What Type of Baseball Dork Are You?

This isn’t going to be one of those online quizzes where you answer a few questions and then some script determines what you are based on your feedback. This is a quiz where you answer one question, a question you might never have been asked before. Maybe you’re going to learn something about yourself. We’re all put here to learn about ourselves.

It should go without saying that, for the most part, FanGraphs is selective for baseball dorks. Sure, casual fans find themselves here from time to time, but mostly, we cater to people who just want to think about baseball in between all of the baseball. That requires a certain intensity, a certain passion for the material, and it’s why we’re sometimes able to write about such complicated subjects without constantly stopping to explain ourselves. The audience is smart, and all of us are dorks.

But it didn’t really occur to me until recently that there might be types of dorks. I was talking with a baseball acquaintance on the phone, and at one point I explained that I’m a pitching guy, more than I’m a hitting guy. I’m personally just more interested in pitching than hitting, and I get more excited by pitching than hitting, and this probably ends up reflected in what I publish. For example, I just can’t get enough of those damned pitch comps. They’re like Pringles to me. Sometimes it gets a little out of control, but I am who I am.

I identify most as a pitcher dork. Which is to say, I most dork out over mechanical breakdowns, or new-pitch developments, or a perfectly-located changeup that gets the hitter way out in front. Much of the beauty I see in the game is thrown, and not hit, and I’d much rather watch a no-hitter than a slugfest. I prefer to focus on pitchers in my analysis, and I prefer to focus on pitchers during games, and I’m going to go ahead and guess this is largely because I used to be a pitcher, and when I went up to bat once in high school, my coaches told me they’d never let it happen again.

I’m a pitcher dork, but that’s not all there is. I asked Dave Cameron, and he said he most identifies as a hitter dork. Again, a significant reason is probably that Dave used to be a position player, and not a pitcher. But he sees a lot of the beauty coming off of the bat. Where I might rewind a perfect breaking ball in my head, Dave might rewind perfect contact. A hitter dork might dork out over a hitter’s mechanical breakdown. You might be interested in tweaks, or exit velocities and launch angles. Pitchers are out there as the favorites; they always have the better odds. The hitter is the underdog, but sometimes the underdog gets the better of the favorite and sends the ball out to dead center. It’s a hell of a thing to be able to do, hit. Any of us can throw. Good hitting is practically magic.

When I was first thinking about this, I figured a person would have to identify more as either a pitcher dork or a hitter dork. But when I asked August Fagerstrom, he said he most identifies as a defender dork. So that’s three answers from three people. August said defense is what he likes to watch and write about the most, and, one more time, as a partial explanation he pointed to the fact that defending was the thing he did best in his playing days.

I understand this, though. Think about what happens on the field during a play. The pitcher is in complete control — he can throw what he wants, when he wants, and he’s not reacting to anything. The hitter then has to react to the pitcher, but at least the hitter has a good sense of the general area where the ball is going to be. If you’re standing up there, you pretty much know the pitched baseball is going to be somewhere around the plate, somewhere between 70 and 100 miles per hour. When the ball’s in play, though, defenders have to react, even though the play itself is unpredictable. When a pitch is in flight, it could turn into any kind of batted ball, to any spot. So defenders have to be ready for anything, and defenders are the only players who do things that get called acrobatic.

There’s real beauty in defense. It’s worth dorking out. So as I see it now, you’re either a pitcher dork, a hitter dork, or a defender dork. It’s not about appreciating one, and not the others; my hypothesis is just that there’s one you appreciate more than the others. We all have our preferences, whether they come from our playing histories, or whether they’re independent. (Or whether there is no playing history. You don’t need to have played baseball to like baseball.)

Here’s maybe a quick way to find your own answer, in case you’re having a little trouble. Below are three videos. Which do you like watching the most? Which would you most be willing to watch over and over, locked in a room, for the rest of your life? That ought to tell you what type of dork you are. Don’t fret about identifying yourself as any kind of dork. It’s not intended as a pejorative. You’re a baseball dork. Welcome to this community of baseball dorks.

Speak out! Be proud.



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Jeff made Lookout Landing a thing, but he does not still write there about the Mariners. He does write here, sometimes about the Mariners, but usually not.


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Pale Hose
Member
Pale Hose
2 months 16 days ago

I expected (guessed) a 60/30/10 split for pitching/defense/hitting. Interesting results so far.

Runaway Toaster
Member
Member
Runaway Toaster
2 months 15 days ago

So you’re a “poll guessing dork”…

Bryz
Member
2 months 15 days ago

I totally misread your name as “Ramon Troncoso” at first glance.

Pitching dork confirmed.

burgh_fan
Member
burgh_fan
2 months 16 days ago

I suppose I’m a hitter dork though when I played I couldn’t hit or pitch but could field a little and I’d much rather watch a masterfully pitched 1-0 game than a 10-8 slug fest. However in general I would say I have a bit more appreciation for hitting than anything else.

Neil
Member
Neil
2 months 16 days ago

I don’t know if I’m alone on this, but the question and the videos just don’t align for me. The defense video is the most fun to watch, but I’m a hitting dork, all the way.

trevorwallison
Member
trevorwallison
2 months 16 days ago

I agree. A video of Vlad Guerrero hitting balls in the dirt or Adrian Beltre’s one-knee homers would be more fitting, I think.

