FanDuel - WFBC

July 17, 2005

The Designated Hitter harming MLB: "...whether Selig realizes it or not, the dearth of pitching in baseball, especially in the AL, is threatening to make a travesty of his game." Look at these numbers, 38% of qualifying pitchers (this season) in the AL have an ERA below 4.00, while 62% of NL pitchers are below the mark. With every passing season, it's becoming more clear how much of a joke pitching in the AL has become and with the exception of a select few, teams will continue to struggle. Hopefully, sooner than later the DH will become a thing of the past in the AL.

posted by EmpireWF to baseball at 06:11 PM - 27 comments

I don't think I'd hold my breath on this one Empire..As in all pro sports its all about the money. The players unoin will never allow baseball to ditch the DH. Also it gives at bats to the marginal older players whom fill the seats and pay these inflated salaries,which allows them to use rookies,who may not have that chance without the DH.

posted by maclmn at 06:38 PM on July 17

Wait, let me get this straight: AL lineups have one guy who's in there simply to hit. NL teams let the pitcher hit instead. And somehow AL ERAs are higher? Amazing! That clearly indicates AL pitching is worse. If the DH has such a negative affect, surely dominant NL pitchers who switch to the AL continue to pitch at the same level of dominance.

posted by yerfatma at 06:43 PM on July 17

So if the DH is the sum of all evil in the AL what do you do about Coors Field?

posted by kingshunter at 06:49 PM on July 17

So if the DH is the sum of all evil in the AL what do you do about Coors Field? Special baseballs, kinda like the tennis balls you have to use at altitude? ;-) (I tried hitting a sea-level tennis ball at altitude once. Once.)

posted by lil_brown_bat at 06:58 PM on July 17

How, exactly is it making a travesty of the game? The game has had a DH for years now and it's been fine. The idea that pitching is somehow more valuable to the game than hitting is missing the point of the entire game; fact is, pitchers are still getting hitters out 70% of the time in both leagues and that says that pitching still dominates.

posted by dfleming at 07:04 PM on July 17

Fans love hitting, not pitching, which is why there's a home-run derby at the All-Star game and not a pitching derby.

posted by mr_crash_davis at 07:52 PM on July 17

The Batting Pitcher harming MLB...whether Selig realizes it or not, the dearth of hitting pitchers in baseball, especially in the NL, is threatening to make a travesty of his game. Look at these numbers, 95% of qualifying pitchers (this season) in the NL have an OPS below the league average, while only 42% of AL DHs are below the mark. With every passing season, it's becoming more clear how much of a joke hitting by pitchers in the NL has become and with the exception of a select few, teams will continue to struggle. Hopefully, sooner than later the hitting pitcher will become a thing of the past in the NL.

posted by grum@work at 08:50 PM on July 17

The DH adds a little extra flavor to the game. I would like to see it in both leagues!

posted by daddisamm at 11:01 PM on July 17

Can all batters pitch? I rest my case.

posted by smithnyiu at 11:24 PM on July 17

Can all batters pitch? I rest my case. Yes they can (to some degree), and many position players are brought in each year to pitch in blowouts. How do they fare? About as well as a pitcher does when they make him step up to the plate. Case re-opened! ;)

posted by grum@work at 11:34 PM on July 17

well if the AL is turning off pitches, then it must look real nice to hitters. but anyone who really wants to make the NL switch to the DH is about as stupid as selig coming up with interleague play.

posted by gregy606 at 11:43 PM on July 17

How do they fare? About as well as a pitcher does when they make him step up to the plate. Good point grum, but not what most people want to see. It's a polar response when the pitcher is on deck; you're either pissed or already counting the out. It's a shame that through the years most pitchers have lost any ambition to work on their hitting. I really think they should be baseball players, not solely pitchers. But they're not, and some of them look ridiculous waving at every pitch close to the plate, just like Johnny Damon would look ridiculous serving up a BP 65mph groove...

posted by smithnyiu at 09:31 AM on July 18

All in favor of dropping the DH,say I. It is only a cheap way to generate runs to attract casual fans. A real protest by true live and die baseball fans would put to death this blot on the honor of the game. I have sent letters to AL team front offices over the years with my irritating pose. It has not changed a thing. But they know my feelins'. Now let us aii join hands to end pitch counts and percentage ,overusing of relievers. Amen.

