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Thread: Which teams are most analytical?

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    Which teams are most analytical?

    The relative success of the (presumably analytical) Athletics and the (presumably non-analytical) Reds came up in the Oswalt thread, and this article over at Fangraphs seemed relevant to that discussion. Rather than clutter up the Oswalt conversation, however, I thought I'd start a new thread for this topic.

    A few thoughts on the article:

    Recent World Series winners have come from all three tiers in the article, so it seems an analytical style, an old school style, or a mix can achieve success.

    It's interesting to see teams like the Astros and Cubs in the highly analytical category. They've had some serious runs of futility lately, and so I wonder if they've been driven to a new, analytical style by their recent failures, or if they've simply been executing an analytical approach poorly the last couple years.

    The Reds are listed as an "in between" organization at the moment. I'd like to think the Reds could become a more analytical team in the future, but I'm not sure how likely that is with the current management. I'm curious to hear what other posters think about Jocketty's tendency or willingness to keep up with analytical development in baseball.

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    Score Early, Score Often gonelong's Avatar
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    Re: Which teams are most analytical?

    Quote Originally Posted by LegallyMinded View Post
    The Reds are listed as an "in between" organization at the moment. I'd like to think the Reds could become a more analytical team in the future, but I'm not sure how likely that is with the current management. I'm curious to hear what other posters think about Jocketty's tendency or willingness to keep up with analytical development in baseball.
    Short answer: I think the Reds will adopt very slowly.

    Tangent Answer:
    Analysis of any kind is just a tool. Visual analysis, statistical analysis, brain mapping, ... whatever. They are all just tools in the toolbox. Some organizations will understand how to use some of the tools better than others. Others will sometimes use good tools, but apply them in the wrong areas (a saw is great for making cuts, but a poor tool for driving in nails).

    Some guys can look at a pile of wood and build a dresser from scratch. Some guys do better if they have engineer level designs.

    I am not worried about WJ not having engineer level designs, he can look at the pile of lumber and make whatever he wants. I'm ok with that.

    The biggest bang-for-the-buck in statistical analysis was a decade ago. Now that most teams are very serious about it there may not be much value to be gained beyond basic or mid-level analysis.

    GL

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    Start the Reactor! *BaseClogger*'s Avatar
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    Re: Which teams are most analytical?

    Quote Originally Posted by LegallyMinded View Post
    It's interesting to see teams like the Astros and Cubs in the highly analytical category. They've had some serious runs of futility lately, and so I wonder if they've been driven to a new, analytical style by their recent failures, or if they've simply been executing an analytical approach poorly the last couple years.
    Both teams have recently become "highly analytical" with the hiring of new GMs...
    "On-base percentage is great if you can score runs and do something with that on-base percentage," Baker said. "Clogging up the bases isn't that great to me."

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    Charlie Brown All-Star IslandRed's Avatar
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    Re: Which teams are most analytical?

    Quote Originally Posted by gonelong View Post
    The biggest bang-for-the-buck in statistical analysis was a decade ago. Now that most teams are very serious about it there may not be much value to be gained beyond basic or mid-level analysis.
    There's some truth to that, to the extent we're talking about discovering new universal truths.

    But as teams get better at crunching Hit f/x and Pitch f/x data, I think there are localized gains to be made, both in evaluating your own players and looking for weaknesses in other teams. Pitching evaluation has room to grow now. By being able to track the actual quality of the pitch thrown, it's possible to separate input/process from output/outcome -- and move beyond just "what happened" into the realm of "why." It's easier than ever to figure out exactly what a hitter's weakness is and attack it. Hitters can know exactly how they're being attacked. And defensive evaluation is still a soft science.
    Not all who wander are lost

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    Re: Which teams are most analytical?

    The biggest issue lies in realm of the scouting and development branch of the organization. Teams cannot continue to allow player salaries to escalate. And the main negative about the Reds' current off-season is that every other off season for years to come will be judged by what has been down this year. And the charge will be made every year that unless the team is "wheelin' and dealin'" then they aren't trying.

    The scouting and development has to get better. And if it can be improved using new fangled stats and computer generated analysis models, then the Reds' FO owe it to themselves to be the best they can be.

    The thing is, if the average fan can interpret data charts on Fangraphs, and can read PECOTA projections on Baseball Prospectus, then you would hope someone in the Reds' FO has the assignment to attempt to compile the information into a usable format. Personally, I don't care if WJ is a 100% sabermetric GM. I just hope he at least considers the information before he makes his decisions.
    Opinions are like belly buttons. Everybody has one, and they don't want someone else's shoved into their face.

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    Flash the leather! _Sir_Charles_'s Avatar
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    Re: Which teams are most analytical?

    Quote Originally Posted by LegallyMinded View Post
    The relative success of the (presumably analytical) Athletics and the (presumably non-analytical) Reds came up in the Oswalt thread, and this article over at Fangraphs seemed relevant to that discussion. Rather than clutter up the Oswalt conversation, however, I thought I'd start a new thread for this topic.

    A few thoughts on the article:

    Recent World Series winners have come from all three tiers in the article, so it seems an analytical style, an old school style, or a mix can achieve success.

    It's interesting to see teams like the Astros and Cubs in the highly analytical category. They've had some serious runs of futility lately, and so I wonder if they've been driven to a new, analytical style by their recent failures, or if they've simply been executing an analytical approach poorly the last couple years.

    The Reds are listed as an "in between" organization at the moment. I'd like to think the Reds could become a more analytical team in the future, but I'm not sure how likely that is with the current management. I'm curious to hear what other posters think about Jocketty's tendency or willingness to keep up with analytical development in baseball.
    Definitely new for both clubs. The Astros just recently hired some stat analyzer dude (yeah, that's the technical title I'm sure *grin*). And the Cubs just brought in Epstien who I think was known for that somewhat.
    2014 predictions:
    99-63 WS champs (Cards take 2nd WC, Mil 3rd, Pit 4th, Chi 5th)
    Bruce/Votto neck and neck MVP race (neither takes it)
    Bailey CYA winner
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    Member MikeThierry's Avatar
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    Re: Which teams are most analytical?

    Definitely new for both clubs. The Astros just recently hired some stat analyzer dude (yeah, that's the technical title I'm sure *grin*). And the Cubs just brought in Epstien who I think was known for that somewhat.
    Jeff Lunow is a big sabermetrics proponent. I think this was one of the reasons why he was hired by the Cardinals to begin with. Under Lunow, they have done an excellent job in rebuilding the minor league system. It's one of the reasons why the Astros hired Lunow.

    Right now, I would label the Cardinals more on the sabermetrics side of things than in between. One of the reasons why the Cards were kind of in the middle was because of Tony LaRussa. LaRussa had probably the most power of any manager in baseball and would have more play than John Mozeliak at times. Now that he is gone, Mozeliak will have more control over the club. I get a feeling he wants to move the organization into an even more sabermetrics side of things.

    As far as Walt is concerned, it's hard for me to tell where he is. There are times where he seems to take the new stats into account but he also has that old school side of him. He is probably a mixture of both.
    Last edited by MikeThierry; 02-10-2012 at 12:39 PM.
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