I don't really delve into that sort of stuff (historical research). All of my work is pragmatic, utilitarian, and relates to modern baseball.vance wrote:Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions.
1. Based on the work you have done, could you rank the top five hitters of all time? How about top five pitchers?
Ranking top hitters and pitchers, especially going back many years, is problematic because the context from era to era and sometimes even from year to year can change so dramatically. Unless one can account for context, those "all-time lists" based on any kind of statistics, even saber ones, are going to be failry meaningless.
Good question. First of all, there were teams that used sabermetricians (or whatever they were called back then), like Chadwick and Roth, way back when. Even 20 years ago, a few teams experimented with using analysts and sabermetricians, like Mike Gimbel and Craig Wright.2. I know when the SABR revolution first began, very few of the researchers, writers and thinkers were a part of the baseball establishment. Because of that most all of the cutting edge work was published and available to the masses. That leads me to this question: How much of your research, if any, are you unable to publish because it falls under the domain of your work with the Cardinals?
You are right in that sabermetrics is a field where most of the work was and is available to everyone, mostly via the internet, and to some extent via printed material (books, journal articles, etc.). Teams could improve dramatically without ever hiring an analyst or sabermetrician, just by scouring the internet for sabermetric material, especially the many good player projection databases available for free or for a small fee.
I don't keep secret a whole lot of stuff. Most of my research is freely available or is in our book, The Book. Sure, my projection databases and UZR numbers are largely propietary, but the methodology is freely available and other people do essentially the same work.