The only thing we have to Fiers

The very first thing that statistical analysis shows us is there is a whole lot of randomness involved in every single baseball outcome. Predictions based on statistics are merely suggesting the most likely outcome. Not even Colin Wyers of Baseball Prospectus is so soulless as to not appreciate when something unlikely and random occurs during baseball. If anything, a basic understanding of statistical likelihood, enhances one’s enjoyment of short hops, fielding flubs and unexpected performances.

And this is why Mike Fiers is the most enjoyable story in baseball right now.

- Dustin Parkes, Getting Blanked.

Good read from Parkes on Fiers, the Brewers’ 27-year-old rookie sensation. I especially like the excerpted part because it reiterates something I’ve argued many times before: Understanding baseball’s probabilities fosters a greater appreciation for both the unlikeliest and likeliest outcomes. It’s beautiful when Jeff Francoeur plays like a superstar for a few months and then it’s beautiful when he regresses to his career norms. Baseball is the best.

As for Fiers: Certainly no one could have predicted this level of success in his first go around the big leagues, but his Minor League stats were pretty good. He was old for every level, but his career Minor League strikeout-to-walk ratio is over 4 and he seemed to suppress hits pretty effectively. Maybe his stuff doesn’t look like a typical Major Leaguer’s, but then maybe there’s some selection bias there.

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