Shermham
Member
Shermham
2 months 16 days ago

I was going to say the opposite–I think I’m more of a pitching dork (in reality probably both, but for the sake of discussion slight edge to pitching), but just seeing the out pitch on 17 batters doesn’t really demonstrate the beauty of pitching to me, much of which lies in sequencing and setups. And on the other hand, Miggy hits are poetry in motion, plain and simple.

glenstein
Member
glenstein
2 months 14 days ago

Not even kidding, but I’m a defense dork, and I thought the hitting and defense videos were unfairly matched up against one of the greatest pitching performances of all time (considering the era).

I scrolled down half expecting a comment to that effect to be made, but as it turns out, I’m the scissors in a rock-paper-scissors trio of essentially opposite views on the matter!

Rob Moore
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Rob Moore
2 months 15 days ago

Yeah, I’m definitely a pitcher dork, but I’d rather watch great defense highlights than any other kind of highlights.

briney212
Member
briney212
2 months 15 days ago

yeah I would say the same except I’m a pitching guy, without a doubt, Kerry Wood’s 20 K game is my favorite highlight of all time (have you ever watched it in it’s entirety? It’s beautiful.) But defensive highlights are, for the most part, more fun to watch.

sheeks9
Member
sheeks9
2 months 16 days ago

I’m a meatball. I played first base. I like bombs (and all other parts of hitting as well).

Defense ain’t bad though, and I actually enjoy the slow, crafty pitchers as well.

mlucey
Member
mlucey
2 months 16 days ago

I went with pitching. When I’m on this site I deep dive into the pitching side while I stay with more of the basic sabermetric hitting stats.

When watching, I want the best of both worlds. I want a 6-0 victory for my team. Give me some offense and runs, maybe a homerun or two. Yet my team’s SP better provide a great pitching performance with some good defense.

troybruno
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Member
troybruno
2 months 15 days ago

hope you’re not a Rockies fan!

Nate
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Nate
2 months 16 days ago

I like watching pitching on TV. But when I have a bad angle at the ballpark I want to see dingers, diving defensive grabs, and 300 ft throws home.

Parker Bernhart
Member
2 months 16 days ago

Agreed. In general, I identify as a pitcher dork (with some defense dork mixed in), but at the ballpark I’d rather have an interesting 10-9 slugfest than a 1-0 shutout, unless said shutout also involves a no-hitter or perfect game.

Basically, at a live game it’s more about the experience, while on TV I can do a better job of analyzing things like a pitcher’s delivery, movement, command, etc.

Will H.
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Member
Will H.
2 months 16 days ago

Yeah, good point, but on the rare day I get dugout seats I find that – angle aside – I can really appreciate an ace on the mound. Scoring helps, too, in keeping me focused on the art of how the pitcher is dealing.

But true about good angles, I watched that video of Felix’s 9-pitch 3-K inning a million times because you could see how insanely varied all his pitches were, much more – I’d imagine – than if live.

Nate
Member
Nate
2 months 16 days ago

So basically we are every kind of dork. Watching Marte or Polanco (I’m Pirates fan) throw on TV is impressive, but at the game it defies my daily experience of physics.

kbn
Member
kbn
2 months 15 days ago

I can agree with this 100%. Pitching analysis live at the park is very difficult to pull off unless you’re actually behind home plate, and even then it’s a very different experience from what you might be used to watching on TV. I do sometimes like analyzing nuances in mechanics live more than on TV, since you get a better sense of scale and motion with your eyes than through a camera lens positioned 450 feet away from home plate, but in general… no.

In person, hitting is exciting! Defense is even more exciting, but unfortunately less common. Probably the second most enjoyable moment I’ve had at a ballpark was watching Jackie Bradley Jr make a running catch in right field not 15 feet from where I was sitting and then promptly double up the runner on third (who was tagging and headed for home). (most exciting btw was a Donaldson 3 run walk-off homer in Oakland) Infield defensive spectacles are always fantastic to watch, especially from a slightly higher angle (200/300 level infield seats in most parks). Seeing good defense in person really drives home how incredibly difficult the game is, since the camera angles and fast cuts on TV radically under-sell the reaction times and agility required to be a strong defender.

Honestly, I think a lot of this is just coming from the fact that I’m after a different experience when I watch a game in person vs on TV, and I feel like that’s one of the strengths of baseball as a sport.

But based on the clips above… I can’t *not* get chills watching Pedro be completely unfair.

The Dude of NY
Member
The Dude of NY
2 months 16 days ago

I am really a catcher defense dork because we know so little about it. (Granted, I was a catcher, so I might be biased.)

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

I was gonna say that catcher defense dork probably deserves its own sub category.

What about bullpen/bullpen usage dork as a special case on pitching dork, too?

troybruno
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Member
troybruno
2 months 15 days ago

baserunning dork

dl80
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dl80
2 months 15 days ago

And the sub-sub-category pinch running dork.

Todd Doug
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Todd Doug
2 months 15 days ago

I, too, was a catcher so I think it’s like a hybrid dork. I really love when good catchers work with good pitchers to set up hitters. But then I also love when hitters figure out the sequence and sit on a pitch. I’m a mental dork. I’m also a Cardinal fan. I suck.

Matt
Member
Matt
2 months 14 days ago

This. Catcher dork here. Definitely deserves it’s own category, but it may be one that only former catchers can appreciate. Nothing like calling a great game.

hello
Member
hello
2 months 16 days ago

Hitting, 100%. And it has actually caused me to lose interest in watching over the past few years, because the current low-scoring environment of MLB is just soooooo boring to watch. There’s nothing interesting about watching a pitcher throw ankle-high fastballs and get rewarded with strike calls. Pitching is a lot of fun to watch when the pitcher has to dance around a batter’s wheelhouse or ACTUALLY challenge the hitter right down the middle, but that hasn’t been the case in MLB for the better part of a decade now.

