We won’t be able to fully assess the quality of this year’s NFL draft class until all the players retire. But we can be pretty sure their success will depend on more than innate ability. One important factor will be something they have little control over: The more success produced by a draft’s immediate predecessor and successor, the less value that draft is likely to produce.It’s a surprising finding. Normally we’d expect talent to be roughly equally distributed each draft, with some fluctuations. The draft process isn’t entirely random: College players can leave school early. But that should smooth any fluctuations, because the draft is, after all, an efficient market, so rational players should time their exit for when they’ll have the least competition from their peers.And yet, total value from a single draft depends on the year before and the year after.Two explanations strike me as most plausible.The first is that the total talent entering the draft each year does oscillate. That could happen because a particularly strong college class will get a disproportionate share of playing time and coaching, leaving surrounding classes weaker.The second possible explanation is that NFL teams can only play 11 men at a time; being surrounded by other young athletes getting a lot of playing time makes it harder for rookies to get on the field. That suggests that the underperforming draft class’s sin isn’t being less talented, but having bad timing, and therefore less opportunity.I think one of these two explanations is more likely than the other. But before I explain why, here’s what I did:I downloaded the data for every draft from 1970 — the year the AFL and NFL merged — to 2013 from Pro-Football-Reference. For each drafted player, each year, the website lists his career contribution to team success. Its unit of measure is the player’s approximate value (AV), an all-encompassing estimate of a player’s usefulness, for all positions. For its draft pages, PFR doesn’t use a simple sum of AV, but instead an alternative measure that takes into account a player’s overall career contribution and his peak value. (100 percent of his best single-season AV, plus 95 percent of his second-best season total, and so on.)To compare adjacent draft classes’ total AV, I had to account for the varying number of draft picks in a given season: as low as 222 in 1994, as many as 487 in 1976. For each pair of adjacent drafts, I chose the lower of the pair’s number of picks, n, and summed the AV of the players selected in the first n picks, for each draft. I then restricted the analysis to the period 1970 to 2002, because many of the players for subsequent seasons remain active, which could affect the year-to-year correlations. Then I checked the correlation of one draft class’s total value to the total value of the preceding and subsequent drafts. Each correlation was -0.54. The negative sign means the higher one class’s value, the lower the preceding year’s and following year’s. And the correlation was even more strongly negative between the value of one year and the average of the value for the year before and after: -0.7.The most extreme fluctuation, as Brady Butterfield noted this week on his blog, was from 1982 to 1983. The 1983 class, which included six Hall of Famers in the first round, produced 53 percent more AV than the year before. It also produced 36 percent more AV than the 1984 class.I then performed similar checks of offensive stats to see whether they hinted at the reason for the negative correlation. I wanted to check whether the effect was due to opportunity or performance. Counting stats represent opportunity: If players are getting on the field more, they’ll put up better numbers and higher AV totals, on average. Rate stats represent quality of performance: The more a player does with his opportunities, the better his rate stats and higher his AV totals.What I found is that opportunity was the chief driver of the results. Counting stats exhibited the same sort of negative correlation from year to year, especially for quarterbacks: For completions, attempts, yards and touchdowns, the higher the numbers the classes before and after compiled in their career, the lower the numbers that year’s class racked up, with a correlation for each of about -0.4. Yet for rate stats, the opposite effect held: The higher completion percentage and passer rating were for neighboring years, the higher it was for that year’s draft class, with a correlation for each of about 0.5. Quarterbacks surrounded by draft classes with lots of QBs who got a lot of playing time got to play less, but when they did, they were better. That suggested they had to do better to even get the chance to play.Opportunity matters in sports, as in other walks of life. General managers are inclined to give top draft picks playing time in the hope they’ll justify the pick. The careers of Ryan Leaf and JaMarcus Russell demonstrate this phenomenon on a micro level. The macro-level data tells the same story.
