Posted: 2021-09-02 10:06:26 (ET) [ 687 views ]
Is MLB hiding the truth in order to keep you, the public, the fantasy managers, the wagering world and the US Government from knowing that Air Density is affecting competitive advantage? Well, we know that air density issues are true and that baseball vmi has it correct. Why else would MLB consider making a special larger baseball for Coors Field games? By the way, pitchers would probably hate that concept. However, why is MLB afraid of air density and competitiveness enough to hide it? Money! They want to sell more tickets and beer and get higher TV ratings and contracts. They would certainly like to be more relevant when football season arrives. But, if the question comes up about air density in each home stadium, they want to control that, because it answers the question, "which teams have the disadvantage and which teams have the biggest advantage?" They want to present themselves as a professional baseball league with a level playing field. It is not! Furthermore, I suspect they also do not want the MLB Players Union to get if figured out before the next agreement. We at www.baseballvmi.com have proven that MLB does not have a level playing field. The Colorado Rockies have had 20 years of knowledge in the air density subject, but want to squash it, so that they can get pitching in place even though they can seldom compete due to losing on the road. By-the-way, year in and year out, they are much more competitive in the second half of each road trip, than the first half of it.
On August 11th of this past month, an MLB.COM writer called me to ask--what is your opinion of why the Rockies have the best home record in baseball coupled with the worst road record? Within the context of this recorded 20+ minute conversation, he stated he wanted to do an article on both the Rockies road woes and my opinion of how to correct the issue. He said he needed to talk to his boss about whether he could do that. After speaking with his boss, he has not responded to either email or text from me. Writing is on the wall.
Why would MLB risk fantasy baseball managers proving that MLB is hiding statistics that would help them in their pursuit of competitiveness? Why would MLB risk that wagerers might get fed up with it, as well?
So, is MLB and are individual teams into this VMI thing?
In my opinion MLB is afraid of it, just like they are afraid of competition from the Independent Leagues of baseball. Why? It is because they want everything to be in their favor, so they push everything aside in order to stay in control. If they can keep the public from having options in Professional Baseball, then they maintain the appearance of being the only choice for TV contracts and MLB game attendance. It makes sense. It is important, financially, for them to have a monopoly if it is possible and allowed by government. They are one of the few if not the only monopoly allowed by the US Government, because they made all MLB teams franchises under one company.
I have received letters from some of the brass of MLB over the years including Sandy Alderson when he was Bud Selig's right hand man and Joe Garagiola, Jr. when he was with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Generally, Joe Garagiola was more complimentary of how precisely our ADI and VMI are calculated and how the statistics would probably be important and are similar to what others had indicated at that time. However, he did not indicate that Arizona would be interested in pursuing any solution to helping their team.
Sandy Alderson (speaking for Bud Selig and MLB, at the time) said they were not interested in pursuing any solutions to help level the playing field for the league.
Do players actually pay any attention to what VMI publishes?
We have a lot of followers who look at our data without becoming members. Are some of those players? Some are and I suspect others, as well. However, the players, as I have indicated previously, are sensitive to being accused of using an excuse for their performance. It is handy for coaches and general managers to say what former Colorado Rockies general manager, Jeff Bridich said to Nolan Arenado; "play better." As long as the managers have that crutch and can hold the players to a standard produced by the top teams, then they don't need to do more. However, the truth is revealed by VMI. That truth is that each player and team must adjust to more movement caused by the climate today and then the reverse by adjusting to less movement in another climate tomorrow. Every player shakes his head at times and wonders what the heck is going on, but some, like Charlie Blackmon and the experienced Rockies know that extreme adjustments are necessary. They know that the playing field in MLB is not level. In fact, John Vander Wal, former player for the Yankees and the Rockies, said "they had to do something (regarding the humidor in 2002) because when you play in Colorado and then go to San Diego, the pitches are diving and darting and you are not used to it." after the Yankees scored 40 some runs in 3 games at Coors. Subsequently, in San Diego New York scored 5 runs over 3 games, and Rockies TV announcers played it down. The players want to get the heck out of Colorado. Pitchers don't want to be in Colorado and that scares the Rockies' brass. However, the money and fan base is good, so the players put up with it because few are in control of their own fate in baseball.
Do owners consider helping their players to be competitive?
