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delv
06-14-10, 12:10 PM
So... obviously we are not yet at the midpoint of the year, and the following question can be perhaps best resolved by looking at wOBA against and comparing objectively to past numbers, but man... there are some low ERAs in baseball right now, especially in the NL:

The NL currently features 18 starting pitchers with an ERA under 3, and half of those with ERAs under 2.5.

The AL features 7 with ERAs under 3, our beloved Phil Use recently sending his ERA above the watermark.


What say y'all? Are these numbers outstanding relative to past years at this point in time? SSS? Etc...

Hooligan Tavarez
06-14-10, 12:22 PM
The average team in the AL is allowing 4.53 R/G

American League R/G
2010: 4.53
2009: 4.75
2008: 4.68
2007: 4.82
2006: 4.87
2005: 4.68
2004: 4.99

National League R/G
2010: 4.43
2009: 4.49
2008: 4.63
2007: 4.78
2006: 4.76
2005: 4.45
2004: 4.66

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 12:22 PM
Don't forget 4* no hitters with 3* perfect games. Yeah, it's kinda nuts. But off the top of my head I can't think of a good way to determine why. Are pitchers just sharp this year or have hitters gotten worse? Or is it a mix of both?

I wonder how much the steroid era had anything to do with it.

THEBOSS84
06-14-10, 12:37 PM
So... obviously we are not yet at the midpoint of the year, and the following question can be perhaps best resolved by looking at wOBA against and comparing objectively to past numbers, but man... there are some low ERAs in baseball right now, especially in the NL:

The NL currently features 18 starting pitchers with an ERA under 3, and half of those with ERAs under 2.5.

The AL features 7 with ERAs under 3, our beloved Phil Use recently sending his ERA above the watermark.


What say y'all? Are these numbers outstanding relative to past years at this point in time? SSS? Etc...

Buster Olney Buster_ESPN

At the height of the steroid era, in 2001, a total of two pitchers posted ERAs under 3.00. Right now, 25 starters have ERAs under 3.00.

delv
06-14-10, 12:37 PM
Don't forget 4* no hitters with 3* perfect games. Yeah, it's kinda nuts. But off the top of my head I can't think of a good way to determine why. Are pitchers just sharp this year or have hitters gotten worse? Or is it a mix of both?

I wonder how much the steroid era had anything to do with it.

ya gotta figure pitchers used steroids too, so presumably the effects would cancel themselves out... unless we posit that steroids are ultimately more effective for the hitter than the pitcher, which is an argument with legs, given the number and degree of offensive records broken in the steroid era in contrast to the number of pitching records.

delv
06-14-10, 12:39 PM
Buster Olney Buster_ESPN

At the height of the steroid era, in 2001, a total of two pitchers posted ERAs under 3.00. Right now, 25 starters have ERAs under 3.00.

of course, on the 2nd day of the season, there are also a boatload of guys with ERAs under 3.00, and we are only 2.5 months in, but yeah, that's an obscene difference.

THEBOSS84
06-14-10, 12:40 PM
Joel Sherman tried to tackle this subject yesterday -

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/more_sports/drug_crackdown_young_stars_f0CjTNLRNY4BgOMgELGxNN

Hitman23
06-14-10, 12:41 PM
It feels like almost every day someone is taking a NH or PG into the 7th. There were two more yesterday. Pitching is really fun to watch this year.

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 12:46 PM
ya gotta figure pitchers used steroids too, so presumably the effects would cancel themselves out... unless we posit that steroids are ultimately more effective for the hitter than the pitcher, which is an argument with legs, given the number and degree of offensive records broken in the steroid era in contrast to the number of pitching records.Absolutely. As Tim Lincecum and even Strasburg now show us, you don't need to be strong and bulky to be an effective pitcher. But if you want to turn doubles into homers, extra strength can make the difference.

delv
06-14-10, 12:51 PM
Joel Sherman tried to tackle this subject yesterday -

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/more_sports/drug_crackdown_young_stars_f0CjTNLRNY4BgOMgELGxNN

Interesting little section in there:


