This article is part of our MLB Barometer series.
Of all the factors to consider following the trade deadline, the potentially mythical "change of scenery" is perhaps the hardest to pin down. Players' xFIPs and xWOBACONs and assorted other acronyms, as vague and mysterious as they may initially seem, are concepts we're collectively learning to deal with, backed up by charts and graphs and hundreds of pages worth of quality analysis. But what are we supposed to do with an element that is essential part of the player's psyche, something we don't have access to (and hopefully never have access to)?
I'm not talking about the numerous measurable factors that shift when a player changes teams. His new home park may suit his skills better or worse than his previous one. He may have more or fewer opportunities to start. He might move into or out of a starting or closing role. He may have better or worse teammates around him. All of those factors are important, but none is extraordinarily hard to deal with.
Less measurable but still knowable are the changes that come with working with a new coaching staff. We can't know for certain how new coaches could unlock something for a player who's just been traded, but certain teams are widely known as being strong in that area. The Astros, Dodgers and Yankees are frequently mentioned as being at the top of that pile.
The quasi-mythical factor I'm referring to is a purely psychological one. It's impossible to measure with any precision (at least in