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NYTimes: The next wave of Sportvision game recording records it all. (They're the Pitch f/x and...

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NYTimes: The next wave of Sportvision game recording records it all. (They're the Pitch f/x and Hit f/x guys, but not the company doing the Doppler thing at the All-Star Game.) "A new camera and software system in its final testing phases will record the exact speed and location of the ball and every player on the field, allowing the most digitized of sports to be overrun anew by hundreds of innovative statistics that will rate players more accurately, almost certainly affect their compensation and perhaps alter how the game itself is played. Bowman said he preferred the data be more open so that statistically minded fans and academics could brainstorm ways to wring useful information from what would become petabytes of raw data. Software and artificial-intelligence algorithms must still be developed to turn simple time-stamped x-y-z coordinates into batted-ball speeds, throwing distances and comparative tools to make the data come alive. A half-century after Branch Rickey harrumphed, "There is nothing on earth anybody can do with fielding," all these pixels and bits will almost certainly revolutionize the analysis of baseball glovework. Even the most traditional fans may appreciate the importance of on-base percentage and other modern offensive statistics, but they still rate fielders by errors and fielding percentage, which are about as computationally sophisticated as a horse clomping its hoof.
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