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View Full Version : End of the Roid Era - Now What ?



Ltlabner
08-18-2008, 12:56 PM
Ok, so now the sterioid era is over (for all intents, I'm sure some guys are still finding a way to hit the roids, HGH or whatever) what's next?

We sort of kicked this around a while back talking about the next "moneyball" skill. But what sort of era is the game going to enter now?

Will it be an era of the resurgance of speed & defense? Another pitcher dominated dead-ball era? A time where station-to-station high BA low SLG guys excell? A time when a team of mostly tallented guys can whip up on a team of one superstar surrounded by crap?

On the team-building front, the trend is to hold onto prospects with a deathgrip. However, at this last deadline (and into August) most of the deals involved superstars/stars being shuffled around. What's the trend moving forward?

What sort of era are we heading into, and how will it effect the construction of teams in the years to come?

RedsBaron
08-18-2008, 01:06 PM
Since most of the ballparks constructed in the last two decades have been hitter friendly, it is unlikely that we will have another pitcher dominated dead-ball era. To do so would probably require the baseball itself to be deadend, although the possible elimination of maple bats and the requiring of heavier bats might also lessen offense. Historically, attendance has gone up with offense goes up and goes down when offense goes down, so I very much doubt we will ever see even the "mini-dead ball" era of the mid-1960s re-occur, at least not for long.
As more people (alas not employed by the Reds) grasp the importance of on base percentage, I expect to see OBP gain in importance, and offenses may come to resemble baseball of the late 1940s and early 1950s, with many more baserunners "clogging the bases" and a lot of runs being scored, although with not as many home runs.
Speed and defense will always be important, but present day ballparks probably mean they, especially speed, will not be as imoprtant as they were during the 1970s and 1980s, the heyday of large multi-purpose stadiums with vast distances in the outfield and astroturf.

15fan
08-18-2008, 01:23 PM
1) I think the days of the 5 man starting rotation are numbered. I think you'll see some teams move to the model of 1-3 starters on a regular rotation, and a bullpen mentality for what were the 4-5 spots in the rotation.

2) Once Fidel moves on to the next realm, I think there's going to be a mad rush to get into Cuba and scoop up talent.

Keeping up with the international theme, I think longer term it would be smart to look to...China. There are 300 million here in the U.S. For every one person in the US, there are 4+ in China. The infrastructure is already there to identify and develop top notch athletes. After reading Greenspan's book, I'm a big believer in creative destruction. Central planning vs. market economies means that at some point, the wall around China comes crashing down. When it does, there are a whole lot of kids in gymnastics, martial arts, and weightlifting programs that I'd want to translate into middle infielders, rangy CFs, and first basemen.

3) From an entertainment perspective, I'd like to see a return to the heyday of 80s run-run-run baseball. Turn singles into doubles, walks into triples, etc. Generally, I think the premium on strong-armed catchers has gone by the wayside. Watching the throws during the ASG, it was quite obvious that throwing out runners has become a lost art. Exploit that inefficiency in the market by acquiring speedy guys and resurrect the art of the stolen base.

Rojo
08-18-2008, 01:34 PM
The Rays are doing it with speed and defense. They're success might garner a few imitators.

Chip R
08-18-2008, 01:39 PM
1) I think the days of the 5 man starting rotation are numbered. I think you'll see some teams move to the model of 1-3 starters on a regular rotation, and a bullpen mentality for what were the 4-5 spots in the rotation.

2) Once Fidel moves on to the next realm, I think there's going to be a mad rush to get into Cuba and scoop up talent.

Keeping up with the international theme, I think longer term it would be smart to look to...China. There are 300 million here in the U.S. For every one person in the US, there are 4+ in China. The infrastructure is already there to identify and develop top notch athletes. After reading Greenspan's book, I'm a big believer in creative destruction. Central planning vs. market economies means that at some point, the wall around China comes crashing down. When it does, there are a whole lot of kids in gymnastics, martial arts, and weightlifting programs that I'd want to translate into middle infielders, rangy CFs, and first basemen.

3) From an entertainment perspective, I'd like to see a return to the heyday of 80s run-run-run baseball. Turn singles into doubles, walks into triples, etc. Generally, I think the premium on strong-armed catchers has gone by the wayside. Watching the throws during the ASG, it was quite obvious that throwing out runners has become a lost art. Exploit that inefficiency in the market by acquiring speedy guys and resurrect the art of the stolen base.


Good points. I think the lack of strong-armed catchers is due to the demise of the SB as an offensive weapon. It's kind of a chicken and the egg thing. when/if the SB comes back as an offensive weapon, I'm sure we'll see the return of the catcher who can throw. Of course as long as guys are getting paid to hit the ball out of the park, that's what players are going to do.