Jon L.
Member
2 months 16 days ago

All three, all day.

You’re making me late for work.

ImperialStout
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Member
ImperialStout
2 months 16 days ago

Dork of all three, which is why I’m mediocre at analyzing them all. Generalists unite!

wubbie075
Member
wubbie075
2 months 16 days ago

Yep, I am just a baseball dork. All 3 types of plays make me go “oooohhhh” to an equal degree. And I hate all my friends who love soccer but say baseball is boring. wut??

Brad_of_NY
Member
Brad_of_NY
2 months 16 days ago

I’m fielding all the way…its always my strong suit when I play, and I find the development and evolution of defensive stats to be the most interesting to read. Give me Simmons and Carlos Beltran defensive highlights anytime.

szielinski
Member
Member
szielinski
2 months 16 days ago

Hitting. I can easily recall the feel of the bat in my hands when I made solid contact. That last happened 40-50 years ago.

dudemcgregor
Member
dudemcgregor
2 months 16 days ago

I LIKE THEM ALL!!!

rainbowtrout27
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rainbowtrout27
2 months 16 days ago

Definitely base running! Stolen bases, infield hits, 1st to 3rd…this is the good stuff.

WatsonCrick
Member
WatsonCrick
2 months 15 days ago

There’s something insanely beautiful about the perfect jump

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

Defense dork here, probably because in my limited playing in like cub scout baseball, I was mostly stashed in right field and got to mostly watch my team play defense. ;-p

For me it’s the holding of the breath will he/won’t he/how’d he even… on great defensive plays.

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

By bobbleheads owned, I am 50/50 defense dork and pitching dork. Sorry hitters, you got shut out!

(But that’s only because a Pence thrice-hit-2012-nlcs bobblehead doesn’t exist.)

The Continental
Member
The Continental
2 months 16 days ago

Mostly a mascot dork, really. Orbit has been a godsend.

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

Orbit is pretty great, but at best he cancels out Dinger and the Phanatic.

Never forget: http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=12876146

(Actually, I am totally gonna watch that right now. ;-p)

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago
mpilatzke
Member
mpilatzke
2 months 16 days ago

None of the above. Since I never played baseball, and I’ve had a passion for rotissere baseball dating back to the early 90’s, I find myself to be an analytics dork. Whether it’s FIP, BABIP, or any other advanced stat category, I find myself riveted by sites like this one.

804NatsFan
Member
804NatsFan
2 months 16 days ago

I’d identify as a “numbers” dork more than anything.

I only played baseball through 9th grade (not very successfully), and was more of a casual fan through age 35 or so (resident of Iowa, so no strong team affiliation).

But the last 8ish years I’ve lived in Richmond VA, and last 5ish latched on to the Nats, and in the process of following them I’ve also discovered Fangraphs, Baseball Reference, etc.

I love the advanced metrics nature of the game, whether it be explaining the past or predicting the future. I get excited about new forms of metrics, whether it’s launch angles/speed for hitting, spin rate/movement for pitching, or catcher framing and other defensive metrics.

This more generalized love for the “numbers of baseball” may be the case for a lot of us Fangraphs readers, I guess… or especially those of us that didn’t see a lot of success on the field, and may be the dorkiest of numbers dorks off the field (I should mention I’m an actuary).

jbona3
Member
Member
jbona3
2 months 16 days ago

Not to get into the weeds (but that’s why we’re here, no?) I’d say I’m a power-dork; power hitting and power pitching. I appreciate a perfect double-play, a great diving catch, quality bunt, stolen base or extra base hit in the gap, but for me watching vintage Pedro blow a 97 MPH by a guy and then dot the corner with his curve or change, or Jose Fernandez or the Mets current Trio is exciting for me. Or watching Manny and Ortiz in 2003/2004, Griffey Jr. in his prime, or Toronto now. That’s what I dork out on.

TheDuck
Member
Member
TheDuck
2 months 16 days ago

It’s hard to argue that anything is more impressive or fun to watch than the truly spectacular defensive plays. However, for those of us (most?) who appreciate baseball through the lens of a box score more often than the lens of a video camera, it’s nearly impossible to appreciate defense on a game-to-game basis. Spectacular pitching and hitting performances can speak to us through single game statistics, but spectacular fielding performances can’t.

TLDR: If I could watch every game in person or on TV, I’d vote defense, but I find great pitching to be more fun to follow via stats and analytics.

whogg72
Member
whogg72
2 months 16 days ago

I am, in the following order:

1. An OBP dork (especially if you get more walks than strikeouts, you’re on my team)…
2. A WHIP dork (your WHIP is under 1.10? You’re drafted!)…
3. A Blue Jays dork…

Defence is fine when watching the game live/on TV, and is important for, say, the team I want to win, but on paper never played a league that counts defence, so…

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

4. A Canadian dork. ;-)

(What can I say, you opened yourself up for that by dropping your defence ;-)

whogg72
Member
whogg72
2 months 15 days ago

That’s MR. Canadian dork to you ;). We’ll see who gets that final word during the Nats (meaning Expos)-Jays WS this year…

Hurtlocker
Member
Hurtlocker
2 months 16 days ago

I like defense a lot because that was my strength, but great pitching and hitting are just as exciting. I suppose that is why we all love baseball so much, it’s got so many “flavors”. Like Ken Burns said, “It is a leisurely game that demands blinding speed. The only game in which the defense has the ball. It follows the seasons, beginning each year with the fond expectancy of springtime, and ending with the hard facts of autumn. It is a haunted game, in which every player is measured against the ghosts of all who have gone before. Most of all, it is about time and timelessness. Speed and grace. Failure and loss. Imperishable hope. And coming home.”

