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  • Pitching still dominating. What to do?

    An interesting article about more and more pitchers touching 100 mph, and the outfits training all these guys thinks they can get even faster.

    The article is correct, in my opinion, that it is putting baseball into a death spiral. I know the metrics crowd likes anything that increases win probabilities, but I'm convinced that the average fan wants to see the ball put in play, wants to see action. Twenty to thirty strikeouts a game is boring. The authors of the article point out that fans want more action in a short time, and the current trend in MLB is less action in a longer time.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/basebal...h-WxKsEhas0dsA

  • #2
    The solution is staring us right in the face.

    Angel Hernandez and C.J. Bucknor do all the calls behind the Plate at every game. Only the Tropicana Juice Company squeezes more often in any given 24 hour period.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Nellie Fox View Post
      An interesting article about more and more pitchers touching 100 mph, and the outfits training all these guys thinks they can get even faster.

      The article is correct, in my opinion, that it is putting baseball into a death spiral. I know the metrics crowd likes anything that increases win probabilities, but I'm convinced that the average fan wants to see the ball put in play, wants to see action. Twenty to thirty strikeouts a game is boring. The authors of the article point out that fans want more action in a short time, and the current trend in MLB is less action in a longer time.

      https://www.cbsnews.com/news/basebal...h-WxKsEhas0dsA
      First thing you do is ban shifts, two infielders on each side of second base, outfielders can't be closer to the infield than a reasonable distance.

      Second and I'm not entirely joking here, you fire all the stat-analytics people in front offices. They are the reason the game has degenerated into what it has become. Their influence has spread like a poison.

      Third, teams at all levels begin emphasizing the fundamentals of the game like the Orioles and Cardinals did for decades. Make contact, put balls in play, learn to bunt, learn to inside-out swings, learn to go the other way and advance runners, run...speed kills...stop trying to hit every ball 827 and a half feet. It'll take time of course with this last suggestion but eventually it will pay off.

      The three outcome approach and a brain dead commissioner have and are continuing to ruin the game.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Lipman 1 View Post

        First thing you do is ban shifts, two infielders on each side of second base, outfielders can't be closer to the infield than a reasonable distance.

        Second and I'm not entirely joking here, you fire all the stat-analytics people in front offices. They are the reason the game has degenerated into what it has become. Their influence has spread like a poison.

        Third, teams at all levels begin emphasizing the fundamentals of the game like the Orioles and Cardinals did for decades. Make contact, put balls in play, learn to bunt, learn to inside-out swings, learn to go the other way and advance runners, run...speed kills...stop trying to hit every ball 827 and a half feet. It'll take time of course with this last suggestion but eventually it will pay off.

        The three outcome approach and a brain dead commissioner have and are continuing to ruin the game.
        Yeah, I’m not gonna lie, I hope the White Sox do exactly zero of these things.

        Let some other losing squad bring back the beauty of the sacrifice bunt and finish in 4th place while they do it. As for this team? “Send it flyin’ to the ****ing Dan Ryan.”

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        • #5
          Do what they did the last time the pitchers dominated, after the 1968 season they lowered the mound.
          Last edited by LITTLE NELL; 07-09-2021, 04:30 PM.
          Now coming up to bat for the White Sox is the Mighty Mite, Nelson Fox.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Mohoney View Post

            Yeah, I’m not gonna lie, I hope the White Sox do exactly zero of these things.

            Let some other losing squad bring back the beauty of the sacrifice bunt and finish in 4th place while they do it. As for this team? “Send it flyin’ to the ****ing Dan Ryan.”
            Except this team doesn't hit a hell of a lot of home runs do they? 🙄

            And the question wasn't posed specifically about the White Sox but the sport in general which is losing interest even among die hard fans because walk-strike out or home run (which still doesn't happen that often) gets friggin' old really quick.

            By the way the 2005 Sox seemed to do a pretty good job of having a balanced offense, they could beat you with a bunt, a bloop or a blast. In the top quarter that year for home runs, sacrifice bunts, stolen bases, sacrifice flys and infield hits. The 1990 Sox weren't called "Doin' the Little Things" for nothing and of course those clubs in the 50's / 60's were damned good at just about every phase of the game. In short you better have some ways to score runs when you aren't hitting home runs.

            Now of course if you can guarantee me, three home runs a game, I may come around to your perspective.
            Last edited by Lipman 1; 07-09-2021, 04:40 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Lipman 1 View Post

              Except this team doesn't hit a hell of a lot of home runs do they? 🙄

              And the question wasn't posed specifically about the White Sox but the sport in general which is losing interest even among die hard fans because walk-strike out or home run (which still doesn't happen that often) gets friggin' old really quick.

              By the way the 2005 Sox seemed to do a pretty good job of having a balanced offense, they could beat you with a bunt, a bloop or a blast. In the top quarter that year for home runs, sacrifice bunts, stolen bases, sacrifice flys and infield hits. The 1990 Sox weren't called "Doin' the Little Things" for nothing and of course those clubs in the 50's / 60's were damned good at just about every phase of the game. In short you better have some ways to score runs when you aren't hitting home runs.

              Now of course if you can guarantee me, three home runs a game, I may come around to your perspective.
              They did last year, and they plan on getting about 70 home runs back when Eloy and Robert return. At full strength, this lineup can rely on legitimate and reliable power threats from C, 1B, SS, 3B, CF, and wherever Eloy plays. The best course of action going forward is sinking or swimming with Andrew Vaughn as a 7th solidified lineup spot. That leaves RF (again) and 2B as needs.

              Kris Bryant and Javy Baez. Get it done. Add Anthony Rizzo as a LH DH.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by LITTLE NELL View Post
                Do what they did the last time the pitchers dominated, after the 1968 season they lowered the mound.
                My first thought as well.

                The other "phenomenon" (for lack of a better word) is that like all other positions, pitchers are taller. Taller pitcher means delivery point is closer to the plate. Add that to the fact that fastballs are probably on average 5-7 mph faster than they were when the mound was last lowered (throwing 95 a couple of decades ago was top end; now guys are mostly in the mid-to-high 90's and often hit 100). Move the mound back a couple of feet (not sure the exact dimensions, but you can't move it back such that it is on a line between 1st and 3rd).
                I want my $2

                I wasn't in the last can. I was in the first can. You started at the wrong end. - Tosh

                If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there. - GH 1943-2001

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                • #9
                  I think the biggest problem is that guys are throwing harder than ever, part of the reason (I think) is that you're not asking starters to throw 7+ innings anymore, so pitchers can max out on every pitch. I think banning shifts would help a bit, but I think they're going to have to move the mound back.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by whitesox5187 View Post
                    I think the biggest problem is that guys are throwing harder than ever, part of the reason (I think) is that you're not asking starters to throw 7+ innings anymore, so pitchers can max out on every pitch. I think banning shifts would help a bit, but I think they're going to have to move the mound back.
                    Or not have a mound at all. Pitching from flat ground will definitely take some steam off the heaters.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Maybe it's just me, but I don't find today's game to be boring or unwatchable at all. Some of the most enjoyable games I have seen this season have been pitching duels with lots of strikeouts. I read recently that ratings are way up this year so maybe this isn't really an issue at all?

                      If the league wants to boost offense, I agree with what others have said that lowering and/or moving back the mound is probably the best place to start. It would help even the playing field without sacrificing the competitive spirit of the game.

                      Any solutions that start with "firing the analytics people" are childishly naïve. You're basically telling pitchers that they are too good, they should stop trying to be so good because it's bad for baseball. Look at someone like Liam Hendriks, who 3 years ago was a journeyman who was DFA'ed, then began to embrace analytics and turned himself into one of the top pitchers in the world. Are you going to tell him that he should have not tried to improve because doing so isn't good for baseball? I guarantee his bank account is happy that he embraced analytics.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Lipman 1 View Post

                        Except this team doesn't hit a hell of a lot of home runs do they? 🙄

                        And the question wasn't posed specifically about the White Sox but the sport in general which is losing interest even among die hard fans because walk-strike out or home run (which still doesn't happen that often) gets friggin' old really quick.

                        By the way the 2005 Sox seemed to do a pretty good job of having a balanced offense, they could beat you with a bunt, a bloop or a blast. In the top quarter that year for home runs, sacrifice bunts, stolen bases, sacrifice flys and infield hits. The 1990 Sox weren't called "Doin' the Little Things" for nothing and of course those clubs in the 50's / 60's were damned good at just about every phase of the game. In short you better have some ways to score runs when you aren't hitting home runs.

                        Now of course if you can guarantee me, three home runs a game, I may come around to your perspective.
                        The approach to focus on slugging and OBP is particularly useful against today's dominant pitching. So instead of looking to the 2005 Sox, maybe you should look to some of the more recent World Series winners and playoff teams.

                        2020: The Dodgers led the league in HRs and slugging, 2nd in OPS (to the Braves who went to the NLCS)
                        2019: Nats were 7th in slugging and 6th in OPS. This includes their bad first half.
                        2018: Red Sox led the league in slugging and OPS
                        2017: Astros led the league in slugging and OPS

                        That's as far back as I'm willing to go, but go check it out for yourself. Sorting by slugging and OPS leads to basically a "who's who" of the best teams in baseball during that year.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Nellie Fox View Post

                          Or not have a mound at all. Pitching from flat ground will definitely take some steam off the heaters.
                          I've thought of that also, I wonder why there was a pitcher's mound to begin with?
                          Now coming up to bat for the White Sox is the Mighty Mite, Nelson Fox.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post
                            Maybe it's just me, but I don't find today's game to be boring or unwatchable at all. Some of the most enjoyable games I have seen this season have been pitching duels with lots of strikeouts.
                            You and I definitely differ on this. I find strikeout after strikeout extremely tedious to watch. I want the ball in play. I want defenders running, fielding, throwing, not standing around with their hands on their hips. I want base runners on the move. Some action.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nellie Fox View Post
                              You and I definitely differ on this. I find strikeout after strikeout extremely tedious to watch. I want the ball in play. I want defenders running, fielding, throwing, not standing around with their hands on their hips. I want base runners on the move. Some action.
                              Here here!

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