Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Setting the defense based on previous at bats

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Setting the defense based on previous at bats

    I don’t think anyone who knows much at all about baseball would deny that a scatter chart for hitters or pitchers for a season wouldn’t at the very minimum be a help in aligning the defense. But. I come across folks all the time who believe its important from at bat to at bat in the same game. What I’m talking about is, let’s say a batter grounds out to 3rd in his 1st at bat. The next time he’s up the manager moves the defense that way in anticipation that if he hits the ball again, it will go that way, and there’s a lot of hollering from the bench and the stands for the 3rd baseman to stay alive over there because he went that way last time.

    I’m wondering how valid a strategy that is. IOW, are the chances improved that the defense will be where the ball is hit if its put in play, over if they just played where they did at the start of the game, based on whatever scouting or guessing was done prior to the game. If you just believe it does with no real proof, that’s OK. But, if you believe it based on something you’ve read or some numbers you’ve tracked, please show that. I’m interested because I’m working on trying to develop a metric that will look from at bat to at bat to see how likely it is.
    The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

  • #2
    Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
    ....based on whatever scouting or guessing was done prior to the game [or AB].
    I would say this is more or less what we use to position the defense.

    Now that's not to say that on a "FB count" (different thread), and the player goes foul to an extreme one way or the other, that we don't make some movements/adjustments after seeing that....but the key word there is "extreme", so we usually don't do much changing after our initial "guesses" about a pitcher/hitter matchup.
    In memory of "Catchingcoach" - Dave Weaver: February 28, 1955 - June 17, 2011

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by mudvnine View Post
      I would say this is more or less what we use to position the defense.
      I think its safe to say that all levels below MiL, that’s pretty much the process. Not because coaches aren’t smart enough to use that kind of information, but rather that it’s pretty rare that its available.

      Now that's not to say that on a "FB count" (different thread), and the player goes foul to an extreme one way or the other, that we don't make some movements/adjustments after seeing that....but the key word there is "extreme", so we usually don't do much changing after our initial "guesses" about a pitcher/hitter matchup.
      That sounds to me as though it’s the most logical approach. But having said that, I’m sure you’ve run into your share of coaches who say things like that, if not actually move the players. I’ll throw out a guess that its something that depends a lot on the experience of the coach. IOW, its something more likely to be seen the lower the level gets.
      The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
        That sounds to me as though it’s the most logical approach. But having said that, I’m sure you’ve run into your share of coaches who say things like that, if not actually move the players. I’ll throw out a guess that its something that depends a lot on the experience of the coach. IOW, its something more likely to be seen the lower the level gets.
        I had an AC that was my "pitching coach" for our TB club when I was doing 11s and 12U, who wanted shift and adjust the defense, depending on what and where he was calling for the pitch.

        Needless to say, with my opinion of the control that youth pitchers have with their pitches.....I said that we wouldn't be doing that.

        I was surprised that what finally convinced him, was me telling him that if we ever coached against each other, that I'd know, and be able to tell me hitters what pitch was coming, simply be how his fielders moved....whether he was aware of it or not.

        Should have seen the look on his face....a mixed between and h ......classic.
        In memory of "Catchingcoach" - Dave Weaver: February 28, 1955 - June 17, 2011

        Comment


        • #5
          That’s in inexperience showing big time. The problem is, it makes perfect sense, as long as you assume the other teams is made up of a bunch of halfwits who pay no attention to what their opponent does.

          There’s a lot of “beliefs” or “myths” in baseball like that too. Like the one people believe that hitting is contagious, so that hits most often follow other hits. There’s always some truth to those things, but the extent of those truths is seldom what people believe them to be.
          The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by mudvnine View Post
            I had an AC that was my "pitching coach" for our TB club when I was doing 11s and 12U, who wanted shift and adjust the defense, depending on what and where he was calling for the pitch.

            Needless to say, with my opinion of the control that youth pitchers have with their pitches.....I said that we wouldn't be doing that.

            I was surprised that what finally convinced him, was me telling him that if we ever coached against each other, that I'd know, and be able to tell me hitters what pitch was coming, simply be how his fielders moved....whether he was aware of it or not.

            Should have seen the look on his face....a mixed between and h ......classic.
            He could just do a fake shift every so often to fool your batters. Or, the fielders could move with the pitch, instead of before it.

            Comment


            • #7
              I would say at the lower levels it is pretty much coincidence were hitters hit. most have a slight pull tendency though.

