Me, the Highway, and Life

Okay, here’s the deal. I’m driving up to Oregon this week to visit family and catch a couple of minor-league games. I don’t know what my availability will be like while I’m off yonder, so posting will be real light this week. I will try to pop in every now and then with reports, pix, and/or videos from the road, but I can’t make any promises. At the very least, we’ll have the IGDs up and running every day — assuming anyone is still interested in talking about the games at this point. ;-)

When I return to San Diego, it will be to a full-time office gig. Yeah, it’s about the money. My family and I miss it. Also, if I’ve learned anything from writing about baseball for a living, it’s that thinking about something (even something you love) around the clock will drive you batsh*t crazy.

Anyway, the good news is, I’ve developed a pretty solid workflow for Ducksnorts so I think I’ll be able to keep things going without much trouble. At the same time, I haven’t done the office thing in about 20 months, and I’m not sure how I’ll respond. I do know that I’ve made enough sacrifices to family time, health, etc., in the past that I’m not willing to do it again. I don’t anticipate a problem, but if something has to give, it’s going to be this. Sorry, I’m not as young as I once was.

On a somewhat related note, a 2009 Annual is looking unlikely at the moment. I’ve done some research for it, but as I approach 40, it occurs to me that I could probably do something useful with the hundreds of hours it takes to assemble a product that has no real market. I may be a dreamer, but I’m not daft.

Plus I have other writing projects that have been sitting on the back burner for too long. I still have a lot more to say about my road trip to Cooperstown, and I’d like the chance to say it. We’ll see what happens…

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20 Responses »

  1. You should graph the Padres’ winning percentage against the number of posts for the IGDs to see what the correlation is. Without Turbine Dude, I’m not sure there would be any discussion some days.

  2. Not back to the Cubical, Geoff. Noooooooooooooo.

    Well, enjoy your trip and your last week of freedom. It was fun while it lasted.

    Have we reached the point where Padre ineptitude starts to be funny? Maybe after the ASB.

  3. Have a great trip, Geoff, and good luck with your new job.

  4. Geoff…sorry to hear you are back to the 9-to-5, but you took a shot that most would not have been willing to. I tip my cap to you!

  5. We’ve enjoyed having you all to ourselves, but I think we all certainly understand your situation. Best of luck, sir.

  6. Geoff,

    Good luck to you in your future endeavors. You’ve built quite an infrastructure here for us to enjoy. Life moves into different phases…..

    All the best of luck in the new job.

  7. A thought…what about asking a couple of the regular posters to become once a week contributors? You probably could get one or two of the well respected regulars to take a day each week to call their own. This would get some of the workload off your back.

  8. Hey GY sorry to hear you have to return to cubical life…No matter where your life takes you, you can always look back and say that you gave your dream a shot and will never look back at it in regret which is much more than most people can say.

  9. Good luck, Geoff, with whatever you do. And have fun on the trip!

  10. GY … sobering … the highway and life take work and creative effort … I admire the way I’ve seen you confront both … and I know you’ve created a community here that we’ll be a part of going forward … we’ll see what has to give … and we’ll give that! Onward!

    OT … I got this forwarded to me yesterday … many of you have probably already seen it … it’s a 4-minute video of a dancing traveler to some good music … I really think you’ll enjoy it and it will lighten your day …

  11. Have a fun trip, Geoff.

    Anybody remember this player?

  12. LM. I think, maybe even know, you are on to something with your first pitch analysis. It would be interesting to see the same data for PMAC, who seems to be hoping for a walk each AB and not showing the power he previously demonstrated. There’s at least one more slumping Padre I’d like to chart. Where are you getting the pitch data?

  13. Tom W. I’m back from SD, (how does anyone get any work done there?) See (SABR 36) for a 2006 analysis of OBPvs.SLG. I wrote Mark about a year ago. He said no one, including Paul DePodesta, wrote to him to refute his calculations.

  14. #12@malcolm: I’m getting the data from “Full Play-by-Play” web pages at … such as …

    … so it’s pretty “brute force” … so I’m unlikely to get motivated to do McAnulty …

    I wish I knew how to write code which extracts the raw data from the new PitchFx database … I’m pretty sure it’s do-able … but I’m yet to have the info I need handed to me on a silver platter :-) I’ve done some similar scripting / programming in the past … and I know my way around data and databases … there just seems like a lot of details I’m missing on how to get started with pulling that data. If any of you have ideas on where to find help, please point me to it.

    If / when I do figure out how to easily tap in to the PitchFx data, then what I’ll want to do is look for how often Padres batter “take strike one down the middle of the plate” … which will first require me to define “down the middle of the plate”. It just seems like too many Padre hitters take a good pitch for strike one, then chase a bad pitch for strike 2 … and then AB is really in the control the pitcher.

    I’m pretty sure that the Padres coaches are aware of what’s really doing on and doing what they can to improve it … it’s just fun for me to try to think of ways to keep up.

  15. #14@LynchMob: Here’s some of the info I need … here’s an example of the data that’s available in XML format …

    I can write code which can parse this … I can probably write code which can create the URLs (ie. do the navigation) … the major missing is code which will “be a browser” (ie. given a URL, return its content) … I guess if I had to figure out how to do that, I’d try to find some open-source browser and try to figure how it works … has anyone here done something like that? I’m pretty rusty at that … I’d guess my language of choice would be perl … or is there something comparable that you recommend? I can envision someone’s got a perl package that does XML decoding … in fact, there’s probably a perl package that does the web surfing too … OK, the wheels are turning … but, as with GY, there’s a highway and there’s life …

  16. #15@LynchMob: Hmmm, it feels like this is what I’m looking for … … anyone have any experience with this?

  17. Good Luck Geoff. I remember us discussing your very situation last year in an Applebees parking lot. You got a lot of moxy!

  18. Geoff, your time was certainly not wasted. You’ve made a name for yourself as a terrific analyst, fair-minded writer, and blog celebrity. You never know when these real-life credentials and contacts will pay unexpected dividends.

  19. Good luck Geoff on your next endeavor!

  20. Good luck, brother… I understand and will most likely have to do the same long term.