Poll

Is it acceptable or unacceptable that the two leagues have different rules as pertains to the DH?

I don't mind or prefer that the leagues have two different rules.
8 (80%)
It would be better if the leagues had the exact same rules.
2 (20%)

Total Members Voted: 10

Voting closed: May 30, 2015, 01:57:53 PM

Author Topic: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.  (Read 3346 times)

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Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #50: January 21, 2016, 11:48:13 AM »
Right, as well as all the subsequent lowering of the shot clock multiple times, adjustments of the 3-second area, 3-point line, etc. I'm sure there are others in every sport, as well.

Anyways, none of this is to say that I don't think there are valid reasons people prefer NL rules, though I disagree. But I think the disagreement should remain in the "what's more enjoyable" realm as opposed to saying one is "logical" and the other is "not". It's enough for us to disagree on the following - whytev enjoys the strategic decisions that accompany pitchers hitting, while I dislike watching pitchers hitting enough that I'm willing to give up those strategic decisions.

You are right. I do find it more enjoyable. Nothing better than having to decide to burn your pitcher because he came up with the bases loaded. It's a true strategic conundrum.

Offline NJ Ave

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #51: January 21, 2016, 11:58:50 AM »
You are deliberately missing the point and it's obnoxious. I want all personnel decisions to have an offensive and defensive consequence. Full stop. I'm done.

No idea what you're talking about - I've stated that I think there are legitimate reasons why people can prefer NL rules, including those you list.

Some people find it obnoxious when others refuse to capitulate, I assume.

Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #52: January 21, 2016, 12:10:14 PM »
No idea what you're talking about - I've stated that I think there are legitimate reasons why people can prefer NL rules, including those you list.

Some people find it obnoxious when others refuse to capitulate, I assume.

No I agree with your reasons. But you got obsessed over the "logical default" point which is really secondary. And so did I. I'm not worried about it, sorry.

Offline dracnal

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #53: January 21, 2016, 12:36:27 PM »
You are right. I do find it more enjoyable. Nothing better than having to decide to burn your pitcher because he came up with the bases loaded. It's a true strategic conundrum.

So is deciding to pull your starter after 26 outs because he's about to face a guy who's hit him hard a few times already this game. That strategic decision led to 28 more outs being needed. I get that there is one fewer decision on the part of the offense, but you still have to decide on steal attempts, hit and runs, pinch running, matchups, etc. 

On the defensive side, you still have to ask if that pitcher should face a hitter when you get to those bases loaded situations, if you think your guy has the stuff to get that one more out, etc.  It would also mean getting to talk about how great the value on Ryan Zimmerman's contract is - he's great when healthy but breaks from regular field use at a Nick Johnson rate.

Offline OldChelsea

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #54: January 21, 2016, 01:42:26 PM »
'The Case for Universal DH': http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/162413778/universal-dh-in-the-nl-mlb-needs-to-adopt?partnerId=ed-9992634-658620023 - from mlb.com's 'Sports on Earth' E-mail.

It may indeed be closer than many of us would like.

Offline varoadking

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #55: January 21, 2016, 01:56:25 PM »
'The Case for Universal DH': http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/162413778/universal-dh-in-the-nl-mlb-needs-to-adopt?partnerId=ed-9992634-658620023 - from mlb.com's 'Sports on Earth' E-mail.

It may indeed be closer than many of us would like.

They'll likely bring it in the season after Zimmerman's contract is up...  :(

If they're gonna do this...they need to do it now...

Online HalfSmokes

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #56: January 21, 2016, 03:03:16 PM »
what is wrong with different leagues having different rules? If you like the DH, great, there are plenty of teams to follow, if you don't, again, plenty of teams to follow.

'The Case for Universal DH': http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/162413778/universal-dh-in-the-nl-mlb-needs-to-adopt?partnerId=ed-9992634-658620023 - from mlb.com's 'Sports on Earth' E-mail.

It may indeed be closer than many of us would like.

I don't seem any reason from that to think the end is nigh- I just see an author who prefers one style and wrote a piece in favor of that style.

