Baseball teams have been shifting defensively forever. Most of us think of the modern idea of a defensive infield shift started with Lou Boudreau and what became known as the “William’s Shift” in 1946.
The first time Williams came up against this shift, he hit the ball right to Boudreau himself, standing directly between first and second base.
From that moment on, teams shifted on Williams for the rest of his career. The shift was so common that Williams once estimated it lopped about 15 points off of his lifetime batting average, and he wasn’t far off: his career splits before and after that season showed a difference of 16 points.Continue reading “Should Your Team Be Shifting More?”