The Baseball Cube

TBC Site Updates

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Articles related to site updates and possibly some ranting.
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Pointing Towards Something
Its easy to get off-track. Especially for me. The Baseball Cube is a labor of love. Its an albatross in my life. I love it. But its heavy. For a while, it was on the zeitgeist but with the evolution of "analytics", the site has been tossed to the side into the less "cool" of the genre of baseball sites. Why did I miss the boat on analytics? To start, I didn't have the bandwidth to understand. I was more concerned with beefing up the historical data. Quantity. Length instead of width. WAR is great but how can I compete with BR or Fangraphs or Baseball Savant. Next-level analytics. Meh. I lost my way. I started off on the cutting edge simply because I was providing a view of data on the web that nobody else had. Over time, analytics took over and The Baseball Cube faded into a secondary niche site with various datasets that people needed. But not the masses. Just a few hundred (Thousand?) people here and there. And that's fine. How does 1 person compete with the multi-employee companies (BR) and the corporations (MLB/ESPN). Well, I don't. They can have their zeitgeist. I'm going longitudinal. And I'll work harder than them, pound for pound, then any of them.

The problem has never been vision. I live with vision. I know what I want the site to be. Getting it there has always been the issue. I let analytics pass me by because I can't be everything to everyone and this has been the problem all along. I have tried to be ETE for too long. I know that the only thing I want is this: To be able to research any player throughout the history of baseball. Whether Pro, college or high school, and to view that player's base statistics throughout their career, regardless of where they played. Choose a player and leave the page satisfied that you know the player inside out. WAR may aggregate his career into 1 number for you. My vision is to give you the stats and let you make your own decision. WAR is the "expert" who steals your experience of analysis from you. TBC lets you toss the expert aside and make your own educated decision.

I've been on the message boards and in the Facebook groups. I can see the religion of analytics. If you deviate from the mantra publicly, you're a heretic. Having a daughter who plays sports at a high level, I have seen the work she has put into getting there. These players are more than numbers. The numbers assume that they have put in the work and will remain a constant. Players are variables yet are treated like constants. WAR is history. This player is better than that player. Meh. Its just another stat that tells you how a player did. The human element cannot be calculated. His influence on his teammates. A coach's influence. A player's personal life. I like that analytics exist but that's it. Humans cannot be projected. Its a fool's errand. Yet like many things on the Internet, there's an Overton Window. You must stay in there. I don't believe in the Overton window. Compliance to Experts gives way too much power to humans. Experts are not gods and provide merely input. Thanks for the WAR BR and FG. I will take them into consideration. Good work. But I'll let my site's visitors make their own opinion.

Baseball is funneling towards this analytics religion and though I won't argue that there is some merit that homers are like the seeker chasing the Golden Snitch in Harry Potter... I mean, why would you bunt/steal/hit-run when the golden snitch would give you what you need much quicker and more efficiently at the cost of more strikeouts...I wish baseball would adjust. Move the fences back. Move the mound back. Do something to reduce homers, reduce strikeouts, increase balls in play. Analytics and extreme analysis of physics within the sport is not really helping it. Its providing some juice to intellectuals but as a business, for a fan, its not really that appealing to watch a increased parade of 3 true outcomes. But I digress.

What I'm saying is that I am pointing towards something different than analytics. You'll see it soon. It will be a web site that gives you length. Historical data for MLB (already got it), Minor League stats (sorta got it but enhancing it), College Stats (the ultimate project) and even High School stats (chasing it forever!). It will be a different experience and every project I work will be pointing towards this. It will take time but I'm still young and I'm still motivated and with COVID, I still have the time to point towards this star.