Re: Power outage in baseball
There are several reasons that scoring is down, but the biggest one is that pitchers are better than ever. Pitchers are bigger and throw harder than they used to. The number of guys throwing 95+ MPH is out of this world. It used to be a guy that could throw that hard stood out in a crowd, now every team has several. Pitchers now are bigger and stronger than the hitters in many cases. Most of the biggest and tallest players in baseball are pitchers. Improved surgical and rehab techniques are keeping the best pitchers performing at their peak level. Many/most of the best pitchers in baseball have recovered from injuries that would have ended their careers or reduced their effectiveness in previous years.
Despite what we have heard about pitching being diluted by expansion, the truth is the size of the population and hence the pool of young pitchers has grown at a greater rate than the number of teams in MLB. Teams have scouts and academies searching all over North America, the Caribbean, Central and South America and even in Asia. Baseball is a worldwide sport now more than ever. If you can pitch you can bet a team will find you no matter your race and homeland, and that was not the case in years gone by.
The increasingly specialized use of situational relievers has had a huge effect. The availability of video from every game and the speed and ease of editing video has made scouting reports much more accurate in terms of identifying hitters's weaknesses.
I think the biggest reason is one that RedsManRick mentioned earlier -- the cut fastball. The cutter is all the rage amongst pitchers this year and is very effective. Fastballs are not straight anymore. Almost every pitch a hitter sees has more movement and higher velocity than what hitters faced even a few years ago. It is a lot more difficult to square up a ball these days.