Date of Award

12-2013

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department

Economics

Advisor

Sauer, Raymond

Committee Member

Baier , Scott

Committee Member

Tollision , Robert

Abstract

This paper is focused on hit batsmen in Major League Baseball from the 2008 season through August 20th of the 2013 season. More specifically, this paper examines the characteristics of retaliation pitches and attempts to determine the intent of the pitcher. The paper also takes into account moral hazard and cost-benefit analysis of hitting an opposing batsman. There has been a vast amount of literature in economics with regard to hit batsmen in Major League Baseball. However, very few of these papers have been able to evaluate economic theories in Major League Baseball using Pitchf/x data. Pitchf/x technology became fully implemented into all thirty Major League ballparks prior to the 2008 season. Pitchf/x provides us with intricate details of every pitch, which include velocity, movement, and pitch location. Using Pitchf/x data, this paper presents a very detailed statistical analysis with regard to hit batsmen under a variety of scenarios. A probit model is used to test for the probability of an intentional retaliation pitch based on a variety of predictor variables. The most important conclusion we are able to draw from the two regression models presented in this paper is that, holding all other factors constant, retaliation pitches that are fastballs increase the probability of being intentional by roughly 17%.

Included in

Economics Commons

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