THE CUTTER
“Mariano Rivera, bless his heart, has opened a lot of eyes,” Mark Teixeira said. “The cutter is the best pitch in baseball.”
More and more pitchers are throwing it. For example, Rivera taught it to Halladay at an All-Star Game, and Halladay went from superb to a Hall of Famer. The pitch has been vital to Hughes, and also to the growth of another emerging young starter, Jonathon Niese. It essentially provides a pitch that does not heavily tax arms and is invaluable in staying off the sweet spot when behind in the count.
“You have more people teaching it, so you have more people doing it,” Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long said of the cutter. “I write reports and used to write all the time ‘fastball straight.’ I don’t do that much anymore. The cutter has helped a lot of pitchers because if you can move it both ways, you really have something.”


Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/more_sports/drug_crackdown_young_stars_f0CjTNLRNY4BgOMgELGxNN/1#ixzz0qqnoMJGT



Now, I don't wanna say the cutter in itself is a magical pitch, but one can imagine that cutters suppress SLG, as it's harder to make solid contact against them (someone can look this up on fangraphs), but they can also be thrown more than breaking pitches can, as they're easier to locate in the zone.

In general, I wonder what kinds of patterns have existed in baseball in regards to pitch-type usage, and how they might be correlated with offense (and just offense in general, but SLG vs BA vs OBP. In other words, is a pitch easier to get a basehit off of, but harder to hit a HR against? Or maybe easier to spot and take for a ball, but virtually impossible to hit if thrown for a strike?). For example, I feel like I rarely see splitters nowadays, whereas they seemed to be all over the place when I was growing up (80s-90s). What was the primary or secondary pitch in 1968? These are historical questions some older people might be able to provide insight into.

delv
06-14-10, 12:55 PM
Absolutely. As Tim Lincecum and even Strasburg now show us, you don't need to be strong and bulky to be an effective pitcher. But if you want to turn doubles into homers, extra strength can make the difference.

yeah, but we can't underestimate the effect of PEDs on hand-eye coordination, an aspect that benefits both hitters and pitchers, though in different ways.

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 01:15 PM
yeah, but we can't underestimate the effect of PEDs on hand-eye coordination, an aspect that benefits both hitters and pitchers, though in different ways.Anabolic steroids don't improve your brain function. Neither does HGH.

Hitman23
06-14-10, 01:18 PM
Anabolic steroids don't improve your brain function. Neither does HGH.I heard somewhere once that it helps improve your eyesight. Is this true or no?

delv
06-14-10, 01:29 PM
Anabolic steroids don't improve your brain function. Neither does HGH.

hand-eye-coordination isn't just brain function but also muscle control.

amphetamines, on the other hand, do affect both

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 01:35 PM
I heard somewhere once that it helps improve your eyesight. Is this true or no?Imma let you finish, but I think this is a no. Some medical person feel free to correct me.


hand-eye-coordination isn't just brain function but also muscle control.

amphetamines, on the other hand, do affect both
Ok, but anabolic steroids and HGH don't do anything with muscle control (well, at least not directly. If anything I'd imagine steroids could make you twitchier...)

But you're right about amphetamines.

Hitman23
06-14-10, 01:47 PM
Imma let you finish, but I think this is a no. Some medical person feel free to correct me.I never really put a lot of confidence in what I heard but I would assume that if it did, that would improve hand eye coordination indirectly.

ojo
06-14-10, 01:50 PM
i've been groaning about this all season. my roto team SHOULD have the best pitching...by a good margin. i'm only 'near' the top however..and it's because of all these arms from out of nowhere..

Yankee Tripper
06-14-10, 01:53 PM
Ok, but anabolic steroids and HGH don't do anything with muscle control (well, at least not directly. If anything I'd imagine steroids could make you twitchier...)

Just curious, is this post impliying the steriod don't help you at baseball? Because there is plenty of evidence from guys like Mcguire, Sosa, Bonds, Canseco...that suggets steriod help you quite a bit.

Now I'm not sure on HGH, but I can tell you this, plenty of people THINK (or thought) it will help them, or there wouldn't have been so many players taking it.

