Your verification ID is: guDlT7MCuIOFFHSbB3jPFN5QLaQ Big Computing: In Baseball too much data is never enough

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

In Baseball too much data is never enough

A couple of weeks ago I ran across a post for a intern position at TrackMan which uses information of ball flight to improve performance. They have been very successful in golf. In fact I tried one of their units out over the winter. This job post was more interesting to me because it was looking for an analytic intern for baseball. My first reaction was just what baseball needs more data points in a hulking cloud of data.  Bill James and the Sabermatrics guys have already culled and studied the baseball stats to death even throwing out some stats as irrelavent and creating some others that are better predictors of results.

Then I realized the error of my ways. TrackMan is looking to enrich the result data with physical data. So not just if the ball was a strike or hit or even if it was a fast ball or a curve ball, but what was its speed, location and spin at points along its trajectory from mound to plate. This is very cool. In her talk at the NYC Rusers group Amanda Cox presents a heat map of Rivera's pitches crossing the plate versus other pitchers which was a simple piece of the total pitch but explains why Rivera was better in a very clear way (22:00). I believe this has the potential to change the way pitchers pitch and batters hit.


  1. Christian Louboutin

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