              I would say at most levels a neutral defense (maybe with a couple feet offset to the pull side) is the best thing. no need for fancy defensive alignments.
              of course if you see in BP that he hits everything to the same spot you might react but I would be careful to base your evalutations on one AB especially with hitters that only have a grooved swing and can't really control were they hit. use a neutral alignment -unless you are sure, can't go wrong like this
              I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
                There’s a lot of “beliefs” or “myths” in baseball like that too. Like the one people believe that hitting is contagious, so that hits most often follow other hits. There’s always some truth to those things, but the extent of those truths is seldom what people believe them to be.
                Yes, but think about how "mental" hitting is.....and how much self-confidence plays into certain scenarios both the hitter and the pitcher.

                If one hitter happens to have great a good AB off a pitcher, the next hitter comes up with just a bit more confidence than he might, had the previous hitter just been K'd with some "heat" or wicked off-speed stuff.....

                If that second guys manages to come through with solid contact for a base hit, the next hitter is walking up thinking that that pitcher is now in big trouble.....and at this point, some self-doubt may even be creeping in on the pitcher.....and so it goes.

                So while hitting is certainly not "contagious" by definition, there is something to be said about early and successive success in an inning for a hitting team to build upon that success, that mentally shifts the "edge" ever so slightly in their direction....and when it come to hitting, that little "edge" is sometimes all it takes.
                In memory of "Catchingcoach" - Dave Weaver: February 28, 1955 - June 17, 2011

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ipitch View Post
                  He could just do a fake shift every so often to fool your batters. Or, the fielders could move with the pitch, instead of before it.
                  So he would shift his fielders to a less effective alignment for the pitch he's calling, just to fool the opposing team? What sense does that make?

                  He's really going to shift his fielders to play "oppo", yet instruct his pitcher to throw inside to the hitters "pull" side? Sounds like someones going to be chasing a baseball for a long time when that pitcher hits his spots and the hitter yanks it.

                  Besides, you missed the point completely.....I could care less with what the opposition does defensively before the pitch. There is not a single youth pitcher that has the control to throw pitches where he (and his coach) want them to induce the hitter to hit the ball into a particular defensive alignment.

                  I was simply messing with his head....which I guess I inadvertently did to others. Oops.....

                  At the HS level, we'll sometimes have our SS read the pitch called with certain hitters or situations when we have runners on base so he can communicate to the 2nd baseman as to who's covering the bag....but to move the defense from pitch to pitch depending on the pitch that's coming, thinking the hitter will hit it into that particular alignment is not something that I have ever seen to be effective at the lower levels....or the upper ones for that matter.

                  How many MLB teams to you see moving defensively pitch by pitch? If it actually worked, don't you think they'd be the ones doing it?
                  In memory of "Catchingcoach" - Dave Weaver: February 28, 1955 - June 17, 2011

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
                    I don’t think anyone who knows much at all about baseball would deny that a scatter chart for hitters or pitchers for a season wouldn’t at the very minimum be a help in aligning the defense. But. I come across folks all the time who believe its important from at bat to at bat in the same game. What I’m talking about is, let’s say a batter grounds out to 3rd in his 1st at bat. The next time he’s up the manager moves the defense that way in anticipation that if he hits the ball again, it will go that way, and there’s a lot of hollering from the bench and the stands for the 3rd baseman to stay alive over there because he went that way last time.

                    I’m wondering how valid a strategy that is. IOW, are the chances improved that the defense will be where the ball is hit if its put in play, over if they just played where they did at the start of the game, based on whatever scouting or guessing was done prior to the game. If you just believe it does with no real proof, that’s OK. But, if you believe it based on something you’ve read or some numbers you’ve tracked, please show that. I’m interested because I’m working on trying to develop a metric that will look from at bat to at bat to see how likely it is.
                    In any one game there's a good chance where a hitter puts the ball in play depends on the pitcher he's facing, what pitch was thrown, and the count. A pull hitter may drive two the other way or up the middle because he saw outside pitches with 1-2 counts. The third time he may pull a 2-0 pitch deep into the corner. The hitter may have hit two the other way because the starting pitcher threw in the upper 80's. The world changes facing a pitcher throwing 82 the third time at bat.

                    I positioned defenses based on bat speed I saw early in the game and pitchers velocity and/or stuff.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by mudvnine View Post
                      Besides, you missed the point completely.....
                      We're even, because you missed mine too. I was talking about little things that the defense can do to trick the batters. For example, the SS moves 4' to the left when the catches gives the sign, but then moves 6' to the right as the pitcher goes into his windup.

