Baseballs Hot Stove Season Offers More Sizzle Than Substance

For baseball fans, it can be difficult to pass the long months between the World Series and spring training. Football dominates our attention even when MLB games are actually being played, to say nothing of when the NFL is in peak season. But baseball still generates some interest when the weather turns cold, thanks to free agency, trades, and all the other offseason activity known as the “hot stove league.” The deal-making typically peaks at baseball’s winter meetings; this year’s version was held recently in San Diego.If you believe the hot stove chatter, championships are won or lost in the chess match between rival general managers and player agents. Even the betting markets seem to have bought in. The Cubs — who finished 73-89 last season and haven’t won a World Series in 106 years — saw their title odds skyrocket after emerging as one of the offseason’s biggest winners.But all of this sound and fury might signify nothing. Over the past decade and a half, there hasn’t been a particularly strong relationship between hot-stove triumphs and actual ones on the field. Further, teams don’t appear to be capable of reliably outperforming expectations in the offseason market, and the veteran players teams typically acquire tend to be paid more than their contributions warrant anyway. Add it all up, and winning the winter isn’t necessarily all it’s cracked up to be.Since the 2000-01 offseason, only about 14 percent of all wins above replacement (WAR)1Using the version. in any given MLB season have been generated by hot stove acquisitions2Defined as veteran players acquired over the previous offseason. That number is on the decline; last season, hot stovers created only 7.6 percent of all the WAR in baseball. That wasn’t much more than the share of all WAR (5.4 percent) generated by players making their major league debuts (a cohort not typically known for its immediate impact).How insignificant has the offseason been recently? Before the 2014 season, you could have zeroed out the WAR each team received from its hot stove pickups (relative to average), and absolutely nothing about the playoff picture would have changed, in terms of which teams qualified for the postseason. That’s because, under this exercise, the typical team would see a movement of only about plus-or-minus two wins over the entire season if there were no hot stove winners or losers at all.Big victories in the winter also track only modestly with how well a team actually plays the next season. Since 2000-01, WAR generated by hot stove acquisitions explains only about 14 percent of the variation in teams’ pythagorean wins — meaning there’s some relationship, but not a particularly strong one. For instance, using that relationship and our knowledge of offseason winners and losers alone, we wouldn’t have been able to predict any MLB team to win more than 85 or fewer than 74 games last season. In reality, two-thirds of all teams’ records fell outside that range.And remember, this is all after we know how well each team’s offseason pickups performed. Predicting which offseason pickups will do well ahead of time is much more difficult — perhaps because the teams themselves can’t reliably know. There’s essentially no correlation between how much WAR a team’s haul of offseason pickups generate from year to year, and while some of that is driven by cycles of spending and austerity3With some exceptions, the same teams don’t tend to pour massive amounts of money into free agency year after year., it’s also true even if we control for the amount of money teams spent.A recurring theme in sports is that the market for talent is largely efficient — and, consequently, the ability to acquire good production at below-market rates tends to be fleeting (granting some notable exceptions).It also bears noting that, because of MLB’s economic structure, the market price for hot stove players is higher than the average amount that teams generally pay per win. When we hear about the cost of a win in these contexts, it generally refers to a player’s value on the open (free agent) market, and when teams are bidding against each other, this framework does a good job of predicting what free agents will be paid for the WAR they’re expected to generate. But MLB also has an underclass of young, homegrown players who are not paid anywhere near what their value would be on the open market, and those players are the true bargains upon which championship foundations are laid.Those are also not the players who tend to change teams during hot stove season. From 2001 to 2014, teams paid about 50 percent more per WAR to hot stove leaguers than baseball paid for wins overall, if broken down using a marginal spending per marginal win model. And in each of the past two offseasons, teams paid more than double the amount per WAR to hot stove acquisitions than the overall average cost per WAR.When viewed this way, teams rarely get surplus value from playing the hot stove game, even if they don’t overpay relative to the open-market price of a win. This could explain why the hubbub of the offseason amounts to very little in the standings.By devoting attention to free agents and veteran trade targets, teams chase after an expensive subset of players (what writer Matt Swartz of the Hardball Times calls “auction-market” talent) whose win production fundamentally costs more than that of cost-controlled young talent (“non-market,” in Swartz’s terminology). Front offices are finally realizing this, which is a big reason why we’re seeing more talent locked into long-term contracts at a younger age, and why, consequently, fewer meaningful stars get to peddle their wares during hot stove season.This doesn’t mean offseason player movement means nothing at all. About 30 percent of MLB-wide WAR last season was generated by a player who had been acquired by his team during hot stove season sometime in the previous five years. And, if nothing else, the hot stove rumor mill keeps baseball in the headlines over the winter.Just the same, though, we shouldn’t expect the results of those deals to match the hype that comes with them. read more

