As a Cards fan, we’re very familiar with Whitey and his style and preferences. When he said that Ozzie Smith should get paid like a “100 RBI guy” because he takes away 100 runs, he wasn’t exactly accurate, but we knew what he meant.
Nowadays you read so much stuff — and go through it so fast — that maybe one little thing, one key note, doesn’t stick in your head.
This is where I think coaches and data guys need to get together and see which form the data is most useful to the manager, graph, tables, color-coded, bullet points, etc.
It also needs to be decided which data is most important.
“As coaches — and I think Clint [Hurdle] would tell you the same thing — a lot of it still comes down to gut feeling. I set the defense on the infield and I can see how our pitcher is throwing and how a hitter is swinging. I know if he’s hot, and a lot of times you can tell by someone’s swing what he‘s trying to do.
I don’t like that he uses the term “gut feeling” because it gives others the impression that it’s just a guess or a hunch when it actuality is a very strong inclination based on years of observations and experiences … in other words, based on quite a large amount of data. There just aren’t conscious calculations taking place.
You can tell by a guy’s swing what types of pitches he’ll be more likely to pull (or late) and whether he’s more likely to hit a fly/ground ball, and when you put all that in combination with your pitcher is throwing that day based on all of the similar situations they’ve seen before, a “gut feeling” might be a rather strong decision.
I just don’t want people to get the wrong idea about gut feeling. When a 20+ year veteran soldier has a gut feeling combat, it’s different than the solder that has a gut feeling in his first week in combat.
My concern with gut feelings are the occasions where it ends up just being gas. Those situations don;t work out for anyone in the general area.
Comment by CircleChange11 — March 16, 2012 @ 9:50 am
believe it or not — our defensive alignments were done with colored pencils.
There was an exhibit of one of Herzog’s colored shift cards in Cooperstown, back when he was enshrined. So, yes, I believe it!