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Dr. I longs for a time before all these inane stats were used

Idle Thoughts, while waiting for more exit velo, Gio Urshela for MVP and for calmer days in New London:

• Dr. Idle, Dr. I to his close friends, wrote a column the other day about why kids around here can't hit a baseball anymore.

He got this response from someone in Major League Baseball via e-mail Saturday:

"You hit the middle of the target. Coaches, even in the majors now, are now relying on video, "track man" and "Rapsodo" rather than what they see in real life. Many of the new wave have never been in the batter's box! Players are more concerned with their spine angle rather than how to hit a curve ball or how to be on time for the fastball without cheating."

So there.

• Reminder: There is a GameDay-palooza this week. We'll be live streaming the ECC lacrosse (boys' and girls') as well as the baseball championship games.

• Dr. I's friend Tom Moriarty of Niantic contributes this:

"Hey Mike, I bet you didn't know Gio Urshela has a 4.6 UZR. Great, huh?"

So, Dr. I looked up what "UZR" means in egghead-speak.

Here goes:

"UZR quantifies a player's entire defensive performance by attempting to measure how many runs a defender saved. Say, for instance, a center fielder sprints to make a nice catch on a fly ball. Then, say data from BIS tells us that similar fly balls get caught 60 percent of the time. That center fielder gains, essentially, 0.4 bonus points for difficulty. If he can't make the play, he loses 0.6 points. At the end of the day, that player's overall score gets adjusted to the league average — and then that score gets adjusted for how many runs the once-adjusted score is worth."


• RIP to Dr. I's favorite writer, the great Dan Jenkins, who died recently at 90.

Dan was a magnificent columnist and author who wrote a line once that applies to Dr. I's life every day.

"I used to go to sleep and dream about women," he wrote. "Now I go to bed and dream about killing people."

• Dr. I fears this analytical manure is seeping into other sports.

Like when he was watching the Masters and was alerted that "Rickie Fowler's pelvic rotation is 46.2 when he strikes the ball."

OK. Dare you. Tell Dr. I how this information is possibly relevant.

• Dr. I nearly began blushing at the women's Final Four watching the UConn-Notre Dame game.

His seat on press row was in front of the Notre Dame rooting section.

So many potty mouths, so little time to discuss.

The scribe next to me said, "Do they take communion with those mouths?"

• Where are all the Red Sox fans?

• Not just because Dr. I is a loyalist of the football Giants, but he hopes Daniel Jones becomes a star.

Just so all these no-life NFL draftniks can again get exposed for how little they know.

Here are all the Celtics in Dr. I's lifetime he would rather have over than Kyrie Irving:

Bird, Pierce, Havlicek, Parish, DJ, KG, McHale, Cowens, JoJo White, Ray Allen and Reggie Lewis.

• Prediction: Our guy A.J. Dillon of New London will win the Heisman Trophy this year playing for the gutty, gritty BC Eagles.

• Big night next Saturday: Sun opener in Neon Uncasville against old friend Mike Thibault and the Mystics.

Be there.

• Know what's on Dr. I's last nerve?

Glad you asked.

All this inane chatter in high school baseball dugouts.

How long till "hey batter, batter ... SWING!"

Just stop.

This is the opinion of Day sports columnist Mike DiMauro


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