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Evaluation of Talent in a Changing World: The Case of Major League Baseball

Author

Listed:
  • Peter A. Groothuis
  • Kurt W. Rotthoff
  • Mark C. Strazicich

Abstract

Comparing talent across time is difficult as productivity changes. To compare talent across time we utilize Major League baseball data from 1871-2010 and time series techniques to determine if the mean and standard deviation of five performance measures are stationary and if structural breaks exist. We identify two structural breaks in the mean slugging percentage: in 1921, the free swinging era of Babe Ruth, and in 1992, the steroid era. Given that productivity changes over time, we develop a simple benchmark technique to compare talent over time and identify superstars. Applications of this measure outside of baseball are also suggested. Key Words: Benchmarking, Major League Baseball, Technology Changes, Structural Breaks

Suggested Citation

  • Peter A. Groothuis & Kurt W. Rotthoff & Mark C. Strazicich, 2013. "Evaluation of Talent in a Changing World: The Case of Major League Baseball," Working Papers 13-15, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
  • Handle: RePEc:apl:wpaper:13-15
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    File URL: http://econ.appstate.edu/RePEc/pdf/wp1315.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Marko Terviö, 2009. "Superstars and Mediocrities: Market Failure in the Discovery of Talent -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(2), pages 829-850.
    2. Nunes, Luis C & Newbold, Paul & Kuan, Chung-Ming, 1997. "Testing for Unit Roots with Breaks: Evidence on the Great Crash and the Unit Root Hypothesis Reconsidered," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 59(4), pages 435-448, November.
    3. Lee, Junsoo & Strazicich, Mark C, 2001. " Break Point Estimation and Spurious Rejections with Endogenous Unit Root Tests," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(5), pages 535-558, December.
    4. Junsoo Lee & Mark C. Strazicich, 2003. "Minimum Lagrange Multiplier Unit Root Test with Two Structural Breaks," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 1082-1089, November.
    5. Roll, Richard, 1978. "Ambiguity when Performance is Measured by the Securities Market Line," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1051-1069, September.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes

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