I think a major issue he’s facing that won’t change is that he’s facing far more lefties this year than previously. Sure, the Indians got some bad luck in terms of which starter’s they’ve been facing, but with Sizemore, Choo, Hafner, and Branyan 4 of their best hitters, teams will continue to pump lefties against them out of the bullpen whenever possible.
Compelling analysis, but I’m unsure of what the present and future implications are of it. Is anybody aware of similar comps of once formidable hitters in their prime years suddenly losing plate discipline over a protracted period like this? Do these players typically eventually rediscover their hitting zone? This situation seems unique to me. Seems doubtful it’s just the result of a different approach at the plate. Assuming he’s now healthy, he’s clearly not picking up the ball as well as he has in the past. Maybe it’s something as simple as getting his eyes checked out for any changes?
Good questions — I’m also wondering about what generally causes a pattern like this. Is it simply that he’s “pressing,” in which case he should eventually work it out? Or is he compensating for some physical issue – either his eyes not working right or some other nagging injury?
until he decides he wants to quit trying to pull every pitch he sees to right field, he’s in trouble. ive missed one game this year of the tribe’s and its painfully obvious watching him at the plate. he’s sitting back on every pitch it seems like, trying to get his arms around the ball and force it to right. bummer is, he’s a better hitter than that and just like they’re doing to hafner, they need to explain to him that its alright to put the ball in left field. until then, fantasy owners will continue to ask..”tell me again why i drafted him so early”.
Could you maybe say why you think it’s troubling? I don’t hear of players everyday who lose their ability to judge the strike zone overnight. Unless he’s losing bat speed because of an injury or something, it seems like this is something that will just correct itself….
If Oxford says that the plural is the traditional usage, and there is no record of data ever being used in the plural before 1960 (and I’m being generous with the date), then Oxford is on shaky ground. I would conjecture that this is in fact the case and that Oxford and the grammarians are seeing the world as they wish to see it rather than as it is. This is a common failing of those who speak from “authority” and that is a major reason why arguing from authority in and of itself is not advisable.
Data is a skunked term: whether you write data are or date is, you’re likely to make some readers raise their eyebrows. Technically a plural, data has, since the 1940s, been increasingly treated as a mass noun taking a singular verb. But in more or less formal contexts it is preferably treated as a plural.
Garner then gives examples of its use as both a singular and plural noun.
data is acceptable as a singular term for information: The data was persuasive. In its traditional sense, meaning a collection of facts and figures, the noun can still be plural: They tabulate the data, which arrive from bookstores nationwide. (In this sense, the singular is datum, a word both stilted and deservedly obscure.)
So I think it is safe to say it can be used either way in current usage, although according to Garner data are is preferable in formal settings, and I know in scientific contexts data are is used much more often.
Rex I think you have the timing of its shift in usage backwards. Previously it was only used as a plural noun, and the singular use is a recent trend as its singular, datum, is used less and less. According to Henry Fowler’s A Dictionary of Modern English Usage, published in 1926:
data is plural only (The data are, not is, insufficient./ What are the data?/ We have no data.)
So the usage authority in 1926 was even stronger that data is plural. Also based on its etymology, plural of the Latin datum, it should be plural. If you are going to come and so vigorously claim I am wrong please provide some evidence.
Last time I checked this thread there were six comments. Since Sizemore is on one of my fantasy teams, and I haven’t even been playing him lately, I was really curious to read more about him. I saw there were 13 new comments, and looked forward to reading them. Then I saw that eight of the 13 were about grammar. Ugh.
Technically I guess I added nothing here and just complained about people complaining about grammar. Ironic.
Very well researched. Sorry to not contribute more on the question of why Sizemore is struggling. He’s on my fantasy team too, so I’m dying to find the answer. I didn’t find that thread on the Indians board to be too illuminating, other than the fact that Sizemore seems to be doing worse both when he swings at the first pitch (tiny 7-AB sample size) and when he lets the first pitch go for a strike. Sounds like he’s in a deep funk.
This is another case where the data does a great job of explaining why something happened (or is happening), but doesn’t do a good job predicting what will happen going forward. He’s chasing and making worse contact, but will it continue? Apologies in advance if my grammar is off.
I’m pretty sure Dave is right here; people use the word both as singular and as plural. It’s irregular to begin with, so I’m not sure why correctness is even a worry.
-Many observations suggest…
-Much evidence suggests…
If you’re a “collective singular” guy, you say “much data.” If you’re not, you say “many data.”
The matter is extremely subtle from that standpoint of reasoning: “the data suggest that X” implies that each individual datum suggests it, while “the data suggests that X” implies that the collection does, even if no individual datum does. Data are often collected individually, but used collectively. Thus, it seems natural to use the plural when we’re collecting but the singular when inferring. And contexts besides inferring and collecting may have their nuances as well (data may be *criticized* individually when some are improperly collected, but collectively when it does not suggest the conclusions than someone draws…)
Comment by Mister Delaware — May 12, 2010 @ 11:48 am
I can tell you just from watching him that when it’s early in the count he lets good pitches go by, and once he gets to 2 strikes he will swing at basically anything. Like literally, anything. I have gotten into the habit of calling his strikeouts before they happen when I watch the games: “Fastball up around his head, swing and a miss strike three” or “curveball down and in, swing and a miss” and five seconds later exactly those things will occur.
I too am not sure why this data is more “troubling” to the Indians than simply looking at Sizemore’s OPS. It was a nice piece, a great statistical analysis that completely supports what I’ve subjectively observed watching Sizemore this year. But I actually find Sizemore’s situation much less troubling than say, Matt Laporta’s, who doesn’t so much have plate discipline problems as far as I have subjectively seen, but instead just can’t hit the ball in the air. Troubling indeed, for a “power” hitter. In Sizemore’s case, it would seem to be the whole “not seeing the ball well” thing, and something that he’ll eventually come out of … unless he’s going blind.
May be a case of trying to show that he’s better than last year, and he’s “thinking” too much. Some say the game is 90% mental… not really, but there is definitely a big mental aspect to the game that can sometimes cause statistical outliers.
Will someone please get this guy some eye drops. Sounds to simple and I’m probably and idiot, but I would move him 2 inches closer to the plate to make the inside pitches appear more inside and generate less swings also allowing him to recognize & cover the outside corner better.
I think a big issue with his plate discipline is the high number of left-handed pitchers he’s facing and how terrible he is doing facing them. His splits are terrible: RHP he is batting .284, LHP he is batting .106….