Monday, August 27, 2007

Welcome to bIBLemetrics!

With the inaugural season of the Israel Baseball League behind us, I've just launched bIBLemetrics, a blog for Israel Baseball League statistical analysis.

I was a big baseball fan as a kid, but lost interest when I finished high school nearly 20 years ago. This year, partly thanks to the IBL, I'm back with a vengeance. And I'm returning to one of my childhood dreams: to be the next Bill James. Instead of going up against the experienced statheads of Baseball Prospectus, though, I can start with the field to myself, right here with the IBL.

If a statistical analyst of the MLB is a sabermetrician, it seems appropriate that the IBL should have iblemetricians. So that's what you can call me.

I've already downloaded the IBL's box scores and game logs (see the Scoreboards section of their website), and I'm working on the software to extract the data from them. Some of the questions I hope to address once I'm set up:

  • Park effects: Does Gezer Field inflate offense? If so, by how much? Do park effects change our assessment of who were the league's top players?
  • In general, did the most valuable player awards go to the right players?
  • What is the advantage to batting second (if there is one)? With two teams sharing each home field, we can compare games with the same venue but different "home" and "away" sides.
  • By how much does Beit Shemesh (or any other team) increase a game's attendance?
  • Any other questions on your mind that can be approached with baseball statistics?


BringHeat said...

Control seemed to be a big issue for many of the pitchers. Compared to MLB, how well were the more successful pitchers able to surmount giving up many walks, as opposed to many hits? And, something usually not covered in MLB, there were LOTS of hit batsmen. How did that affect scoring?

iblemetrician said...

Good questions. There were indeed a lot of HBPs, and - I don't know if this is just a matter of luck - some batters got hit much more often than others.

Katz-Moses was hit 18 times in 78 at-bats and Raymundo 17 times in 101 at-bats, while Dashevsky, M. Brill and Field were never hit in 127, 117 and 115 at-bats respectively.

Given the overall HBP rate, I'm curious to check whether the distribution by batters is consistent with randomness.

And you're right, we should also compare walk/hit rates with the majors.

iblemetrician said...

Oops - I forgot to thank you for posting the blog's first reader comment! Thanks, and welcome.