I like the China idea too. The problem is the same, though, as it is with Cuba. However, the Chinese seem to be a lot more friendly to the capitalistic business model than Cuba does. Grease some palms in Beijing and you can probably count on signing some Chinese players.

Jpup
08-18-2008, 01:56 PM
The PED Era is far from over.

RedsBaron
08-18-2008, 02:07 PM
1) I think the days of the 5 man starting rotation are numbered. I think you'll see some teams move to the model of 1-3 starters on a regular rotation, and a bullpen mentality for what were the 4-5 spots in the rotation.



Bill James has argued that we could or should return to four man pitching rotations, but with strict pitch counts. The thinking is that it is the overuse in a game, rather than the lack of an extra day of rest, that is most abusive of arms. In other words, you could have four starters, but with the starters limited to say 100 pitches or so.
It might work, but managers tend to have a herd mentality. I expect managers will be very reluctant to try out James's idea.

RFS62
08-18-2008, 02:26 PM
The PED Era is far from over.

Yep, in fact it's in the Model T stage.

I've posed this question before. What happens when PED's are no longer health risks? What if HGH had no adverse effects?

Would we still want them abolished? Wouldn't they be pretty much the same thing as advanced weight training and nutrition?

The only argument against PED's now is that they're harmful. What if that wasn't the case?

Medical science will change sports in the next few years, in ways we can't even imagine. Well, maybe Princeton can. He's probably experimenting with his little league team now anyway.

:p:

princeton
08-18-2008, 02:49 PM
I'm attending a lecture next month at the medical school next door entitled "modification of nuclear receptors to enhance athletic performance." Could be a kook, but I think that it's supposedly serious science.

I think that the program going on in the Chinese Olympics will pave the way for the next generation of athletes. but I have no reason to think that

BCubb2003
08-18-2008, 02:50 PM
Yep, in fact it's in the Model T stage.

I've posed this question before. What happens when PED's are no longer health risks? What if HGH had no adverse effects?

Would we still want them abolished? Wouldn't they be pretty much the same thing as advanced weight training and nutrition?

The only argument against PED's now is that they're harmful. What if that wasn't the case?

Medical science will change sports in the next few years, in ways we can't even imagine. Well, maybe Princeton can. He's probably experimenting with his little league team now anyway.

:p:

There are three factors, and the presence of any of them is the deciding point: Legality, safety, disruption. If it's illegal, it's out of the game, even if the hazards haven't quite been proven. If it's unsafe, it's out of the game, even if it's not yet illegal. Even if it's safe and legal, it might be out of the game if it's too disruptive. If Tommy John surgery had pitchers coming back throwing three or four no-hitters in a row, or Lasik eye surgery had 20 guys hitting .400 every year and scores of 35-27 every night, you have a right to say, "That's not baseball, get it out of the game."

RFS62
08-18-2008, 03:02 PM
There are three factors, and the presence of any of them is the deciding point: Legality, safety, disruption. If it's illegal, it's out of the game, even if the hazards haven't quite been proven. If it's unsafe, it's out of the game, even if it's not yet illegal. Even if it's safe and legal, it might be out of the game if it's too disruptive. If Tommy John surgery had pitchers coming back throwing three or four no-hitters in a row, or Lasik eye surgery had 20 guys hitting .400 every year and scores of 35-27 every night, you have a right to say, "That's not baseball, get it out of the game."



No argument on 1 and 2. But on number 3 (in bold) I have to disagree.

I'd say it "is" baseball. Just as surely as it is baseball now with players much larger and stronger than past years.

If there are no ill effects of a legal PED, how can you tell an athlete he can't use it?

Blitz Dorsey
08-18-2008, 04:44 PM
Until they find a way to test for HGH, I am not even close to ready to believe the PED era is over. There are still a ton of guys using IMO, not just a small portion. I don't have a dime to spare, but I would bet my house that Giambi went back on the goods this year. A-Rod is a no-brainer (people are still ignoring what Canseco says? lol... I mean, I know the guy is a fool, but he's not a lying fool). Pujols is the most obvious of them all IMO.

Plus, then you have the matter of people (the new BALCOs we'll call them) trying to find undectable steroids every day. You know they're out there trying to find that right mix of chemicals that will get them rich and allow dirty athletes to pass as clean. Sorry if I come across as jaded, but I think I am being the realist here and people who think we're past the PED era are naive. We already know guys are using HGH (more than we care to imagine since they know they won't get busted for it) and then there are also the "new" steroids that I'm sure exist. It's all conjecture of course, but I'm just stating my opinion.

buckeyenut
08-18-2008, 05:41 PM
How long before we have a female baseball player? I think that may be coming in the next ten years as well. There is no reason they can't break that barrier.

15fan
08-18-2008, 05:45 PM
How long before we have a female baseball player? I think that may be coming in the next ten years as well. There is no reason they can't break that barrier.

