Wednesday, June 30, 2010

WNST: Math is Hard

OK, so I guess I was the WNST "Oriole Apologist of the Day" on Monday. Let's see what Glenn Clark had to say about it:

Congratulations to our “Apologist of the Morning”, as selected by “The Great Arbitrator” Drew Forrester. “Heath” from Dempsey’s Army is no stranger to the AOTM-but this morning he received the award for citing Fangraphs in opining that Juan Samuel was wrong for trying to have Matt Wieters bunt last week. I don’t often credit Drew for being funny, but labeling a group of people as “Fangraph-sexuals” was pretty damn humorous.

Normally, I wouldn't mention this at all but I had to address a couple of things.
I use stats in a lot of my posts. This is not a purely analytic baseball but I am literate in advanced baseball stats and use them when warranted. I try not to overwhelm with every new stat that comes down the pike but I will incorporate newer stats that I feel are relevant. For example, I am starting to work in wOBA into the mix while still using OPS and "slash lines" as points of reference.
Thus, you're going to find stats on many of my posts on this site. They are not scary. And if you are interested in learning more about them, they are readily available from,, and, yes, And I think that while stats do not tell the whole story, they tell you a lot and, these days, they tell you more than they ever have before.
I did not hear Drew's show so I have to address Glenn's summation; is the leading source for advanced baseball statistics anywhere. I write a blog about a baseball team. I am never going to apologize for using the best sources of baseball knowledge when formulating my posts. I am also not going to bother defending "sabermetrics" and their validity in baseball analysis. That would be redundant. And if Drew wants to make unfunny, thinly-veiled homophobic references to try to discredit "sabermetrics" or readers of, well, that's pretty much par for the course.
But the supreme irony is this; on the same morning I was reportedly mocked for utilizing a site that provides advanced baseball statistics, Drew had Joe Sheehan on to talk baseball. You know, the Joe Sheehan from Baseball Prospectus! A guy whose columns on BP routinely contained references to EqA, VOPR, EQR, SNLVAR and PECOTA projections, stats far less known to baseball fans because you can't access them without a subscription! Really? The very same morning you paint me as a flouncy stat dweeb you have one of the founders of Baseball Prospectus on your show?
So Drew either has no self-awareness whatsoever or is disingenuous beyond words. I'll go with the latter. (Drew/Glenn: "Latter" means the last thing I said...)
But while we're at it, I wanted to address a couple things from this...
On the Oriole blogs:
I read them all - casually - just about every day, and I’m amazed at how transparent most of them are these days. They’re nothing more than a cheerleading forum. Rah, rah, rah. And on the outside chance something happens that deserves an unquestionable volley of criticism, most of the bloggers throw the word “but” in there about 15 times. ”I’ll point out the wrong…but I have to follow it up with something else that takes the team off the hook a little bit.”
Right. God forbid you write ONE piece where you actually take the team to task for something and then leave it at that.

Well, that shows that you DON"T really read the blogs on a regular basis. There are plenty of critical posts on a lot of the Oriole blogs. Especially on Camden Chat, the one Drew claims to read the most. Now, perhaps they are not 100% negative ALL the time (some other media outlet has cornered the market on that), but there is a fair amount of criticism in the Oriole blogosphere but it contains two things absent at WNST; nuance and a sense of perspective. Oh, and no froth from the mouth. It's no wonder they don't understand it.

Back to my blog yesterday that I wrote at concerning Free The Birds.
 Here, for your review, is the front page of Camden Chat from Tuesday, May 11. You’ll notice 16 different topics or stories under “Bird Droppings”. Heck, there’s even info in there about John Smoltz trying to qualify for the U.S. Open golf championship. That’s interesting...

What DON’T you notice?

Yep. My blog from Monday about Free The Birds is nowhere to be found...
However…Tuesday rolls around and the powers-that-be (and frankly, I don’t know who makes the front-page decisions and never asked Stacey) list 16 different stories about the baseball team but none of them were worthy of being replaced by my piece on Free The Birds.
And that’s what you get when you deal with bloggers. Afraid to let “the other side” have their say. Because if you do that - some folks who read the piece might even think, “hmmm…that’s a valid point or two.”

WAAAAAHHHHHH!!!! They didn't like to my post! Wah, wah wah...

Honestly? You can't possibly be that thin-skinned.

I write several posts a week. If I'm lucky, I may get a link from Camden Chat once every couple of weeks. But that's OK. Why? Because if my post is worth linking to, by definition, someone will link to it. I'm not sure how or why anyone would feel slighted if Camden Chat or any of the other blogs linked to them or not. It's hardly personal.

But WNST made it personal when they accused Stacey and crew of excluding them because they didn't want Drew ("the other side") to have his say. It's infantile and insulting.

I don't know why Stacy no longer appears on WNST but I would imagine it has less to do with their viewpoints and more to do with the fact that they are colossal babies.

When the guy at who “doesn’t like the team” writes a piece and beats them up for their stupid tickets and media relations policies, that doesn’t get linked or posted at Camden Chat or ANY OTHER SITE IN TOWN (of course).

Again, Drew obviously doesn't regularly read the blogs. WNST is and has been linked to by several blogs. Even with all the barbs I've thrown at WNST and Nestor over the years, I have linked to his stories and opinions that I actually agree with.

So I guess I have nothing else to say except that I wear their scorn as a badge of honor.

OK, resume party....

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