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

When it comes to hitting, I think I like to dork out on two things:

1. making fun of goofy batting stances or other batters box nonsense. The Ortiz, the (pooper) Rowand, etc.
2. swing at anything types hitting things that shouldn’t be hit. As a Giants fan, I loved to hate/hated to love prime Panda hacks.
3. oh, and I’ll grant occasional consideration to the Pretty Swing (i.e. the Posey.)

Insert players from your team of choice or the past as you see fit. Vlad/Votto for 2/3 for example.

filthyrichard
Member
filthyrichard
2 months 16 days ago

To answer this, I had to parse my “dorkiness” from my “nerdiness.” To me, the latter describes an enthusiasm for numbers and trends, and with that in mind it’s easier to “nerd-out” over pitching and hitting because we have good established metrics for both. But I’d say my “dorkiness” is the way I fantasize about making cool plays, have an internal alternate life where I’m a dope MLB player, make unconscious baseball moves when I’m standing around waiting for coffee to brew, etc. In that sense, I’m mostly a defense dork. Hitting and pitching are fascinating, but I get more giddy for a rangy/slick/flashy defensive play, even if it only occurred in my mind.

bsii
Member
bsii
2 months 16 days ago

This was exactly my problem. While I use “geekiness” where you use “nerdiness,” nerding is probably the more appropriate term. I’m prone to dorking out over/geeking out about/gushing over defense, but nerding on stats/metrics.

Johnston
Member
Member
Johnston
2 months 16 days ago

Defense and hitting originally. In college I thought all pitchers were pretty much worthless (I roomed with one for a year who wasn’t far off the meathead pitcher in Bull Durham and the rest on the team were other meatheads, flakes and weirdos, and none were drafted). Over the years since then I have come to appreciate intelligent pitching, so now I’m into a mix of defense, pitching and hitting. I prefer Andrelton Simmons to Bryce Harper by far, though.

wangjazz
Member
wangjazz
2 months 16 days ago

I answered hitting dork but I think my dorkness evolved over time.
I was specifically a Pirates dork, but more an overall numbers dork now.
Evolved from Maddux types dork to power SO/ground
Ball dork.
Evolved from a power dork to an OBP dork.
I was a pitcher’s dork but more a hitter’s dork now.

Also would like another option : prospects dork.
We are an unusual kind, usually from sad losing teams, but a strong dorkness resides in us.

StroShow
Member
2 months 16 days ago

I’d like to say I’m a bat flip dork, but mostly I really enjoy statistics in general, which is why I like baseball.

Hockey has more action (don’t lie to yourself, you know it’s true), but baseball is measurable like nothing else, and so for me, when a player does something particularly noteworthy in baseball and you can easily compare that to other players and stats, what’s what I enjoy.

Jay_B
Member
Member
Jay_B
2 months 16 days ago

Self-reporting as a defense dork because it would include both great glove play and awesome throws (I’ve watched Ichiro, Vlad, Yoenis, Bo highlights as much as anyone).
I will say though, that when watching a game in person I geek out over stolen bases more than anything.

Timothy
Member
Member
Timothy
2 months 16 days ago

On the stats side, I’m undeniably a hitting dork. I love hitting statistics and trends. I’ve got an excel spreadsheet to calculate a stat line with variable k%, bb%, ISO, homers, etc.

But in terms of single game performances, pitching is king. I go into every game hoping for a 20 strikeout outing. Watching the top pitchers work is more appealing than watching the top hitters rake.

MLB_Nate
Member
MLB_Nate
2 months 16 days ago

OK, Maybe another category here, but I’m probably mostly a “Strategy” dork. Things like why that lineup? Why that Reliever? Hit-and-run here? or no? Safety Squeeze? I love to see these decisions and why. Baseball is more of a chess match than any other active sport I can think of.

Of the three options available, I can get goosebumps over a masterful changeup, so I picked pitching.

Fun article.

Bakaar
Member
Bakaar
2 months 16 days ago

Defense dork. Like a lot of folks, when I played baseball, defense was my strong suit, and now I like defense best as an adult. Never got a chance to pitch, and my hitting…well, let’s say I got on base from HBP more than actually having the bat make contact with the ball.

It would be an interesting poll to also check how many readers actually played baseball when they were younger, and perhaps see how well that compares to their preference now. You could even see if a favourite player plays a similar position: possibly people gravitate towards a position because of that player, or appreciate players more because of their own play experience.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

I think level becomes very significant there. I bet almost all of us played baseball, but someone like me who never played above little league is very different than someone who played even D3 college.

witesoxfan
Member
2 months 16 days ago

How about being a baseball strategy dork? Pinch hitting, lineup setting, pitching management (both how to best utilize your rotation as well as bullpen), defensive shifts, double switches, intentional walks, pitch outs, bunting, and the how, when, and where of all of these actions, plus any number of other actions. All of those specific things won’t necessarily make a huge difference over the course of the season, but it seems they can influence the outcomes of individual games if only on a micro level.

Beer
Member
2 months 16 days ago

I have a thing with pitchers. Definitely pitching dork.

