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View Full Version : Where's all the great pitchers?



Ltlabner
08-07-2006, 02:36 PM
One of the first replies I read to the news we acquired Ryan Franklin was "uggh".

One of the first replies I read when "the trade" was announced was "this is a horrible trade".

One of the first replies I read when Loshe was acquired was, "I had a nightmare that Kriv would bring Loshe to town".

One of the first replies I read when we picked up Cormier was a comment on his age. Ditto Everyday Eddie.

Are there any pitchers in MLB that people here actually like? I don't mean that as smart alec as it sounds, but I am very currious what pitchers people here think are actually good. More importantly, why do you think they are good. There are some obvious names that I think people might agree on, but beyond the obvious names, are there any pitchers out there that you'd describe as "good".

You can seperate them into bullpen and starters if you want.

I'm tempted to limit the available pool of pitchers to only those we have a shred of a chance to pick-up via trade but frankly, I think that would make the list so small as to be irrlevant. And I don't want this to disolve into a trade rumors thread.

jimbo
08-07-2006, 02:43 PM
With team expansion and the fact that injuries are becoming more prevelant amongst young pitchers, the quality of pitching in the major leagues has become pretty thin. With the pool of "good" quality pitchers becoming smaller and smaller, their asking prices have skyrocketed. Unless you have unlimited payrolls like a few teams have, or have brought them up through your system, it has become harder and harder to acquire them. I think this is lost on some fans who seem to think they grow on trees. The Reds are in the position where they have to take chances on guys like Franklin, sometimes it will work out, other times it won't. At least we have a GM who is willing to take those chances.

docm3
08-07-2006, 03:03 PM
See my post below.

RedsManRick
08-07-2006, 03:05 PM
My criteria for a "good pitcher"...

1.) Track history of average or better. A single good season does not a good pitcher make.
2.) Periphial stats which suggest repeatability of his good performance (K/9, BB/9)
3.) The absence of extreme factors which may be hiding his true ability (a league average ERA in Washinging or LA)

Some guys you may not consider top tier who I would love to have:

Starters:
Dan Haren
Chris Capuano
John Lackey
Brett Myers

Relivers:
Juan Rincon
JJ Putz
Justin Duchscherer
Scott Linebrink

There are a lot of pitchers who aren't Pedro Martinez or Mariano Rivera but who are quite good on a regular basis. I think Aaron Harang falls perfectly in to this category. Look at most bullpens in the majors and you'll find a guy or two who strikes out more than a guy an inning and has an ERA under 3.00. The problem is that it takes a lot of volume in terms of pitching prospects to get these types of guys. We simply haven't been acquiring the volume of good arms necessary to have some pan out.

docm3
08-07-2006, 03:07 PM
You may have already seen this article:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/05/AR2006080500702.html

Big Klu
08-07-2006, 03:09 PM
A few years ago, I was sitting in my boss's office, and he showed me a 1974 Pirates program that he had bought at a game when he was in high school. Back then, they numerically listed the pitching staffs for each team in both the NL and AL so that fans could figure out who was pitching by looking at the scoreboard. There were two things that stood out in my mind:

1) Every team carried at most 10 pitchers, and about half of them carried only nine.

2) Every team, even the very worst ones, had at least one pitcher on their staff that made me say, "Wow, he's pretty good. I would hope that the Reds would miss his turn in the rotation if Cincinnati was playing them."


Expansion is a big reason why the quality of pitching in baseball has decreased. In 1974, there were only 24 clubs, each with nine pitchers.
24 * 9 = 216.

About half of them carried a tenth pitcher, so add 12 more.
216 + 12 = 228

So there were approximately 228 big-league pitchers in 1974.


Today there are 30 clubs, each carrying 11 pitchers.
30 * 11 = 330.

I would estimate that at least two-thirds of those clubs carry a twelfth pitcher, so add 20 more.
330 + 20 = 350.

So we can see that in the last 32 years, there have been approximately 122 roster spots allocated to pitchers added to the major-league ranks. I don't think that there is that much additional talent out there.

terminator
08-07-2006, 03:20 PM
Sorta like the old quote "I wouldn't want to be a member of a club willing to have me as a member" . . . a good pitcher is one that other teams are unwilling to trade.

I think a "good" pitcher is one with stats that are mostly better than the league average. Overall we haven't been able to acquire those guys for the obvious reason -- no one wants to give them up.

Cormier is good. Maj and Bray are either good or have the potential to be good. At the time we got them, Mays, Yan, Lohse, Franklin, Guardado were "not good."

Franklin is less "not good" than say Mays was "not good." :laugh:

dabvu2498
08-07-2006, 03:25 PM
Franklin is less "not good" than say Mays was "not good." :laugh:
On July 14, Franklin had his ERA down to 3.81. I've seen worse.

BCubb2003
08-07-2006, 03:46 PM
So we can see that in the last 32 years, there have been approximately 122 roster spots allocated to pitchers added to the major-league ranks. I don't think that there is that much additional talent out there.

An even larger number of "non-major league" batters were added to the ranks, but it doesn't seem to work that way.

The population of the world increased from 4 billion to 6.8 bilion in that time, but of course that didn't mean the population of pitchers grew proportionately.

Maybe there's only a limited supply of mutant human arms on the planet.

terminator
08-07-2006, 04:19 PM
On July 14, Franklin had his ERA down to 3.81. I've seen worse.
And he's at 4.58 *now*. Career 4.35 (and 2004 & 2005 were worse than that average). Most players are considerably better when you select a point in time at when their stats peak. 4.58 isn't bad, but it sure isn't good either.

vic715
08-07-2006, 05:51 PM
And he's at 4.58 *now*. Career 4.35 (and 2004 & 2005 were worse than that average). Most players are considerably better when you select a point in time at when their stats peak. 4.58 isn't bad, but it sure isn't good either.
No but to show you how bad the pitching pool has been expanded to having to many pitchers,back 30 years ago if a pitcher had an era over 4 he was job hunting.I would almost guess that of the 300 or so pitchers pitching in the Majors right now only about 100 actually are true bonafide Major League pitchers. And that number may be high.