WAR in table is a meta-metric that averages together several different versions of the statistic. Numbers accurate as of Friday morning.Source: TheBaseballgauge.com 5Joey Votto1BCIN54.366.695 18Carlos CorreaSSHOU14.467.056 12Buster PoseyCSF36.557.878 7Mike TroutCFLAA50.970.393 1Albert Pujols1BLAA100.666.6100% 4Robinson Cano2BSEA65.169.098 15Nolan Arenado3BCOL23.566.464 RKPLAYERPOSTEAMCAREERPOSITION HOF AVGHOF PROB. 16Jose Altuve2BHOU25.069.060 19Mookie BettsRFBOS18.771.255 8Chris SaleSPBOS36.269.883 24Kenley JansenRPLAD17.237.445 20Anthony Rizzo1BCHC26.066.655 11Manny Machado3BBAL27.566.480 22Bryce HarperRFWAS25.071.247 13Kris Bryant3BCHC18.766.473 WAR Hall voters probably won’t be looking only at WAR, which does help Verlander’s case. According to the more conventional indicators included in James’s Black Ink and Hall of Fame Monitor tests (which give more weight to peak performance), Verlander clears the traditional marks necessary for HOF inclusion. But he falls short in the Gray Ink and Hall of Fame Standards tests, which give more weight to long, consistent careers — underscoring just how much Verlander’s Cooperstown case swings depending on which factors you look at.Verlander’s postseason stats complicate his legacy even further. He’s no stranger to late-October baseball. He led the Tigers on two World Series runs, in 2006 and 2012, but both trips ended abruptly. Verlander was on the losing end of three of the nine games in those series. Aside from dominating sprints through the AL playoffs in 2012 and 2013 (in which he posted a microscopic 0.57 ERA2Weighted by innings pitched in each series.), Verlander has a 6.00 ERA in the rest of the postseason.3Also weighted by innings. So he has run both extremely hot and extremely cold in his playoff career.But the good news for Verlander is that the Astros will provide him with an opportunity to redeem those up-and-down postseason numbers. Houston has a world-beating offense, and one of its only weaknesses was a rotation that had enjoyed little health and even less consistency throughout most of the season. All due respect to Dallas Keuchel, who has been shaky since returning from injury — but with Verlander, the Astros have picked up a bona fide ace who can anchor the team multiple times in a series and let the big bats go to work.What makes this trade particularly rare is that players of Verlander’s reputation don’t tend to change addresses midseason, especially not while still producing strong numbers. Out of 1,608 regular-season trades listed on The Baseball Gauge since 1988, only 107 involve a marquee player as accomplished (by wins above replacement4Once again, using The Baseball Gauge’s meta-metric for WAR.) as Verlander. Swaps involving pitchers are rarer still, and once you consider that the Tigers ace still figures to produce 0.7 WAR over the rest of the season, only 30 trades are comparable to this one.This isn’t the first time that the Astros have picked up Hall of Fame-caliber pitching talent for the stretch run. In 1998, Houston swapped a trio of young players with the Seattle Mariners for Randy Johnson. Johnson performed admirably as the Astros clinched the division, but Houston lost to the Padres in the NLDS. Johnson would finally get his first (and only) World Series appearance three years later with Arizona.But the Johnson trade happened at the deadline, while the Verlander deal happened in August, which made this transaction even more unusual. Only 23 players who have been traded as the main piece after the deadline had as much total career value as Verlander; only six were pitchers. Even within that already small pool, half of the players made only minimal contributions to their new teams after the trade.Given Verlander’s strong performance already this year and Houston’s need atop its rotation, it seems a good bet that Verlander will make much more than a “minimal contribution.” For the sake of both parties’ long-term legacies, they’d better hope so. 6Clayton KershawSPLAD57.769.894 14Evan Longoria3BTB50.366.472 It was the trade that almost wasn’t (but then was). Just as talks between the Houston Astros and Detroit Tigers over ace pitcher Justin Verlander looked like they were breaking down Thursday, news broke overnight that the two clubs had agreed to terms — Verlander would be headed to Houston after all, as part of a deal that also included cash and prospects.This is a huge move for the Astros, who needed rotation help ahead of the playoffs. But it might prove to be a big turning point in Verlander’s career, too. Although Verlander has built an impressive résumé in 13 big league seasons, he might not be on a