Monthly Archives: April 2014

Shift Rates on the Rise

The usage of shifts in MLB has exploded this season.  Teams are on pace to combine for more than 13,000 shifts on balls in play this year, up from just over 8,000 a year ago.  Front offices and field staffs are shifting their defensive infield alignments as a result of sophisticated batter ball-in-play tendencies to […]

Opening Act: Stats and scouts evaluate rookies’ defense

Nearly a month into the MLB season, the signal in the Defensive Runs Saved data is beginning to break free of the noise. The elite defenders are steadily climbing toward the top of the leaderboards, while the less talented gloves are falling to the back of the pack. With that in mind, this seems like […]

The “Other” Adam Eaton is Starting to Make a Name for Himself

For most baseball fans, when you hear the name Adam Eaton, the first person that comes to mind is probably the 36-year-old right-hander who played a decade in MLB from 2000 to 2009. That Adam Eaton, a Washington native, had himself a respectable career. A former first-rounder, he was once traded in a deal for […]

How the Astros became baseball’s king of shifts

The escalating use of defensive shifts across baseball during the past few seasons has been well documented, and in 2013, the Houston Astros were among the leaders when it came to implementing radical defensive alignments. A year ago, the Astros ranked fifth in baseball in defensive shifts on balls in play with 496, while the Orioles led the way […]

When was [insert great player here]’s First Four-Strikeout Game?

On Saturday, Mike Trout hit another milestone in his already outstanding baseball career, although his first four-strikeout game in the majors was a milestone he would have preferred to have taken longer to achieve. After the game, Trout said all the things one would expect him to say after a four-strikeout effort: he tipped his […]

Trout Fishing for a Defensive Comeback

Part of Mike Trout’s appeal is his ability to do literally anything on a baseball field. Trout is a line-drive hitter with over-the-fence power. He can propel his prototypical linebacker body to a 6.5-second 60-yard dash and possesses a plus arm that he used to draw accolades on the mound as an amateur. His incredible […]