Phillies113
Member
Member
2 months 16 days ago

I’ve never really identified as one of these three types of dork over another. I just love watching talented baseball players doing talented baseball things, whether it’s with a bat or with a glove or with a hand (a pitcher’s hand, specifically).

…but…if I absolutely HAD to choose, I’d say I’m a pitching dork. Nothing makes me as giddy or gets my blood pumping like watching a beautiful, museum-worthy pitch, like Chris Archer’s slider, or Clayton Kershaw’s curveball. Goosebumps.

I don't care what anyone
Member
I don't care what anyone
2 months 16 days ago

I’m a categorization dork.

Fredchuckdave
Member
2 months 16 days ago

Pitching/Hitting I like good defensive plays as much as the next guy but hard to evaluate with the naked eye. I would like a Bondsian type of pitcher to emerge at some point (there was this one guy named Clemens) with 5 15 WAR seasons in a row or what have you.

Big Daddy V
Member
Big Daddy V
2 months 16 days ago

Watching a game where everyone strikes out is incredibly boring. Hitting all the way.

The Wolffer
Member
The Wolffer
2 months 16 days ago

I classify myself as a pitching dork (former pitcher, definitely biased), but boy do I love watching dingers

YABooble
Member
YABooble
2 months 16 days ago

Hitting dork, but I love the other stuff too.

TKDC
Member
Member
TKDC
2 months 16 days ago

I’m an umpire dork. I’m there to see Joe West.

Vil
Member
Vil
2 months 15 days ago

LMAO!

free-range turducken
Member
free-range turducken
2 months 16 days ago

Whatever it is, I’m a dork.

Shirtless Bartolo Colon
Member
2 months 16 days ago

I’m a hitting dork. Not a walking dork, walks suck.

Jed
Member
Jed
2 months 16 days ago

I’m honestly not sure how to phrase this, but I don’t really think of myself as a dork for hitting or fielding or pitching themselves. I can appreciate all of them, but I’m a dork for any player who does something hilariously better than everyone else. So while base running in general doesn’t get me fired up, watching Dee Gordon run is awesome. Hitting and pitching are more nuanced. Kluber’s breaking ball or Kershaw’s slider are more interesting to me than pitching in general (Kershaw obviously does everything so well that watching his whole game is fun), and I love me some Joey Votto. For the most part I don’t notice or really care about fielding, but Simmons makes me sit up and pay attention. Watching Cliff Lee just not walk anybody. Stanton dingers. Kiermaier running down a ball in the gap.

CousinNicky
Member
CousinNicky
2 months 16 days ago

Braves Fan: I grew up a pitching fan obviously in the 90’s as a kid it would be impossible not to be. Then in the 2000’s, in my high school days I preferred the long ball with all the Bonds/Sosa/McGuire “stuff” going on. But my resurgence of interest over the past 5 years, I think has been fueled by how under valued defense and base running are. My appreciation of how awesome Andruw Jones was in center for decade and then watching Heyward and Simmons every night, well not anymore(C’est la vie!). Still, I love a good RH homerun swing(J. Upton, Mike Trout, Stanton).

teckertfong
Member
teckertfong
2 months 16 days ago

I’m a all those video links are purple dork. Getting sucked into YouTube baseball highlights for hours is a great use of half a work day.

paulpleiss
Member
paulpleiss
2 months 16 days ago

I don’t understand why more people aren’t defender dorks. Also hitter dorks only polling at 25% seems preposterous. Chicks dig the long ball!

Rob
Member
Rob
2 months 15 days ago

Pitching, once you comp, the fun don’t stop!

Joe Douglas
Member
Joe Douglas
2 months 15 days ago

What if you’re a prospect dork? Or in the case of Cistulli, a fringe-prospect dork?

some guy
Member
Member
some guy
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a roster-construction dork. Secondarily I’m a pitching dork.

It’s impossible to look at a pitcher in a vacuum. One can’t say that a particular pitcher is going to be better next year because he is getting an extra x% break on his curve, generating y% more grounders if his infield is Tony Womack, Dan Uggla, Nick Castellanos and cursed-glove Jose Galindo. So I like to see how all the parts fit together.

And it’s fascinating to me that something unmeasured and seemingly simple as moving to the edge of the rubber can turn a journeyman into a dominating reliever like Jeff Manship.

philosofool
Member
Member
philosofool
2 months 15 days ago

I hate to say this, but I’m more of an “unbelievable stats” dork. What I really geek out on is just plowing through Barry Bonds and Babe Ruth seasons, or Ted Williams career (.482) OBP, or most walks in a no hitter, or Randy Johnson appearances on single season k/9 leader boards, or Dennis Eckersley 1989 (0.602 WHIP, 18.3 K/BB), or striking out the side on 9 pitches, or being the first team to spend $100M on a 100 loss season (I’m a Mariners fan), worst O-swing/Z-swing ratios for hitters.

When I watch baseball, I like to see great stuff. Slick defense, beautiful pitching, blistering line drives, tense and dramatic moments. But what I dork out on are the numbers.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

Oh, no, that is all of us. We all can look at Bonds’ or Pedro’s pages and get our blood pumping at nothing but some selectively bolded tables of numbers.

We are weird weird humans, all of us.

Vil
Member
Vil
2 months 15 days ago

Yep.

tz
Member
tz
2 months 14 days ago

My favorite unbelievable stats factoid is still this one:

In 1948, Lou Boudreau’s WAR (10.9) was greater than his strikeout total (9). Not bad for a manager ;)

Jeff Luhnow
Member
Jeff Luhnow
2 months 15 days ago

A Craig Swan dörk.

