Big Data’s Big Impact on Professional Sports

Data’s Big Impact on Professional Sports
Big data is a major buzzword in business today. Launching a startup, attracting customers, and remaining competitive depends largely on information. The volume, variety, and velocity of data is now at higher levels than at any time in history.

Aside from the ways that big data is revolutionizing how we get products into customer’s hands or streamline a supply chain, it’s being leveraged in some unique industries. Professional sports organizations today use big data to analyze players, improve games, and boost revenues. Here are three example of big data’s big impact.

Sabermetrics, which is the empirical analysis of baseball statistics, isn’t anything new. In fact, a sportswriter in the mid-1800’s was the first to use boxscores with the game, launching an analysis of what was up until then an unstudied pastime. Today, however, we’ve gone far beyond boxscores and even standard metrics with the availability and use of big data in baseball.

MLB’s Statcast is now producing mountains of data about nearly everything that happens within a baseball diamond. Exit velocity (EV) is a measurement that comes from the system, where radar and high-resolution cameras measure the speed of a ball after it’s hit by the batter. For pitchers, the system can measure Spin Rate (SR), Velocity, and Extension.

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The Statcast system is installed in 30 MLB parks, and analysts can use the stats to predict accuracy, performance, and even to diagnosis potentially unreported injuries in players.

If you thought that you had to hire an expensive golf pro to improve your swing, you might have other choices.

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