Theo Tobel

Theo Tobel has written 51 posts for Theo Tobel's Baseball Blog

Biomechanics in the Wild: Looking at Max Scherzer’s Injury

About a month and a half ago, I wrote an article about the increased importance of biomechanics–the study of structure and function in living things–in baseball. Check it out below, if you haven’t already: Today, I want to look at some examples of how this can be applied in Major League Baseball, and how you … Continue reading

A Stupefying Slider

A few days ago, I was reading David Adler’s article “The Nastiest Pitcher You Don’t Know Yet” on, about the Mariners rookie Matt Brash and his frequent mentions on the Pitching Ninja Twitter page. But in my opinion, Brash is not even the nastiest pitcher on the Mariners, much less in the league. It’s … Continue reading

The Future of Baseball

The era of baseball analytics, often referred to as “Moneyball” thanks to the popularity of the Michael Lewis book and subsequent movie starring Brad Pitt, has been in full swing for more than two decades. Teams continue to extend the boundaries of the discipline, using advanced tracking systems, such as Hawkeye, which provide more and … Continue reading

Freddie Freeman: the Killer of Pitches Low in the Zone

In a fascinating post titled “What makes a home run pitch” in the Hardball Times, Jonathan Hale looks at long ball frequencies versus pitch location. In one of his graphics, called “Home Run Rate by Height of Pitch,” it shows a clear increase in the frequency of home runs from two to four feet off … Continue reading

Celebrating the Start of Baseball With a Free Agent Fiesta

Yesterday, MLB’s owners and the Players Union reached a new labor deal, with Opening Day scheduled for April 7th, only one week after the original start date. My friend Thomas and I were checking Twitter every five minutes (while in school), and when Jeff Passan of ESPN dropped the news, we were ecstatic. Not only … Continue reading

Read My First SABR Games Project Article, “October 7, 2013: Juan Uribe’s home run advances Dodgers to NLCS”

I am proud to say that I have written my first article for the Society of American Baseball Research’s Games Project, where “the goal is to put each game in historical context — whether that history is of a particular player, team, season, or something even broader.” I know it’s been a little bit since … Continue reading

gganimate: A New Way to Visualize Baseball Data

Earlier this week, I discovered a package in the coding language, R, called “gganimate.” I was intrigued by the what seem to be the endless possibilities of this package, which animates graphs and visualizations in a myriad of different ways. Today, I will use gganimate to make three graphs come to life! Example #1: 1988 … Continue reading

A Tribute to Baseball Cards

My love for collecting baseball cards started many years ago, around the age of eight. As a young entrepreneur, I had the idea of making my own baseball cards: I collected stats and pictures for players, and then printed them out and laminated them. I went to Douglas Park, the park nearest my house, to … Continue reading

Baseball’s Speedy Sprinters

Hello and happy new year! With no light at the end of the lockout tunnel, there are no big trades to discuss, no free agents being signed to massive contracts – all there is is concern for the fast-approaching 2022 Spring Training. So, until the lockout ends, I will continue to analyze data from past … Continue reading

Remembering the Negro Leagues’ Best

A little over one year ago, Rob Manfred recognized the Negro Leagues–the leagues in which African American baseball players participated in before they had the option to play in the MLB–as “official,” meaning that all statistics, players, and records in the Negro Leagues (1920-1948) would be counted as the Major Leagues, an effort to repair … Continue reading

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