Mike Fitzgerald, Director of Research and Development at MLB’s Arizona Diamondbacks, will deliver the guest talk at the 2019 OptaPro Analytics Forum.
Fitzgerald is the latest in a long-line of leading analytics practitioners, working across US sports, to speak at the Forum, following in the footsteps of Dean Oliver, Dennis Lock and 2018 presenter Luke Bornn.
A graduate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) majoring in maths, Fitzgerald first started working in professional baseball as a quantitative analyst for the Pittsburgh Pirates, where he spent five seasons.
During his time in Pittsburgh, the franchise built a reputation for possessing one of the league’s most advanced analytics departments. In addition to supporting the Pirates’ scouting and roster assembly strategies, Fitzgerald became one of the first data analysts to travel with an MLB team to away matches, where he had a direct line into the coaching staff to assist with in-game strategy.
Following the appointment of Boston Red Sox’s Mike Hazen as the D-Backs new General Manager in late 2016, Fitzgerald became Hazen’s first key appointment as part of Arizona’s commitment to grow its analytics department.
After confirming his guest talk at the Forum, which is taking place in London on 6th February, Fitzgerald said:
“The OptaPro Analytics Forum provides a platform for sharing insight and innovative approaches to applying analytics in elite sport. I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to speak to my peers working at some of Europe’s leading clubs.
“With analytics now playing an increasingly integral role in performance analysis and recruitment in professional football, I am looking forward to sharing my experiences from baseball, discussing the common challenges we face as practitioners, both on a daily basis and in achieving long-term goals.”