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View Full Version : Pitching idea I've been thinking about.


Madscout
07-07-2007, 09:14 PM
My idea is this. Instead of the current system of having 5 starters and a bullpen, where the starters try to go as long as they can (or at least 5 or 6 innings), why not try a system where the starters are renamed "proven pitchers" (pps). Instead of telling a pp to start and go deep into a game, you use two of them in one game where one goes 4 innings, and another goes 3 (you try and have 6 on a team). This way, you can throw a guy one night, give him 2 nights rest and he throws again but rotated (if he threw 4 then he throws 3 and vica versa). Then the rest of the two innings left are like normal, a set up man and closer, or bullpen guys.

I think the pluses of this system are that you get more innings out of proven guys. I think you could have more guys that could be proven guys, such as a guy that has three good pitches that can get guys out the first time through the line up, but struggles the second. This could help out with money, because the pool for pps would be bigger Secondly, batters see individual pitchers less, and they can fool them more.

The only problems I can think of is with the NL rules, but this can be manuvered around. Also, if there are more guys in so a bigger chance that a guy can struggle.

Let me know what you think, especially people with expirience, such as Ondafarm.

CashMan
07-07-2007, 10:05 PM
I think you should pull the network cord out of the network card of your PC.

Daver
07-07-2007, 10:26 PM
My idea is this. Instead of the current system of having 5 starters and a bullpen, where the starters try to go as long as they can (or at least 5 or 6 innings), why not try a system where the starters are renamed "proven pitchers" (pps). Instead of telling a pp to start and go deep into a game, you use two of them in one game where one goes 4 innings, and another goes 3 (you try and have 6 on a team). This way, you can throw a guy one night, give him 2 nights rest and he throws again but rotated (if he threw 4 then he throws 3 and vica versa). Then the rest of the two innings left are like normal, a set up man and closer, or bullpen guys.

I think the pluses of this system are that you get more innings out of proven guys. I think you could have more guys that could be proven guys, such as a guy that has three good pitches that can get guys out the first time through the line up, but struggles the second. This could help out with money, because the pool for pps would be bigger Secondly, batters see individual pitchers less, and they can fool them more.

The only problems I can think of is with the NL rules, but this can be manuvered around. Also, if there are more guys in so a bigger chance that a guy can struggle.

Let me know what you think, especially people with expirience, such as Ondafarm.

You're kidding right?

hose
07-07-2007, 10:31 PM
I would rather see a franchise go back to the 4 man rotation if they were going to revamp their pitching philosophy.

TDog
07-07-2007, 11:04 PM
You're not going to see teams go back to four-man rotations with veteran pitchers because free agents won't sign with teams who intend to use four-man rotations unless you add dollars and years to their contracts. That isn't going to happen. What is proposed here won't happen either, if only because you wouldn't be able to keep starters happy.

A professional pitcher will be concerned with his potential for future earnings. Scoring rules require a starter to pitch at least five innings to qualify for a win, so all wins will take on the nature of relief wins, which have a random quality. A pitcher who only pitches three or four innings in a game will be typecast as a reliever with, perhaps, starting potential by other teams.

The idea of using three three-inning pitchers to pitch a nine-inning game isn't new, even if you think it's original. In 1966, a Baltimore mathematician wrote a book titled Percentage Baseball. One of the things he suggested was pitchers generally only pitching three innings at a time, only going once through the lineup and being replaced by a pinch hitter. The designated hitter decreases the percentage advantage to a pitcher only pitching three innings.

During the early 1970s, the White Sox imposed a minor league plan where pitchers only pitched three innings at a time. I have forgotten the reasons Chuck Tanner cited for the plan, but it didn't last.

TornLabrum
07-07-2007, 11:43 PM
A friend of mine and I used to do this in the '70s playing Cadaco All-Star Baseball. That way the pitchers didn't have to bat.

And that's about the only place it should ever be used.

