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Babe Ruth Batting Statistics and Einstein's Work Function

# Babe Ruth Batting Statistics and Einstein's Work Function

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An analysis of the game-by-game batting logs for Babe Ruth’s 1927 season (when he set the single season home run record) shows an interesting movement of the AB and Hits data along a series of parallels with the general equation y = hx + c. Here x is the number of At Bats (AB) and y is the number of Hits (H). The game-by-game batting logs reveal scores of (0, 0), (1, 1), (2, 2), (3, 3), and (4, 4) and also scores of (1, 0), (2, 1), (3, 2), (4, 3) and even (6, 5), and so on. Thus, the slope h = 1, the theoretical ideal batting average, and the intercept c = 0, -1, -2, etc. indicating the number of missed hits for each game.

When the data is aggregated, on a monthly basis, the same linear law holds but the slope h 0). Thus, for Ruth, the batting average BA = y/x = h + (c/x) increases with increasing AB. The theoretical maximum BA that a batter can achieve (if c
Babe Ruth’s batting statistics also serves to illustrate the significance of the nonzero c in many other complex problems of interest to us. The nonzero c is like the “work function” conceived by Einstein, in 1905, to explain the photoelectric effect. In Einstein’s law, the nonzero intercept tells us something about difficulty of producing an electron when light shines on the surface of a metal. Einstein’s law also suggests a movement along parallels, for experiments with different metals. The nonzero c in baseball batting statistics is related to the missing hits, or the “difficulty” of producing a hit, or a home run (if y is taken as home runs). A similar “work function” applies to many other complex problems where large masses of (x, y) observations are being made on a daily, monthly, quarterly, and annual basis. Some examples are financial data (profits and revenues of companies) or other performance related data (airline quality ratings), or fatality data (deaths due to traffic accident, guns, cancer, etc.).
An analysis of the game-by-game batting logs for Babe Ruth’s 1927 season (when he set the single season home run record) shows an interesting movement of the AB and Hits data along a series of parallels with the general equation y = hx + c. Here x is the number of At Bats (AB) and y is the number of Hits (H). The game-by-game batting logs reveal scores of (0, 0), (1, 1), (2, 2), (3, 3), and (4, 4) and also scores of (1, 0), (2, 1), (3, 2), (4, 3) and even (6, 5), and so on. Thus, the slope h = 1, the theoretical ideal batting average, and the intercept c = 0, -1, -2, etc. indicating the number of missed hits for each game.

When the data is aggregated, on a monthly basis, the same linear law holds but the slope h 0). Thus, for Ruth, the batting average BA = y/x = h + (c/x) increases with increasing AB. The theoretical maximum BA that a batter can achieve (if c
Babe Ruth’s batting statistics also serves to illustrate the significance of the nonzero c in many other complex problems of interest to us. The nonzero c is like the “work function” conceived by Einstein, in 1905, to explain the photoelectric effect. In Einstein’s law, the nonzero intercept tells us something about difficulty of producing an electron when light shines on the surface of a metal. Einstein’s law also suggests a movement along parallels, for experiments with different metals. The nonzero c in baseball batting statistics is related to the missing hits, or the “difficulty” of producing a hit, or a home run (if y is taken as home runs). A similar “work function” applies to many other complex problems where large masses of (x, y) observations are being made on a daily, monthly, quarterly, and annual basis. Some examples are financial data (profits and revenues of companies) or other performance related data (airline quality ratings), or fatality data (deaths due to traffic accident, guns, cancer, etc.).

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06/26/2013

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