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  • kmart35

    I know this has been debated over and over again and the professional opinion for the most part is that, statistically speaking, it makes no difference if a batter has had great success against a certain pitcher or not. I played baseball my whole life all the way up to D1 and in my experience there is nothing more powerful than a hot streak or knowing you own a certain pitcher. There were days when I’d see a certain pitcher warming up before the game and I’d know I’d get a couple knocks just because I’ve gone 3-4 a couple times against this guy even if my teammates couldn’t solve him and there were other guys where my team would light up every time and I’d go 0-3 with 2 Ks. What I’m saying is maybe what analytics fails to record is the huge mental advantage you get while on a hot streak or from owning a pitcher over your career.

    Feel free to let me know how horribly wrong I am.. I don’t use BvP exclusively but mostly as a last check i.e if I someone I’m about to pick is a career 1-15 against the starter I’ll find someone else

  • bretboy

    I think it can be valid if you have a decent sample size. I agree with you that it isn’t the first thing I check when doing my research, but if I am stuck on a position with a couple players I may refer to BvP to see who may have an advantage. 1-10 I wouldn’t worry about, but a 3-50 I would probably look elsewhere….

  • OneShotKill17

    I don’t use it but I do look at it. Same as you, played ball through college and there is 100% something to bvp and i don’t believe the sample size needs to be as big as some ppl make it seem. You know if you own a pitcher after a couple games and you also know if a pitcher owns you.

  • kmart35

    @bretboy said...

    1-10 I wouldn’t worry about, but a 3-50 I would probably look elsewhere

    3-50 is over about 15 games. I think it’s pretty rare to see that large of a sample size when talking about BvP isn’t it?

  • Priptonite

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    It’s not that you’re wrong, it’s that you’re arguing the wrong point. People who are anti-BvP (or anti-streakiness) don’t necessarily believe that it doesn’t exist. They just believe that it holds little predictive significance.

  • sethayates

    @Priptonite said...

    It’s not that you’re wrong, it’s that you’re arguing the wrong point. People who are anti-BvP (or anti-streakiness) don’t necessarily believe that it doesn’t exist. They just believe that it holds little predictive significance.

    ^^ Pretty much this, but also BvP can be explained by other stats. Let’s say that we run a contest where you pick the top 5 BvP matchups and I’ll pick the top 5 matchups based on wOBA and wRC. On day one, I’ll take Nelson Cruz who owns a .466 wOBA and a 202 wRC against left handed pitching. He’s facing John Danks tonight who allows a .353 wOBA to righties.

    Now it’s your pick. You also want Cruz who is 5-10 with 2HR against Danks (I made those numbers up). So, are we picking him because of his BvP or because he mashes lefties?

    If he hits a HR the BvP crowd will say, “See, I told you that Cruz owns Danks, that’s 3 HR in 11 ABs”

    Meanwhile the stats crowd is like, “Of course Cruz owns Danks, he owns a lot of lefties based on his wOBA and wRC”

    Basically, the wOBA approach and the BvP approach can each claim victory, and that’s ok, but long-term I want the largest sample possible when I’m making my picks. Looking at wOBA, ISO,wRC, etc gives me that. BvP really doesn’t.

  • bretboy

    @kmart35 said...

    3-50 is over about 15 games. I think it’s pretty rare to see that large of a sample size when talking about BvP isn’t it?

    Well yeah. It’s possible in divisional games, but I was just over-exaggerating my point. agree with @priptonite though.

  • jszabo417

    Having also played through college, I’ll say this much… There were certain pitchers who I loved to face and certain pitchers who I hated to face. However, don’t underestimate the value of a hot streak. I don’t know how to explain it unless you have played baseball, but when you’re in the zone, you can throw out what the stats suggest. This is only true for a very short sample size and I would not use this as a predictor of future performance. I’m just saying if you want to ride a guy when he’s hot, it could be a good contrarian pivot if the stats suggest he’s going to regress (short term). A perfect example is Daniel Murphy during the NLDS and NLCS. No way I’d be putting him in my lineup against Kershaw, Greinke, and Arrieta, but the dude was on fire. However, we all saw what happened in the world series.

    The first thing I do when I research MLB is analyze the starting pitchers. That tells me the story of which games and players to target and avoid. I also keep a log of the last 3-4 games and track how many hits and runs each team produced. It’s not Money Ball, but it helps me with my process.

  • JMToWin

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    @Priptonite said...

    It’s not that you’re wrong, it’s that you’re arguing the wrong point. People who are anti-BvP (or anti-streakiness) don’t necessarily believe that it doesn’t exist. They just believe that it holds little predictive significance.

    Priptonite is right on.

    I’m somewhere in the middle on all this. Essentially, I feel it’s predictive in some cases and not predictive in others, and it’s nearly impossible for us to discern which is which.

    Each hitter has certain pitchers they simply see well – these guys are likely to square up the ball against these pitchers even if they end up going 0-4. But other guys may be, say, 6-14 off a pitcher in their career simply because of a few lucky ball placements. Without studying each BvP history in-depth, it’s hard to determine which is which – and even then, sometimes, it doesn’t help!

  • chasec23

    hh

  • CheeseIsGood

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    I wrote this last summer with my views about BvP. Cliff notes version; it is absolutely real, but we don’t know when it is real and when it’s randomness of small sample size.
    https://rotogrinders.com/articles/mlb-dfs-the-truth-about-bvp-770113

  • Jeets232

    With hitters only facing a particular pitcher only a few times a year (if he’s in division), it is hard to trust even a large sample size of say 30+ AB because many of those at bats occur in past seasons. Now, stats from previous seasons are not bad, but we all know that a player’s performance can change over the years (i.e. injuries, peak years, etc.). Although I don’t really use BvP in the traditional sense in my approach, I do believe it exists. I have found it useful at times in GPPs to help indicate players who might see high ownership.

  • alsmizzle

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  • MTro86

    RG Writer

    @CheeseIsGood said...

    I wrote this last summer with my views about BvP. Cliff notes version; it is absolutely real, but we don’t know when it is real and when it’s randomness of small sample size.
    https://rotogrinders.com/articles/mlb-dfs-the-truth-about-bvp-770113

    I also have to agree with the guys who have echoed this. You may know you own a certain guy and feel great against him, but how do I know that? How do people that are not the hitter know that you just didn’t face a certain pitcher at the right time and have a few sneak through or during a red hot streak?

    Recently, batter vs pitch type has become more popular and while I like this a bit more than BvP, if you’re crushing a certain pitch, the other team knows this too and isn’t going to throw you too many.

    Which is why…….

    I really, really liked seeing a few people start writing about batters vs batted ball type (ground ball pitchers, fly ball pitchers). This seems like it could potentially be as useful as L/R splits. This would be a lot harder to change than simply “don’t throw this guy a fastball”.

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