Madscout
07-07-2007, 11:46 PM
All I wanted to know is why it doesn't or wouldn't work. For a team like we have, sure it wouldn't be a good idea right now. We have 5 guys that can go the distance. For some of the smaller market teams, who don't have the (starting) pitching that we have, it might have been a good idea. Don't say, "It won't work because the stats don't line up". That just tells me you aren't taking stats in stride. Not keeping guys happy makes sense. I just was wondering if there was another way, realizing that names such as "starter" "middle relief", "closer" are just labels, not things set in stone.

Daver
07-07-2007, 11:53 PM
All I wanted to know is why it doesn't or wouldn't work. For a team like we have, sure it wouldn't be a good idea right now. We have 5 guys that can go the distance. For some of the smaller market teams, who don't have the (starting) pitching that we have, it might have been a good idea. Don't say, "It won't work because the stats don't line up". That just tells me you aren't taking stats in stride. Not keeping guys happy makes sense. I just was wondering if there was another way, realizing that names such as "starter" "middle relief", "closer" are just labels, not things set in stone.

It has nothing to do with stats.

Pitchers are creatures of habit, and 90% of pitching is mental, they prepare to pitch every fifth day, and enter that game expecting to pitch into the ninth, to try and change that rytham won't work, unless you do it from the minor leagues on up.

Madscout
07-08-2007, 12:24 AM
It has nothing to do with stats.

Pitchers are creatures of habit, and 90% of pitching is mental, they prepare to pitch every fifth day, and enter that game expecting to pitch into the ninth, to try and change that rytham won't work, unless you do it from the minor leagues on up.

I understand this. It makes perfect sense. It just seems to me that the pitching situation that we have today is outdated. Every (sort of) team goes out and tries to get the best 5 guys that they can for their rotation. They pay a hell of a lot of money to do it. Then, when one of those 5 guys pitches great, say 7 scoreless, you get some guys who aren't paid as much, with stuff that isn't great, control that isn't great, come out an ruin 7 innings of work, such as what happens just about every other night for a certain team we all know. Good starting pitching, **** relief.

DSpivack
07-08-2007, 12:57 AM
It has nothing to do with stats.

Pitchers are creatures of habit, and 90% of pitching is mental, they prepare to pitch every fifth day, and enter that game expecting to pitch into the ninth, to try and change that rytham won't work, unless you do it from the minor leagues on up.

Am I hallucinating, or didn't LaRussa once try a 3-innings each approach?

Nellie_Fox
07-08-2007, 01:26 AM
Let me know what you think, especially people with expirience, such as Ondafarm.Ondafarm thinks you should fire Ozzie. He thinks of nothing else.

Lip Man 1
07-08-2007, 01:37 AM
Spivak:

LaRussa talked about in spring training this idea. He never used it in an actual game though.

Each pitcher would get a number based on certain factors. Say for example, a team carried 11 pitchers.

Those guys are numbered 1 through 11.

LaRussa's plan was to use three pitchers every game for three innings and simply work down the line for each and every game.

Example:

Monday - 1, 2, 3
Tuesday - 4, 5, 6
Wednesday - 7, 8, 9
Thursday - 10- 11 -1
Friday - 2, 3, 4

and so on.

Starters would not automatically be numbered 1 through 5 and the bullpen guys wouldn't automatically be numbered 6 though 11. There would be a balance between the two.

For example #1 and 2 might be regular starters but number 3 a relief guy.

Lip

UserNameBlank
07-08-2007, 01:57 AM
I don't think it has much to do with IP at all. If you have pitchers working a set amount of innings every time well, that's just not going to be a solid plan because you have to manage a baseball game inning by inning, at-bat by at-bat. If you set up a team where virtually every pitcher is on a schedule and can not be used out of rotation, what do you do when your second pitcher is brought in for the fifth inning and takes a giant crap? Who do you turn to without ****ing up your entire rotation?

IMO, baseball has been around long enough that if there was a better way to manage a pitching staff it would have been done by now. IP, pitch count, days off, being tired, etc. really don't have all that much to do with anything. Some guys just don't have their stuff on a given day. They aren't machines and control varies outing to outing. Sometimes even factors that are totally out of your control like weather/humidity/wind/shadows/etc. factor into how a certain individual pitches on a given day. It all depends.

