Originally Posted by edabbs44
Williamson, Graves and Sullivan were all pretty much useless or out of baseball by their early 30s. Maybe that usage pattern isn't optimal?
.....Williamson was always an injury problem. Graves went through the closer/starter/closer flip flop that got him out of whack. I'm not sure why Sullivan ever quit. He was effective till the end.
These guys essentially all had 10 year long careers. That's plenty of pension time.
Even in 1999 McKeon's usage patterns were seen as from another time. The idea behind greater relief pitcher specialization is that it keeps your good guys healthy longer. It's been a long process. The cost of course is that your "Bruce Sutter" pitcher isn't always in there during the most important at bat. It's not just Dusty, that does it.
I think teams have an obligation to protect the arms of young starters. Yes, you might be able to wring 3 more wins out of your season by pitching Strasburg more, but the very real risk is that if everybody does that then you run the real risk that generation of starting pitchers will flame out. While I do see that obligation, I'm not convinced that it is in the teams best interest to try and preserve the arm of every journeyman reliever that comes down the pike. If we would get 5 years of Sullivan/Williamson/Graves out of Simon/Hoover/LeCure but it meant they topped out at a 10 year career, then I think that's a trade that most reds fans, the reds organizaton and probably Simon/Hoover and LeCure would all make.