Lakers Fail At Home to Do Away With Nuggets

Kobe Bryant was brilliant, but Denver was better.With a chance to move on to the second round of the playoffs, the Los Angeles Lakers instead gave a meager performance, fell behind by 15 points in the fourth quarter and hoped that Kobe Bryant could save them. He tried mightily — 15 of his 43 points came in the fourth quarter — but it was not enough to prevent the Denver Nuggets from earning a 102-99 victory.And so, the series is now 3-2 for the Lakers, who have to win Thursday in Denver to advance to meet Oklahoma City, which swept the Dallas Mavericks.Andre Miller, with 24 points, dominated Steve Blake in the fourth quarter, going one-on-one with dazzling ease. Miller’s two foul shots with 12.8 gave Denver a three-point cushion. Reserve center JaVale McGee outplayed the Laker’s Andrew Bynum in a big way. McGee had 21 points and 14 rebounds for the sixth-seeded Nuggets, who were inspired by Bynum’s comment that closing out a series is “easy.””That’s true, closeouts can be easy,” Bryant said. ”Tonight wasn’t one of those nights. … Did it pump them up? Probably. You never want to give anybody bulletin board material, but if you’re going to be a champion, you’ve got to play through things like that.” read more

Penn State Students Start Vigil To Protect Joe Paterno

The connection Joe Paterno had with some students of Penn State remains strong, so much so that a group started a round-the-clock vigil to make sure that the statue of the deceased coach’s statue on campus is not vandalized by those mortified by his negligence in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse travesty that threatens the existence of the program Paterno built to a prominent level.There are so many who are outraged by presence of the statue outside the football stadium and want it removed. Earlier this week, a plane flew over campus with a banner that read: Take the statue down or we will.”It was that act that motivated seniors Mike Elliot and Kevin Berkon to organize a gathering at the statue as a way of preserving it from potential person who might vandalize it. The students planned to be there a  few nights, but were not sure how long they would commit to protecting it.The plane is licensed to Air America Aerial Ads of Genoa, Ohio. Federal Aviation Administration records show the agency grounded a plane from the same company after it towed banners taunting Tiger Woods during the 2010 Masters golf tournament.The Paterno statue outside Beaver Stadium has been a point of much contention since the results from a scathing report by former FBI director Louis Freeh were made public and greatly tarnished the reputation of a man once known as “JoePa.”Critics have called for the statue to be taken down after the Freeh report concluded that Paterno was aware of allegations levied against convicted pedophile Jerry Sandusky in 1998 — in contrast to his grand jury testimony and an interview given after his firing — and that he was involved in the decision to not report a 2001 incident to the authorities even after his superiors had decided to.Penn State president Rodney Erickson said no decision has been made on whether to take it down.“I’m still in the process of talking with members of my leadership team,” Erickson said. “I’ll want to talk with members of the board and others. And we will make a decision, and we will make the right decision based on what we believe is the best course of action for the university.” read more