The only thing you can hope for is that your guys get outs when you call on them. That's it. In a perfect world all bullpen guys would throw strikes, attack hitters, have at least 3 major league pitches, and have the type of stuff that allows them to get away with mistakes. But that isn't the case and bullpens are a crapshoot, so we all just have to live with it and hope that when we get lucky and have a year where our pen is lights out, like 2005, we have a good enough team around them to make a charge, like 2005.

UserNameBlank
07-08-2007, 01:59 AM
Spivak:

LaRussa talked about in spring training this idea. He never used it in an actual game though.

Each pitcher would get a number based on certain factors. Say for example, a team carried 11 pitchers.

Those guys are numbered 1 through 11.

LaRussa's plan was to use three pitchers every game for three innings and simply work down the line for each and every game.

Example:

Monday - 1, 2, 3
Tuesday - 4, 5, 6
Wednesday - 7, 8, 9
Thursday - 10- 11 -1
Friday - 2, 3, 4

and so on.

Starters would not automatically be numbered 1 through 5 and the bullpen guys wouldn't automatically be numbered 6 though 11. There would be a balance between the two.

For example #1 and 2 might be regular starters but number 3 a relief guy.

Lip
LaRussa gets too much credit. That sounds like a pretty dumb idea to me because what happens when one of your pitchers is throwing great, it is a tight game, his time is up but the next guy is struggling? Do you take him out and bring in your own version of Ryan Bukvich or do you keep him in and throw everything out of whack?

Boondock Saint
07-08-2007, 02:15 AM
Mark Buehrle. No-hitter. That right there is reason enough to not do this.

FedEx227
07-08-2007, 11:33 AM
Everyone keeps bringing up the idea of guys that start great and end badly, how about guys that have a rough first inning and then cool down. Johan Santana has been known to have some rough patches in the first inning then completely warm up. What you're doing with this system is not giving your good starter a chance to actually prove his merit. If he gives up 3 runs in the first, he only has another 2 innings before he's out.

Plus, you would not find many pitcher that would be understanding to this concept. Pitchers love to have the spotlight, love to be in total control of the game, especially starters.

It wouldn't work, the current system isn't outdated, bullpens are just hard to build because they are such a crapshoot, but not every bullpen in the majors is flawed; the Twins and the Angels and for the better part of the decade Braves all had fabulous bullpens year in and year out.

DSpivack
07-08-2007, 11:33 AM
LaRussa gets too much credit. That sounds like a pretty dumb idea to me because what happens when one of your pitchers is throwing great, it is a tight game, his time is up but the next guy is struggling? Do you take him out and bring in your own version of Ryan Bukvich or do you keep him in and throw everything out of whack?

Of course it seems a terrible idea, but I don't why I'm so entertained by it. I thought he actually implemented it, though, 'tis a shame he didn't.

TDog
07-08-2007, 12:07 PM
Mark Buehrle. No-hitter. That right there is reason enough to not do this.

Or is it? On Sept. 28, 1975, four Oakland A's pitchers combined on a no-hitter.

Jerksticks
07-08-2007, 12:43 PM
It has nothing to do with stats.

Pitchers are creatures of habit, and 90% of pitching is mental, they prepare to pitch every fifth day, and enter that game expecting to pitch into the ninth, to try and change that rytham won't work, unless you do it from the minor leagues on up.


Dude, do you really think that's how rhythm is spelled?

I'm never Dr. Dictionary, but that just makes ya go "Whoa, does this dude have credibility?"

I don't really care what ya say either, that's funny.

soxinem1
07-08-2007, 12:46 PM
I would rather see a franchise go back to the 4 man rotation if they were going to revamp their pitching philosophy.

Bingo!! And while we are on it, lets go back to the nine (or at most ten) man pitching staff.

This idea comes awfully close to Bevington's 'too many walks gets you yanked' strategy that lasted about 2-3 games.

Lip Man 1
07-08-2007, 12:47 PM
And of course the Sox had 'Blue Moon' Odom and Francisco Barrios combine for a no hitter as well at Oakland.

Lip

Madscout
07-08-2007, 03:21 PM
Ok, so lets recap the reasons why this won't work.

