Yesterday I gave some advice to some new bloggers. "Take risks," I said. "Try stuff, " I said. "The beauty of a blog is that you have nothing to lose," I said.
Then I blow a pretty good night on trying something new, get about halfway done and I'm not particularly happy with that half. Great. If you think I'm not publishing the damn thing, you've got another thing coming.
Recently I saw a copy of another independent program and scorecard from Seattle called Grand Salami. In the middle of it, they have two pages about the teams the Mariners will play that month, one of which is text and the other one is a stats page with a lot of notes written in. I wondered if that stats page might be something I could come up with regularly when the Twins play opposing team in a big series. How hard could it be?
Answer: if you want to do it the way I want to do it, it's a pain. I don't want the basic stats. I want to see OPS, and I want it against lefties and righties. I want ages. I want defensive metrics like UZR/150 and I really want WPA. Ideally I'd also like to see how players did against specific players from the Twins.
There isn't a site that has all those stats in a fairly easy way to grab them. I could probably design a db to grab a bunch of extracts and get close, but that sure ain't happening tonight. So I grabbed a few of them, typed them in and then started on the notes.
Turns out, the notes aren't too easy either. First, without a pdf converter on my PC, there wasn't a great program to go about doing the graphics. Then, I found out that I lacked space to explain some of the stats the way I probably should, like WPA. And since I ended up doing it in MS-Paint, fixing errors was damn near impossible.
Anyway, here is the first stab at it. I was hoping I could put an actual file into my blog someplace, like in a rich text field, but it looks like I'm limited to a .jpg. too. So it'll probably be too small. Mostly this whole entry is a test to see if I click on it if it will get big enough to read.
We'll see. Good night. Feedback is welcome.