Baseball Hacks

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Overview

Baseball Hacks isn't your typical baseball book—it's a book about how to watch, research, and understand baseball. It's an instruction manual for the free baseball databases. It's a cookbook for baseball research. Every part of this book is designed to teach baseball fans how to do something. In short, it's a how-to book—one that will increase your enjoyment and knowledge of the game.

So much of the way baseball is played today hinges upon interpreting statistical data. Players ...

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Baseball Hacks: Tips & Tools for Analyzing and Winning with Statistics

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Overview

Baseball Hacks isn't your typical baseball book—it's a book about how to watch, research, and understand baseball. It's an instruction manual for the free baseball databases. It's a cookbook for baseball research. Every part of this book is designed to teach baseball fans how to do something. In short, it's a how-to book—one that will increase your enjoyment and knowledge of the game.

So much of the way baseball is played today hinges upon interpreting statistical data. Players are acquired based on their performance in statistical categories that ownership deems most important. Managers make in-game decisions based not on instincts, but on probability - how a particular batter might fare against left-handedpitching, for instance.

The goal of this unique book is to show fans all the baseball-related stuff that they can do for free (or close to free). Just as open source projects have made great software freely available, collaborative projects such as Retrosheet and Baseball DataBank have made great data freely available. You can use these data sources to research your favorite players, win your fantasy league, or appreciate the game of baseball even more than you do now.

Baseball Hacks shows how easy it is to get data, process it, and use it to truly understand baseball. The book lists a number of sources for current and historical baseball data, and explains how to load it into a database for analysis. It then introduces several powerful statistical tools for understanding data and forecasting results.

For the uninitiated baseball fan, author Joseph Adler walks readers through the core statistical categories for hitters (batting average, on-base percentage, etc.), pitchers (earned run average, strikeout-to-walk ratio, etc.), and fielders (putouts, errors, etc.). He then extrapolates upon these numbers to examine more advanced data groups like career averages, team stats, season-by-season comparisons, and more. Whether you're a mathematician, scientist, or season-ticket holder to your favorite team, Baseball Hacks is sure to have something for you.

Advance praise for Baseball Hacks:

"Baseball Hacks is the best book ever written for understanding and practicing baseball analytics. A must-read for baseball professionals and enthusiasts alike."

— Ari Kaplan, database consultant to the Montreal Expos, San Diego Padres, and Baltimore Orioles

"The game was born in the 19th century, but the passion for its analysis continues to grow into the 21st. In Baseball Hacks, Joe Adler not only demonstrates thatthe latest data-mining technologies have useful application to the study of baseball statistics, he also teaches the reader how to do the analysis himself, arming the dedicated baseball fan with tools to take his understanding of the game to a higher level."

— Mark E. Johnson, Ph.D., Founder, SportMetrika, Inc. and Baseball Analyst for the 2004 St. Louis Cardinals

This guide shows fantasy baseball fanatics--and those who love the game--how to get data, process it, and use it to truly understand baseball.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596009427
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/7/2006
  • Series: Hacks Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 472
  • Sales rank: 610,908
  • Product dimensions: 6.32 (w) x 8.94 (h) x 1.11 (d)

Meet the Author

Joseph Adler has years of experience working with lots of popular data mining packages, including databases (including Oracle, PostgreSQL, and MS Access), statistical analysis tools (SAS, SPSS, S-Plus, and R), and data mining tools (SAS Enterprise Miner, Insightful Miner, Oracle Data Mining, Weka, and SPSS Clementine). He is currently leading a project at Verisign to pick a data mining package for enterprise deployment.

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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 Basics of baseball 1
Ch. 2 Baseball games from past years 39
Ch. 3 Stats from the current season 114
Ch. 4 Visualize baseball statistics 158
Ch. 5 Formulas 210
Ch. 6 Sabermetric thinking 310
Ch. 7 The bullpen 410
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2006

    'OFF WE GO TO THE BALL GAME!!'

    Are you a baseball aficionado or fanatic who is interested in statistics and want to know how to load this data into a database for analysis? If you are, then this book is for you! Author Joseph Adler, has done an outstanding job of writing a book about how to watch, research, and understand baseball. Adler, begins by showing you how to watch and score baseball games, and how to find some simple baseball data on the Web. Then, the author shows you where to get databases of career statistics and introduces some tools that you¿ll find helpful in working with this data. Next, he shows you how to get data on current baseball games. The author then introduces R and shows you a lot of cool tricks that you can use to analyze baseball data with R. He continues by covering a few of the most popular formulas and a few favorites. Then, the author discusses many baseball problems, some classic and some new. Finally, he comprises a few random topics that didn¿t fit anywhere else: fantasy baseball, widgets, and other sports. This most excellent book is an instruction manual for the free baseball databases. More importantly, this book is a cookbook for baseball research.

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