Thursday, February 20, 2014

MLB Trade Rumors Apparently Censors When They are Wrong

As I am wont to do, I read baseball news widely and was reading this post on MLB Trade Rumors, when I came to disagree with the writer's position on free agent Brandon Lyon.  I proceeded to check into his stats, made a comment, which he replied to a semi-rude way to reinforce his point, at which point I dug into Lyon's numbers more deeply and realized some things very quickly and left my comment there.  It got deleted.

So then I answered again, asking if this is MLBTR's new official policy and wondered if my comment would be deleted again.  It was.  Not only that, but he also banned me from being able to comment on their site.  So I guess it is their new official policy to censor comments that disagrees with the writer, and in fact, made him look bad, whenever they feel like it.

Here is basically what I said:  I disagreed with the writer's comment of "a somewhat positive spin" regarding Lyon, because his stats, for a reliever, isn't very good.  Then once he replied with some more positive data on him, I found some other things to reinforce my point that Lyon isn't that good a reliever, which I took to be his meaning regarding "a somewhat positive spin" and his subsequent reply making more positive statements about Lyon's prospects.

And Lyon isn't really that good a relief option right now.  For one thing, Lyon's K/9 has been subpar his whole career, that's not what you want to see from a good reliever.  He had only good one year, in 2012, the year that probably got the writer thinking that Lyon was still good, since he noted the positive spin (else why note it?).  However, that was his only season EVER in his career where he had an above par K/9.  I posited that him being injured the year before and missing a lot of the season rested his arm and he was stronger in 2012, but then regressed back to normal in 2013.  In any case, his K/9 in all his other seasons were in the low 6's, nothing really to build a strong bullpen around (though he could be an OK complementary piece).

Worse, his BB/9 when from good to bad starting in 2009, going from roughly 3.0 BB/9 to mid-3 BB/9 since.  That, coupled with his poor K/9 has resulted in very subpar (though OK for a reliever) K/BB of near but under 2.0 K/BB ratios, which is what you want your pitchers to be at or above, if you are trying to build a good bullpen.  You don't build a good bullpen by signing pitchers who can't beat 2.0 K/BB easily.

And he has not been a good reliever for a long time now, not by any sabermetric analysis, as relievers seasons are small sample sized and require looking at multiple seasons to see where his actual talent level is.   And he wasn't all that good early in his career, only that he was forced into closing and doing OK in that role, and once his BB/9 got worse in 2009 - and more importantly, stayed worse - he's been a sub-par reliever since.

To conclude, for the temerity of first commenting that he was wrong by presenting his advanced metrics as "a somewhat positive spin", he deleted me, then second questioning MLBTR, he actually went ahead and terminated my commenting ability on their website.

ogc thoughts

Try and delete this comment, MLBTR!  I've supported MLBTR with a lot of comments over the years, and as my loyal readers know, I don't comment without some statistical evidence of my position (or I would plainly state that this is my opinion).  I guess they are feeling pretty high on their horse nowadays and feel like they can just ban people who disagree and catches them on their errors left and right.

As I've noted before, I have never deleted a comment off my site, not even that vile, denigrating, over the top, beat down that Roger left here one time regarding my analytical abilities and ability to hold a job based on those abilities, except for ones where I didn't want the language left here on my system since there could be children reading.  For those, I copied the comment, noted my deletion and replacement, and took out the offending language with X's, I think, or perhaps "shoot" or "fudge", as the case may be.

I'm ashamed of MLBTR's behavior, not that they would care since they are so high and mighty now, but just to note, in case that wasn't clear.  When I'm wrong, I'll admit it, openly, in the same place it was exposed, I don't feel the need to be right, I only feel the need to know the truth, whatever it may be.

4 comments:

  1. Weak sauce. Like you, I don't delete anything, even if it makes me look bad ultimately.

    I read the site pretty frequently, but I missed that one. It appears your initial comment is still there. Do you get notified by disquis that you are banned? I'm just curious. I think its worth contacting somebody besides the author of that piece, who is a guy I don't recognize.

    Deletion of comments is indeed weak. BTW thanks for getting my back with that Giants top ten list brew up with Chris Crawford. Ironically he took my comment down and then left your comments up. I guess he realized he was bringing a knife to a gun fight, or getting into a land war in Asia, or some other fun metaphor. You were more polite than I was, and that is to your credit!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't remember the exact sequence. I believe what happened is that when I tried to comment on that thread again, DISQUS opened up a new tab discussing getting banned or prohibitted (already deleted tab, and memory bad) by the site in question.

      Good point, maybe it is just this one guy going off the ranch. I would contact the owner if I could, maybe I'll look for something another day.

      It appears that I can comment again on other parts of the site, I tried one, one of those stupid "YEAH!" or something and I got that in. I did notice that when I entered in my second comment, which I'll admit was more inflammatory but I think I'm allowed some anger when my original comment was deleted, the system noted that the author was monitoring the comments and so it would need to be approved, or whatever the terminology was, so I was expecting the second one not to go through.

      He had to leave my initial comment and his response, is my cynical view. Both that and his comment was there for a few days before I was able to get back and add my data that showed him to be even more wrong than my initial comment. I mean, really, Lyon hasn't been good in a while, he's at best a second tier reliever now, if not third. If the author had deleted the whole chain, then it would have been totally obviously to regular readers there that something got deleted. Deleting just my comeback probably was missed by the vast majority of people reading there. But, yeah, weak sauce.

      Hey, no problem, and honestly, seeing what happened to you, I made pains not to be swinging my elbows around, just to get your point out, which I thought was good, sometimes we have to tag team to get our point out. Not that I don't try to be polite most times, but I put in extra effort in trying to be as bland and robotic as possible in this case, so that the truth is revealed. And he didn't seem to be blatantly defensive, like this MLBTR guy was, but just appeared to take some offense, whatever it was that triggered him. So I thought trying a different tack might do the trick.

      And you've had my back in other cases, which I've appreciated as well, so I was happy to help out there.

      Delete
  2. I always try to contribute to any site to which I post a comment, yet one or two sites have blocked me and or taken down my posts with no explanation. Usually it has been when I have posted a comment which disagrees with the poster, but I am always professional about the post, without name calling, and usually with back-up data. One of the sites that has blocked me is a very popular newspaper, and the unnecessary censorship means I just take my business elsewhere.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the comment!

      Yes, you have been very evenhanded in your comments, here and elsewhere, so I can't imagine why you would be blocked. Yeah, that's all you can do, take your business elsewhere.

      Delete

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