The practice of recording MLB scores began in the 19th century with Henry Chadwick. Chadwick developed the antecedents to current statistics such as runs scored, batting average, and allowed runs; he based the scoring on experiences he acquired in the game of cricket.
Customarily, statistics such as batters’ batting average and earned run average have ruled baseball’s statistical world. However, a recent introduction of sabermetrics has initiated an attack on new statistics. The statistics are crafted to be better in evaluating the performance of players and their contribution to their team yearly.
What Is The History of MLB Scores?
In a baseball game, the league appoints an official scorer to document all the events taking place in the field. The scorer also has the task of sending the certified scoring record to league offices. Apart from keeping track of the scores, an official scorer can also make judgment calls that have no impact on the game outcome or progress.
Judgment calls involve fielder’s choice, unearned runs, errors, wild pitches, and the worth of hits. All these go into the official record that also includes MLB scores for each team and player that the scorer prepares at the end of the game.
In the initial days of MLB, this function was performed by newspaper writers. However, as the game advanced and baseball player statistics became important, teams started to put pressure on the newspaper writers to favor their teams when playing at home. This developed into there being a bias in-home team scoring. This bias in scoring has questioned previous records that include several no-hitters.
This led to newspapers banning their writers from being scorers because of the concerns on conflict-of-interest. Subsequently, in 1980, MLB started hiring independent scorers. Ever since, there have been suggestions on reforms on the improvement of the performance of scorers.
In 2001, a scoring committee was formed by the MLB to evaluate the scorers’ performance. The committee was given the mandate to overturn some controversial scoring decisions. The scoring committee was used by the authority in the 2009 MLB season. An academic study conducted in 2006 confirmed the existence of a home-team bias in-game scoring decision, although the bias reduced after 1979.
What Are MLB Scores – Rules?
In baseball rules, the official scorer has to view the game while within the press box for two primary reasons. One, it ensures that all scorers watch the game from the same perspective. The main reason for bringing in this rule was to enhance consistency in decisions of scorekeeping among different official scorers. They are scoring at different games in the same field, and scorers in various areas.
The second reason is that the press box is a neutral location in the stadium. While at the press box, scorers are in the company of broadcasters and writers who are presumably neutral. Also, while in the press box, the official scorer is not likely to be influenced by coaches, players, and fans.
Rule 10.01 stipulates that a scorer’s decision should not clash with other regulations that govern scorekeeping. He is allowed to view existing replays and seek the opinion of others on the same.
However, it is only the scorer who has the mandate to formulate judgment calls needed in the score report. Once he makes a judgment call, the scorer should immediately communicate the decision to members of the press present in the press box using a microphone.
There is a 24-hour window period for a scorer to reverse or reconsider a decision that was reached at during a game. In unusual circumstances, the MLB’s scoring committee can overturn a judgment call that seems to be “clearly erroneous.”
Lastly, before the lapse of 36 hours after the conclusion of a game, it is the requirement for an official scorer to summarize the game through the use of a form recognized by the league.
The task should be accomplished for every scored game, including the games that will be replayed later, and forfeited games. Information that the scorer must include in his score report includes teams’ names, date, location, officiating umpires, final score, and rule 10.02 data requirements.
There is an exception to the rule if the defense makes an out and tries to finish a triple or double play. In such a situation, no error charge is done if a runner is allowed by a wild throw to reach safely. But, if the wild throw permits the runner to progress an extra-base, then an error charge will be charged because of the extra advance.
Also, when an accurate throw is made with enough time to finish a double or triple play, where the base fielder does not make the catch, then an error is charged.
This rule further stipulates that a “mental mistake” on the part of the defense should not warrant an error charge. Errors should only be charged when there is an attempt to make logical play beside the offence, but does not record the out or stop an advance as a result of a mechanical misplay.
But, an exception can be made for an error charge based on a “mental mistake.” When a fielder does not tag a runner, base, or batter in a force situation before recording an out, an error is charged to the fielder.
The most popular judgment call that involves an error happens as a defense failure to put out a batter-runner putting the ball during play. If the official scorer fails to record an out, an error is charged on the defense, with the batter losing on a hit credit.
Other situations require the official scorer to make a judgment call, and they include poor throws in an attempt to advance and dropping foul balls unintentionally, which let the batter continue with his at-bat.
What Is The Use of Statistics?
Baseball scouts and general managers look at a player’s statistics, including MLB scores, to decide on a player’s abilities. Statistics are also useful to pitchers, managers, and catchers as they help them study batters on rival teams to help them figure out how to position and pitch their players when playing against them.
The information is also used by batters and managers to assess pitchers in opposing teams in a bid to figure out the best way to hit. The decision on who should feature in the lineup or the relief pitcher to play is also made using similar statistics.
In modern-day baseball, statistics such as RBIs, batting average, and home runs are the most common references in batting. Any player who is in the lead in the three statistics is known as the winner of the “Triple Crown.”
In pitching, pitchers strive to lead in ERA, wins, and strikeouts to be considered among the best in the category. The one who makes the achievement is also a “Triple Crown” winner.
In conclusion, other special situations also make them into statistics. For example, if a hitter uses his left hand to hit other left-handed pitchers, the manager may use this to give him more slots to face lefties. Also, some hitters have made history in succeeding against certain pitchers; the manager can use the information to develop a matchup that will favor his team.
It is, therefore, the responsibility of the official scorer to make the right judgment call as anything that goes on record can be used to determine a player’s future in the game. This is especially so in cases where sports scholarships are awarded to students or when a player is to be considered for professional baseball.