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 02:00 PM
Just curious, is this post impliying the steriod don't help you at baseball? Because there is plenty of evidence from guys like Mcguire, Sosa, Bonds, Canseco...that suggets steriod help you quite a bit.No. That post was in response to delv suggesting that they can improve hand-eye coordination. I can't think of any physiological basis as to why this would be true.


Now I'm not sure on HGH, but I can tell you this, plenty of people THINK (or thought) it will help them, or there wouldn't have been so many players taking it.Interestingly enough, from what I've read there is no evidence that HGH actually increases strength. But it is somewhat effective in helping recover from injuries.

Yankee Tripper
06-14-10, 02:20 PM
No. That post was in response to delv suggesting that they can improve hand-eye coordination. I can't think of any physiological basis as to why this would be true.
OK, that makes sense.


Interestingly enough, from what I've read there is no evidence that HGH actually increases strength. But it is somewhat effective in helping recover from injuries.
But that could indirectly increase strength by reducing the recovery time between workouts, no?

delv
06-14-10, 02:27 PM
Ok, but anabolic steroids and HGH don't do anything with muscle control (well, at least not directly. If anything I'd imagine steroids could make you twitchier...)


I'd figure part of increased strength would be increased muscle control, specifically when tired and under duress in general. I know that part of the issue when I get tired is that I can't control my muscles with precision as much as I could before, so my b-ball shot ends up being off, and I figure, with something as precise as a baseball swing, the same would hold over the course of a season. But yeah, these are medical Qs that I, at least, am not fully qualified to answer.

edted*

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 02:47 PM
But that could indirectly increase strength by reducing the recovery time between workouts, no?
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1724606/?tool=pmcentrez

"Such an effect on connective tissue in muscle would make the muscle no more capable of force generation but may promote resistance to injury or faster repair, which would be an advantage to an athlete. This may explain the anecdotally reported predilection of baseball players for abuse of testosterone and rhGH together. Unfortunately this possible synergism has never been studied under control circumstances in young men. [...]

[T]ransgenic mice overexpressing GH show no relative increase in muscle mass as a fraction of total body weight, and what muscle they have develops less force than expected on a weight basis. Thus, the balance of evidence seems to be heavily against an anabolic effect of rhGH on human muscle."

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 02:52 PM
I'd figure part of increased strength would be increased muscle control, specifically when tired and under duress in general. I know that part of the issue when I get tired is that I can't control my muscles with precision as much as I could before, so my b-ball shot ends up being off, and I figure, with something as precise as a baseball swing, the same would hold over the course of a season. But yeah, these are medical Qs that I, at least, am not fully qualified to answer.I don't think so. Check Wiki for a quick overview:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anabolic_steroid

The key is HOW it results in increased strength.

delv
06-14-10, 03:29 PM
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1724606/?tool=pmcentrez
"Such an effect on connective tissue in muscle would make the muscle no more capable of force generation but may promote resistance to injury or faster repair, which would be an advantage to an athlete. This may explain the anecdotally reported predilection of baseball players for abuse of testosterone and rhGH together. Unfortunately this possible synergism has never been studied under control circumstances in young men. [...]

[T]ransgenic mice overexpressing GH show no relative increase in muscle mass as a fraction of total body weight, and what muscle they have develops less force than expected on a weight basis. Thus, the balance of evidence seems to be heavily against an anabolic effect of rhGH on human muscle."


Ok, but what you always hear from athletes is that HGH allows them to work out and lift weights more and accordingly gain muscle. So it's not that the HGH itself promotes muscle growth, but that it allows for it to happen more quickly given an athlete with a good work ethic. There's a certain point after which an athlete can no longer work out; his body won't gain anything more from it and may end up instead getting hurt. HGH allows that threshold of hours-per-day in the gym to be increased.
Muscle building includes tearing and rebuilding of muscle. HGH, presumably, allows you to do the latter more quickly.

