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Projecting who will win the 2018 Home Run Derby

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Continuing my pattern of enjoying the festivities around the All-Star Game the most, I’ve always loved the Home Run Derby. As a kid, when I’d come home from school, the old reruns of Home Run Derby from the 1960s were on. Because I was born in 1978, I got to see a lot of players whose careers I had missed out on, like Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle. This was before ESPN Classic was launched and the internet was really a thing.nfl cheap nike jerseys

Recently, in a discussion, I was asked “Dan, can you predict a Home Run Derby?” My first answer was an extremely helpful “Dunno,” but it got me thinking if we could predict a Home Run Derby, using both the matchups and results. We don’t have a lot of data, but modeling these things always gives an interesting glimpse into the inner workings of things.
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So, I found variables for the three most recent Home Run Derbys — I’d love more years, but the formats shift a lot and I wanted to see first if Statcast data would be helpful — and started from there. A few variables, some surprising, some not, came up as useful predictors of Derby performance. Sixteen of the 21 matchups from 2015-2017 were won by the player with the higher average exit velocity and the margin tended to be correlated with their difference in the rankings. Also helpful were things like home runs-per-ball hit, and even recent performance seemed to have more predictive value in a Derby than in real life.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

I’ll spare the nitty-gritty ins-and-outs of dimensionality reduction and go right to the results, plugged in for this year’s Home Run Derby, matchup by matchup.

Pirates call up OF prospect Austin Meadows with Starling Marte ailing

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The Pittsburgh Pirates recalled Austin Meadows from Triple-A Indianapolis on Friday,cheap nfl nike jerseys china  a move that comes with fellow outfielder Starling Marte nursing discomfort in his right side.

Meadows was ranked 70th on Keith Law’s list of the top 100 prospects in baseball entering the season. He will be making his major league debut Friday against the San Diego Padres, batting seventh and playing center field.
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The 23-year-old Meadows is hitting .294 (37-for-126) with 10 doubles, 1 home run, 15 RBIs and 20 runs scored this season at Triple-A. He was the ninth overall pick in 2013.

Marte was placed on the 10-day disabled list after he injured his oblique Tuesday night in a win over the Chicago White Sox and sat out the next two games. The DL move is retroactive to Wednesday.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

He is hitting .308 with six homers, 19 RBIs and 10 stolen bases for the National League Central-leading Pirates.