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Title:Strike three: umpires' demand for discrimination PDF Logo
Authors:Parsons, Christopher A.
Sulaeman, Johan
Yates, Michael C.
Hamermesh, Daniel S.
Issue Date:2008
Series/Report no.:IZA discussion papers 3899
Abstract:We explore how umpires' racial/ethnic preferences are expressed in their evaluation of Major League Baseball pitchers. Controlling for umpire, pitcher, batter and catcher fixed effects and many other factors, strikes are more likely to be called if the umpire and pitcher match race/ethnicity. This effect only exists where there is little scrutiny of umpires' behavior - in ballparks without computerized systems monitoring umpires' calls, at poorly attended games, and when the called pitch cannot determine the outcome of the at-bat. If a pitcher shares the home-plate umpire's race/ethnicity, he gives up fewer hits, strikes out more batters, and improves his team's chance of winning. The general implication is that standard measures of salary discrimination that adjust for measured productivity may be flawed. We derive the magnitude of the bias generally and apply it to several examples.
Subjects:Wage equations
worker evaluation
strategic interactions
economics of sports
JEL:J44
J71
Persistent Identifier of the first edition:urn:nbn:de:101:1-2009010764
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

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