World Series Umpire Heat Maps

The umpires have finally been announced for the World Series. The crew consists of John Hirschbeck (crew chief), Sam Holbrook, Bill Miller, Mike Winters, Jeff Kellogg, and Gary Darling. That list is in the order that they will work behind home plate.

Using a combination of Pitch F/X and game results (K/9 and BB/9), here is how the umpires rank from the most pitcher friendly to most hitter friendly:

Bill Miller
John Hirschbeck
Mike Winters
Gary Darling
Sam Holbrook
Jeff Kellogg

For a comparison, here are right and left handed strike zones for the two umpires on the extremes, Bill Miller and Jeff Kellogg (the rest of the umpire zones is available at the end of the article).

The scale given is the ratio of called strikes to the total number of called strikes and balls. The box is the rule book strike zone with the inner circle for reference only. The zone is from the hitter’s perspective looking home.

Right Handed Hitters

Bill Miller

Jeff Kellogg

Left Handed Hitters

Bill Miller

Jeff Kellogg

Hopefully, the umpires will not be involved in any major controversies this world series, but who knows. At least none of these umpires are at the extreme ends of the strike zone spectrum. Compared the previous playoff series’s this off season, this crew’s strike zone should be one of the more consistent ones.

The Rest of the Umpire’s Strike Zones

Right Handed Hitters

John Hirschbeck

Mike Winters

Gary Darling

Sam Holbrook

Left Handed Hitters

John Hirschbeck

Mike Winters

Gary Darling

Sam Holbrook



Print This Post



Jeff writes for FanGraphs, The Hardball Times and Royals Review, as well as his own website, Baseball Heat Maps with his brother Darrell. In tandem with Bill Petti, he won the 2013 SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.


Comments Are Loading Now!