Opinion 5 questions to ponder during Ohio States bye week

1. Is it a rebuilding year if a trip to Indianapolis is the ceiling?Let’s face it, the chances of OSU making the first-ever College Football Playoff are pretty slim. The Buckeyes most likely needed to finish the regular season with an undefeated record to be one of the final four.With one loss, those chances are all but dashed — especially since that one loss coming against an unranked team that fell to East Carolina the following week.That said, OSU could easily be in the running for a conference title when December rolls around.If the Buckeyes do make a trip to Indianapolis — where the Big Ten Championship game is set to be played Dec. 6 — it might not even mean they won the rest of their games. A loss to Michigan State in East Lansing, Mich., wouldn’t by any means eliminate OSU from Big Ten-title contention, since there is no guarantee the Spartans won’t stumble as well, and a loss to any other team seems unlikely considering the general lack of impressiveness displayed by the Big Ten so far this season.A Big Ten Championship is always on the list of goals for an OSU team, but it’s never at the top — meaning if that is the highest accolade attainable, the season wasn’t quite a success. 3. Has Barrett’s general success put the writing on the wall for his backup?Barrett, while not always convincing, has put up numbers that are hard to argue with so far this season. He threw for 312 yards and tied a school record with six touchdown passes against Kent State and has already picked up three Big Ten weekly awards.If he continues to play well — especially when you consider a potential return of senior Braxton Miller next season — will 2014 mark the last season redshirt-sophomore Cardale Jones spends in Columbus?Beyond Barrett and Miller, Jones would potentially be competing with the highly-touted recruit Torrance Gibson — who has yet to commit, but could be coming to Columbus next season.Jones has never done a ton to turn the coaching staff away from him completely, but he’s never been overly impressive when on the field either. If he ever wants to start as a college quarterback, his best chance might be away from OSU. OSU freshman linebacker Raekwon McMillan (5) rushes Kent State redshirt-sophomore quarterback Colin Reardon (10) during a game against the Golden Flashes on Sept. 13 at Ohio Stadium. OSU won, 66-0.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorThree games into a new season, fans of the Ohio State football team have seen three different products on the field.In the first game, the Buckeyes used a second half surge to beat Navy in Baltimore, but the team fell off in week two. A loss to Virginia Tech showed a different OSU — one that could very well struggle through the Big Ten schedule — despite moments of promise. In week three, the team shellacked Kent State, 66-0, but it’s hard to know exactly what that says about the Buckeyes’ potential.With OSU scheduled for a week off before taking on Cincinnati, here are five thoughts to ponder about the team’s potential, personnel decisions and game planning for the Bearcats. OSU senior defensive lineman Michael Bennett (63) attempts to tackle Kent State redshirt-freshman quarterback Nathan Strock (16) during a game Sept. 13 at Ohio Stadium. OSU won, 66-0.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editor4. Three weeks in, do any seniors regret coming back?Coming into the season, OSU was widely expected to be one of the best, if not the best, teams in the country. When Miller went down with a torn labrum, that all changed.While the team was still expected to be pretty good — and hasn’t been awful this season — a realist might say the Buckeyes’ season goals have to be adjusted.With a potential National Championship seeming unlikely, do players like senior defensive lineman Michael Bennett, senior tight end Jeff Heuerman and Miller himself regret returning for one last go around for the Scarlet and Gray?Bennett could have been a potential first-round draft pick, while Heuerman and Miller would very possibly have made an NFL team as undrafted or late-round pickups. There’s no certainty with that path, but the money it offers might go missed without the potential of bigger and better things awaiting the end of this season for OSU. 5. How worried is a young defensive backfield about taking on Cincinnati’s Gunner Kiel?Kiel, a redshirt-sophomore transfer from Notre Dame, was one of the highest-rated quarterbacks in recent memory coming out of high school. With just one game under his collegiate belt, he has already posted six touchdowns and better than 400 yards through the air.While not as porous as it was at times last season, the OSU pass defense surely took notice, especially considering the youth in the lineup. The safeties — redshirt-sophomore Tyvis Powell and sophomores Vonn Bell and Cam Burrows — will have to be ready to step up and help an at-times struggling cornerback corps for the Buckeyes.If that one position group holds strong, OSU could be looking at an easy win. But if it doesn’t, it could be another long day for the Buckeye faithful. 2. When will it be time to lean on the freshmen?Coach Urban Meyer’s recruiting has been dominant since he arrived in Columbus, especially in comparison to the rest of the Big Ten.As true as that may be, his freshman classes haven’t necessarily made the biggest immediate impact through his first two-and-a-quarter seasons, but this year’s bunch has a chance to change that.You can forget about J.T. Barrett — as a redshirt he isn’t technically part of this year’s class — but there is still a plethora of talent that came in a year after him. Freshman running back Curtis Samuel has looked like the best option out of the Buckeyes’ backfield so far, while freshman linebacker Raekwon McMillan has played very well in limited time on the field.Neither are necessarily considered starters or “the guy” at their positions, but both should find more and more playing time going forward.Beyond that duo, freshman wide receiver Johnnie Dixon won’t be redshirting, so it might be time to see what he can do against a team other than Kent State. Beyond that, there is depth along the offensive and defensive lines that could be provided if more true freshmen are given a shot.Regardless of talent among some of the older players, OSU might want to start phasing in the youngsters as soon as possible, because they could legitimately provide game-changing impact. read more

