Michael Salfino, whose team and player performance analysis has appeared in nationwide publications, lends his expertise to Comcast SportsNet. [Link]
One of the many projects sitting on the Beerleaguer back burner is to pay a visit to Baseball Think Factory’s 2008 ZiPS projections, computer-based data used to calculate and predict future performance. To meet our stathead quota, we did this last year. There are two reasons why it hasn't been revisited: not enough time, and not enough understanding of how these systems work. Amazingly, I’m constantly asked to contribute to out-of-comfort-zone projects like the Hardball Times Annual. It’s assumed that because I’m young, on the Web, and host a popular blog that I’m juiced in to the latest statistical breakthroughs. The truth is, I’m from the old school and prefer naked eye observation. I reach for advanced data when I need to. That’s how I prefer to write Beerleaguer most of the time. As useful as they are, and as much as I believe in their principles, college-level stats, quite simply, aren’t my style.
Ironically, rebelling against these disciplines makes you pretty uncool in cyberspace, where guys like Michael Salfino get all the chicks. Salfino lent his data-driven eye to Comcast for an excellent summary of how three major projection systems – PECOTA, Bill James, ZiPS – forecast the starting lineup. Each capsule contains stuff that hasn't been covered here. It’s worth a read, just to find out how in the world someone from the new school has nothing but love for Pedro Feliz.
Game chat: Kyle Kendrick takes the hill when the Phillies take on the Reds today at 1:05 p.m. in Sarasota.