Dave Stewart
Member
2 months 15 days ago

Who is this?

free-range turducken
Member
free-range turducken
2 months 15 days ago

He used to pitch for New Yörk.

Jeff Luhnow
Member
Jeff Luhnow
2 months 15 days ago

OK, time to stick a förk in it.

free-range turducken
Member
free-range turducken
2 months 15 days ago

Who made you boss? Put a cörk in it.

Serbian to Vietnamese to French and back
Member
Serbian to Vietnamese to French and back
2 months 13 days ago

Asshole Craig Swan

Jetsy Extrano
Member
Jetsy Extrano
2 months 15 days ago

We’ve got a shit-ton of GM dorks, I was expecting that as an option! And manager dorks. I guess I’m pitching + manager.

Bryz
Member
2 months 15 days ago

Pitching dork. I love the variations of windups, arm angles, and movement of the pitches. I obsessed over learning how to throw every type of pitch. I even got pissed at a high school teammate for bragging about his “sinker,” only to watch him spin curveball after curveball over the plate.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

Does it make me even more of a dork that I have also obsessed over learning how to throw every kind of pitch… despite not playing any organized baseball above little league, and doing much of my practice alone at a park?

Having typed that question, it is now apparent I did not need to ask it.

Anyway, I so wish I knew someone like you or me, who I could go throw with who also is interested in spin axis, useful spin, mechanics, arm pronation, etc etc.

Death to Flying Things
Member
Death to Flying Things
2 months 15 days ago

Oh my, Simmons by a mile. I stopped the Cabrera homer countdown at number 43. ;) I watched and enjoyed all of Pedro. But Simmons, lunging backwards to tag second, or throwing a bullet from way too deep in the hole–couldn’t take my eyes off that. Truth is, I like all of baseball. But there’s a fundamental difference in these skills. A great fielding play can be savored in isolation. Hitting, in contrast, is mostly memorable because of the setting. You can’t appreciate a walk off fully unless you are caught up in the drama of the moment. Pitching appreciation is somewhere in between–partly a thing of intrinsic beauty, like Pedro’s astonishing breaking pitches, and partly dependent on the “leverage” of a situation. If someone says “Carlton Fisk,” you probably remember a particular moment: 1976, Game 6 of the World Series, 12th inning, and Fisk willing his drive to stay fair. If someone says “Ozzie Smith,” you probably get a quick flashback of a backflip and just smile and say, “Yeah, I watched him play”…

Dreamin
Member
Dreamin
2 months 15 days ago

Right now as a resident of Arizona, I’m an oh-god-baseball-is-here-day-drinking-and-just-seeing-baseball-of-any-kind kind of dork.

The other 11 months of the year, the light hitting 2B deep down inside of me wants to say defense dork, but enjoying great pitching is the thing I love most about the season.

Westside guy
Member
Member
Westside guy
2 months 15 days ago

I’m definitely a defender dork.

… which has made being a Mariners’ fan these past few years has been even more painful. But I have high hopes this season will be better.

KCDaveInLA
Member
KCDaveInLA
2 months 15 days ago

I looked at the three choices and thought “am I a three-way dork?” But then that sounded really lurid. I love watching great defensive plays more than anything, so I guess that makes me a defender dork. I think FG readers like to find the underappreciated and undervalued aspects of the game, or to look for new ways to measure value and success, which is dorky only to the casual fan.

By the way, I’m also an announcer dork, growing up listening to Denny Matthews and his straightforward approach with understated humor, and then to Vin Scully and his magical ability to never say the same thing twice. MLB streaming makes them all available now, so I get to compare and contrast, which is one of the most fun things for me.

Menthol
Member
Member
Menthol
2 months 15 days ago

I’m bi-dorkal and out of closet about it.

Ruben Amaro Jr.
Member
Ruben Amaro Jr.
2 months 15 days ago

I kissed a nerd and I liked it.

Embiggens Papiamentu
Member
2 months 15 days ago

#NotGraphsDork

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

Change your profile link to this: http://www.banknotesindustries.com

Decide for yourself how successful it is at it, but it is where, if anywhere, Notgraphs has its second life.

Embiggens Papiamentu
Member
2 months 15 days ago

Done. I’m ready to move on. Things change, like Bryce was saying.

#NotGraphsLives #KeepNotGraphs.

Bob Davidson
Member
Bob Davidson
2 months 15 days ago

balk dork here

Shirtless Carson Cistulli
Member
2 months 15 days ago

Dork dork.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

I feel like it would be disingenuous to label myself as anything but a defense dork, considering I wrote this:

http://www.banknotesindustries.com/expert-like-analysis/andrelton-and-me/

However, in terms of what I actually think about the most, and what I spend the most time studying, and what I spend the most time doing against a wall in my backyard, there is no question I am 100% pitcher dork. I love watching great defense, but what I really dork out about is pitching.

Cheeseball
Member
Member
Cheeseball
2 months 15 days ago

What about the dorks who like the management side of baseball: transactions, prospects, projections? Those dorks are baseball dorks too. Me, I like everything about baseball, but what made me a baseball dork first was Hershiser’s impossible scoreless inning streak, and his kneeling to pray on the field, like he was in church. After the strike and steroids drove me away, what brought me back to MLB was Mariano Rivera, sobbing alone on the mound while the rest of the Yankees celebrated with Boone at home plate. Can you be a narrative dork?