1. Pitchers are creatures of habit/ they like the spotlight...

This would be a new habit. Starters and relievers are chosen to be starters and relivers. The train with being whatever they are in mind. This would be a new goal.

2. Pitchers aren't machines, they can't just go and get guys out and have their stuff working whenever...

Exactly, so instead of saying to a starter, "Go pitch naked for 5-6 innings or our bullpen is screwed" We say, "Go pitch naked for 3-4 innings and we have guys to back you up"

3. Lack of Flexibilty/ what happens if a guy goes out there and sucks...

I suggested a 6+ man rotation. What happens today if a pitcher goes out in gets shelled in the 2nd? You bring in bullpen guys for those other 7+ innings and screw up your bullpen. In this system, you bring in the other guy or a long reliever to get the job done until the other starter can come in. It seems to me that there is more room for damage control in this. Now, if both of them get shelled, you cut your losses and take the loss. But how many times today do guys go out and get shelled? So how many times are the two goning to go out and get shelled? Moreover, you can have more flexiblity with this. Bring a guy out an inning early if he throws a lot of pitches. You can stack to guys with opposite stuff, such as a control pitcher needs to hit spots to get guys out, with a pitcher with a good stuff, a lefty and a righty, etc. I'm not suggesting a rigid you pitch 3 you pitch 4 no matter what, only that 3 or 4 would be the goal. As far as typecasting, typecasting follows from the present schema we have of baseball today, just as stats do. Don't worry, the media would make the stats change so that we could worship new guys on big market teams.

4. (and my personal favorite) I think if there was a better way, baseball has been around for so long that someone would have found it...

Wow, do you honestly believe that? That kind of thinking has us still riding in horses and buggies, cause that had been going on so long that there wasn't a better way. Weight the opitions and think about it before you say, "Well its been this way forever so it must be right"

Boondock Saint
07-08-2007, 03:53 PM
Or is it? On Sept. 28, 1975, four Oakland A's pitchers combined on a no-hitter.

It absolutely is. How many pitchers have thrown 3 innings of no-hit baseball? Thousands. And tons of nobodies, too. Whoop-dee-freaking-doo. If your team changes to a 3-4 inning format, you kill any excitement of a no-hitter.

TDog
07-08-2007, 05:49 PM
... Weight the opitions and think about it before you say, "Well its been this way forever so it must be right"


I don't think anyone is saying that. i believe there are pragmatic reasons why you won't see teams under the current salary labor structure go to a four man rotation or go to a system where a pitcher goes no more than three or four innings.

What you are talking about is what teams do in spring training to get pitchers in shape. It's the kind of thing you might see in a young youth league where rules are established to prevent pitchers from damaging their young arms. In the regular season, such a plan would put all relievers on the same level as relievers. Starting pitchers would be ineligible for wins. You wouldn't have any top-notch starters on your team anyway because you wouldn't be able to sign or keep them. And if you did develop an outstanding starting pitcher (you wouldn't know because you never saw him pitch more more than four innings, but if you did have such a pitcher on your team) you would be doing the other team a favor by arbitrarily taking him out after three or four innings.

The overall pitching on the current White Sox team is not deep enough to have success with this plan. If you had a staff consisting of nothing but adequate-to-good relievers, it could work in the sense that it would be a better alternative to running out starters who have no business starting. You wouldn't have to shell out the big bucks for starters, so you would have money to spend on hitting. But attracting hitters to come to your team would be difficult, even if you overpaid them.

The only way this would work would be if league rules mandated a pitcher could pitch no more than four innings in a game. When you start your own league, you can see how this would work out.

Madscout
07-08-2007, 10:41 PM
So the real reasons why this wouldn't work are that guys want to be the man and go out and win it for thier team. They don't want to be a smaller part, but have a better chance of winning. Fans want to see the man go out and get that, and all of this comes at the expense of possibly winning more? They want this because of the money that they get for being the man. Maybe it is just me, but I would trade just about X number of wins for Mark Buehrle's no hitter or his performance yesterday, where X= a trip to the playoffs. Individuals sell, but everyone loves a winner.

