Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
May 6, 2005
BASEBALL: Clutch Hitting

Elan Fuld, a junior at the University of Pennsylvania, apparently has evidence on this elusive phenomenon:

[H]is calculations provided statistical evidence that players such as Eddie Murray, Frank Duffy and Luis Gomez were clutch hitters.

A surprising finding in the study was that Bill Buckner, who has gone down in history as one of the game's worst "choke artists" for his Game 6 World Series error, was statistically proven to be a clutch hitter.

In his study, Fuld defined a clutch hitter as a batter who hits better at more important points of the game. He modeled the at-bat outcomes of players using the importance of the game situation to find out if clutch or choke abilities helped to explain their performance.

"Once situational importance rose to around at least a certain level, the player would start to think this is very important and start doing something that makes him hit better, if he's clutch, or panics and does something that makes him hit worse, if he's a choke hitter," Fuld said.

This information comes from a university press release. It sounds interesting and plausible, but I'd like to see the data for myself. I'd also like to know how he weighted game situations.

(Via 6-4-2.)

Posted by Robert Tagorda at 2:42 PM | Baseball 2005 | Comments (1) | TrackBack (1)
Comments

You may want to check out the BTF thread (see URL), the author comes in to answer some of the questions at about comment #35.

Posted by: Devin McCullen at May 6, 2005 5:03 PM
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