One mans life work restoring historic home finally honoured as it is

first_imgChristopher Terry photographed this year with his grandaughers Brougham Hall in Cumbria as it looks today “These obstacles can be overcome, especially with funding from us, Heritage Lottery Fund and Natural England, but we face a significant challenge in saving these sites for future generations,” said Duncan Wilson, chief executive of Historic England.Only 14 per cent of buildings or structures on the list are thought to be economic to repair, and the total “conservation deficit” between the cost of repairing all the sites and their value once they have been restored is now £613 million.There are 926 places of worship on the register, along with 2,582 scheduled monuments such as prehistoric barrows which are the most at-risk type of heritage, 95 parks and gardens, six wrecks and even six battlefields.:: More information on the Brougham Hall Charitable Trust can be found here The future of the hall will be secured by trustees, including his children Katy, Charlie, Jono and Jim.Mr Terry first came across Brougham Hall in 1968, while on honeymoon with his first wife Janet, and fell in love with it.After making initial unsuccessful inquires about its future, he kept an eye on it from afar until 1985, when he managed to acquire it after learning it was due to be “redeveloped” into houses. Christopher Terry, a former professional cricketer and antiquities enthusiastCredit:The Terry family Bamber Gascoigne at West Horsley Place, Surrey, which has been put on the at risk registerCredit:Heathcliff O’Malley “He gave up the best part of half his life for Brougham Hall,” said his daughter Katy. “He’s done it for 30 years with really very little recognition, so this is really a culmination of what he had been working for.”Paying tribute to her father, who had five grandchildren and left a community of friends in Penrith, said: “He was one of the most charismatic, determined, stubborn, charming people you could ever wish to meet.”His whole life had a purpose and his passion for Brougham was unstinting.” Brougham Hall in Cumbria as it looks todayCredit: Simon Ledingham Christopher Terry’s four children, who have all helped with the projectCredit:The Terry family Bamber Gascoigne at West Horsley Place, Surrey, which has been put on the at risk register It is the type of project the phrase “labour of love” might have been created for: one man’s 47-year mission to restore a crumbling historic hall after spotting it on his honeymoon.Today, Christopher Terry is to be recognised for his lifetime’s achievement after Brougham Hall, Cumbria, is finally taken off the Heritage at Risk register, just two months after he died at the age of 77.Mr Terry, a father-of-four, ploughed his time and money into the ruined estate, a 14th century fortification with a Tudor building and 18th century hall, hoping to bring it back from the brink of destruction to save it for the nation.Historic England will today announce it has been transformed so drastically it is no longer considered “at risk”, calling it a “valued visitor attraction” with a community centre to train the craftsmen of the future. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Christopher Terry, a former professional cricketer and antiquities enthusiast The following year, he formed a Trust to secure its future – selling it for one peppercorn – and threw himself into restoring it, commandeering the help of his children and second wife Alison in moving piles of stones around the lawns and getting their hands dirty.After winning the bureaucratic battle for funding and planning permission, the hall now attracts up to 100,000 visitors a year, with 15 small businesses based there.Historic England has now praised Mr Terry’s “tireless effort”, saying he “brought the ruins of Brougham Hall back to life”. The Brougham Hall restoration project underwayCredit:The Terry family It is has now officially been removed from the “at risk” register along with the landscape of Castle Howard, Crowland Abbey in Lincolnshire and Wilton’s Music Hall in London.Buildings added to the register include West Horsley Place, the Surrey stately home unexpectedly inherited by Bamber Gascoigne and his wife last year.Formerly belonging to his aunt, the Duchess of Roxburghe, its grounds will soon be home to Grange Park Opera company but is considered “at risk” for historic water damage and structural problems. The Brougham Hall restoration project underway Christopher Terry's four children, who have all helped with the project Christopher Terry photographed this year with his grandaughersCredit:The Terry family Brougham Hall in all its splendourCredit:Alamy It is joined on the list by London Zoo’s aviary, designed by Lord Snowden, a 16th century shipwreck and Newington Green Unitarian Church dubbed “the birthplace of feminism” after Mary Wollstonecroft wrote A Vindication of the Rights of Women while a member.Brighton Old Town, a fort which defended Portsmouth from the French and a church immortalised in TS Eliot’s poem The Waste Land also join the list.Overall, there are 137 fewer entries on the list this year, with  experts warning the gap between the cost of repairs and the value of restored properties is growing thanks to a shortage of skills and scaffolding. Brougham Hall in all its splendour His family said the recognition was the culmination of Mr Terry’s life’s work, and a final honour for the quiet, determined labour he had put in with little public thanks.It is understood he had been aware that Brougham Hall was likely to come off the at risk register this year, but he died from cancer in August before it could be publicly confirmed.last_img read more

