Most baseball fans already know — the Nationals are in first place in the NL East, but they’re going to shut down ace Stephen Strasburg after 180 innings to protect his young arm. Strasburg had Tommy John surgery two years ago, and the Nationals aren’t taking any chances. I don’t necessarily think he should go over 180 innings (I’m no doctor), but why are the Nationals doing it this way? He’s going to hit doomsday just before the season finishes and the playoffs begin. Sorry fans, sorry players, your first place team is going to be shorthanded when it counts.
In a similar situation, the White Sox have found ways to give Chris Sale extra rest throughout the season. Why not do that or even use a six man rotation? GM Mike Rizzo has favored a regular schedule for Strasburg on the advice of various medical experts. A six man rotation would be pretty regular. I’m not the first to suggest this — I just want to highlight how dumb this decision was. The Nationals have never been to the playoffs! They might miss their shot at a World Series because of this.
In celebration of the Nationals strategy, poll your friends/office mates and share the dumbest sports decision(s) that you can think of in the comments below. “Trading Babe Ruth” is a good start but not very original.
Posted in Baseball, Common Sense
Tagged 180 innings Strasburg, Chicago White Sox, Chris Sale, innings limit stupid, National, National League East, Nationals dumb, Nationals shouldn't shut down Strasburg, six man rotation, Stephen Strasburg, Strasburg innings limit, Strasburg playoffs, Strasburg Sale, Strasburg shut down stupid, Tommy John surgery, Washington Nationals, White Sox, why are the Nationals shutting down Strasburg, World Series
Incredibly, the Blue Jackets turned them down! I thought the Redskins trade for the second pick in the NFL draft (used to select Robert Griffin III) was crazy. The Islanders offered the fourth pick along with six other picks. How could the Blue Jackets — who are terrible — refuse the chance to collect six extra prospects? Doing so would give them trade assets and limit their risk exposure substantially. Even if their second pick (highly regarded defenseman Ryan Murray) works out, how can he possibly be worth more than seven draft-worthy players, including the fourth overall pick?
As in the NFL, I was shocked by the value the Blue Jackets and Islanders placed on the second pick. There’s so much risk involved with top draft picks. Given the price teams are willing to pay, why not trade them for known quantities (current NHLers) or multiple picks slightly lower down? I made this same argument about the first pick in the NFL draft this year. Just because Andrew Luck is “the best quarterback prospect since Peyton Manning” (or whoever) doesn’t mean the Colts should have drafted him. The value of that pick was astronomical precisely because Andrew Luck is considered to be a sure thing, when we all know there’s no such thing as a “sure thing” in a sports draft.
Edit: At least the Bobcats have realized that they should trade the second pick this year. Even if they had the first pick (which they surely would keep), I would suggest that they at least check Anthony Davis’s market value.
Posted in Basketball, Common Sense, Football, Hockey, Trades/Free Agency
Tagged Andrew Luck, Anthony Davis, Blue Jackets, Blue Jackets dumb, Blue Jackets Islanders draft trade, Blue Jackets Ryan Murray, Blue Jackets should have traded second pick, Blue Jackets turn down trade, Bobcats trade second pick, Charlotte Bobcats, Colts should have traded Andrew Luck, Colts should have traded first pick, Columbus Blue Jackets, Indianapolis Colts, Islanders trade every pick, Islanders trade whole draft, National Hockey League, New York Islanders, NFL, Peyton Manning, Redskins gave up too much for Robert Griffin, Redskins trade, Robert Griffin III, Robert Griffin trade dumb, Ryan Murray, top draft picks overrated, top draft picks risky, Washington Redskins
Here it comes – out of nowhere, the NFL decided to release the “all 22” video for every game. Clearly, the NFL read my petition a few months ago and decided it was time for action. As evidenced in the linked article, many insiders are deathly afraid that people will analyze the all 22 tape incorrectly, since accurate analysis requires knowledge of the play call (or a good guess) as well as keen observation and football acumen. The obvious response to this is, “In what sport do observers correctly analyze the proceedings?” There will always be errors in layman analysis. Meanwhile, releasing the all 22 will allow serious fans to actually see the entire game, which has tremendous value of its own.
Posted in Commentary, Common Sense, Football
Tagged all 22, all 22 camera, all 22 petition, all 22 released, all 22 tape, all 22 video, football, National Football League, NFL, NFL all 22, NFL releases all 22, Sports
I’ve been watching my fair share of basketball during the playoffs — very exciting, compelling series so far, despite the injuries. However, I have a few questions:
- Why do you have to hand the ball to the ref before you throw it in? Wouldn’t it be much more exciting to let players throw it in as soon as they can get a ball, like a soccer throw in? Teams are allowed to do this after a made basket already. Add another commercial break to balance out the faster pace if that’s what it takes.
- Why can you only draw a charge if you stay on the ground and fall over? The offensive player can draw a foul while jumping and keeping his feet, why not the defense? If the defender jumps, the best case is a no call. Referees have a big say at the end of basketball games, but it’s not a bigger say than baseball umpires, for example, who must make every ball and strike call. I think one of the reasons people persecute basketball refs (besides the Tim Donaghy scandal) is that the foul rules aren’t especially consistent.
- Why do teams get so many timeouts, especially in the first half? They have lots of practiced plays that they can signal in from the sideline. I suppose that the endgame timeout flurries increase the tension on those individual plays, but the downtime in between is no fun, and I bet the rest of the game seems less important by comparison. Again, if we need a couple more evenly spaced TV timeouts or sponsors on the jerseys to compensate, I’m fine with that.
These are my questions. Do you have any answers?
Posted in Basketball, Common Sense, Innovative Ideas, Rules Analysis
Tagged baseball umpires, basketball, basketball games, basketball inbounds, basketball refs suck, basketball rules, basketball rules inconsistent, basketball throw in, basketball too many stoppages, basketball too many timeouts, Boston Celtics, commercial break, end of basketball games take too long, National Basketball Association, NBA, NBA games are fixed, NBA refs are terrible, NBA too many timeouts, offensive player, Officiating, playoffs, problems with NBA referees, Shopping, soccer throw in, Sports, Tim Donaghy, tim donaghy scandal, timeouts, timeouts NBA, Training
For anyone who follows quantitative sports analysis, player tracking cameras are not news. Along with the NBA, soccer teams use them (even in the MLS) and rugby teams use them. They give x-y-z coordinates for each player at a high frame rate, which can be processed into a variety of statistics. Many think that this approach will revolutionize sports analysis. I stumbled across an article at ESPN today spreading this view to the masses.
Tracking data can help with many things, but it won’t save analysts from themselves. Here’s a point-counterpoint from the article linked above.
Point: “Paul Pierce averaged 4.5 assists this season, which is pretty good for a scoring wing. But that number doesn’t tell the whole story. According to SportVU, Pierce’s teammates shot a higher percentage after his passes than any other player in the NBA. This shows Pierce is passing at the right time — he’s giving his teammates mostly layups and open shots.”
Counterpoint: Pierce might be making great passes, but it’s just as likely that Pierce plays with better than average shooters or better than average cutters/floor spacers, or that Pierce commands a strong defender Continue reading
Posted in Basketball, Causal Analysis, Commentary, Common Sense
Tagged basketball, cameras, Carlos Boozer, Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, NBA, nba player tracking, Nikola Pekovic, optical tracking, Paul Pierce, player tracking, player tracking cameras, player tracking data, player tracking dumb, player tracking is misleading, player tracking won't help, point counterpoint, Rajon Rondo, Ricky Rubio, Sports, sports video tracking, SportVU, video tracking data, Zach McCann