Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Golden Trio

I'll admit I'm not a big fan of awards but I'm happy for three Giants--Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford, and Joe Panik--who were awarded the Gold Glove. The Giants had a good club this season and it's not surprising they'd get some recognition. Not much else to celebrate. Counting the days until Spring Training.


p.s. More good stuff. Alguacil, as expected. But . . . Barry? OK by me, of course.


Ron said...

Fuck Nate Silver & fuck his website.

M.C. O'Connor said...

538 gave Trump more of a chance than most polls. (HuffPo said 99% certain for Clinton, which was obviously stupid, Silver had it more like 2-1). In fact, they consistently reported that many of the states Clinton was leading in were in fact within polling error. And Silver repeatedly admitted he missed the Trump phenomenon in the primaries and that Trump was a wildcard and brought a randomness and unpredictability to the model they used that they could not necessarily account for. In his words:

"In an extremely narrow sense, I’m not that surprised by the outcome, since polling — to a greater extent than the conventional wisdom acknowledged — had shown a fairly competitive race with critical weaknesses for Clinton in the Electoral College. It’s possible, perhaps even likely, that Clinton will eventually win the popular vote as more votes come in from California.

But in a broader sense? It’s the most shocking political development of my lifetime."

Ron said...

I read all of his disclaimers every day, I know that his odds were not as good as some of the other ones. But, the guy 'who called every State right in 2012' got at least 5 big ones wrong this time around.

Clinton is now ahead in the popular vote. The Electoral College system will never change, but one of the side effects is that people in about 60% of the States in the Union never get a chance to see a Presidential Candidate up-close after the primaries are finished. And, even in the primaries, several States never see the Candidates, because it is done by the time that they vote. I'm tired of the importance given to Iowa & New Hampshire during the Primary Season, & I wish that more people did get a chance to see the Candidates during the Election. As a Child, I saw Eugene McCarthy in 1968. Then, as an Adult, I saw Howard Dean, John Kerry, & John Edwards in 2004 (Kerry & Edwards when they were actually the Nominees of the Party). Those were impactful & memorable events in my life. It's too bad that the rules & practicalities are such that, on the West Coast, were are non-participants, both by direct contact & in the value of our individual votes.

This Election is a sickening development on so many levels, I can't even start to document adequately. We are in for a very long 4 years.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Well I won't argue about the impact of time differences on the national election. And the Electoral College has always been an anachronism. Not sure what that has to do with Nate Silver. Polling and forecasting are uncertain things. No one can call every race. He at least laid out the uncertainty--a 1 in 3 chance is not a trivial thing. After the Brexit vote in the UK it became clear to me that anything could happen here in the States. I'm surprised, but not shocked. Trump's election was within reasonable probabilities.

I think he's a complete asshole, but at this point I have to hope for the best. I'm not a rich celebrity so I can't just move to Canada or Bermuda or whatever the fuck place they can pack up and run to. (Don't they sound like spoiled teens arguing about curfews when they announce that they'll leave?) Besides, I'm an American and I love where I live and have no intention of allowing a stupid election result to change that. I don't have much faith in the President-elect, but for all our sakes I hope he's up to the job.

Zo said...

I found this from the Washington Post interesting: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/10/28/professor-whos-predicted-30-years-of-presidential-elections-correctly-is-doubling-down-on-a-trump-win/?wpisrc=nl_fix&wpmm=1 along with the link in the article "Our first interview." It is not based on polls.

M.C. O'Connor said...

I saw that story some time back, the Chron linked to it. I thought it was interesting how much he talked about uncertainty:

"I do think this election has the potential to shatter the normal boundaries of American politics and reset everything, including, perhaps, reset the keys to the White House. Look, I’m not a psychic. I don’t look at a crystal ball. The keys are based on history. And they’re based on a lot of changes in history, they’re very robust. But there can come a time when change is so cataclysmic that it changes the fundamentals of how we do our politics, and this election has the potential — we don’t know yet, but it has the potential."

When I checked on my IRA account right before the election it was trending upward, which I took as a sign the favorite (HRC) would win. Stock markets hate uncertainty. Then it dipped when Trump was called the winner, now it is bouncing back. Certainly a Trump presidency could be cataclysmic, but maybe the markets have more "faith" in the country's stability, regardless of who occupies the White House. Then again, maybe people on Wall Street are just a bunch of ninnies who spook at everything.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Back to baseball: Giants are the featured team in <a href="http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2016/11/offseason-outlook-san-francisco-giants-7.html>MLBTR's Offseason Outlook.</a>

Giants have a good club, as we know. Evans addressed the 2015 team's weaknesses very well, I thought. So I expect he will do the same for the 2016 team's shortcomings.

