Scott Sabol finished off his brief, yet stunningly naive, post at Beyond the Boxscore with:
The bottom line: Pitching overall is getting better. Batters are getting fooled more than they did just 5 years ago.
I’m trying to go easy on a guy who’d say that with such conviction based off arbitrary numbers chosen from the Pitch Type, Batted Ball, and Plate Discpline tabs on FanGraphs’ season leaderboard. But that doesn’t mean anything to Colin Wyers, Official Hater of Subjective Statistics:
There’s someone getting fooled here, but it isn’t batters.
Nine minutes later, he added:
You have to go out to three significant digits to see a change in walk rates at all. You see a .016 rise in strikeout rates.
If your data suggests to you that there’s been a 500% increase in swinging at pitches in the strike zone over this time period, then may I suggest to you that what you’ve found isn’t “interesting,” it’s bad analysis caused by bad data.
Justin Bopp (likely the idiot who chose to run this article) is there to rebuild Sabol’s fragile ego:
Lots of good feedback here, Scott.
Keep at it!
It’s obvious that Sabol is a defenseless swimmer in shark-infested waters when matched against Colin Wyers. Anyone with half a brain could see this article made no sense. So, why did Beyond the Boxscore run it anyway? Allow me to give you some advice. FanGraphs may be kicking your ass in page views and popularity, that doesn’t mean you have to rip off their content.