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View Full Version : Is A 12-Man Pitching Staff Necessary?



Big Klu
07-25-2007, 02:21 PM
Do the Reds (or any club) need to carry 12 pitchers? Should they carry fewer? Should they carry more?

I have never seen the logic for carrying 12 pitchers, especially when the pitching is as bad as the Reds' pitching is. I know the argument is that when the pitching is this poor, you need more pitchers to cover the innings. But the way I see it, if the pitching is that bad, why should a club carry more bad pitchers? I think that the Reds would be better off carrying 11 pitchers, provided that at least two of the relievers are "innings eaters" who can routinely go multiple innings (which they have in Gosling and Saarloos). This would also give the bench an extra position player, which could be useful.

Many of us grew up in an era when 10 (or even 9) pitchers were the norm. Then it went up to 11 in the 90's, and now it seems to be 12. I saw in last week's series in Atlanta that the Braves carry 13 pitchers. Is that the start of the new trend? Who will be the first team to carry 14 pitchers, and when will that be?

I just wondered what everybody's opinion is on this. Thank you. :)

nate
07-25-2007, 02:28 PM
But the way I see it, if the pitching is that bad, why should a club carry more bad pitchers?

The suck spreads better that way!

WVRedsFan
07-25-2007, 02:36 PM
Klu:

That's a good question and is similar to "why do they need 3 catchers?"

Because. Why? Just because.

Krivisky likes three catchers because in case on goes down, you've got 2 more to play, so he has a 2 catchers who are clueless at the plate and one who didn't meet a pitch he didn't like. The latter is also your only threat as a pinch hitter. go figure.

As far as the 12 pitchers, my guess is that what is there is so poor and will have to be used more often, it's another safety valve. But that's just a guess.

M2
07-25-2007, 02:37 PM
I still figure that a 10-man staff is optimal (I totally agree with the notion that all most teams are doing is carrying some extra bad pitchers), though it may not be practical. Yet if the 12-man staff is a modern necessity, then so is the 27-man roster.

Rojo
07-25-2007, 02:40 PM
Cut off your two worst pitchers and distribute their innings among the ten best?

Whadayou, nuts?

Big Klu
07-25-2007, 02:44 PM
Klu:

That's a good question and is similar to "why do they need 3 catchers?"

Because. Why? Just because.

Krivisky likes three catchers because in case on goes down, you've got 2 more to play, so he has a 2 catchers who are clueless at the plate and one who didn't meet a pitch he didn't like. The latter is also your only threat as a pinch hitter. go figure.

As far as the 12 pitchers, my guess is that what is there is so poor and will have to be used more often, it's another safety valve. But that's just a guess.

That's true. But I would think that 12 pitchers and 3 catchers should be mutually exclusive (unless at least one of the catchers is a legitimate option at another position). If a club carries 12 pitchers, then it can't afford to lock up three roster spots for catchers, and vice versa. If the Reds had only 11 pitchers, then they could theoretically carry three catchers, or carry two catchers and still have room for a better hitter/gloveman on the bench.

Big Klu
07-25-2007, 02:45 PM
I still figure that a 10-man staff is optimal (I totally agree with the notion that all most teams are doing is carrying some extra bad pitchers), though it may not be practical. Yet if the 12-man staff is a modern necessity, then so is the 27-man roster.

That is something I have been contemplating, as well.

Caveat Emperor
07-25-2007, 02:59 PM
Cut off your two worst pitchers and distribute their innings among the ten best?

Whadayou, nuts?

A lot of people would say yes -- that dividing up that many innings among only 5 relievers instead of 7 is borderline criminal.

Last year, Reds starters threw 1027 IP. The team, total, had 1445.2 IP. That means the bullpen was responsible for 418.2 IP. If you divided that workload evenly among 5 bullpen arms, that equals out to 83.2 IP per reliever. Now, when you factor in that the closer is probably going to toss fewer innings (due to saving him for save situations), that number will probably tick a little higher to around 85-87 IP.

I don't know how comfortable I am with the 5 "best" relievers on the Reds each getting 85 IP. If you have 5 really good relievers, then by all means...

WVRedsFan
07-25-2007, 03:09 PM
That's true. But I would think that 12 pitchers and 3 catchers should be mutually exclusive (unless at least one of the catchers is a legitimate option at another position). If a club carries 12 pitchers, then it can't afford to lock up three roster spots for catchers, and vice versa. If the Reds had only 11 pitchers, then they could theoretically carry three catchers, or carry two catchers and still have room for a better hitter/gloveman on the bench.
My thoughts exactly. One of the reasons this team is poorly constructed offensively is having three catchers on the roster. That and the extra two pitchers makes life very hard on the manager, and I'm sure this isn't Pete's idea. I thought I might find a clue on the Twins' site, but they have 11 pitchers and two catchers, so it's not that.

Danny Serafini
07-25-2007, 03:14 PM
The days of 10 or 11 man pitching staffs are a thing of the past. First off starting pitchers aren't going to give you as many innings anymore, partly because the modern fascination with pitch counts keeps innings down, and partly because expansion has let in more lousy starting pitchers who get knocked around and out of games early. More bullpen innings means more relievers needed.

The second issue is the rise of the LOOGY and the constant lefty/righty games managers play. That increases the number of pitchers used per game. Taking a pitcher out of the pen means more guys throwing more consecutive days, and it's going to wear them down more. A fresh #7 reliever may not be very good, but he should still be better than a worn down #5 or #6. Cutting a reliever or two out of the pen sounds good, but like the four man rotation it just doesn't fit today's game.

The notion of cutting a crappy pitcher or two sounds good, but he'd wind up being replaced with a crappy bench player or two. Swapping out Ricky Stone for Dewayne Wise seems like a bit of a wash.

15fan
07-25-2007, 03:17 PM
If I ran the Reds, I'd use Harang & Arroyo as starters, and then have a 10 man bullpen.

I really don't get the logic of 3 catchers during the regular season. If something happens, you just call up someone the next day. When was the last time a single game was influenced by the fact that a team lost 2 catchers in one game?

I'd also like to see Adam Dunn take a shot at catching. Not because I think he'd do well, but because if there was a play at the plate, no one would get through him.

(The same line of thinking also has me wondering why hockey teams don't employ sumo wrestlers as goalies. Just find someone who's 350-400 lbs and have him sit in front of the net all game long. Sort of a Jabba-The-Hut defensive philosophy...)