Zack Britton
Credit: Bill Kostroun/New York Post

The New York Yankees’ coaching staff’s inability to resolve struggling players’ woes in 2023 raised many eyebrows. The team sacked hitting coach Dillon Lawson mid-season to bring in Sean Casey. While Casey was good with communication and hands-on experience, the numbers after his appointment stayed the same.

Amid the lackluster performance, many analysts also raised doubts about the New York Yankees’ dependence on analytics. Some even allege that skipper Aaron Boone incorporated analytical data more than a healthy amount. Moreover, Aaron Judge’s criticism proved to be the last straw as Hal Steinbrenner promised an audit. Amid this, a former Yankee has once again brought the analytical issue back into focus.


Zack Britton Points Out Flaws In Yankees’ Analytical Approach

Credit: New York Post

The New York Yankees’ analytical department was caught at a crossroads after many pointed out flaws within the data usage structure. Captain Aaron Judge further fueled the criticism when he claimed that the Yanks have been looking at the wrong numbers all season long. Subsequently, Hal Steinbrenner, the owner, conducted an external firm audit to figure out the best and most effective workflow. Having said that, amid the criticism, former Yankee Zack Britton has reignited the analytical debate just weeks ahead of the new season. On a particular episode with Foul Territory, Britton shared an incident where Yanks’ analytical team had a standoff with him. Britton, who served five seasons with the Yanks, was recovering from a Tommy John surgery when the said incident happened.

Zack Britton said that analytics teams once came up to him and asked to videotape his grip to try to get other people to throw his sinkers. However, Britton laughed it off, saying that grip has nothing to do with his sinker accuracy and effectiveness. Britton pleaded that his unique throwing style was purely based on genetics. Having said that, the former Yankees player’s comments have sparked a broader discussion about the role of analytics in the modern game. While many acknowledge the value of data-driven decision-making in player evaluation, strategy development, and performance optimization, others caution against its overreliance and emphasize the importance of balancing analytics with traditional baseball instincts and intangibles. This coming season, the Yankees analytics department must do right by their job to avert any further instances of criticism.

When Brian Cashman Defended Club’s Analytics Team!

Brian Cashman
New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman speaks during the Major League Baseball’s general … [+]COPYRIGHT 2023 THE ASSOCIATED PRESS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Just weeks after the New York Yankees’ postseason elimination, general manager Brian Cashman launched a defensive mode. He went on a rampage to defend his team and everything associated with the franchise. That included the analytics team that had been under scrutiny over its effectiveness and reliability. Cashman said the Yanks are not over-reliant on numeric data.

In fact, Brian Cashman claimed that the Yankees have the smallest analytics team across the league. He also defended manager Aaron Boone, who was accused of making decisions solely on the basis of analytics. Needless to say, the Yanks analytical approach will change in 2024, given the results of the third-party audit.

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