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

Anyone who listens to Effectively Wild is at least a little bit of a metagame dork, which I think includes what you mentioned.

Shirtless George Brett
Member
Shirtless George Brett
2 months 15 days ago

To me the most beautiful play in baseball is an outfielder throwing an absolute laser to cut a guy down. Rick Ankiel is my spirit animal.

I guess that makes me a defence dork.

Kevin Krueger
Member
Kevin Krueger
2 months 15 days ago

I most identify with line-drive/contact hitters with an advanced approach (which, not coincidentally, was what I was best at as a high school player). Nothing quite like taking a 1-2 slider down and away to get me jazzed up about baseball!

Ivdown
Member
Ivdown
2 months 15 days ago

If I had my choices, as a Dodger fan, I would go Kershaw’s (perfect game) no hitter, Matt Kemp’s 39 HR in 2011, and any season of Adrian Beltre’s fielding.

The choice for the choices presented or what I said would be the pitchers just dominating, though.

lebesgueToDiffer
Member
lebesgueToDiffer
2 months 15 days ago

As a Yankees fan I couldn’t be locked in a room with that video. In general though, definitely a pitcher dork. Sexiest pitch to me is a well placed two-seam.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

A righty slinging one at the belt of a left-handed batter and getting it to dart across right onto the upper-inside corner of the plate… mmmm delicious.

The Kudzu Kid
Member
Member
2 months 15 days ago

I would happily *watch* that Andrelton Simmons video on a loop for the rest of my life.

However, being forced to *listen* to Chip Caray on a continuous loop would be its own special kind of hell.

Subversive
Member
Subversive
2 months 15 days ago

This was way more interesting than I expected, because it turns out I’m a defense dork, which I never realized until just now.

Chazerbaijani
Member
Chazerbaijani
2 months 15 days ago

How about a “grittiness dork”?
Definitely.

Vil
Member
Vil
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a total defender dork. I could never hit for any power when I played in rec leagues, and I never pitched.
But I loved to play center field. Out there I could imagine that I was Paul Blair, my favorite center fielder of all time. Something about running down a long fly ball and watching the arc of the ball as I tracked it. Sometimes I made a great catch, sometimes I didn’t. I always reminded myself out there: “Be aggressive. Go for it. Try to make that shoe string catch. Don’t bail out and play it safe.”
And though I had a pretty good throwing arm, I always got a thrill from seeing the great arms of my lifetime throwing out base runners trying to stretch a hit.
Clemente, Dewey Evans, Ichiro. Too many great arms to remember.
And finally, I still jump up out of my seat and shout “Yes!” when I see a great relay throw or a double play executed perfectly.

jgaztambide
Member
Member
jgaztambide
2 months 15 days ago

So I thought my answer would be hitting (cuz that’s what I spend most of my time reading/thinking about on this site) but I couldn’t get enough of the Pedro clip and the Simmons clip.

I realized that I enjoy watching good (flashy) defense but don’t pretend to understand its analysis, and I enjoy analyzing hitters but don’t love to watch clips of it. Is that weird?

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
2 months 15 days ago

No, I don’t think so. I think that might mean you’re are even more a hitting dork, since it doesn’t wow and surprise you as much as fascinate you. I’m 100% pitching dork but that Andrelton clip does something to my jimmies. However, I’m not that compelled to really dig into what he’s doing, whereas I’ll think about where Garrett Richards places his middle finger and how much pressure he puts on it in order to achieve the spin rate he gets on his curveball.

tz
Member
tz
2 months 15 days ago

I’m an irony dork. Like how the indisputable best player in the game is right now the indisputable second-most exciting player to watch on his team.

Still can’t get over that force out Simmons did on Yelich. Might be his best play of the bunch, and it didn’t involve his platinum arm one bit.

sleepy
Member
sleepy
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a ditching pork (yuck yuck). It’s just easier to dissect. And I love it.

Matt
Member
Matt
2 months 15 days ago

I’m the kind Goose Gossage doesn’t like. Now if you’ll excuse me I’ve wasted too much time here. I have to get back to ruining the game.

Danbowski
Member
Danbowski
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a cricket dork, but I come here because this is how I would like to talk about cricket.
That said, I identify as a pitching dork.

Wes
Member
Member
Wes
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a hitter nerd, but I tend to focus on the absurd hitting feats. Things like an Evan Gattis triple or a Ben Revere home run.

Lee
Member
Lee
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a hitting dork, but not necessarily a homer dork. Many times, when the ball leaves the bat, you know it’s gone. No suspense. My favorite play in all of baseball? A double to the gap with a runner on first. You have hitting, plus the suspense of fielding vs. baserunning. Is the runner on first going to score? Will he be thrown out at the plate? Is the throw going to be cut off? I could watch that all day.

Shirtless Bartolo Colon
Member
2 months 15 days ago

I’m a shitting pork. Forgot to put that left over barbecue in the fridge.

Blerick
Member
2 months 14 days ago

Im the good kind

outofstep
Member
outofstep
2 months 14 days ago

/visits youtube.com

/types Rick Ankiel Guns Down The Rockies

/presses Enter

libradawg
Member
libradawg
2 months 14 days ago

The reason I’m a pitchers dork is because I not only prefer them in baseball, but I think it is the most unique position in all of sports. I guess a quarterback or hockey goalie would be the closest, but you gotta appreciate how hard a pitcher’s job is. He can throw the best pitch that any pitcher has ever thrown – and the best he has to show for it is an 0-1 count. If a QB completes enough passes he gets rewarded with a Touchdown, even though for a pitcher that’s barely worth 2 IP of tosses.

