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Thread: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

  1. #106
    Score Early, Score Often gonelong's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny Footstool View Post
    Well, the game is steeped in history, especially historical statistics (much more so than tennis). Those statisitics were influenced by human umpires. Take the human umpires out of the equation, and suddenly statistics will start to change. We'll have ushered in a new era, sure, but we'll also have burned a bridge in terms of the history of the game.
    I don't think it would alter stats any moreso than integrating baseball, introducing a DH, or lowering the mound. I suspect the players would adapt pretty quickly to a more standard strike-zone.

    I kind of see this like comparing live music to a digitally mastered recording. Sure, you can use technology to remove all the fret buzzes and missed notes, but some of us actually like the idea that there's a human performing who can potentially make a mistake.
    IMO thats a great argument for not replacing the players with robots, but it doesn't do much to sway me on the umpires.

    GL
    Last edited by gonelong; 09-11-2007 at 11:43 PM.

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  3. #107
    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny Footstool View Post
    I kind of see this like comparing live music to a digitally mastered recording. Sure, you can use technology to remove all the fret buzzes and missed notes, but some of us actually like the idea that there's a human performing who can potentially make a mistake.
    I'd compare it to sticking to cassettes instead of CDs because something about analogue is more real than digital.

    The game is the band, the umpires are simply the thing which let you hear the band. You might as well get as good as quality a recording as possible, so that you detract from the quality of the band itself.

    Sure, some people will have some emotional attachment to their cassettes (or 45s or 8 tracks), but that doesn't mean it's better.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

  4. #108
    post hype sleeper cincinnati chili's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by RFS62 View Post
    Let me tell you, all the same arguments and concerns were voiced ad infinitum when tennis first went to their system. Pretty much a carbon copy of this debate. And since they've gone all in, the technology has evolved into something incredible, far superior to the old "totally human" system.

    It's a simple fact that humans can't possible judge the movement of a hurtling sphere, spinning and curving at speeds up to 100 mph, and detect it's position in space with near 100% certainty and precision.

    The idea that umpires are right as much as they are is a tremendous testimony to their incredible skill and talent.

    Doesn't matter. We've got a better system, and it's only going to improve. It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when the change takes place.

    And just like tennis, there will be a staunch group of traditionalists who think the game will somehow be diminished by adding this technology.

    They're wrong. The game will be made better. The game is what's important here, not the ego of the umpires union.

    Nothing is bigger than the game. No person, no union, no group, no tradition.

    The prime directive of all umpires is to get the call right. Physician, heal thyself.
    Great post here and throughout this thread.

    It occurred to me that before they introduce this in the major leagues, they could do a trial run at Triple A or the World Baseball classic or something. That would allow them to work out the kinks.

    I'm too lazy to look it up, but I'm guessing Cyclops didn't debut at Wimbledon or the U.S. Open.
    ". . . acquiring J. Blanton from Oakland for, apparently, Bailey/Cueto, Votto and a lesser prospect. I do it in a second . . . The Reds' equation this year is simple: Make Matt Belisle your #3 starter . . . trade for Blanton, win 85 or more, be in the mix all summer." - Paul Daugherty, Feb. 8, 2008

  5. #109
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by oneupper View Post
    While I respect the above opinions, there is something I don't get..

    Why isn't it like excel vs. green sheets or
    Cars vs. Horse drawn buggies or
    Calculators vs slide rules or
    whatever technical advance has been made..

    There is a task at hand:. To determine if a sphere, traveling at high speeds has traversed a certain physical space.

    Humans have performed this task, since basically they were best and only alternative.
    They were trained and selected (eyesight)...

    Lets face it...its not easy. Given the task, umps do a pretty decent job.

    We now have the option of machines that could perform this task with a much higher degree of accuracy.

    I have a hard time thinking why we shouldn't consider it.
    It's a GAME.
    This is the time. The real Reds organization is back.

  6. #110
    Churlish Johnny Footstool's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    I'd compare it to sticking to cassettes instead of CDs because something about analogue is more real than digital.

    The game is the band, the umpires are simply the thing which let you hear the band. You might as well get as good as quality a recording as possible, so that you detract from the quality of the band itself.

    Sure, some people will have some emotional attachment to their cassettes (or 45s or 8 tracks), but that doesn't mean it's better.
    Cassettes were digitally mastered, too.