Hall of Fame track quite yet. So what he ends up adding to Houston’s postseason push this season might have an outsize effect on his eventual case for Cooperstown.Verlander is one of the best pitchers of his generation, of course. He has the fourth-most wins of any active pitcher and the third-most strikeouts. He’s one of only 22 pitchers to win an MVP award, and when he took home the honor in 2011, he was the first in nearly two decades to do it. But according to the advanced metrics — which are taking on more importance in the Hall of Fame voting process with each passing year — Verlander probably still has some work to do before locking down his status as a future Hall member.According to The Baseball Gauge’s wins above replacement meta-metric,1Which averages aspects of the WAR versions found at Baseball-Reference.com and FanGraphs.com, in addition to Baseball Gauge’s own WAR metric. Verlander currently has 53.8 career WAR. The average starting pitcher in Cooperstown has 69.8, so the 34-year-old Verlander would need to tack 16 more WAR onto his lifetime total to reach the typical HOF level. Using a variant of Bill James’s “favorite toy” (which estimates a player’s chances of hitting a statistical milestone given his age and recent track record of production), The Baseball Gauge gives Verlander about a 47 percent chance of putting up the WAR necessary to hit the HOF average. That puts Verlander in a tie for 22nd-highest among active players (and trails fellow pitchers Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, Chris Sale and Max Scherzer) in Hall of Fame probability: 3Miguel Cabrera1BDET66.466.6100 25Andrelton SimmonsSSLAA23.967.037 21Giancarlo StantonRFMIA34.471.253 2Adrian Beltre3BTEX80.966.4100 23Justin VerlanderSPDET53.869.847 10Paul Goldschmidt1BARI35.066.680 9Zack GreinkeSPARI55.669.881 Verlander’s Hall of Fame chances could use some helpFor active players, probability of matching the average career wins above replacement (WAR) for a Hall of Famer at the same position 17Max ScherzerSPWAS43.069.858 read more
Mariah Carey is working on a holiday movie with Brett Ratner. According to Deadline, the diva is expected to play a key role in the Christmas film and Ratner will serve as a producer. It will also feature her songs along with other tracks by different artists.Carey was last seen on the big screen in Lee Daniels’ The Butler in 2013, while Brett Ratner directed Hercules and Horrible Bosses 2 last year.The two friends recently sparked romance rumours after they were caught getting cozy in St Barts, France during their weekend birthdays.
Entrepreneur is on the ground at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. Check back for highlights from the event as well as insights from thought leaders and innovators. If you’re going to be in Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show, commonly known as CES, from Jan. 5 to 8, you’ll probably be there to either showcase your business or check out the latest and greatest tech products on offer.You’ll definitely have your fill of gadgets (and we’ll be on the floor reporting on the things we find interesting), but CES also features panel discussions that shed light on experts’ insights into the near future of technology.Related: How Tech and Data are Transforming Small Businesses (Infographic)Here are five we recommend attending:1. CES 2017 Trends to WatchWhat it entails: Shawn DuBravac, the chief economist and senior director of research at the Consumer Technology Association, the trade group behind CES, will “preview impactful trends, next big things and disruptive innovations” at the “CES 2017 Trends to Watch” talk.Why entrepreneurs should care: If you want your business to get a leg up on the competition at CES, you should know what people will be talking about in the coming year and how new technologies may impact your business or industry.When and where: Jan. 4, 9 to 10 a.m., Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall, N257Cost: Free2. Social Media, Viral Campaigns and AdvertisingWhat it entails: We can all learn something from videos and ad campaigns that go viral. The panel, “Social Media, Viral Campaigns and Advertising,” will include six executives from the media landscape to dive into strategies for success.Why entrepreneurs should care: Want to be the next Ice Bucket Challenge? Then you should learn best practices on what it takes to make a campaign go viral.When and where: Jan. 4, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall, N262Cost: Additional pass required.Related: Watch YouTube’s Top 10 Most Viral Videos of 20163. Artificial Intelligence: Real Business OpportunitiesWhat