Get one of the 100m sprinters to put on a glove and run down balls in the OF as a late inning replacement. I like it.

Their arms couldn't be any worse than Johnny Damon, eh?

registerthis
08-18-2008, 05:56 PM
There is no reason they can't break that barrier.

The barrier to the arrival of female athletes into the game--inherent mysogynism among many male athletes and fans aside--isn't a barrier that players the likes of Robinson faced while trying to break into the game. The barrier is one of inherent athletic ability. At the major league level, much like in the NBA, NFL or NHL, the disparity in athletic capabilities between men and women is generally simply too great. It's possible that a female baseball player who can hit 95 mph consistently and throws a wicked change-up will rise through the ranks. But with baseball's inevitable expansion into more and more foreign markets, and the inevitable cultivation of talent in those markets, the availability of top-tier talent is going to continue to expand and I don't know if that leaves a lot of room for the arrival of a female ballplayer. I'm not saying it will *never* happen, but it's not a change that I would bank on during the next ten years.

If anything, the arrival of the first female ballplayer would be treated as more of a curiosity than a wholesale change to the structure of the game.

CougarQuest
08-18-2008, 09:41 PM
The barrier to the arrival of female athletes into the game--inherent mysogynism among many male athletes and fans aside--isn't a barrier that players the likes of Robinson faced while trying to break into the game. The barrier is one of inherent athletic ability. At the major league level, much like in the NBA, NFL or NHL, the disparity in athletic capabilities between men and women is generally simply too great. It's possible that a female baseball player who can hit 95 mph consistently and throws a wicked change-up will rise through the ranks. But with baseball's inevitable expansion into more and more foreign markets, and the inevitable cultivation of talent in those markets, the availability of top-tier talent is going to continue to expand and I don't know if that leaves a lot of room for the arrival of a female ballplayer. I'm not saying it will *never* happen, but it's not a change that I would bank on during the next ten years.

If anything, the arrival of the first female ballplayer would be treated as more of a curiosity than a wholesale change to the structure of the game.

Counterpoint:
Corey Patterson is able to get a MLB contract
....AND actually put on the field
.....to play a real MLB game.

There has to be a 5'09" 170ish lb female that can play better than him
....in her sleep
....with or without a chest protector.

registerthis
08-19-2008, 09:35 AM
Counterpoint:
Corey Patterson is able to get a MLB contract
....AND actually put on the field
.....to play a real MLB game.

There has to be a 5'09" 170ish lb female that can play better than him
....in her sleep
....with or without a chest protector.

There's also likely a Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Australian or Latin American male who can do it better than both of them. That's my point. Baseball's expansion into new markets and the development of talent in those markets bodes well for the future of the game as a whole, but not so much for women who may have an eye towards playing in the majors.

Ltlabner
08-19-2008, 09:39 AM
There's also likely a Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Australian or Latin American male who can do it better than both of them. That's my point. Baseball's expansion into new markets and the development of talent in those markets bodes well for the future of the game as a whole, but not so much for women who may have an eye towards playing in the majors.

Agree totally.

I don't know if any of the skills of cricket would transfer to baseball but if they did you could even include Indian's into the mix. Even without cricket skilz, with a billion people there might be one or two that can catch a screaming line drive.

registerthis
08-19-2008, 09:46 AM
Even without cricket skilz, with a billion people there might be one or two that can catch a screaming line drive.

I've played cricket a few times ("play" being a loose metaphor for what I likely *actually* did) and it's a real mixe****** in terms of comparisons to baseball. A good bowler (pitcher) can throw some serious heat, and in cricket it's not illegal to take aim at the batter's shins--although the goal of course is to knock down the wickets.

You also get the opportunity to catch some screaming line drives--with your bare hands. But the game is much more slower paced, and you don't necessarily utilize the full range of defensive skills that are used in a typical baseball game.

I also found it darn near impossible to focus on. People who say baseball is the most boring sport on earth have clearly never watched a cricket match.

Chip R
08-19-2008, 09:50 AM
Agree totally.

I don't know if any of the skills of cricket would transfer to baseball but if they did you could even include Indian's into the mix. Even without cricket skilz, with a billion people there might be one or two that can catch a screaming line drive.


The founder of the Cincinnati Red Stockings, Harry Wright, was a first class cricket player.

CougarQuest
08-19-2008, 10:29 AM
There's also likely a Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Australian or Latin American male who can do it better than both of them. That's my point. Baseball's expansion into new markets and the development of talent in those markets bodes well for the future of the game as a whole, but not so much for women who may have an eye towards playing in the majors.

The Reds need a RF, CF, 3rd, SS, C, and pitching....so sign a female Korean, a female Chinese, a female Japanese, an female Australian and a female Latin American.

With or without chest protectors.