Category Archives: Monte Carlo Simulations

World Baseball Classic qualifiers open in Sydney

Sixteen teams will compete in the tournament next spring. Twelve of those slots are already filled based on teams’ performance in 2013. The last four slots will be decided this spring and fall. Four double-elimination tournaments (each between four different countries) will be contested, with the winner advancing to the next round. A preview of each tournament featuring our Elo rankings is below.

Read the rest on Beyond the Box Score

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International baseball: South Korea wins inaugural Premier 12

A three-run homer by Byung-Ho Park capped a five-run fourth inning as South Korea rolled past the United States, 8-0, to claim the inaugural Premier 12 baseball championship in front of 40,411 fans at the Tokyo Dome.

For South Korea, the victory marked their first global baseball title since the 1982 Baseball World Cup hosted in Seoul. The championship comes on the heels of a gold medal at September’s Asian Baseball Championship. As in September, South Korea needed a furious ninth-inning rally to upset Japan in the penultimate game. Seven innings of one-hit ball by Japanese ace Shohei Otani had the visitors facing elimination, down 3-0 with three outs to go. But six straight batters reached base for South Korea, with Dae-Ho Lee’s line drive single into the left field corner bringing in the tying and go-ahead runs.

Read the rest at Beyond the Box Score

International baseball: Premier 12 preview and summer wrapup

Baseball, as former commissioner Bart Giamatti once wrote, “is designed to break your heart.” The World Series is over, the chill rains have come, the days are all twilight, and we’re forced to scavenge, staring glumly at the garish colors and chemical aftertaste of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Baseball!

There is one more event on the calendar before the offseason: The World Baseball Softball Confederation is hosting the first Premier 12 tournament in Japan and Taiwan next week. The event features the top 12 nations in the WBSC’s rankings, which are based on participation in other WBSC tournaments, and will serve as a qualifying event for future Olympic baseball tournaments. According to the WBSC, the Premier 12 is the “flagship professional baseball world championship.” This is not to be confused with the World Baseball Championship, which was labeled the WBSC’s “Official men’s Baseball World Championship” [sic] when the MLB-WBSC partnership was renewed in September. (WBSC did not respond to requests to clarify the distinction between the two.)

Read the rest at Beyond the Box Score

July international baseball update

July is typically a slow period in the sports calendar, even for baseball fans. This year, though, the Pan American Games help fill the doldrums around the All-Star Game. To help prepare you for this month’s events, I’ve compiled another update of my international baseball rankings with predictions of the men’s and women’s baseball events at the Pan-Am Games, along with the European championship qualifiers being held at the end of the month.

Read the rest on Beyond the Box Score

September international baseball preview

We unveiled our rankings of international baseball squads a couple of weeks ago to coincide with our presentation at Saberseminar. Our first edition, available here, had the United States a few points ahead of the Dominican Republic and Cuba.

But my favorite part of the system is its usefulness for predicting upcoming events. To that end, we built 10,000-iteration Monte Carlo simulations of the big international events coming up in the next month.

Read the rest on Beyond the Box Score

How fast does team batting average stabilize?

…Carleton showed that a player’s batting average (BA) only stabilizes towards his true talent level after 910 at bats (AB).┬áBut a team can get that many AB in a month. Intuitively, if a player can suffer through a bad month at the plate, why can’t a team? The Marlins may have approached the Mendoza line on the road in April, but that includes a 10-for-53 stretch by Giancarlo Stanton. Odds are, they’re not as good as they looked in Miami to open the season, and they’re not as bad as they looked away from Miami either.

Read the rest at Beyond the Box Score