Author Topic: Ben Goessling live chat - Feb 23, 2010 (Completed)  (Read 19153 times)

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Online JCA-CrystalCity

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  • Platoon - not just a movie, a baseball obsession
Love the question. Because of the accounting background, I'm a fair bit more comfortable with numbers than a lot of reporters, many of whom viewed journalism school as the promised land where math's reign of terror held no sway. :-) So I enjoy the sabermetrics stuff, and try to use as much of it as I can in my reporting. The problems I have with it are these: Some of the stats aren't commonly agreed upon yet, and some, like zone rating, have a few subjective elements to them. And as reporters, we still have to cater some of our stuff to the average fan, who doesn't know OPS from UPS. The challenge becomes writing about it in a way that bridges the gap from the baseball-savvy people we cover to the fans who read our stuff. You'll see me write about OBP and OPS quite often, and I'll probably write more about VORP and WARP this year than I have in the past. You have to balance some of it out, though.

Ben - Thank you for taking this question.  Even if a stat captures the essence of a pitcher or hitter (velocity, % first strike, contact type, etc...), it is only useful in writing or video if it can be understood by those who you communicate it to.  I can see that being thrown back at me here :)