe that would dare to disagree. As a saber, you are better than these people. If someone does not subscribe to a sabermetric outlook of baseball they are of a lesser intellect. . Additionally, major league managers are idiots who consistently err for not using sabermetrics in the dugout. As a sabermatician, you know more about baseball than the average major league manager

oh come on Hongbit, we're not that smart. You exaggerate so much.

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Intangibles may exist, but do they have much of an effect on a baseball team's performance?

The real question is, how much of a players intangibles aren't already measured indirectly by the statistics?

As for Pudge, I think his contributions on offense are limited to what he provides on the stat sheet. I think his contributios on defense are very difficult to quantify.

If you want a good start on sabermetrics, go on ebay and bid on the old copies of Bill James' Baseball Abstract. Also read Pete Palmer's (and someone else... Thorn maybe?) book "The hidden game of baseball"

I wonder how many fans/writers have questioned a managers moves before. I'm pretty sure that's not limited to sabr's. But i guess it's worse to question someone when you have evidence to back you up. Better to just go with your gut and such.

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Originally posted by qsilvr2531

I wonder how many fans/writers have questioned a managers moves before. I'm pretty sure that's not limited to sabr's. But i guess it's worse to question someone when you have evidence to back you up. Better to just go with your gut and such.

A real baseball fan just knows. He doesn't need to back himself up because he actually watches games. All sabers do is look at stats and read Moneyball and worship Bill James. They are also puny and physically weak and wear big thick glasses and chicks don't dig them. None of them have played ball beyond tee-ball either. People like that have no business being baseball fans. They should just go play chess or something.:cool:

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Originally posted by Edman85

Intangibles may exist, but do they have much of an effect on a baseball team's performance?

This is actually a very profound philosophical question. Essentially, can everything in life be measured and reduced to numbers so we can predict the future?

On a day-to-day basis leadership qualities, guts, charisma--things like that make a difference and those are things that cannot be measured.

When I saw Willie Horton cut down Lou Brock at home in the 5th game of the World Series in 1968, that turned the tide and there is no way of reducing that event to numbers.

When that poor dope in Chicago caught the ball and the Cubs folded, that was an intangible that cannot be reduced to numbers.

This is a great game, the greatest game on earth, precisely because of the intangibles.

Sabremetrics trys to do a better job of making sense of things you CAN measure and that's a noble enterprise. It cannot take into account the intangibles that are immeasurable.

I suppose the best scouts, for instance, have a better intuitive sense about the intangibles than average scouts.

Hey, most people believe in a God you can't measure, so believing in baseball's intangibles shouldn't be too great a leap I'd think.

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I love a lot of sabermetrics principles. And I agree with a lot of common beliefs there. However, I also find them too cold and unforgiving to ever be a complete and total "saber guy."

I beleive that leadership and intangibles are things that can help a team throughout a long season.

What I don't believe is that you can "leadership" your way to a World Championship.

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Originally posted by tiger337

A real baseball fan just knows. He doesn't need to back himself up because he actually watches games. All sabers do is look at stats and read Moneyball and worship Bill James. They are also puny and physically weak and wear big thick glasses and chicks don't dig them. None of them haved played ball beyond tee-ball either. People like that have no business being baseball fans. They should just go play chess or something.:cool:

This may be unfair, but it's devastatingly funny, and way clever. Thanks!

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Originally posted by OldTimey

I love a lot of sabermetrics principles. And I agree with a lot of common beliefs there. However, I also find them too cold and unforgiving to ever be a complete and total "saber guy."

I beleive that leadership and intangibles are things that can help a team throughout a long season.

What I don't believe is that you can "leadership" your way to a World Championship.

Although I'm a "saber", I do believe in intangibles. A lot of sabers seem to think that almost everything in baseball happens randomly. I don't think that's true. I think a lot of things happen for different reasons. Things may look random after you summarize everything but slumps can happen for reasons, hot streaks can happen for reasons, etc. The problem is I don't think anybody knows whether a certain result happened because of tangibles or whether it happened randomly. A lot of people say stuff like "Pudge made the Marlin's pitchers better with his presence behind the plate". "Shannon Stewart's leadership lead the Twins to the division title" "Fernando Vina makes Carlos Guillen a better player". "Tony Clark gets off to slow starts because he is emotionally weak" There is absolutely no way to prove things like that.

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I think a lot of things happen for different reasons.

I don't think religion has any place in a baseball discussion.:classic:

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Originally posted by qsilvr2531

I don't think religion has any place in a baseball discussion.:classic:

I watch baseball religiously. Pudge is our savior. I have a great deal of faith in Dave Dombrowski.

I agree, Q...:classic:

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Sabermetrics help to quantify a number of things that can change the way one might view the game, particulary since it is based on observation.

Even little things change one's perspective. I have a copy of Total Baseball that contains an article by Palemr that explain much of the basics and also give insight on the expected values of certain events.

I still remian fascinated by the expected run values associated with certain events. Having a man on first, for example is worth .33 runs. A double yields ordinarily .65 runs. The tough one to figure out for many (because it is mildly counter intuitive) is that getting a man on third (the weighted average of all such events) will produce 1.09 runs. A homer generally will yield 1.46 runs. The above numbers are based on over 20,000 big league games examined by Palmer.

What does this tell us ? Take an example often alluded to on this website. Since advancing a man from first to second, should, on average, yield an additional .28 runs (.65 minus .33), an out is scarce resource (you have only 27 of them), the value of calling for a stolen base is very dependent on the specific caught stealing percentage for the runner. To make a long story short, we (the Tigers) do not have a baserunner currently that is stealing efficently enough to justify the attempt.

Where the other side of the argument gets interesting is when psychological elemnts come into play. The suicide squeeze, as a percentage play, is absolutely ridiculous. Suppose that you have a ragged, but close game (1 to 0 in the sixth). The squeeze may very well shake things up and give you a way to get into your opponent's mind, simply because the improbable has been attempted. In such circumstances there are times when the threat becomes stronger than the execution of the threat after the improbable has been attempted, not to mention a possible mental edge that may very well make your oppenent error.

Managing involves giving your team a way to win. Sometimes getting someone off thier game is a way to do that.

In short, their remains a tension between the measured versus mind game approach and both , when used together PROPERLY, may actually enhance the prospect of winning.

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Originally posted by HeyAbbott

In short, their remains a tension between the measured versus mind game approach and both , when used together PROPERLY, may actually enhance the prospect of winning.

Good post. You should be able to maximize your chances for success by understanding both the stats and the intangibles. I'd like to see more discussion on how the two can complement each other rather than how one is better than the other. As noted in QS's signature, statistical models are very useful but never completely correct. When the model doesn't work, why doesn't it work ? That's when you have to step away from stats and consider immeasurable things (which may actually become measurable once you identify them).

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You want a good book about baseball's other side, try the Thinking Fans Guide to Baseball. It's pretty good, too.

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Good post. You should be able to maximize your chances for success by understanding both the stats and the intangibles. I'd like to see more discussion on how the two can complement each other rather than how one is better than the other.

Just synthesize our arguments.

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Originally posted by jake

Just synthesize our arguments.

That's what I try to do. QS tries to do that too. The problem is everyone knows we lean sabermetric even when we try to be (pretend to be ?) in the middle. :classic:

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