it entails: The discussion, “Artificial Intelligence: Real Business Opportunities,” will try to look into the future — a time when artificial intelligence will play a greater role in our daily lives. It will ask questions such as, “Can AI replicate human emotions and intuition? Does it need to?” Speakers include executives from technology companies NVIDIA, IBM and Josh.ai.Why entrepreneurs should care: AI will play a much greater role going forward, and its prominence will impact every type of business, including yours.When and where: Jan. 5, 1 to 2 p.m., Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall, N256Cost: Additional pass required.4. Startup Spotlight: Whom to Watch in 2017What it entails: During the “Startup Spotlight: Whom to Watch in 2017” session, tech journalists will highlight the most innovative startups on display at CES 2017’s Eureka Park.Why entrepreneurs should care: Keep a pulse on your competition and industry leaders by learning what journalists and the media think are hot in the startup world.When and where: Jan. 6, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall, N261Cost: Additional pass required.Related: Cuban to Trump: The U.S. Needs to Invest in Robotics to ‘Win’5. New President, New Congress: What’s Next?What it entails: President-elect Donald Trump and a new Congress will be sworn into office two weeks after CES, and much of the former’s agenda in terms of tech and business is unknown at this point. The event, “New President, New Congress: What’s Next?” features Rep. Darrell Issa, who is also an entrepreneur, and Rep. Will Hurd, a former CIA officer. Both will discuss tech issues and provide advice to the incoming administration.Why entrepreneurs should care: While the new administration may not have a direct impact on your business in the short term, it’s a good idea to know of any potential changes in your industry coming in the future.When and where: Jan. 7, 10:15 to 11:15 a.m., Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall, N254Cost: Free Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. January 4, 2017 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 4 min read Register Now » read more
Cryptocurrencies fall after Japan’s Coincheck halts withdrawals Japan-based virtual currency exchange Coincheck said Sunday it will refund about $400 million to customers after hackers stole hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of digital assets. As many as 10,000 businesses in Japan are thought to accept bitcoin and bitFlyer, the country’s main bitcoin exchange, saw its user base pass the one-million mark in November Explore further Citation: Japan’s crypto exchange to refund to customers after theft (2018, January 28) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-01-japan-crypto-exchange-refund-customers.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2018 AFP The company said it will use its own funds to reimburse about 46.3 billion yen to all 260,000 customers who lost their holdings of NEM, the 10th biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalisation.On Friday, the company detected an “unauthorised access” of the exchange, and later suspended trading for all cryptocurrencies apart from bitcoin.The resulting 58 billion yen ($530 million) loss exceeded the value of bitcoins which disappeared from MtGox in 2014. The major Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange collapsed after admitting that 850,000 coins—worth around $480 million at the time—had disappeared from its vaults.The high-profile demise of MtGox failed to douse the enthusiasm for virtual currencies in Japan, which in April became the first country in the world to proclaim it as legal tender.Nearly one third of global bitcoin transactions in December were denominated in yen, according to specialist website jpbitcoin.com.As many as 10,000 businesses in Japan are thought to accept bitcoin and bitFlyer, the country’s main bitcoin exchange, saw its user base pass the one-million mark in November.Many Japanese, especially younger investors, have been seduced by the idea of strong profits as the economy has seen years of ultra-low interest rates offering little in the way of traditional returns.Major Japanese newspapers on Sunday labelled the management of virtual currencies at Coincheck as “sloppy” and said the company had “expanded business by putting safety second”.Local media added the Financial Services Agency was expected to take disciplinary measures against Coincheck, which proclaims itself “the leading bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchange in Asia”, following the theft. read more