Nellie_Fox
07-09-2007, 01:26 AM
So the real reasons why this wouldn't work are that guys want to be the man and go out and win it for thier team. They don't want to be a smaller part, but have a better chance of winning. Fans want to see the man go out and get that, and all of this comes at the expense of possibly winning more? They want this because of the money that they get for being the man. Maybe it is just me, but I would trade just about X number of wins for Mark Buehrle's no hitter or his performance yesterday, where X= a trip to the playoffs. Individuals sell, but everyone loves a winner.Maybe it's because teams want their best pitchers to pitch the most innings. A fairly simple concept.

IlliniSox4Life
07-09-2007, 03:51 AM
So the real reasons why this wouldn't work are that guys want to be the man and go out and win it for thier team. They don't want to be a smaller part, but have a better chance of winning. Fans want to see the man go out and get that, and all of this comes at the expense of possibly winning more? They want this because of the money that they get for being the man. Maybe it is just me, but I would trade just about X number of wins for Mark Buehrle's no hitter or his performance yesterday, where X= a trip to the playoffs. Individuals sell, but everyone loves a winner.

Beyond what Nellie said about wanting the best pitchers to pitch the most innings, another reason that this wouldn't work is that it is just too dramatic of a change. Moving from a 4 to a 5 man rotation was easy. You just space the starters apart an extra day. Your plan requires a fundamental change in the way you develop and condition players. Mentally and physically for it to work, pitchers have to get used to it over a long period of time. You can't just take 6 guys who are major leaguers and then get them to be successful pitching like that. And nobody is going to revolutionize their minor leagues to develop players like that for some period in the future.

pythons007
07-09-2007, 11:17 AM
This sounds something like we had when I was in Little League. Basically you had pitchers that would only be allowed to throw 7 innings per week. So if you had a stud pitcher he would throw 4 innings one game and then 3 the next. I don't think we want to compare the major leagues to Little League do we???

Madscout
07-09-2007, 11:37 AM
Maybe it's because teams want their best pitchers to pitch the most innings. A fairly simple concept.

Actually, your best pitchers pitch more innings, that is if your starters are your best pitchers on your ballclub. I'm not just talking relievers throwing 3 and then 4 innings, I'm talking guys that can get through 3 or 4 innings, which is not rare at all. We have guys in AAA that can do it. Mc Carthy could have done that in '05. If the 6 man rotation throws exactly as planned, that is, 3 one day then 4 two games later, you have your starters (proven guys) throw 1134 innings, which in a six man rotation as proposed translates to each pitcher throwing 189 innings, vs. the current 5 man rotation which would have to each throw 226/227 innings a year to match it. I may be mistaken, but a pitcher that matches that mark is pretty rare.

Madscout
07-09-2007, 11:44 AM
Beyond what Nellie said about wanting the best pitchers to pitch the most innings, another reason that this wouldn't work is that it is just too dramatic of a change. Moving from a 4 to a 5 man rotation was easy. You just space the starters apart an extra day. Your plan requires a fundamental change in the way you develop and condition players. Mentally and physically for it to work, pitchers have to get used to it over a long period of time. You can't just take 6 guys who are major leaguers and then get them to be successful pitching like that. And nobody is going to revolutionize their minor leagues to develop players like that for some period in the future.

If you look back in the tread to the first post, I said this is why it wouldn't be done. All I'm asking is why it would work. Sure deal vs. Hypothetical. I don't mean to suggest that we could take 6 pitchers that are pitching now and throw them in like this. You are exactly right. However, there are pitchers I have seen pitching now that if trained to do it, would fit. Orlando Hernandez, just from the aspect of he is injury prone and that he has some trouble going deep into games (or at least he did for us). With him it would be all a head thing, because he just has it in his mind that he wants to be a starter. Not only could aging pitchers pitch longer, but young pitchers wouldn't have this huge hump to jump over of going to the major leagues as a starter of needing to get through 5-6 innings without getting shelled. Yet another reason it wouldn't be done, because (as I said) the current starting pitchers love the fact that the payroll is coming in.