Math 399 (Sabermetrics)

Instructor: Professor Steven J Miller (sjm1 AT, Bronfman 202, x3293)

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Sabermetrics deals with the application of mathematical and statistical reasoning to baseball problems. The purpose of this class is to conduct sabermetrics research on a variety of problems, ranging from items of interest to the participants to problems suggested by a Major League Ballclub. Investigating these problems will require numerous advanced lectures on topics such as Markov Chain Monte Carlo (and the Perron-Frobenius Theorem), Linear Programming (especially binary linear programming), probability theory and mathematical modeling. As there is a plethora of valuable data on the web, part of the course will be to write script programs to gather and analyze the data to test our models and theories.
Format: lecture/discussion and presentations. Evaluation will be based primarily on scholarship and discussions.
Prerequisites: Multivariable calculus, linear algebra, Stat 201. Enrollment limit: 5 or 6. 

GENERAL: Please feel free to swing by my office or mention before, in or after class any questions or concerns you have about the course (click here for my schedule). If you have any suggestions for improvements, ranging from method of presentation to choice of examples, just let me know. If you would prefer to make these suggestions anonymously, you can send email from (the password is the first seven Fibonacci numbers, 11235813).

OBJECTIVES: There are two main goals to this course: to explore problems in sabermetrics and to learn some advanced mathematics and modeling techniques.

SYLLABUS: The following is a tentative syllabus, including some of the topics to be studied but not necessarily the order in which they will be investigated. As this is an independent studies course, there will be significant student input in the choice of topics and the order in which they are covered. Though the class does not begin to formally meet until Fall 2009, we have already had one meeting with all participants, and plan on having several more so that we can begin working over the summer.

Useful Resources

Baseball webpages

Pictures of Baseball Parks (please send your photos)


Interesting math articles