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Deconstructing the Pirates

With the Brewers embracing a systematic rebuild following the 2014 and 2015 collapse, it is worth scrutinizing other building cycles around the MLB. As the Brewers play in Pittsburgh, the Pirates are winding down their second disappointing season following their 2013-2015 contending run. Pittsburgh fully rebuilt their baseball operations, analytics, and player development system under […]

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Update: Cashing Out OFP 2

Earlier this week, I examined the surplus added by Brewers GM David Stearns, which is undoubtedly one of the reasons the club is performing quite well. Stearns, in stark contrast to recently famous rebuilds in Chicago and his previous front office (Houston), is building competitive clubs at the MLB level by cashing in on short-term […]

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Improving Front Office Diversity

When David Stearns was first hired, BPMilwaukee’s Jack Moore wrote a column about the lack of diversity in MLB front offices. This remains a problem today, as front office openings continue to be filled by Ivy-educated white men. Just this offseason, Arizona replaced Dave Stewart with Mike Hazen, who is a Princeton graduate. The solution isn’t […]

Investing in Executive Structure

One of the curiosities of the 2016 Brewers rebuild withstood the trade deadline. Mysteries about whether Jonathan Lucroy would be traded (he would), relievers would be traded (they would), starting pitchers would be traded (nope!), any position players would be traded (Aaron Hill), or any top prospects graduated to the MLB (Welcome, Orlando Arcia!) were […]

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The Brewers By Elo Rating

FiveThirtyEight followed their fascinating NBA and NFL franchise value Elo Ratings by introducing such ratings for MLB franchises. Their published results are fascinating because they blend zero-sum judgments of each team (when the Brewers beat the Nationals, for example, the Nationals lost exactly the same number of points that the Brewers gained) with weighted predictions […]

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The New Professional Orthodoxy

MLB analytics is an austerity movement. As MLB fans clamor for new metrics or data formats, the language of “market inefficiencies” and exploitation seep deeper and deeper into the game’s descriptive fabric. Amateur fan and professional executive interests align in the search for unforeseen, ignored, or under-appreciated skills in order to maximize value. Fans love […]