SPORTS CHART OF THE DAY: Scoring Is Down In Baseball, But Maybe Not Why You Think

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Scoring in baseball is at its lowest point in more than 20 years with less than 8.6 runs being scored per game each of the last two seasons. Many people will say that this is evidence that steroid testing is working in baseball. Other will say that the ban on amphetamines has had the biggest impact.

But Joe Maddon, manager of the Tampa Bay Rays has another theory. He says that the increase in data that is available to teams favours pitching and defence (via

“Data helps the pitching and defence,” he said. “I don’t think there’s anything in there that helps the hitter. I think that’s one reason why we’re seeing run-scoring go down the way that it is.”

The biggest example is the increased use of defensive shifts, which take advantage of stronger data on where batters are more likely to hit the ball.

Of course, the danger is that baseball is scoring too few runs. Here is a look at year-by-year scoring since baseball lowered the pitcher’s mound in 1968…

MLB Scoring

Data via

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