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Scouting night owls is the new market inefficiency. Well, not for the Cubs.

Jun 14, 2011, 3:30 PM EDT

Alarm Clock

File this under one of those things that should have been obvious but wasn’t. Or at least wasn’t because I never thought about it: researchers did a study of baseball players and found that players who classify themselves as morning people do better in day games and night owls do better in night games. There’s more subtlety and detail to that in the article, but that’s the gist.

To be honest, though, I’m not certain that being a “night person” or a “morning person” is as bright distinction as most people make it out to be. I was most definitely a night person until I became a father, after which staying up until 2AM and sleeping late wasn’t an option. Sure, you change habits — I started drinking coffee when I was 33-years-old and I force myself go to bed earlier now — but I’d easily have to classify myself a morning person when it comes to effectiveness these days, even if I still long for the time when I could stay up late and sleep late. I think that in this people act like they act with a lot of things: they choose what they like and then claim that was the only option available to them.

Neat study anyway.

  1. yankeesfanlen - Jun 14, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    The annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies reminded me it’s time for my afternoon nap.

  2. cubsrice - Jun 14, 2011 at 4:02 PM

    I’m thinking that A) he should have interviewed many more players and B) he should have used something that isn’t as fickle as batting average. I didn’t check to see which journal this ended up in, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a good one.

    • cubsrice - Jun 14, 2011 at 4:06 PM

      Goodness…he didn’t really publish this but talked about it at a conference. Last year it was 18 pitchers using ERA as the evaluator. This year it was 16 batters and batting average. No talk of p-values or anything even remotely trying to show statistical significance.

      • cur68 - Jun 14, 2011 at 6:53 PM

        Man I should send this to my supervisor! I’m always getting sample size & skewed data crap. This guy can get up and present data on a single digit percentile of MLB players and call it ‘a study’? I so got into the wrong gig.

  3. spudchukar - Jun 14, 2011 at 6:58 PM

    This is so odd. Just Yesterday I was pondering this very issue. Freaky, Craig. But the conclusion I came to was different. Rather than factor in the weather, biorhythms or interior clocks, how about sin. I know if I got off work early everyday, lived in a party town like Chicago, and began my night early, and didn’t retire until the wee hours of the morning, my productivity would slide. Hung over and playing in the brilliant sunshine, or howling wind, probably doesn’t bring out the best in a player. So maybe it isn’t so much the daytime games as the nighttime accessability.

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