Friday, January 23, 2015

Baseball Mogul Diamond: The "Skip" Button

Baseball Mogul gives you multiple ways to manage players in the last year of their contract (including those eligible for arbitration). The easiest way is to select "Expiring Contracts" in the Sortable Stats Dialog (on the Team Menu):

Then open the player's Scouting Report and click the "Negotiate" button:

However, if you still have expiring contracts at the end of the season, the game will force you to sign or release each of your players. This is frustrating, because you have to decide (for example) whether to sign Jon Lester before you know how much Felix Doubront is going to ask for in arbitration.

So ... we are adding a "Skip" button for Baseball Mogul Diamond.

It's a small feature, but for folks (like me) who wait until the end of the year to deal with expiring contracts, it makes it easier to keep your best players and still stay within your payroll budget.

Monday, January 19, 2015

9 Random Thoughts On Deflategate

1. Even though it rhymes, "deflategate" is a boring name. We should call it "ballgate".

2. The NFL requires that balls be inflated to a pressure between 12.5 and 13.5 psi. If you inflate a ball to 13.0 psi in an 85-degree room and then take it outdoors on a 50-degree day, the pressure will drop below 12.2 psi.

3. Aaron Rodgers claims that the refs themselves actually take air out of the balls. Weird.

4. The rule specifies that the refs check the balls exactly two hours and fifteen minutes before the game. As shown above, a team could inflate the balls with hot air and just let them deflate. This would appear to not violate the rules, although one could argue that it violates the spirit of the rules.

5. "The Referee shall be the sole judge as to whether all balls offered for play comply with these specifications" and "the balls shall remain under the supervision of the Referee until they are delivered to the ball attendant just prior to the start of the game." In other words, if the balls weren't properly inflated at halftime, any blame should fall on the Referee.

6. Troy Aikman has officially lost it, as proven by his absurd claim that "deflategate" is a more serious offense than "bountygate".

7. During the press conference on ESPN, Belichick came across as somewhat credible. However, when I listen to just the audio, I can hear serious stress in his voice. If I had to bet, I'd put my money on "Bill is lying". I don't think he ordered it, but he is so detail-oriented that I'm sure he was aware of the possibility that his staff might be doing something like this on a regular basis.

8. Nevertheless, I think it's unlikely we'll find any hard evidence against Brady or Belichick.

9. Regardless of how this turns out, the NFL should reduce the amount of air in the ball anyway. This would do three things:
  • Increase receptions and interceptions (and decrease incompletions). This would increase offense and scoring, and also increase the excitement and drama that comes from interceptions and pick sixes. These are all good things.
  • Decrease fumbles. If fumbles went down by 40%, we would see teams shifting away from "average running backs who rarely fumble" (like BenJarvus Green-Ellis) and back towards dynamic superstars (like Barry Sanders). Again, this is good for the game.
  • Decrease field goals. Flatter balls are harder to kick. The NFL has been bending themselves in knots trying to cut down on field goals, from changing where to put the ball after a missed field goal to fucking up the overtime rules. It would be much easier to just deflate the balls a bit.