FanPost

The Religion of Prediction


Tim Marchman has an interesting column/bookreview in today's Wall Street Journal online, titled The Religion of Prediction (sorry, no link).  In it he discusses three recent books on sabremetrics, which he calls, "the province of cranks and eccentrics,"

"constantly devising systems to bring all knowledge into one orbit, in service of an idea of universal order (operating) on the faith that reality will, under careful enough scrutiny, turn out to operate under fixed percentages, and that these will, if discovered, allow you to see into the future."

 

Note the quotation marks, his words, not mine.

 

This is a subject far beyond my capacity to evaluate, but it's an interesting discussion. As they say, read the whole thing.

 

Marchman is reviewing three recent books:  Jonah Keri's "The Extra 2%"  dealing with the Tampa Bay Rays, Frederick Taylor's " The Runmakers: A New Way to Rate Baseball Players,"  and Michael Humphrey's "Wizardry: Baseball's All-Time Greatest Fielders Revealed."  Marchman seems to prefer the latter title, and the burden of his argument seems to be that  "technology," referring to Pitch f/x and the developing Field f/x, "is making the mining of traditional baseball statistics for practical insights obsolete -- everybody will have the same information."  Replacing data mining, he seems to be saying, will be technology such as camera analysis of Pitchers' biomechanics to predict, and hopefully forestall through proper training and instruction, the possibility of the next Steven Strasburg (or Brad Lincoln) blowing out his arm.

 

Pirates note:  Taylor's book calls Glenn Wright, Pirates and Dodgers shortstop of the 20s and 30s one of the 10 best hitting shortstops of all time.   All you "cranks and eccentrics'"  Enjoy!

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of the managing editor (Charlie) or SB Nation. FanPosts are written by Bucs Dugout readers.

SB Nation Featured Video
X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bucs Dugout

You must be a member of Bucs Dugout to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bucs Dugout. You should read them.

Join Bucs Dugout

You must be a member of Bucs Dugout to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bucs Dugout. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker