If you have dabbled in Sabermetrics to any degree, you’ve likely heard of Tom Tango or at least read the book he helped author, along with Mitchel Lichtman and Andrew Dolphin, called The Book: Playing the Percentages in Baseball. To say Tango has influenced the use of and popularity of Sabermetrics would be a tremendous understatement.
MLB Advanced Media has hired Tango as a Senior Database Architect of Stats, as Dave Cameron revealed in a Q&A with Tango at FanGraphs. The two discuss Tango’s role with MLBAM and what lies in the future for Statcast, which has given us some useful metrics like exit velocity and launch angle. Tango touches on some of his personal data priorities and in particular details how important it is that the new data shows us where the fielder begins. (That’s big, for example, in figuring out route efficiency.) The Q&A is a pretty good read if that’s your thing.
MLB has already hired a couple pillars of the Sabermetric community in Daren Willman and Mike Petriello. It’s good to see yet another one added and put in a position where they can make a real impact. So, congratulations to Tango. I am selfishly excited to see what Statcast data will look like in the near future.