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How Will MLB Plans Affect VMI?

Posted: 2020-06-09 08:42:50 (ET)    [ 1050 views ]

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If MLB’s plan holds, of continuing spring training through June to begin a shortened season for 2020 in July, how will that differ from beginning a season in April as in past years from which VMI numbers have always been generated?  I am sure that many of you have been pondering that question as you contemplate how accurate projected performances will be.

Okay - so, now we can prepare for a 60 game season.  Hopefully! So, let's just change my words below from "July" to "August" and read on!!!

I have not heard of a final announcement yet, but if they do a spring-type training schedule in Phoenix and Florida, or even if they use home stadiums, then temperatures will be far warmer, especially in Phoenix and a surprise to no one.  What time of day will the games be scheduled in Phoenix?  Regardless, how will that affect the players as they begin playing for real? 

As you probably already know, the VMI is a gauge of what kind of environment each hitter has been recently exposed.  It is an indicator of how much movement on each type of pitch is provided by the overall density of the air.  That will not change.  However, it will change the degree of the VMI ranges that teams might have experienced in their transitions.  That is especially true for games 1 of each series.  So, a team leaving say Colorado after a road series there, may not reach a VMI exceeding minus 22.50, but may hit a VMI of say minus (-)18.00.   How do you handle this?  

The player should perform about the same as in any other situation where the VMI hits this range.  Why? Because his visual memory of the pitches he has seen recently, would differ by the same amount, therefore his reaction will probably be the same.  Also, the pitchers he will face will probably be throwing similar pitches, only in differing pitch mixes.  

Since VMI is only a portion of the overall analysis of team performance expectation, then it should play out as normal.  The differences to consider are more season-long issues, than daily issues.  Considering daily team performances; it does not appear baseball will look any different.  However, how long will it take for a team to settle into their own environment and then begin to struggle on the road?  Will some teams be better on the road than at home? 

When seasons begin in April, teams transition directly from Phoenix and Florida to their home stadiums.   Teams in the North, East and West get a first exposure to very cold dense air in the month of April and then transition around the league.  Air Density Indicies (ADI) in the North, East and West can hit into the mid 70's ranges in this cold air.  It takes them about a month and a half to settle into their own stadium and then they may begin to struggle on the road.  This is particularly true if their stadium environment happens to be more hitter friendly than those scheduled for their road trips.

This year, beginning in the heat of the summer, all the stadiums will be more hitter friendly than in April and May of previous years.  A month and a half this year will put them into mid-August September.  The league average ADI is 61 which includes April, May and September.  This year, they may be averaging about 57 ADI and will play many of their games in the mid 50 ADI ranges.  Only trips to San Francisco, Seattle and San Diego, plus cold summer days on the East Coast will hit closer to the 70's in Air Density Index which coincides with extreme ball movement for the pitchers. 

The every day players—as a team—will, about that time, be hitting their stride but, frustration will not be present that early in the season.  So, the dog days of summer will hit them while they are still excited to be back.  Physically, they may feel it greatly, but psychologically they will overcome it better than in a long season.

However, come September first 21st; any team that is struggling will quickly realize, the season for them is almost over and they probably will finish the season the way the league normally ends a season.  That is; teams playing too tense will loosen up, and teams on the brink of the post season could tense up.  With such a short season, some of those teams will be able to make up enough ground to get into the post season. 

At this time, it appears that you will be able to depend on the VMI as accurate as in years past.  The data we have collected as we follow each team of hitters in and out of various climates will drive predictions for both VMI concepts and our new website called BaseballTout.  It should not matter that the schedule of stadiums may look vastly different for teams if MLB chooses to travel only regionally.  While it may dramatically affect individual teams, it should not be surprising as to which teams that may be.  

Teams from the American League West Division traveling far more often to Arizona and Colorado such as the Astros, Angels, Rangers, A’s and Mariners will see a different side of a road trip.  National League West teams are fully aware of the ball movement differences, but it is impossible for any hitter to flip a switch on his personally developed hand-eye coordination that the travels cement, and the VMI gauges.  

So, for us at BaseballVMI and BaseballTout, we are excited for a season to begin.  We will be watching the numbers generated closely to see if our projections are playing out as I have anticipated.  Anyone can do “data-mining” on our website without a membership.  All one must do is generate a report using the report-type query feature options within each dropdown box.  Keep in mind that the more specific you are, the shorter the report will be to generate.  So, if you are asking for too many players, or the whole league, the report may take a long time to generate.  

At BaseballTout, which will be available to you after about two weeks into the new season (whenever that may be) you will be able to see all of the 2019 games, who won, the BaseballTout pick, the Vegas Odds, etc. for any individual day of the 2019 season.  And you do not need a membership to see this information.  If you purchase a pick that turns out to be a losing pick, your account will be credited with the amount you paid for it, so you may use that credit to buy a new pick.  In other words, we will not sell losing picks.  


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Previous Comments

From: Posted on: 2020-06-26

Thanks for your comment.  It makes sense, and we'll continue to consider that aspect. 

From: Posted on: 2020-06-25

"We will not sell losing picks"...that's not good. If you credit FIVE losing picks in a row back to an account, and the sixth pick hits, you've sold five losing picks and one winner for the amount of one pick. The poor guy still loses his keister. How about this, "we'll do our best." That's fair. Remember, the pick is not yours; it's the guy who places the wager. Period. Don't be like Covers. Be you. You're doing great as is.


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