Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Clutch Hitters And Choke Hitters: Myth Or Reality?

Date:
May 6, 2005
Source:
University Of Pennsylvania
Summary:
Sports announcers already know it, and now Elan Fuld has proven it: clutch hitters really do exist. The 21-year-old University of Pennsylvania junior studied the phenomenon of clutch hitting in baseball, and his calculations provided statistical evidence that players such as Eddie Murray, Frank Duffy and Luis Gomez were clutch hitters. Fuld studied playing statistics of 1,075 Major League players in the 1974-1992 seasons.

PHILADELPHIA Sports announcers already know it, and now Elan Fuld has proven it: clutch hitters really do exist.

The 21-year-old University of Pennsylvania junior studied the phenomenon of clutch hitting in baseball, and his 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.

Fuld has been a life-long fan of the game.

"I really like baseball and like statistics, and this struck me as interesting. Anytime you hear sports announcers, they're always talking about who is a clutch hitter and who is a choke hitter. So I did a research project to determine whether there was statistical evidence for the existence of clutch hitters in Major League Baseball."

Last summer, between his sophomore and junior years at Penn, Fuld studied playing statistics of 1,075 Major League players in the 1974-1992 seasons. He determined the situational importance of a player's at-bat based on a team's lead, which bases were occupied, how many outs there were in the game and which half-inning it was. He used six sets of assumptions that involved sacrifice flys and errors in different ways, allowing for only a 1 percent chance of a player showing up as a clutch or choke hitter if he was not.

"What I found was that, when I included sacrifice flys in the analysis, there was overwhelming evidence that there were clutch hitters," said Fuld, a math and economics major from Brookline, Mass.

Fuld conducted his research as part of Penn's University Scholars program, which provides intellectually dynamic students support and funding to conduct creative and in-depth independent research in many disciplines.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Pennsylvania. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Pennsylvania. "Clutch Hitters And Choke Hitters: Myth Or Reality?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 May 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/05/050506140903.htm>.
University Of Pennsylvania. (2005, May 6). Clutch Hitters And Choke Hitters: Myth Or Reality?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/05/050506140903.htm
University Of Pennsylvania. "Clutch Hitters And Choke Hitters: Myth Or Reality?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/05/050506140903.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The brains of artists aren't really left-brain or right-brain, but rather have extra neural matter in visual and motor control areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins