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Interesting article on why offense in baseball is down


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#1 Gizmo

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 01:25 PM

The Simple Technology That Accidentally Ruined Baseball

 

I don't have any strong opinion one way or the other about the decline in offense in baseball. The game is still as enjoyable as always to me. I did find some things in the article to be interesting, however. 



#2 weird-O

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 02:30 PM

I pretty much disagree with everything that guy had to say. 


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#3 douglas tomlinson

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 10:08 PM

why no mention of improved chest protectors that allow umpires to physically squat lower?  or, since the untimely deaths of a few men in blue, the push for healthier - thus slimmer umpires that can physically get lower behind the plate?



#4 alienrace

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 09:15 AM

Yeah I disagree with the article too.  Offense is basically back down to what it was pre-steroids era, and where it belongs. 


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#5 soulflower

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Posted 06 September 2014 - 11:48 AM

Yeah I disagree with the article too.  Offense is basically back down to what it was pre-steroids era, and where it belongs. 

 

You can't blame all the offense of the 90s and early 00's on steroids unless you're implying Tony Gwynn, Frank Thomas, and Ken Griffey were juicing too. All three guys saw their numbers spike around the same time everyone else's were spiking. Offensive stats went up across the board in the mid-90s. 

 

Historically, Offense in baseball goes up and down for different reasons between eras. The game is constantly evolving. I think eventually, hitters will change their approach but right now, the advanced scouting and Defensive shifts appear to have the advantage...


"...reality has a well-known liberal bias"

#6 aurelius

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Posted 08 September 2014 - 09:05 AM

The probably need to juice the baseballs a little. Right or wrongly, most people tend to like more scoring in baseball rather than watching a pitchers duel. They lowered the mound in the 60s for that reason. They (partially) implemented the DH rule in the 70s for that same reason.



#7 Jimmy Jazz

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Posted 08 September 2014 - 09:29 AM

I think that second page where he lays out other reasons goes a long way in explaining things too. I also read somewhere that the average fastball speed has gone up of late.

As for PEDs, the testing for amphetamines probably hurts offense. It's a long season, guys get worn out.

#8 veritas

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Posted 08 September 2014 - 10:32 AM

This guy apparently thinks that baseball should do something to spur offense just because TV ratings are down.  Well,  I can think of nothing more boring or phoney than seeing steroid bloated oafs hitting juiced balls out of the park.  I hated the game when Bonds, McGuire and Sosa were all the rage.  These clods couldn't carry the jocks of guys like Mantle, Mays, Aaron, Banks, etc. and they'd all have their records expunged if there was any justice.


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#9 soulflower

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 03:18 PM

I think that second page where he lays out other reasons goes a long way in explaining things too. I also read somewhere that the average fastball speed has gone up of late.

As for PEDs, the testing for amphetamines probably hurts offense. It's a long season, guys get worn out.


I certainly agree that fatigue due to the lack of legal substances and stricter enforcement of the drug policy, has had an effect. It seems to have hurt older players the most since the game today has skewed towards 20-27 year olds being the most productive and fewer 35+ year olds on ML rosters today. A decade or so ago, the aging/decline curve was different.

However, overall, I feel that these things go through cycles. Right now, pitching and defense has the advantage but I expect changes if the low scoring games begin to affect Baseball's bottom line.
"...reality has a well-known liberal bias"

#10 soulflower

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 03:24 PM

This guy apparently thinks that baseball should do something to spur offense just because TV ratings are down. Well, I can think of nothing more boring or phoney than seeing steroid bloated oafs hitting juiced balls out of the park. I hated the game when Bonds, McGuire and Sosa were all the rage. These clods couldn't carry the jocks of guys like Mantle, Mays, Aaron, Banks, etc. and they'd all have their records expunged if there was any justice.


Mantle and Mays played in a pretty high offensive era too(the 50s).

I like offense and comparing offensive stats between hitters from different eras.

I love homeruns, long at-bats(ie Paul O'Neill), Walks, the DH, etc. Winning a batting title with an average barely over .300 is pitiful.

I think the ML could go a long way to reduce injuries and increase offense by shortening the seasons.
"...reality has a well-known liberal bias"

#11 soulflower

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 09:18 AM

Baseball writers who complained about Baseball's weak drug policy years ago now are complaining about the lack of offense in the game today and suggesting things like outlawing the Shift:


Olney suggested "perhaps lowering the mound again, or changing the composition of the ball." Verducci wants to outlaw the shift. The terrible, painful irony here is that they fail to recognize that such remedies for the current lack of offense are no different from the use of drugs to get the same effect. What doesn't seem to have occurred to those asking for more offense is that they are requesting the manipulation of scoring levels by artificial means, which is exactly what Barry Bonds and Alex Rodriguez supposedly did.

What they are suggesting is actually worse, because the efficacy of PEDs was never untangled from all the other phenomena at work during that period, particularly stadium design, ball composition and a highly variable but generally shrinking strike zone, whereas if you (say) lowered the mound, or lowered it and moved it back from its traditional 60'6" from home plate, if you moved all the fences in to 250 feet, if you shrunk the foul territory in ballparks like Oakland's and told the Rockies to deactivate their humidor, we know what would happen. You'd fix offense, in the sense that the 1919 World Series was fixed.

Self-appointed purists have complained that baseball's sacred record-book was pillaged by drug users, but it was always subject to manipulations like these. Remember 1930, the average hitter in the National League averaged .303 and slugged .448. After that season, the NL deadened the ball by publicized choice, whereas the American League stayed with the rabbit ball for awhile longer. That's why from 1931 through 1938 the AL had 14 seasons of 40 or more home runs and the NL had none, why Lou Gehrig and Hank Greenberg had seasons of more than 180 RBI and the NL topped out with Joe Medwick's 154 (one of only two NL seasons of more than 138 RBI during that period), the NL had seven seasons with batting averages above .350 while the AL had 18, and so on.


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#12 Jimmy Jazz

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 10:48 PM

I'm happy with reduced offense but I get that ratings/revenue suffer as the more casual fan does not watch 1-0, 2-1, 3-2 type games.

 

Solution: become an O's fan, they hit the ball out.






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