Game 30, Mariners at White Sox

Dave · May 4, 2006 at 10:54 am · Filed Under Mariners 

Happy Felix Day.

Lawton playing center field again. Good thing Felix is all ground balls, all the time.

Contreras is due for a shallacking. His ERA doesn’t come close to matching his performance so far.


156 Responses to “Game 30, Mariners at White Sox”

  1. BelaXadux on May 4th, 2006 11:59 pm

    MikeQ, I’m with you: Some guys consistently exceed their projections as indicated in models drawn from aggregates. I think that this is a function of individual-specific talent. I think these talents are diverse rather than of a single nature, and furthermore are very difficult to isolate within aggregate statistical totals, or even aggregate rates. There have been ‘studies’ done, but I don’t think that the quality of data needed for real analysis on this issue is available, yet, if ever, and so the studies fail to isolate _individual-specific_ effects.

    One would need to take Contreras’ starts, know what pitch was called, see where it was thrown, get a rating on the effectiveness of execution, see the result, and get a rating on the effectiveness of the result, and ideally get all that on video. Ideally, one would also want to control for the hitters, not simply handedness, but what kind of hitters they are, what kind of pitches they can handle, etc.; real scouting report kind of controls. At the end of that, one might conclude, just as a for instance, that a broad class of hitters, mostly RHers, can’t lift his forkball if he executes with it, leading to a weak ball in play, and furthermore that Jose throws the fork-er on different counts with men on base which crosses up the batters even more. —And even then, one would only have an explanation which fits ONE individual, an explanation which _no other player_ can reproduce since they can’t execute his fork-er. So the overall predictive models continue to predict perfectly well for everyone except him. His result is ‘unpredict-able’ by that model, which is not to say that it is either unexpected or chance.

    In this context, it should be no surprise that it’s far, far more difficult for hitters to produce individual-specific effects: the pitcher knows what he wants to thrown, and has a chance to execute, but the hitter has to make the best of what he gets, and in real time.

    However, I would also not be surprised if _defensive player_ can also produce small, individual-specific skews, not to the extent of pitchers, but real ones. Some guys are just BETTER at positioning, for example. And so on.

  2. bmanuw on May 5th, 2006 12:57 am


  3. gwo on May 5th, 2006 2:18 am

    Contreras is due for a shallacking. His ERA doesn’t come close to matching his performance so far.

    hey! look! The Gambler’s fallacy.

    “This coin has tossed tails four times! It’s due a head!”

    Dave, please, please, please, take just one statistics/probability course.

  4. amarshal2 on May 5th, 2006 6:56 am


    We’re all just idiot fan boys arguing for ERA, aren’t we?

  5. Ralph Malph on May 5th, 2006 9:29 am

    Did Dave say:

    “This coin has tossed tails four times! It’s due a head!”

    or did he say:

    “This coin has tossed tails four times! Don’t conclude from that that it is a coin likely to keep throwing tails! Rather I predict that there is a 50-50 chance for it to throw a head this time! Wouldn’t it be nice if it threw a head against the Mariners today?”

  6. gwo on May 6th, 2006 1:04 am

    Ralph : It’s written there above. I even quoted it: “Contreras is due for a shallacking.”

    That’s not “Contreras is not as good as he appears”, it’s not “Contreras has been lucky, and will regress to the mean”, its’ “Due a shellacking”. It’s absolutely the Gambler’s Fallacy writ large in its purest form.

    The give away is “due”. In systems with no memory, there is no concept of “due”. He’s as likely to be exceptionally good again (lucky), as he is to be exceptionally bad (unlucky). Fate will not hand out a shellacking, just because it previously handed out a few excellent starts.

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