Category Articles

The Elam Ending

The Basketball Tournament has finally scored with the Elam Ending.   In case you’ve missed it, The Basketball Tournament has adopted Nicholas Patrick’s “hybrid game format for basketball duration” for its preliminary rounds.  The format is known now as the Elam Ending, in honor of the author’s last name.  Nicholas initially explained the Elam Ending

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MLB 2015 Preview: American League West

Kyle Seager and the Mariners are poised to take the division. MARINERS Time after time, Seattle makes head-scratching maneuvers, but those maneuvers have finally built a team that (in the short term) is a contender. Seattle signed DH Nelson Cruz to a 4-year, $58MM contract in the offseason. That is not an insane amount of

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Second Graders, Baseball Men

1987 Varsity Tavern, Perry Heights Baseball Association champs Every year as baseball season begins anew, I think back to my first baseball club, a tee-ball team in Perry Township (Ohio), and to the euphoria of playing the game for the first time. In 1986, 13 boys, just finishing first grade, met at Whipple Elementary for the

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MLB 2015 Preview: American League East

Edwin Encarnacion at first base, where Ty Whetstone can almost stomach it. BLUE JAYS Toronto made a big splash in the offseason by adding 3B Josh Donaldson (trade with Oakland) and C Russell Martin (free agent). Though the Jays are projected to win the division, some mitigating factors limit the greatness of these deals. Brett

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Dear Diary

The other day, Sports Data Research was recruiting contractors for a new project and I was tasked with rejecting the job candidates who did not make the grade. One spurned applicant responded, “In all fairness, it looks like very little action has taken place on your site in almost a year anyway.” His comment made

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NHL 2014 Western Conference Playoff Picks

Our newest contributor, Jeremy Crowhurst, sees the St. Louis Blues tripping up Chicago’s Jonathan Toews and the defending champions. Predictions? For the playoffs? In hockey? Sure, every few years, the team that finished first overall in the regular season goes on to win the Stanley Cup, like the Chicago Blackhawks did last year. But the

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MLB 2014 Preview: National League East

After coming up short in 2013, will the Nationals slide past their rivals and retake the NL East title in ’14? NATIONALS The Nationals won 86 games last year but were a big disappointment. Considering the history of the Expos/National, this seems to be contradictory, but things have come together recently for this club and

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Overthinking Overtime

As football’s overtime format has been debated and changed over the years, it seems each effort to address a particular concern has introduced a new concern of its own. The NCAA introduced overtime in 1996, in part, to eliminate ties from the game. But by doing so, many college football games turn into absolute marathons,

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Unanswered Points

Mark Tye Turner is the author of Notes from a 12th Man: A Truly Biased History of the Seattle Seahawks The following article is Mark’s second contribution. For his previous article, see here. The term “unanswered points” is part of the lexicon when describing events occurring during a football game. It illustrates the dominance of

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Record Days

Mark Tye Turner is the author of Notes from a 12th Man: A Truly Biased History of the Seattle Seahawks On opening night of the 2013 season, Peyton Manning did something that has not been accomplished since the merger of 1970: he threw seven touchdowns passes. The last person to accomplish this feat was Minnesota

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Larceny Games: Sports Gambling, Game Fixing and the FBI – The Latest Book from Brian Tuohy

Today, author Brian Tuohy contributes a guest column about his research for the new book, Larceny Games: Sports Gambling, Game Fixing and the FBI (2013). It will be released on September 3, 2013 but is available for pre-order now. Gambling with Your Life is a movie you’ll never see. Produced by the NBA in association

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A College Football World Series?

Ecstatic about the new College Football Playoff set to begin in 2014? You’re not alone, and some fans are thrilled simply because the hot-button debate is ending. But what about the beginning? It turns out that the concept of a college football playoff has been around since at least 1960 when Northwestern University athletic director

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The Hallmarks of Quality Metrics

In a previous article I discussed some of the shortcomings of OPS as an advanced metric, which naturally leads to the question: “What are the characteristics of good advanced metrics?” While the relative importance of each criterion is debatable (the list that follows is in no particular order), the considerations should be relatively non-controversial. I’ve

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Football Injuries at Harvard Before and After the 1906 Reforms

During a brutal 1905 football season resulting in multiple fatalities, President Theodore Roosevelt met with college officials to discuss reforming the sport. By December 1905, 62 schools had appointed a rules committee for intercollegiate football. In January, reforms were set in motion, including the legalization of the forward pass and the banning of unnecessary roughness.

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Performance-Based Pay for PED Policy Violators

PED Policy Violators Should Be Subject to Performance-Based Pay Major League Baseball has made significant progress in reducing the influence of performance-enhancing drugs on the game. Improved methods of testing, increased frequency of testing, and stiffer penalties for positive tests have all contributed. Cooperation from the MLB Players Association (driven by the long-awaited realization that

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Strength of Schedule at the All-Star Break

Over the last twenty years, MLB implemented a number of changes to the playoff structure and schedule. Among these, interleague play and the wildcard are the most noticeable to the typical fan. One change that can be overlooked is the unbalanced schedule, which with the advent of year-long interleague play in 2013 has become even

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Shortcomings of OPS as an Advanced Metric

Regular contributor Patriot makes his SDR debut with a column about OPS. To many in the general population of baseball fans, the singular metric associated with sabermetrics might be On Base Plus Slugging (OPS).  OPS has gained a measure of acceptance in the mainstream as an offensive metric in both its raw form and the

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