Online JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #57: January 21, 2016, 03:18:00 PM »
I've heard the slippery slope argument about "why just 1 DH, why not two separate squads of David Ortizes and Brendan Ryans?"  I'd suggest there's a statistically-neutral reason for having one DH and not more.  It is basically the principle of treating like things the same way and different things differently. 

There is a huge (HUGE!) qualitative difference between pitcher's offense and other hitters' offense.  By declining OPS, here are the wOBA and OPS of each position (using scoring notation):

      OPS    wOBA

3 - .780      .336
9 - .758      .328
5 - .738      .319
8 - .734      .320
7 - .730      .317
4 - .706      .307
6 - .682      .297
2 - .678      .296
1 - .326      .147
(source - fangraphs league stats table - all leagues)

Among position players, the greatest gaps are between left fielders, 2d basemen, and SS - .024 points of OPS, and .010 of wOBA.  In contrast, the gap between the worst hitting position and pitchers is more than double the pitchers' OPS and wOBA (e.g., more than .350 in OPS and nearly .150 in wOBA).  The difference between the very best position for hitting (first base) and the worst position for hitting (catcher) is about .100 points on OPS and .040 points on wOBA.  Basically, pitchers are playing a different game when they appear at the plate then any other position.  While the other positions are balancing offensive and defensive contributions, offensive contribution from the pitcher is nearly a random afterthought.  They don't belong with a bat in their hands.

Online HalfSmokes

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #58: January 21, 2016, 03:33:05 PM »
I've heard the slippery slope argument about "why just 1 DH, why not two separate squads of David Ortizes and Brendan Ryans?"  I'd suggest there's a statistically-neutral reason for having one DH and not more.  It is basically the principle of treating like things the same way and different things differently. 

There is a huge (HUGE!) qualitative difference between pitcher's offense and other hitters' offense.  By declining OPS, here are the wOBA and OPS of each position (using scoring notation):

      OPS    wOBA

3 - .780      .336
9 - .758      .328
5 - .738      .319
8 - .734      .320
7 - .730      .317
4 - .706      .307
6 - .682      .297
2 - .678      .296
1 - .326      .147
(source - fangraphs league stats table - all leagues)

Among position players, the greatest gaps are between left fielders, 2d basemen, and SS - .024 points of OPS, and .010 of wOBA.  In contrast, the gap between the worst hitting position and pitchers is more than double the pitchers' OPS and wOBA (e.g., more than .350 in OPS and nearly .150 in wOBA).  The difference between the very best position for hitting (first base) and the worst position for hitting (catcher) is about .100 points on OPS and .040 points on wOBA.  Basically, pitchers are playing a different game when they appear at the plate then any other position.  While the other positions are balancing offensive and defensive contributions, offensive contribution from the pitcher is nearly a random afterthought.  They don't belong with a bat in their hands.


of course, because glove first fielders who can't even minimally hit never make it out of the minors. If you want to watch the best game (which seems to be a cornerstone for the DH argument), why not some speedster with a great glove who would struggle to hit .100 above rookie league patrolling left and some lumbering ox who's not so great with the whole catch the ball concept, but can hit bat 8th?

Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #59: January 21, 2016, 04:15:25 PM »
So is deciding to pull your starter after 26 outs because he's about to face a guy who's hit him hard a few times already this game. That strategic decision led to 28 more outs being needed. I get that there is one fewer decision on the part of the offense, but you still have to decide on steal attempts, hit and runs, pinch running, matchups, etc. 

On the defensive side, you still have to ask if that pitcher should face a hitter when you get to those bases loaded situations, if you think your guy has the stuff to get that one more out, etc.  It would also mean getting to talk about how great the value on Ryan Zimmerman's contract is - he's great when healthy but breaks from regular field use at a Nick Johnson rate.

Yes, AL strategy still exists. I just like it way less.

Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #60: January 21, 2016, 04:21:29 PM »
I've heard the slippery slope argument about "why just 1 DH, why not two separate squads of David Ortizes and Brendan Ryans?"  I'd suggest there's a statistically-neutral reason for having one DH and not more.  It is basically the principle of treating like things the same way and different things differently. 

There is a huge (HUGE!) qualitative difference between pitcher's offense and other hitters' offense.  By declining OPS, here are the wOBA and OPS of each position (using scoring notation):

      OPS    wOBA

3 - .780      .336
9 - .758      .328
5 - .738      .319
8 - .734      .320
7 - .730      .317
4 - .706      .307
6 - .682      .297
2 - .678      .296
1 - .326      .147
(source - fangraphs league stats table - all leagues)

Among position players, the greatest gaps are between left fielders, 2d basemen, and SS - .024 points of OPS, and .010 of wOBA.  In contrast, the gap between the worst hitting position and pitchers is more than double the pitchers' OPS and wOBA (e.g., more than .350 in OPS and nearly .150 in wOBA).  The difference between the very best position for hitting (first base) and the worst position for hitting (catcher) is about .100 points on OPS and .040 points on wOBA.  Basically, pitchers are playing a different game when they appear at the plate then any other position.  While the other positions are balancing offensive and defensive contributions, offensive contribution from the pitcher is nearly a random afterthought.  They don't belong with a bat in their hands.

There is no problem including this one that can't be solved by an 8 man batting order. Not a one.

Offline varoadking

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #61: January 21, 2016, 04:38:25 PM »
There is no problem including this one that can't be solved by an 8 man batting order. Not a one.

The MLB Players Association is a problem...

Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #62: January 21, 2016, 04:44:09 PM »
The MLB Players Association is a problem...

You don't think giving out that many plate appearances would fly with the NL starters?

Offline OldChelsea

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #63: January 22, 2016, 08:29:21 AM »
what is wrong with different leagues having different rules? If you like the DH, great, there are plenty of teams to follow, if you don't, again, plenty of teams to follow.

I don't seem any reason from that to think the end is nigh- I just see an author who prefers one style and wrote a piece in favor of that style.

'Sports on Earth' is an official MLB publication.

Offline NJ Ave

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #64: January 22, 2016, 08:59:48 AM »
I've heard the slippery slope argument about "why just 1 DH, why not two separate squads of David Ortizes and Brendan Ryans?"

I've not heard this. I think there's a very good reason to reject the slippery slope argument though - the fact that we have 42 years of AL history without any movement (even from crackpots) towards more than a single DH.

Personally I just don't like watching terrible sports, and a pitcher batting is terrible sports. Pretty much equivalent to position players pitching, which only happens when there's no other alternative. In my perfect world, pitchers batting would be the same - like you only see a pitcher bat if there's an injury in the 18th inning and you don't have anyone left on your bench.

Online JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #65: January 22, 2016, 09:11:50 AM »
The slippery slope argument comes up in the comments on this article (scroll to WinOneForBobKipper) as well as in any WNFF thread discussing the DH.

Quote
But where does that logic end? Why not let teams play their best 9 hitters and their best 9 fielders, with unlimited pinch runners. Let’s replace the guys that can’t field with the guys who can, and the guys who can’t run with the guys who can

That comment got 24 up votes as of 9 AM today and inspired me to look to see how much worse pitchers hit than position players. My reply is there based on instinct before I crunched the numbers here.

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Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #67: January 22, 2016, 02:11:46 PM »
The slippery slope argument comes up in the comments on this article (scroll to WinOneForBobKipper) as well as in any WNFF thread discussing the DH.

That comment got 24 up votes as of 9 AM today and inspired me to look to see how much worse pitchers hit than position players. My reply is there based on instinct before I crunched the numbers here.

I'm guilty right here.

A lot of AL catchers are awful hitters. The justification for one DH logically should extend to anyone who is a huge asset on the field but can't hit. Sandy Léon, for example.

Online JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #68: January 22, 2016, 08:23:37 PM »
I'm guilty right here.