It's about 100 days, I think, until Spring Training.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Not sure why my HTML failed.

Here's the link.

Oh, I see, I forgot to close-quote.

M.C. O'Connor said...

So, Chapman, Jansen, or Melancon? Seems the Giants have met with all three players' agents. Do we shore up the 'pen with a shiny new bauble? Or do we promote from within? Or, more Giants-y than that, reclaim a scrap-heap project? Or, just make Matt Cain the closer. Why not? He's got a full arsenal of pitches, should be fully healthy, finally, in 2017. Think Dennis Eckersley, John Smoltz, that sort of thing. Too weird?

Ron said...

Melancon is the most affordable &, I think, the most likely. I don't think that we can go in with Cain as Plan A, but they may give him a tryout in that role or in the 8th inning role during Spring Training. Of course, Francona, Maddon, & Roberts really shook up the conventional Closer thinking during the Post-Season, so, maybe, we won't even have a #1 Closer.

With the hastening of the destruction of the planet resulting from Trump as President & Palin as Secretary of Interior, it probably doesn't matter much, though. Every game will either get rained out or all of the AT&T grass will burn to a crisp.

nomisnala said...

Giants should be the first team to win the world series during the Trump era. Note, the Russians were heavily involved in psych-ops in getting Americans to vote for Trump. This is not conspiracy theory but true. The white house briefings when it comes to secret information, is having trouble whether to give the information to Trump at this time, because his campaign has too many ties to Russia. I guess Putin finally got his useful idiot into power as the American President.

M.C. O'Connor said...

The last thing I'm going to say about the election, and politics in general, is that uncertainty and variation are the essence of life. And they are particularly important in what we all love--baseball! The older I get, the more I appreciate such things. Quantum mechanics tells us that nature cannot be apprehended with absolute precision, that only probabilistic determinations can be made. At least, that is the limit of our knowledge at this juncture in time. Here are two articles that I found quite interesting. The first is Nate Silver, picking up the pieces from the failure of his model:


The second is a critique of an aspect of his methodology and a suggestion for improvement (from Quanta magazine):


Failure, that is, being wrong, is nothing to be ashamed of. (It is easy to critique another's failure, especially if they stuck their dick out and you did not.) Being wrong is actually a GOOD THING as it forces one to do better next time. And all of us can use a dose of humility now and then, as I believe humility to be among the greatest of human virtues. Science, and human knowledge, advances when we stop worrying about right and wrong and winning and losing and focus on the imperfections in our outlooks and our schemes for understanding events. We look, naturally, for certainty in this crazy world of ours. It may be that our search for certainty is ultimately futile. That is, our expectations of order and comprehensibility are the problem, as nature (which includes human behavior) is what nature is and is not subject to our puny human biases.

97 days until Spring Training.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Giants supposedly interested in JD Martinez.

89 days.

Ron said...

This is one of those stories which is hard to take very seriously, because it was semi-retracted, as soon as it was thrown out there. However, I think that he would be a decent pick-up. Not much of a defender, though, so we'd need a Blanco-type around for late innings.

I think that we're getting Melancon, although my #1 choice would be Jansen. The best argument for Jansen that I've heard is that, because he was a Catcher for so long, his arm has logged far fewer stress innings than the rest. For a high pressure Reliever, I think that that is a valid factor.

As far as the rest of the recently non-QO'd folks go, Ian Desmond is very interesting to me. Cespedes & Justin Turner should be considered. STAY AWAY from Trumbo, Bautista, & Encarnacion - those guys are AL all the way.

The coming-back-from-injury flyer I would take a chance on is Greg Holland.

nomisnala said...

Models sometimes fail when they do not account for all the variables. There was imput into reality which was not conceived by his model. By the way the model worked in about 90% of the states with extreme precision. Data conflicting from his model came in Florida, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan. All states with baseball teams. I wonder how much his model considered voter suppression, and provisional ballots not being counted. Maybe the democrats should run Don Rickles for President, he may be the only person out there who has a chance to insult as many people as did Mr. Trump.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Looks like the new CBA removes the All-Star Game winner/World Series home field link. World Series home field goes to the team with the best regular-season record. No matter what else they do at least they got one thing right!