Cutie the third How the world reacted to new princes birth

Daily StarCredit:Daily Star The Guardian The Daily Telegraph The Daily Mail ‘His first royal wave’   ‘i’ Paper’Royal arrival Daily MailCredit:Daily Mail The Sun’Cry for Mummy, England and St George’ The GuardianCredit:The Guardian Daily Star The Sun Huge congratulations to Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the safe delivery of their baby boy today! @KensingtonRoyal— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) April 23, 2018 Metro Daily Mirror’Triple Crown’  Congratulations to Kate and William on the birth of their baby boy. I wish them all the very best.— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) April 23, 2018 MetroCredit:Metro Daily MirrorCredit:Daily Mirror My warmest congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the birth of their baby boy. I wish them great happiness for the future.— Theresa May (@theresa_may) April 23, 2018 The Times’Three and easy? Not for William the worrier’ Daily Express Metro’Three cheers!’ Daily Mail The birth of a new baby is a special and joyful time for any family – my congratulations and best wishes to William, Catherine and the new baby’s (no doubt very excited) big brother and sister on this happy occasion— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) April 23, 2018 Le Matin in Switzerland The Daily TelegraphCredit:The Daily Telegraph The SunCredit:The Sun The Guardian’Duke and Duchess show off new son’ After months of waiting the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge welcomed their third royal baby on Monday, to the delight of the country and those far further afield. Arriving swiftly, and even giving the tiniest of royal waves during his first appearance to the public, the new prince was born at 11.01am, weighing 8lbs 7oz. We take a look at how the world’s media reacted to the birth. The Daily Telegraph ‘Welcome to the family: a new prince for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge The Courier Mail, printed in Brisbane, Australia 'i' Daily Mirror  Politicians from around the world also offered congratulations Canada welcomes a baby boy to the Royal Family! Sophie & I send our congratulations to William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and to George and Charlotte on the new arrival.— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) April 23, 2018 The TimesCredit:The Times ‘i’ Credit:’i’ Barack and I are thrilled to congratulate The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on their newest arrival! We hope to meet him soon for a Kensington Palace pajama party. I’ll wear my robe!— Michelle Obama (@MichelleObama) April 23, 2018 Le Matin in Switzerland  Daily Star’Red, white and new’ Daily Express’Thrice the worry now!’  Newspapers around the world joined in The Courier Mail, printed in Brisbane, Australia The Times Le Matin Daily ExpressCredit:Daily Express The birth of a new baby is a special and joyful time for any family – my congratulations and best wishes to William, Catherine and the new baby’s (no doubt very excited) big brother and sister on this happy occasion— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) April 23, 2018 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Residents with a golden ticket to the royal wedding told to provide

Kensington Palace said some “light refreshments and snacks” will be available. The wedding is due to begin at noon and be over by 1pm, but members of the public will arrive several hours earlier in order to pass security checks and find a prime spot close to the doors of St George’s Chapel. The 2,640 crowd granted exclusive access to the grounds will comprise 1,200 members of the public, 1,140 palace staff, 200 people associated with the couple’s favoured charities and 100 local schoolchildren.There will be 600 guests inside the chapel, who will head to a lunchtime reception in the castle after the ceremony. Members of the public with a ‘golden ticket’ to the royal wedding have been told to provide their own picnic lunch.Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have invited 2,460 people “to feel part of the celebrations” by standing in the grounds of Windsor Castle on the big day.However, some guests have expressed their dismay after receiving a letter from the Queen’s lord lieutenants, suggesting that they “bring a picnic lunch as it will not be possible to buy food and drink on site”.Those invited inside the castle walls include charity workers and others nominated for their bravery or work in the local community.Saeed Atcha, founder of a youth charity in Bolton, Greater Manchester, told The Guardian that some of the disadvantaged people he worked with were bemused at the lack of hospitality offered by the Royal family.“They were saying, ‘How come they have this money and you have to bring a picnic?’ I am of the same opinion. It’s unfathomable,” he said.“There’s a McDonald’s [nearby] but I’m not sure I’ll be able to bring in a Filet meal.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Golden ticket holders cheer with delight as they witness the royal wedding