False1
06-14-10, 04:06 PM
So... obviously we are not yet at the midpoint of the year, and the following question can be perhaps best resolved by looking at wOBA against and comparing objectively to past numbers, but man... there are some low ERAs in baseball right now, especially in the NL:

The NL currently features 18 starting pitchers with an ERA under 3, and half of those with ERAs under 2.5.

The AL features 7 with ERAs under 3, our beloved Phil Use recently sending his ERA above the watermark.

What say y'all? Are these numbers outstanding relative to past years at this point in time? SSS? Etc...
Simple. Direct correlation between ERA and Ellsbury's days on the DL. And that's true for both the AL and the NL. He's that good.

Tifoso
06-14-10, 05:06 PM
Simple. Direct correlation between ERA and Ellsbury's days on the DL. And that's true for both the AL and the NL. He's that good.

:roflmao::D:-surrende

NYYDragoon
06-14-10, 11:04 PM
Ok, but what you always hear from athletes is that HGH allows them to work out and lift weights more and accordingly gain muscle. Quite honestly, I don't think most athletes have any clue about the stuff they take. Biologically HGH has not been proven to have any strength-building effects. I feel like there's a lot of placebo going on here.

TheYankee
06-15-10, 12:33 AM
I think something has to be said for bigger parks, too. The Twins play in an enormous park now. Look at Mauer. 28 HR's last year. 2 this year, and neither are at home. Then you go back a year and see Citi Field. Comerica Park is big. We aren't seeing the bandboxes of yesteryear being built.

Obviously, that can't have anything to do with it, but I have to imagine it plays at least a small factor. I can't for the life of me figure out why teams like the Twins build monstrosity's like Target Field -- don't you WANT Joe Mauer to belt 20-25 home runs?

THEBOSS84
06-15-10, 09:01 AM
I think something has to be said for bigger parks, too. The Twins play in an enormous park now. Look at Mauer. 28 HR's last year. 2 this year, and neither are at home. Then you go back a year and see Citi Field. Comerica Park is big. We aren't seeing the bandboxes of yesteryear being built.

Obviously, that can't have anything to do with it, but I have to imagine it plays at least a small factor. I can't for the life of me figure out why teams like the Twins build monstrosity's like Target Field -- don't you WANT Joe Mauer to belt 20-25 home runs?

Good point. Petco can also join that list.

BronxYanks45
06-15-10, 09:01 AM
ugh this is the sad part of the steroid era, pitching has gotten better and people point to PEDs.

CalYankeeFan
06-15-10, 09:27 AM
Good, young pitchers coming up in the game now

Bigger ballparks

Cleaner players

delv
06-15-10, 09:27 AM
I think something has to be said for bigger parks, too. The Twins play in an enormous park now. Look at Mauer. 28 HR's last year. 2 this year, and neither are at home. Then you go back a year and see Citi Field. Comerica Park is big. We aren't seeing the bandboxes of yesteryear being built.

Obviously, that can't have anything to do with it, but I have to imagine it plays at least a small factor. I can't for the life of me figure out why teams like the Twins build monstrosity's like Target Field -- don't you WANT Joe Mauer to belt 20-25 home runs?

Concerning the Twins, my understanding was that the dimensions of Target Field are the same as their prior park's but the winds have affected how the ball carries

ETA:
from an mlb.com article


The ballpark's field, which has nearly the same dimensions as the Metrodome....

then again, that's what they said about NYS

delv
06-15-10, 09:28 AM
Quite honestly, I don't think most athletes have any clue about the stuff they take. Biologically HGH has not been proven to have any strength-building effects. I feel like there's a lot of placebo going on here.
you're likely on to something there

NYYDragoon
06-15-10, 09:34 AM
Concerning the Twins, my understanding was that the dimensions of Target Field are the same as their prior park's but the winds have affected how the ball carries

ETA:
from an mlb.com article

then again, that's what they said about NYS
http://www.katron.org/articles/target-field/Target-versus-Metrodome.png

delv
06-15-10, 09:35 AM
http://www.katron.org/articles/target-field/Target-versus-Metrodome.png

ahh.. given all of their lefty hitters, that jutting out in right-center is probably significant. thanks for the link.