By: Brittany Ghiroli

SARASOTA, Fla. — More than a dozen times over the past four years, Pirates closer Mark Melancon has meticulously scoured a color-coded dashboard, noting cortisol and nutrient intake levels with results on more than 30 biomarkers found in his blood.

For the past eight months, Twins right-hander Trevor May has done the same, as the Washington native keeps a close eye on his Vitamin D level to promote better sleep efficiency.

Data, in the form of advanced metrics and statistics, has become king in baseball, and Melancon and May are among a growing group of players that are taking that information to the next level. In their case, they use a web-based health platform called InsideTracker. The Boston-based company — developed by nutritionists, scientists and aging specialists from Harvard University, MIT and Tufts University — has taken the popularity of nutrition-tracking services a step further: measuring hormones levels, glucose, cholesterol, vitamins and other key biomarkers that don’t show up on a standard physical or blood test.

“You’d like to think if your health improves, your performance improves,” said Melancon. “I’m not going to say, ‘Because of this, I’ve done better.’ But in a roundabout way, yeah, I have.”

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