Feb 17, 2008

baseball nerdliness

1. The Mariners are being taken over by French-Canadian pitchers.
"He didn't really recognize me, so I said, 'Hey, I'm Phillippe.' And he was like, 'Oh, you're Aumont.' And then we just started talking French to each other."

That night, Aumont said, the pair went out to a nearby restaurant and "got to know each other a little bit better."
Not that it's such a bad thing.

2. They'll be under the guidance of Mel Stottlemyre and Norm Charlton.
Last year, the Seattle pitching staff ranked in the bottom third among MLB clubs in ERA, strikeouts and quality starts, and it surrendered far too many two-strike hits for McLaren's liking. When Stottlemyre and Charlton sat down in the offseason and discussed priorities, two things immediately came to mind. They wanted their pitchers to focus on: (1) throwing strike one and (2) pitching inside.
For the sake of cosmic irony, I'm hoping we pitch our way past the Yankees into the World Series.

3. Tom Glavine and John Smoltz, together again.
But in the first-base dugout at Disney, Tom Glavine found precisely one camera waiting for him (manned by ESPN.com's own intrepid Anthony Spadacenta) -- and just about zero representatives of the non-Georgia portion of our nation's media.

Sheesh, in New York, the beer vendors draw bigger media hordes than this.

But even though Glavine turns 42 years old in five weeks, even though his five-year stay in New York ended badly, his return to Atlanta deserves more attention than it got.
For the sake of cosmic irony, I'm hoping they pitch their way past the Mets into the World Series. I won't even mind if they win.

4. Robo-scouts will one day dominate sabermetrics.
Feeding high-resolution images of the exact location of every ball hit into the field and the play resulting from each ball into a computer model, Shane Jensen of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia has evaluated the defensive fielding performance of all major league baseball players relative to the league average.
Eventually the human interpretive part--the part that tends to screw things up--will be entirely passé. Only then will it be safe to wager on sports.

1 comment:

TeacherRefPoet said...

No--you've got that last part wrong. Once everybody has the same information, wagering on sports will again be unsafe. But if you can buddy up with this guy at Penn and get his information before the guys in Vegas have it...well, that's the best possible time to bet on sports.