                      Originally posted by mudvnine View Post
                      How many MLB teams to you see moving defensively pitch by pitch?
                      If it were easy, they all would.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by mudvnine View Post
                        Yes, but think about how "mental" hitting is.....and how much self-confidence plays into certain scenarios both the hitter and the pitcher.

                        If one hitter happens to have great a good AB off a pitcher, the next hitter comes up with just a bit more confidence than he might, had the previous hitter just been K'd with some "heat" or wicked off-speed stuff.....

                        If that second guys manages to come through with solid contact for a base hit, the next hitter is walking up thinking that that pitcher is now in big trouble.....and at this point, some self-doubt may even be creeping in on the pitcher.....and so it goes.

                        So while hitting is certainly not "contagious" by definition, there is something to be said about early and successive success in an inning for a hitting team to build upon that success, that mentally shifts the "edge" ever so slightly in their direction....and when it come to hitting, that little "edge" is sometimes all it takes.
                        Well, I don’t know because its impossible to measure what goes on in a hitter’s dome. However, I suspect that no matter the condition of the batter’s confidence, a lot more has to do with the pitcher’s ability to focus and execute from the stretch. Of course I may well be wrong, but as I said, there’s so much about the game that’s based not on fact but belief, its really difficult to come up with solid answers that will bear scrutiny.

                        hitfollow1.pdf

                        FI, if one looks at this metric, s/he may well see that a heck of a lot of hits come after another hit, and conclude that the reason for that is this “feeling” or “confidence” you’re talking about. But someone else may well see conclude that its much more likely that a hit will follow a ball that’s been put in play, whether it was a hit or not. Still someone else might look at that and wonder how things would look from the perspective or just runners being on, forcing the pitchers to lose some degree of focus.
                        The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          IMO, making numerous adjustments from at-bat to at-bat is an exercise in frustration at younger levels (below 12u). IOW, playing "straight up" is the way to go in most situations, outside of extreme circumstances. Others may disagree.
                          Last edited by bhss89; 07-01-2012, 04:43 PM.
                          "I became a good pitcher when I stopped trying to make them miss the ball and started trying to make them hit it." - Sandy Koufax.

                          "My name is Yasiel Puig. I am from Cuba. I am 21 years old. Thank you."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by bhss89 View Post
                            IMO, making numerous adjustments from at-bat to at-bat is an exercise in frustration at younger levels (below 12u). IOW, playing "straight up" is the way to go in most situations, outside of extreme circumstances. Others may disagree.
                            I THINK you’re correct, but that doesn’t make it so. That’s why I try to look at what actually took place, rather than just accept what APPEARS to be true. Right now I’m messing around with looking at real data to see if I can come up with a way to at least portray what happened so I can then draw conclusions. But, since I only have limited HS data, no matter what conclusions I come up with wouldn’t directly apply to those younger levels you’re talking about. Do you have any data for those levels to back up your hypothesis?

                            The reason I find it interesting, is that if we’re correct, then spending much time doing it is really time wasted that could be more well spent on something else. Eliminating as many things like that as possible only makes the “experience” better because it would be more efficient.
                            The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Ok, so "shifts" are hardly possilbe at the hs level because you don't have enough info. However, knowing your pitcher can help some IF your team also had an idea of how you think as a coach and how you have trained the catcher. In other words, they can anticipate a given pitch prior to the signal, placed themselves in an area one or two steps adjusted and then, if htat pitch is not called, they can adjust back. In my opinion, this can be done without the hitter ever catching on because you "sly" in the adjustments and they are only a few steps.

                              I had one pitcher who could flat out locate. We had a rule we called "the Spotty rule" because this guy could locate so good. It was fun seeing this guy pitch knowing that he could not break a pane of glass and yet he was going to win every time out. In fact, he did win every time out. He went on to college where they took a look at his speed and thought that they had a "cat in a sack." Then they gave him a chance and he set some records for them as well.

                              As an FYI, I just watched the Cardinals get burned all weekend by shifting against the Pirates. My complaint about shifting is that pitchers, pitch speed, type of pitch, game situations etc. are never the same and yet, the end result is the information that comprises those charts. What I wish I saw was a stat on how often the shift fails. I bet it is more than you would think.
                              Granny said Sonny stick to your guns if you believe in something no matter what. Because it's better to be hated for who you are than to be loved for who you're not.

                              I am an ex expert. I've done this long enough to know that those who think that they know it all, know nothing.

                              Comment

                              Ad Widget

                              Collapse
                              Working...
                              X