Inside Baseball | June 23rd, 2022
I'm back with some highlights of things I've been working on
Good morning, especially to those of you who have told me that you miss my more regular posts here at Data on the Cob. I told myself when I started this newsletter that I wanted to write it as long as I was still having fun doing it. The truth is that my last few posts felt more like a chore than a hobby. That’s why I took a break.
Now that I’ve had some time to reflect, I do think this newsletter will continue, just not likely in the weekly format. You can expect posts on a monthly basis that have lots of links to various things I’ve done and seen that you might find interesting. For more frequent nuggets and insights, follow me on Twitter!
This month’s installment includes a few things I’ve been working on that loosely knit together under the theme of “Inside Baseball”—things for people who like to get in the weeds. Also because one section is literally about baseball.
An interactive visualization of some key votes from the 2022 General Assembly session
Some interesting links from the week including a competitive Democratic primary for state Senate, college-going trends, and diversification patterns
A list of every minor league and independent baseball team in Indiana
Thanks for being here!
First, a deeper look at partisan voting patterns in the Indiana General Assembly
I partnered with the folks over at Hannah News Service to put together an analysis of key votes in the 2022 Indiana General Assembly session. I got interested in looking more closely at the roll call of votes at the statehouse after discovering that not every member of each respective party votes together on major bills.
The point here is not to call out any particular lawmaker (that’s for you to do if you wish) but to gain a better understanding of how the two parties function at the Statehouse. Based on my own personal interactions living in Indiana over the past few years, I think it’s safe to say that most Hoosiers think that all Republican representatives vote together and all Democratic lawmakers do the same.
But it turns out that’s not the case.
The six bills I built visualizations for are:
HB 1041 - Transgender Athletes
HB 1134 - Anti-CRT and Education Transparency
SB 17 - Removing Prosecution Protection for Libraries
HB 1217 - Coerced Abortion Requirements
HB 1296 - Remove Handgun Permit Requirement
HB 1300 - Charitable Bail Organization Restrictions
Read through it and you might be surprised in what you find, like seven Senate Republicans (18% of the caucus) voting against the transgender athletes ban or four House Democrats voting for charitable bail restrictions.
Second, some interesting links from the week
Andrea Hunley wins the Democratic Senate primary in new District 46
I made an interactive map of Hunley’s district showing each candidates’ strongest areas. Hunley surprised a lot of people with a pretty dominating performance. This is my home district so I took particular interest in the race.
Poor turnout in the May primary
After the aforementioned primary elections last month, I looked at voter turnout in each county. Indiana has poor turnout in general and this was a particularly dismal showing at the polls. For example, just 11% of registered voters in Marion County turned out to vote. Yikes.
The Indiana Commission for Higher Education released their annual “College Readiness Report” and wow are things dire for college education in this state. In just five years, the college-going rate has dropped 12%. I highly recommend you take a look at the report.
I noticed an interesting trend in an IBRC report about diversifying counties in the state. The counties diversifying the fastest almost all fell along the I-65 corridor. Some interesting ideas as to why were in my Twitter thread about it.
Gas taxes in Indiana
You probably don’t need to be reminded this but gas taxes are really high in our state compared to others. From a political lens, the above map is fascinating. Every other state in the top 10 for gas tax is traditionally Democratic-leaning except Indiana. The Tax Foundation has a good explainer on it.
Finally, cataloging baseball teams in Indiana
I really like going to baseball games, particularly ones featuring smaller market teams. By smaller market I mean really small, like the LaCrosse (Wisconsin) Loggers. This summer I decided to attempt to attend as many small market Indiana baseball games as I could. I started by creating a list of every minor league or independent league team in the state.
To my surprise, I found fourteen! I wrote about them here and a table is below.
Three down, eleven to go.