Tagged: Snowflake League

Snowflake League FAQ

There have been a number of questions regarding the Snowflake League. I attempted to explain the enterprise in a previous post, but some may have missed it and others may not have understood it. Thus I decided to start a FAQ which will later be posted on the Snowflake League website, which I’ve discovered needs some real work from a navigational standpoint. Having developed professionally for the web since, well, there was a web (I was once in talks with a major publisher of computer books to do a book on HTML 1.1), that won’t be particularly difficult. But for the purposes of this discussion it reveals a secondary purpose of the Snowflake League: to work out the kinks before doing something a little more substantial. The intent is to do some historical recreations which should be quite interesting, with historical reflections you might expect from someone who did The Jamestown Site. Just as the current “steroid era” baseball reflects a sports crazed society with a drug problem, so has baseball throughout its history reflected its culture. Baseball’s labor problems, for example, could be predicted from a sport born in the Industrial Revolution. It is correctly pointed out that baseball is unfairly singled out for its current bio-chemistry problems, but baseball is merely at the forefront, as it has always been, of a much larger problem our society faces.

But I digress. For now it is all fun and games. The Snowflake League provides boxscores when the sports pages are devoid. There are “soon-to-be’s”, “never-was’es” and “who-the-****-is-that-guy’s” and, if we’re lucky, a “that guy is dead!”. But it is baseball, at least as close as we’re going to get while I look out my window and see my Jeep covered with snow.

Snowflake League FAQ

What is the Snowflake League?

The Snowflake League is a simulated league designed to prepare for and accent spring training (and consequently the season), which seems all too far away in the middle of winter, particularly in relation to our home teams here in Virginia, Washington and Baltimore.

How are the results generated?

Diamond Mind Baseball is used for the simulation. Diamond Mind Baseball is highly respected baseball simulator used by ESPN and other organizations to predict upcoming seasons and the post season.

The home games for Baltimore and Washington are played manually, inning by inning, at least until a game gets out of hand. The rest of the games are played with the computer managing both teams.

How were the teams selected?

A limited number of teams were selected for manageability and focus.

The eight teams in the league are the parent clubs of Triple A teams we expect to see in the 2008 season. The 2008 schedule for the Norfolk Tides, AAA affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, was examined and the home series we will be likely to attend were selected as the basis for the teams in the Snowflake League.

How were the players selected?

The focus is intentionally NOT on the top tier players. You won’t find much of Alex Rodriguez, Albert Pujols, or any other starter for that matter (except pitchers, at the start). Even for those that follow along, the idea is to familiarize with the second, third and fourth tier players who, collectively, have every bit as much to do with the ultimate success of a franchise as the top tier players over the course of a long season and certainly across seasons.

Diamond Mind Baseball includes a fairly extensive compendium of players who have ever played in the majors with its season disks. Each is scrupulously analyzed for abilities and tendencies (can they bunt? How do they fare against lefties? etc., etc.). Of course since the focus is on secondary players, some players have had to be added manually. Since we don’t have the hours to devote to the kinds of analysis Diamond Mind scrupulously provides with its supplied players, the ultimate results will not be as meticulously accurate as Diamond Mind is known for. But then it is, after all, the pre-preseason!

Snowflake League

Using Diamond Mind Baseball, I am simming a season based on performances from the 2007 season, something I call the Snowflake League. The premise is preparation for my 2008 season here in Norfolk. The participating teams were selected on the basis of Tides home series I expect to be able to attend, as well, of course, Baltimore, the parent club, and Washington, my team. I will be alternating managing the Baltimore and Washington teams, depending on which playing at home—like the major league clubs, they are never at home at the same time. The entire roster for each club will be included, sort of like spring training, although the emphasis will be not on the stars or starters, but the second tier players, especially those I anticipate seeing at some time during the upcoming season. The eight teams will play two four game series against each other, for a total of 56 games ending just before the start of the regular season.

So why should this interest you? Might not. But then if you are a box score junkee like I am, it will give you a fix until the real thing starts. The leaderboards and team stats will contain names you will probably be hearing this spring and perhaps even into the regular season. And I’ll be interspersing the reports with observations on simming and borne of simming that you might have never considered.

This is a short season league designed to be a ramp up to some more substantial historical things I’ve been planning to do with simming for a couple of years now, to work out some of the logistics of working with Diamond Mind, a blog and a web site. In other words, it is something of a trial balloon. But, in any case, it should be fun.

Click on the title (2008 Snowflake League) for the league website.

2008 Snowflake League

1-15-2008

Bal       5  Was       7Cle       2  NYA       1
Atl       8  Bos       2
Pit       1  Tor       2