BASEBALL DEFENSES—POINTS ON A GRID. I have posted, for example here, on the dramatic changes in baseball defenses in the last few years. There were 8134 shifts in the major leagues in 2013, compared to 2357 in 2011.

One indication of how important positioning has become is that the Los Angeles Dodgers now use something similar to a global positioning system (GPS) to paint small marks on their Dodger Stadium outfield to establish a central point in each of the three outfield positions. Dodgers outfielders also consult laminated cards in their back pockets in order to position themselves properly for each hitter. The Dodgers have permitted visiting teams to paint their own marks.

I know all this from this article at the ESPN website by Doug Padilla. Padilla reports that when the Dodgers asked the Mets for permission to paint marks on the Citi Field outfield for this weekend’s three-game series, the Mets refused.

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