Yesterday Craig noted a “tweet” from
Will Carroll of Baseball Prospectus saying there would be “two huge
announcements” coming at the winter meetings. Well, Richard Sandomir of the
New York Times revealed one of them in the New York Times on Saturday
night. It seems Bloomberg, best known for their financial software,
have decided to embrace sabermetrics.
Bloomberg is actually in business with baseball. It has licensed M.L.B.’s
statistics; pitch location and velocity data; and video to create the
team software and fantasy products for fans that will roll out in
February. For the past year or so, it has been soliciting the opinions
of team executives and players about the team software.
The challenge for Bloomberg is to create software that is better,
faster and more visually useful than what rivals offer to help develop
players and predict their performances. A demonstration of Bloomberg’s
software showed dazzlingly colorful graphics and an easy way to plot
statistics and compare players in complex combinations.
Each team, according to the Times,
will get a six-month free trial of the software. I don’t expect this
announcement will resonate much with your everyday fan, but for those
who have followed Baseball Prospectus and the Hardball Times over the
years, the resources and partnership with MLBAM have to be worrisome.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mariners are among the teams that have contacted the Reds about outfielder Jay Bruce. The Mariners enter play Wednesday 51-48, six games out of first place in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot. Adding an impact bat like Bruce could help in their effort to reach the postseason.
Norichika Aoki and Seth Smith have handled the bulk of the playing time in left field. While Smith has hit well, Aoki has not. Bruce came into Wednesday’s game against the Giants batting .271/.324/.567 with 24 home runs and a league-best 78 RBI.
Bruce can become a free agent after the season if his controlling team declines his $13 million club option for the 2017 season by paying him a $1 million buyout. If he’s traded mid-season, his new team won’t be able to make him a qualifying offer, so the club option may be more enticing than it looks at first glance.
A third-inning two-run home run by Adam Rosales off of R.A. Dickey put the Padres up 2-0, but it also helped the Padres tie a National League record. The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, matching the 1998 Braves, the 1994 Tigers, and the 1941 Yankees. The major league record is 27, set by the 2002 Rangers.
The Padres hit three in total on Wednesday in an 8-4 victory against the Blue Jays. One of those dingers was an eighth-inning solo shot by rookie Alex Dickerson, who has now homered in four consecutive games himself. The one he hit on Monday is worth watching, as it got into the upper deck at the Rogers Centre.
As the Padres recently traded Melvin Upton, Jr. to the Jays, Dickerson is likely going to see regular playing time. That’s especially true if he keeps hitting like this.