Data Driven



Baseball started it. And others followed.

Percentages/ratios/if-then scenarios.

Baseball’s timeless contests have been broken down into categories and sub-categories and sub-sub categories. And they’ve been published that way giving Baseball fans the games within the game!


Baseball has been a game of data and statistics. All the bits and pieces taken away for study then put right back together, just like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, to show the whole picture. Baseball has always been this way for coaches and for fans.

Yes… has always had extensive statistical analysis…..ALWAYS.


In the 1970’s there were no computers. If you wanted to change the channel on the television set, you actually had to get up out of your chair and “flip” the dial to one of the 3 channels your antenna picked up.

But- in the 1970’s there was extensive statistical analysis occurring in baseball. I know that for a fact because in the summer of 1976 there was a 14 year old, 4-eyed boy playing Legion ball sitting in a 3B dugout when the afore mentioned analysis unfolded before his very eyes. (All 4 of them)


This young man was playing ‘up’ (as all the fence-huggers like to say these days). Then, playing ‘up’ wasn’t a status or social ranking, it was simply what a kid did because the coach told him to because he thought it would help the team in some way. Honestly, a kid’s status at that time was upheld by eating as many Big Macs after a game as the older guys did. THAT was status!


This pup was NOT ‘up’ because of his bat. Instead, he had decent leather AND, he had some wheels. SPEED! And he knew it highly unlikely he’d get an at bat on that day. But when the coach came over to the dugout from the 3B box and said, “Boys- this guy has thrown a fastball to start every one of you. LOOK for it! Be READY for it!”


HUH??  He has?


NOW the pup was ready to bat! He KNEW what that first pitch would be because the Coach said so! The pup was ready to DRIVE that first pitch. C’mon----put him in Coach!


Didn’t happen.


But what did happen were the gears in the mind of a 120 pound, 4-eyed, 14 year-old began turning as he was introduced to the game within the game. Hello Extensive Statistical Analysis.


And now every sport does it. Example:


Football would share/report in ‘total’ yardage but has evolved from Total Yards to Yards Per Carry to Yards Per Carry After Contact or Catch to Yards Per Carry After Contact or Catch Going to His Right starting on the Opponent’s 30 yard line, etc. There’s even a mathematical formula to rate your Quarterback.   WHAT GREAT STUFF!!


And with the advent of the computer and the burst of available apps, there hasn’t been a more exciting time for data.


Your sport is data-driven. Use your data to find an edge. Use your data to explain a point. It’s all right there, easy to use. And to use the data/technology, you don’t even have to get out of your chair!


When it comes to your program, there is no such thing as too much data.

Harness it. Use it. WIN with it.