A lot of AL catchers are awful hitters. The justification for one DH logically should extend to anyone who is a huge asset on the field but can't hit. Sandy Léon, for example.
The difference between the average catcher's OPS in 2015 and the average 1st baseman's was about .100 points.  Those were the best and worst hitting positions.  The difference between the average pitcher and the average catcher was more than .350 points.  It really is as NJ ave says.  It is just is a skill that pitchers lack.  It is almost like playing a baseball game and then taking a break and assigning an out would be the same as watching an average  pitcher hit. 

Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #69: January 22, 2016, 10:10:51 PM »
The difference between the average catcher's OPS in 2015 and the average 1st baseman's was about .100 points.  Those were the best and worst hitting positions.  The difference between the average pitcher and the average catcher was more than .350 points.  It really is as NJ ave says.  It is just is a skill that pitchers lack.  It is almost like playing a baseball game and then taking a break and assigning an out would be the same as watching an average  pitcher hit.

I still say an 8 man batting order is more logical than a DH.

Offline NJ Ave

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #70: January 23, 2016, 09:09:50 AM »
It is almost like playing a baseball game and then taking a break and assigning an out would be the same as watching an average  pitcher hit. 

For me it's worse than that, because you often (especially in the most important games) can see the opposing pitcher working around your lineup 1 or even 2 batters in front of the pitcher. Whatever strategic positive it adds is outweighed (for me) by the deflating experience of watching your team mounting a fledgling 2-out rally, getting a couple of guys on base with the 8th man up, and watching the other team either intentionally walk him or "intentionally" walk him.

So the counterbalance for me is that while pitchers hitting may add some strategic decisionmaking to make the game MORE fun, it also allows for strategic decisionmaking that makes the game LESS fun.

Offline PowerBoater69

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #71: January 23, 2016, 11:33:34 AM »
I still say an 8 man batting order is more logical than a DH.

Not a bad idea, probably could drop the catcher, middle infielders, and centerfielder as well. Four hitters is plenty.

Offline NJ Ave

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #72: January 23, 2016, 11:41:06 AM »
Not a bad idea, probably could drop the catcher, middle infielders, and centerfielder as well. Four hitters is plenty.

It really should just be Bryce socking a few dingers.


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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #73: January 23, 2016, 11:52:02 AM »
In fairness, there are a few extraordinary pitchers who hit well enough to be worth watching. In 2015, MadBum has a wRC+ of 107, which is above average for a position player (if you prefer a standard slash line, his is .247 /.275 / .468 over 81 PAs).  Tyson Ross hits like a back up position player (77 wRC+ in 68 PAs).  Taylor Jungmann was the next best (wRC+ of 63, .270 / .289 / .324 over 44 PAs).  Only 7 pitchers out of 91 with over 20 PAs last year had a wRC+ > 50, meaning that only those 7 created runs at a rate as high as half that of an average position player. 

For the fun of it, I went back to 2005, using 20 PAs as a cut.  430 pitchers are listed.  3 pitchers had a wRC+ above 100 (average for a hitter), and two of those had only 29 PAs (andy sonnanstine and luke hudson).  Best with more than 30 PAs was . . . you'll be shocked . . . wait for it . . . Micah Owings, with 219 PAs.  22 had a weighted runs created value > 50 (half that of an average hitter).   Mike Hampton and Dontrelle were the best hitters of the rest guys who pitched multiple years as a starter, and Greinke and Carlos Zambrano were probably the only other ones with Cy Young top 5 finishes.  it is only the last two years that MadBum has hit well.

http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=p&stats=bat&lg=all&qual=20&type=8&season=2015&month=0&season1=2005&ind=0&team=0&rost=0&age=0&filter=&players=0&sort=17,d
Of the 91 ptichers with 20 or more PAs since 2005

Offline whytev

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Re: _sturt_ing over: A DH poll.
« Reply #74: January 23, 2016, 03:37:52 PM »
Not a bad idea, probably could drop the catcher, middle infielders, and centerfielder as well. Four hitters is plenty.

Don't get me wrong; I hate that idea too. Just slightly less than the DH.