No, the owners don't consider helping their players to be competitive in the league, that is up to the players. The owners expect to just trade players and put the responsibility on them. They don't want to spend money helping them and they don't need to if they can win enough at home to keep fans and TV contracts, then losing on the road helps the whole league. Profit sharing says, in effect, "win at home and keep your fans happy, we (MLB) will split the money from the home teams, so that you don't need to win on the road." So smaller market and losing teams can tell their fans and players, we are just a small market team so we must build through the farm system. Truth is; they are simply not creative enough nor willing enough to do what it takes to win in MLB regardless of the climate their team is located within. Then, they say, well--we are an entertainment industry.
The Central Divisions of MLB have long been known as the weaker divisions. Why? It is because their stadiums are between 500 feet elevation and 1,000 feet elevation and mostly cold in the spring but hot and humid during the "dog days of summer." This knocks down the extra movement in the Central Divisions venues compared to sea level movement. That lack of exposure to good movement causes additional losses to coastal teams when they travel. They can win their central division periodically, but struggle mightily to win in the Post Season and World Series competition against coastal teams. Just winning enough post-season games to arrive at the World Series is currently worth between $50 Million and $100 Million additional income generated in that year.
Do any teams follow the statistics that are available on VMI?
Some probably are, but not letting me know that.
What do managers, general managers and coaches think of this approach to the physical and mental adjustments that players must make?
The Colorado Rockies baseball operations department under Dan O'Dowd assigned Zack Rosenthal to learn and understand VMI principles soon after Michael Cuddyer arrived at Coors. The next year, O'Dowd either resigned or was told to resign. Rosenthal will not respond as to whether he is watching or not and previously (during a face to face meeting) stated that if they were to build the high-tech batting cage they would be fired. Jeff Bridich and Bud Black have not reached out to us nor has anyone else associated with the Rockies. Originally, Dick Monfort told a mutual acquaintance that "the players can build such a thing if they want, but I won't." Now Dick avoids talking about it by saying "it is not ball movement issues, it is that the players just get tired after playing in the thin air of Colorado." One of the more ridiculous statements ever made since the players mostly stand in the outfield waiting for a ball their way and then sit on the bench awaiting their trip to the plate. That statement shows totally no understanding of baseball, physics, or mental and physical challenges. Furthermore, what is his analysis of the other teams in the league who show the same issues the Rockies show, only by a lesser percentage? Are they too tired to compete at sea level, because of 500 feet greater elevation? No, its air density and the ball movement issues related to it.
Coaches don't know how this affects players. If one does, he won't say so. These coaches never had to play two very different versions of baseball continually during the same week. I did, and the current and past Rockies players have. General Managers? No, most of them never played baseball at all, let alone two versions, both at a high level.
What would it look like to level the field for the Central Divisions, Colorado Rockies, Los Angeles Dodgers, Atlanta Braves and Arizona D'Backs?
All it would take is to provide a high-tech batting cage at the higher altitude locations to duplicate sea level air. Complicated? A little; but costly? Not for an MLB team. Would swinging at 4 sea level pitches per day per hitter cause a problem for home game effectiveness? No, the hitters from each home team are far more familiar with their home conditions than any visiting team could ever become over the course of a MLB season.
Hand-eye coordination is not as sensitive as MLB, media, and players want to portray. Imagine an Olympic gymnast who must flip backward and place hands and feet precisely on a balance beam, then switch to uneven parallel bars and place hands, feet etc. precisely in proper positions and protect themselves from serious injury. What if one competitive team was told it could only work out on one apparatus each day? Then go compete with other teams who switch between all the apparatus each day.
MLB is not only hurting themselves by keeping the possibilities under wraps, what about youth organizations in the Midwest and Mountain districts who never get to see the trajectory of a sea level pitch until they must compete and try to impress others with their prowess?
How do I know they are hiding it and can hurt fantasy managers, etc.? Because, with all the technology out there to analyze pitches and the amount of movement, they do not show any difference between the movement on pitches at sea level vs central divisions, or the western divisions, including the Rockies. Why? Because they purposely left out "Actual Barometric Pressure" for the day of performance in their formulas. MLB only uses standard pressure, which is a fake pressure measurement that only meteoroligists use to identify specifics of storms.
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