Documented throw home from OF no. 1: from shallow right [by Andruw Jones], Chi vs. Cle. 8-ish feet wide, got past catcher, any runner could have scored [from second on a base hit].This is what I'm going to do for all the throws I see (maybe not all on Twitter, but in a notebook or spreadsheet or something). And I'd love it if you could help me out.
We're going to limit it to two types of plays at home: (1) attempts to score from third on a sacrifice fly and (2) attempts to score from second on a single. For each, we need to know to what position and how deep the ball was hit; the name of the outfielder; the type of hit; how accurate the throw was and/or whether the catcher was able to complete the play; whether the runner was successful; and my(/your) opinion on whether any or all runners would have scored on the same play. (It's not as involved as that sounds, since most plays won't involve every one of those elements.) The throw doesn't actually even need to have been made -- if the outfielder drops the ball in getting ready to make the throw, that's perfectly relevant -- but it needs to be a play that could have been close (or an easy out) if executed perfectly. I hope it goes without saying, but I'm not pursuing an agenda here -- I really just want to get an idea for how often the various possible outcomes come to pass -- so I'm trying to collect all the data I can, whatever the outcome.
If you're willing to help, please send me a brief e-mail (billdailysomething on gmail) or Twitter post, or simply leave a comment to this post (a link is up on the right side of the page ->) with this information any time you see one of these plays in a live game. (I'm not interested in highlights, just because if it's shown on SportsCenter or something, there's likely to be something unusual about the play, and we're interested in documenting all plays, not just the interesting ones.) The data I collect myself is obviously going to come heavily from Twins games, so it would be great if I could get some fans of other teams to help out with this.
And so I'll just keep doing it -- hopefully with your help -- until I feel like I have enough data to draw some conclusions about how frequently these throws tend to work out. There won't be anything remotely scientific about it, but hopefully we'll feel like we know a little bit more about it than we did before.