posted by clarencesmmns at 10:34 AM on July 18

I wonder if the rejection of the DH by baseball "traditionalists" is the same reaction American football "traditionalists" had when more and more players stopped being "two-way" and the specialization of the defensive/offensive players began. I don't hear too many people complaining that Tom Brady doesn't stay on the field to play defence. Now let us aii join hands to end pitch counts and percentage ,overusing of relievers. Amen. Well, I'll support a protest for the end of high pitch counts for young pitchers (I'm looking at you, Dusty Baker!) and overusing relievers.

posted by grum@work at 10:58 AM on July 18

League ERA so far this year: AL 4.35 NL 4.33 In short, I don't think the DH makes a whole lot of difference when you consider everything and not just the top pitchers. A team's pitching staff is not just the ace and a couple of others.

posted by graymatters at 01:04 PM on July 18

Fans love hitting, not pitching, which is why there's a home-run derby at the All-Star game and not a pitching derby. Well that's a bit of a generalization isn't it? I mean who doesn't love a tight 1-0 or 2-1 game into the 9th inning? There's nothing more boring to expect to see a good game and get a softball score like 15-12 or 19-7.

posted by psmealey at 01:06 PM on July 18

agreed, when i go see a game, i want to see a pitcher's duel...

posted by gregy606 at 03:03 PM on July 18

Pitching duels are fun to watch, but sometimes a game like this is even better. McGhee hits for the cycle. Sandberg hits a game-tying HR in the bottom of the 9th AND in the bottom of the 10th. A come-from-behind win for the home team. And how could you not get caught up in a game like this. Man...Wrigley Field is just a magnet for unbelievable games...

posted by grum@work at 03:59 PM on July 18

Put the pitcher's mound back to 15"; stop batters from rubbing out the batters' box and move the fences back. Oh, and fire Joe Morgan.

posted by ?! at 06:28 PM on July 18

If I'm not mistaken (and I very well may be) Greg Maddux, hit a grand slam to win a game for the Cubs this year. Kerry Wood also hit and scored in the playoff's.

posted by volfire at 07:17 PM on July 18

Clearly all pitchers can hit then. What are Maddux and Wood's averages?

posted by yerfatma at 08:11 PM on July 18

Maddux's career numbers: .199/.215/.178 Wood's career numbers: .191/.243/.166 And Maddux does have a HR this season, but only 2RBI. And, for a fun comparison, here are some HOF hitters that pitched a little bit as well: Ted Williams: 2.0IP 3H 1R 1ER 0BB 1K Jimmie Foxx: 23.2IP 13H 4R 4ER 14BB 11K George Sisler: 111.0IP 91H 36R 29ER 52BB 63K

posted by grum@work at 09:42 PM on July 18

don't forget now hall-of-famer wade boggs. he threw knuckle-balls if i remember correctly. 2.1IP 3H 1R 1ER 1BB 2K

posted by goddam at 11:07 PM on July 18

Maddux didn't have a grand slam. I know because he hit that damn home run off the Sox.

posted by yerfatma at 05:58 AM on July 19

Given that I've only been around since 1977, the DH is traditional to me. I see no convincing reason why we should do away with it for the sake of doing away with it. Though putting the mound back up doesn't immediately strike me as a bad idea. And I always compare the dirth in good pitching to the large expansion in the 90s. It'll take a while for the talent pool to catch up.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:13 AM on July 19

"Most of these National League pitchers are simply not used to pitching to lineups with no soft spots." WAH!! It's HARD to pitch in the AL...WAH! What a lame reason for abolishing the DH. First off...it isn't going to happen...as already mentioned in this thread there is too much money in it. Secondly...watching pitchers hit is BORING. Sure it changes the dynamics and strategy of the game but having a 'sure out' is lame. As dfleming pointed out: pitchers are still getting hitters out 70% of the time in both leagues. Am I supposed to buy that one more hitter in the lineup ruins the game? I believe that one less hitter in the lineup is just as bad, if not worse.

posted by stofer71 at 05:12 PM on July 19

Did anyone see the Mets Dae-Sung Koo try and hit by standing so far away from the plate he could only reach the ball by lunging at it . Boy , i know thats what i look for in a hitter . Sure beats a chance of seeing a homerun or at least making the pitcher have to work a little instead of getting that free out (with few exceptions such as dontrelle willis).

posted by evil empire at 09:57 AM on July 31

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