China Employs Secret Market Inefficiency

The world is still trembling, one imagines, at the scientific discovery the present author made on these very pages on June 6, 2011. In said article, the illustration in which I reproduce here because you are assumedly too lazy to click a link, it was established that the offensive performance of a baseball player was correlated with the length of his last name.


The Chinese Baseball Club of China has taken this inefficiency to heart and elevated it to heretofore unheard of letter-to-name ratios. For a recent but specifically unspecific WBC contest, they wielded the following starting lineup:


With only twenty-five letters divided between nine names, China is seated firmly toward the left-hand side of the original graph, also known as the “good” side. And with three players sporting two-letter last names, there’s the potential for an exponential increase in performance. Of course, this can only end in one fashion: some day, one nation or another will develop the technology to create a truly nameless athlete, whose infinite wRC+ will irrevocably destroy the game of baseball. Countermeasures, in which teams employ ridiculously long last names for pitchers, will ultimately fail due to jersey logistics.

In the meantime, enjoy the game while you can.

Hat tip to Monsieur Zimmerman for the television screen capture.

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Patrick Dubuque writes for NotGraphs and The Hardball Times, and he served as former Bill Spaceman Lee Visiting Professor for Baseball Exploration at Pitchers & Poets. Follow him on Twitter @euqubud.

9 Responses to “China Employs Secret Market Inefficiency”

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  1. Choo says:

    Well, Saltalamacchia’s got some fucking work to do.

    +16 Vote -1 Vote +1

  2. Mindhead3 says:

    Chu’s on first?

    +18 Vote -1 Vote +1

  3. Patrick Samuel Deduno says:

    USA has got some work to do.
    How about…
    C Jose Mauer
    1B Ike Davis
    2B Aaron Hill
    SS JJ Hardy
    3B David Wright
    LF Ryan Braun
    CF Jon Jay
    RF Matt Kemp
    P Cliff Lee

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  4. nuddles says:

    Fuckin’ Chang, with his long-ass name and only one sill-abel.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  5. Brett Gardner says:

    wang, catcher… surely there’s a joke there, right?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

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