    A more apt comparison is live human performance vs. processed performance. Like seeing a play versus seeing a filmed version of the play.

    And yes, the players are the one's whose performance is the most interesting by far. But the umpires, especially the home plate umpire, also perform. I like the fact that they can potentially screw up. It adds drama to the game.
    "I prefer books and movies where the conflict isn't of the extreme cannibal apocalypse variety I guess." Redsfaithful

  7. #111
    Churlish Johnny Footstool's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by Cedric View Post
    It's a GAME.
    A-friggin'-men!
    "I prefer books and movies where the conflict isn't of the extreme cannibal apocalypse variety I guess." Redsfaithful

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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by RFS62 View Post
    I want Hal. He may lock me outside the pod doors every now and then, but I'll bet he doesn't give Glavine that call six inches outside and low just because he's Glavine.
    We'll burn that bridge when we get to it.

  9. #113
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    "I'm afraid I can't do that, Tom."

  10. #114
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    It's a game where millions of dollars are on the line. It's a game that will suffer if the fans believe that randomness or externalities determine the outcome.

    I'm not advocating this technology for high school tournaments.
    ". . . acquiring J. Blanton from Oakland for, apparently, Bailey/Cueto, Votto and a lesser prospect. I do it in a second . . . The Reds' equation this year is simple: Make Matt Belisle your #3 starter . . . trade for Blanton, win 85 or more, be in the mix all summer." - Paul Daugherty, Feb. 8, 2008

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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by cincinnati chili View Post
    It's a game that will suffer if the fans believe that randomness or externalities determine the outcome.
    Like the wind or the rain? Or a pebble in the grass that causes a bad hop? Or a freak injury to a star player? Or a starting pitcher that had too much to drink the night before?

    Randomness and externalities can not be eliminated from baseball.
    When all is said and done more is said than done.

  12. #116
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by dabvu2498 View Post
    Like the wind or the rain? Or a pebble in the grass that causes a bad hop? Or a freak injury to a star player? Or a starting pitcher that had too much to drink the night before?

    Randomness and externalities can not be eliminated from baseball.
    Good point. Arbitrariness is the word I should have used.
    ". . . acquiring J. Blanton from Oakland for, apparently, Bailey/Cueto, Votto and a lesser prospect. I do it in a second . . . The Reds' equation this year is simple: Make Matt Belisle your #3 starter . . . trade for Blanton, win 85 or more, be in the mix all summer." - Paul Daugherty, Feb. 8, 2008

  13. #117
    Harry Chiti Fan registerthis's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by cincinnati chili View Post
    It's a game where millions of dollars are on the line. It's a game that will suffer if the fans believe that randomness or externalities determine the outcome.
    But, as others point out ad nauseum here, we've accepted the fact that umpires will miss a goodly number of calls throughout any given game. It's just the way the game is, the argument goes. So why would the game suffer more under a system that would undoubtedly be an improvement?

    There will unquesitonably be a PR sell required by baseball to convince the general public--if and when such a system is introduced--that it is indeed an improvement. But beyond that, I don't see why the game would "suffer" any more than it did when the DH was introduced, baseball was integrated, or any of the othger myriad changes the sport has gone through since its inception. Seems like quite the natural progression to me.
    We'll burn that bridge when we get to it.

  14. #118
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by Cedric View Post
    It's a GAME.
    ... and so?

    If I'm playing gin rummy I like to know there's the proper 52 cards in the deck. I wouldn't take kindly to it if someone swapped out the one-eyed jacks for two extra suicide kings.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    Quote Originally Posted by cincinnati chili View Post
    Good point. Arbitrariness is the word I should have used.
    I still think there will be an issue of arbitrariness.

    No matter how right MLB could make this system, there will still be complaints. Maybe they would be valid, maybe not. I just don't see a way to make the umpiring of a game "perfect" in the eyes of players, management, coaches or fans.

    Would such a system make the calling of the game better? Dunno.

    But it's certainly something I'd want hard evidence of, through at least a couple years of testing at the minor league level.
    When all is said and done more is said than done.

  16. #120
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    Re: Neyer: Computers calling Balls and Strikes!

    I'm surprised this has become an idealogical battleground. I can definitely respect the argument that coping with the umpire is part of a being a ballplayer, but it's 62's argument that would sway me. I've always been bothered by the idea that veterans get calls that rookies don't, and that pitchers like Glavine and Maddux have "earned" a big strike zone.


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