Posts Tagged ‘baseball’

It seems a slightly amateurish website hasn’t hindered the fledgling American Premier League from attracting players. Although the ICC has deemed the competition ‘unauthorised’ and the ECB has discouraged county players from taking part, the likes of Astle, Gillespie, Hick and Hollioake.

Whether or not October in New York will be a little too cold for cricket doesn’t seem to have been addressed yet. The baseball season will still be underway, which suggests that there is an appetite for outdoor sport in the city, but whether the players already signed up will convince NYC’s expatriate population to come out in force remains to be seen.

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Inzamam ul-Haq could be amongst a host of Lahore Badshahs players about to take a bite of the Big Apple (or rather the big APL) as Jay Mir of the American Sports & Entertainment Group (me neither) plans an ‘American Premier League‘ Twenty20 tournament based at a converted baseball field in New York.

The last man to try and sell cricket to the Americans, of course, was Allen Stanford. The less said about that, I think, the better.

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Marcus Trescothick has won the William Hill Sports Book of the Year for his autobiography. Trescothick’s exploration of the deepest, darkest recesses of his troubled mind, which hit the cricketing headlines recently for its revelations of ball-tampering, is probably not ideal stocking filler material, but it’s probably going to turn up in plenty of stockings anyway.

The Somerset vice-captain seems a lot more content now that his England career is over, but will his literary success counterbalance his lack of baseball skill?

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…and neither is Ashley Giles. They were both part of a team that got spanked 21-1 by the GB Baseball team (who are, by the way, all amateurs).

It would be interesting to see the likes of A-Rod try their hands at cricket, though. There probably wouldn’t be many forward defensive shots.

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Andy Bull, writing for the Guardian, has picked up on the sterling work of David Barry (and many others) in the field of ‘cricket sabermetrics‘.

As noted by pretty much everyone who’s ever written on this subject, baseball is way ahead in terms of using stats to improve the way the game is played, and even football, normally resistant to change, has been influenced by the rise of ProZone, as well as the likes of Billy Beane. Whilst there is no shortage of cricketing statisticians, they tend not to be overly interested in influencing traditional cricketing behaviour (however irrational it may be).

Australia, as Bull and Barry both note, have used a bit of this statistical science to good effect. John Buchanan in particular is apparently a fan.

I think that there’s a lot of scope for using stats, but there’s a danger in getting carried away. Stats in general are flawed, cricket stats even more so.

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The Stanford 20/20 has now reached the ‘Super Eight’ (or quarter finals, as they used to be called) stage, and is proving far more entertaining than watching England playing cricket about as well as I play the piano (that is, one-note and off-key).

No news yet on whether the Yanks have taken to it, though. They should, though, seeing as they owe their country’s existence to cricket. And baseball, often cited as America’s equivalent, is so English that Jane Austen was the first writer to use the word in print.

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