Boyle: The universal strike zone

From Wayne Boyle at Baseball Prospectus on June 26, 2018:

A Google search for “rulebook strike zone” reveals a comical range of images for interpretations of the rulebook strike zone. Some show a batter, but don’t even draw the midpoint at what is clearly the midpoint. Old strike zone rule examples from years ago before rule changes linger as well.

Official Rule 2.00: The Strike Zone
The STRIKE ZONE is that area over home plate the upper limit of which is a horizontal line at the midpoint between the top of the shoulders and the top of the uniform pants, and the lower level is a line at the hollow beneath the kneecap. The Strike Zone shall be determined from the batter’s stance as the batter is prepared to swing at a pitched ball.

Much of this disarray is because the rulebook strike zone is too subjective, ripe for interpretation. It will need a further refined definition to serve as a universal definition for postgame analysis, and also to help remove it as one of several major roadblocks for machine systems to be implemented calling balls and strikes in a live game.

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Originally published: June 27, 2018. Last Updated: June 27, 2018.