From swan rescuers to injured Ghurkas, a teenager from the Welsh Valleys to a hospice fundraiser, they gathered in their finery and settled down in ringside seats to witness the only show in town. The grass alongside St George’s Chapel on Saturday was thronged with lucky golden ticket holders invited to watch the Royal wedding unfold from within the grounds of Windsor Castle. As the brilliant sunshine bore down, some 1,200 members of the public laid out picnic rugs and folding chairs, unpacked their hampers… There was a man dressed from head to toe in Union Jacks, another who had purchased a full top hat and tails especially for the occasion. Others were in scout neckerchiefs and cadet uniforms.

Jersey overrun with feral chickens after families dump pets when they become

They don’t want to kill them by wringing their necks, so what they do is liberate themStewart Petrie, the head of environmental health in Jersey Show more Jersey has been overrun with feral chickens as a result of families dumping pets when they become too big, local authorities have warned.There are understood to be about six broods of chickens nesting around the island – with the largest estimated to be more than 100 in number.Because there are no foxes on the island to act as a natural predator, local authorities are fighting an ongoing battle with the birds, which are waking people up at 3am, pecking at gardens and becoming a traffic hazard as they stray on to roads.Stewart Petrie, the head of environmental health in Jersey, said: “Someone might buy a fluffy, cute little chick, but when it starts defecating everywhere or grows up into a rooster and starts waking them up at 3 o’clock in the morning, they want to get rid of it. “They don’t want to kill them by wringing their necks, so what they do is liberate them.”Jon Parkes, lands manager for National Trust Jersey said “All we can do is just appeal to people to stop dumping animals in the countryside. “They are essentially domesticated animals in the wrong setting.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Women in restaurant industry experience more sexual harassment from customers than in

Women in the restaurant industry experience more sexual harassment from customers than in the kitchens, one of Britain’s top female chefs has said.Clare Smyth, who provided catering for the wedding reception of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, has two Michelin stars at her London restaurant, Core, and previously ran the three-star Restaurant Gordon Ramsay.While professional kitchens have a reputation for being testosterone-fuelled, Smyth said that most inappropriate behaviour comes from drunken male customers behaving badly towards waitresses.”I see a lot of things. Believe me, when you work front of house at a restaurant and you’ve got middle aged men who have had a few drinks and you’re a pretty young woman – the stuff that gets said is absolutely disgusting,” Smyth said.I’m really focused on that kind of thing, and giving them the tools to be able to deal with it confidently, because how do they become leaders and managers when they’re being patronised by the guests, put down all the time, asked, ‘What time do you finish work, sweetheart?'”It’s something that’s really rife in my industry, so it’s something I really battle against.” “One of my guests who I’ve known for a long time, I’ve had to ask not to come back to the restaurant because I saw him do something. The young lady didn’t want to say anything because she felt it was her job, and that made me really angry,” Smyth said.”I absolutely refuse to accept anything like that at all in my workplace. I’m very supportive of the young ladies and I see it as my duty to make sure they make it all the way through to the top and change things so we won’t have to talk about it any more.”Maitre d’s can also be patronising to young women, she added. “There’s a lot of older maitre d’s. So a lot time [sexism] is front of house, not actually from chefs.”Smyth said of Gordon Ramsay, her mentor for many years: “Everyone thinks that Gordon might be a bit of a bully but actually it was him who said, ‘You don’t always have to like the people you work with. Don’t let them hold you back. Focus on you.’ And that’s something I’ve always done in my career.”Smyth, 40, was recently named the world’s best female chef at an awards ceremony in Spain, and admitted to mixed feelings about the accolade because she does not believe women should be in a separate category to men. Show more Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Speaking at the Harper’s Bazaar Summit in London, Smyth disclosed that she had gone as far as banning one long-standing customer over his unacceptable behaviour towards a female member of staff. read more