Silver King
Member
Member
Silver King
2 months 14 days ago

Based on the three videos, I’m a big fielding dork! I’d have guessed it’d be close among the three sides, and maybe hitting coming out ahead, but watching Simmons was far cooler. And of the three players, I’m more a fan of Pedro than the others. Posters have made good points about the limits of these three videos for deciding the question…

My formative baseball years were Whitey’s Redbirds, so dorking out over shortstop wizardry certainly makes sense. Oh, and while it’s both far less common today and revealed as less important, doggone it was fun to anticipate and watch the speed and chance-taking with those teams.

James
Member
James
2 months 14 days ago

I’m not a Dodger fan and I watched Kershaw’s no hitter (way to go Hanley…kidding) three times in three days. It’s so beautiful. Huge pitching dork, but have to include the catcher in that equation too. I love watching a well pitched game when the pitcher never shakes a pitch. It kind of sucks though. I have a hard time watching baseball with other people when a good pitcher is on the bump because I like watching him set batters up etc.

Sam Samson
Member
Sam Samson
2 months 14 days ago

D and pitching but obviously I’m going to pick the Pedro game. How could anyone not? I know several Yankees fans who would.

phoenix2042
Member
Member
phoenix2042
2 months 14 days ago

Favorite thing to watch highlights of: defensive wizardry and defensive blundering.

Favorite thing to watch over the course of the game: pitching brilliance for the nuance and skill.

Favorite thing to watch my team doing: hitting because there’s really only upside when your team is at bat.

Jody
Member
2 months 14 days ago

Definitely a pitcher dork – likely because I played as a catcher for quite a few years, so squatting there with a full view of the all the stops while orchestrating the infield and keeping the count low allowed me to experience the game from a treasured perspective.

I’m glad that I came across this post, because I have to say that for those of you who’ve ever played one of the various tabletop baseball sims (like Strat or APBA), you’re painfully aware of the not-so-subtle lack of pitching dynamics. So much that, for our own game, Roll Saga Baseball, we invested years of research and development to ensure that the game represents the pitcher faithfully and that all the pitches, from the 2-seamer to the elusive Shuuto were covered in game play. Our reasoning was simple: how can you really sim baseball without hyper-focus on the one player that everything starts with?

Is all that not sufficient evidence? Yes, pitcher dork indeed.

tz
Member
tz
2 months 13 days ago

Just watched the whole Miggy highlight for the third time (I think I may have a problem).

Here, in a nutshell, is the REAL Miguel Cabrera Triple Crown:

1. Supreme hand-eye coordination.
2. Supreme lower-body, core, and wrist strength
3. Exemplary textbook hitting form.

And that’s in comparison with his fellow major leaguers. One of the best hitters ever.

johnforthegiants
Member
johnforthegiants
2 months 13 days ago

For sure in terms of watching I’m a fielding dork. But dorkitude isn’t just about watching, it’s about pouring through statistics too, and fielding statistics just don’t do it.

Also, for me there’s a big difference between starting and relieving pitching. Pitching out of a serious jam, high-leverage situations with runners in scoring position and great hitters at the plate, that’s the best.

redsoxu571
Member
redsoxu571
2 months 13 days ago

I’m sorry, but that poll is just no good. You have to accept that not everyone will end up classifiable.

Your videos are the perfect example:
-Oh look, Pedro’s 17 strikeout game! Power-precision fastballs, fading changeups, knee-buckling curves! *cackle cackle!*
-Oh wait, now Miguel Cabrera and a collection of assorted home runs! Look at him drive that one to right-center *cackle* Oh, he golfed than one from down and in *cackle* MOON SHOT! *cackle*
-Oooooo, Andrelton Simmons making it look easy *cackle* It’s like they took all of Brandon Phillips’s best moves and then bolted on a 3rd baseman’s arm for good measure *cackle cackle*

So what am I supposed to do when all of these fill me with glee? And you left out baserunning, by the way. Anyone want to pull up a collection of Rickey Henderson steals?

I think perhaps the reason I know I don’t have a preference towards any aspect of baseball is because the only time I DON’T enjoy the game is when you end up with a bad “pitching duel” in which the SPs have mediocre-at-best stuff and command, but the batters aren’t doing anything with it either, and there are nothing but routine plays to be found. It’s a tight, low-scoring affair with little drama or excellence, and that makes me sad. Give me something good in at least one of the game’s areas, though, and I’m pleased.

rlwhite
Member
rlwhite
2 months 13 days ago

I’m a prospect dork. This is partially because I cut the cord years ago and so I rarely see games on TV anymore. I play deep dynasty leagues and spend my work breaks reading about prospects. I see more minor league games than major league games. Analyzing scouting reports and speculating about the future are things I enjoy.

If I must choose between pitching, hitting, and defense to nerd out over, I guess I choose hitting because I feel more comfortable predicting success for hitters. Pitching is more random in its development and more impacted by injuries.

TampaRay
Member
TampaRay
2 months 12 days ago

Can I be a catcher dork? When I watch a game, I watch the catcher until the ball is hit (and sometimes after). I also love catcher stats, love seeing the different approaches (including, but not only, framing), and the pitch-calling to the extent I can tell.
Catcher impact on the game is way, way, way underrated. In an individual game, the catcher is a close second to the pitcher in importance. In a whole season, the starting catcher is by far the most important single player, and the backup catcher(s) are quite important as well.

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