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Old 07-03-2014, 12:34 PM
TDog TDog is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Modesto, California
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Originally Posted by JB98 View Post
Why is it a bad thing to have three lefties in the rotation? Can anyone give me a good reason why that is a detriment? I think it's a bunch of bull**** invented by idiots in the Chicago media.

Danks, Sale and Quintana pitched consecutively over the weekend against the AL East-leading Toronto Blue Jays. All three pitchers won. Was it an advantage for Toronto to face three lefties in a row? Doesn't seem like it.

I wouldn't trade Danks. The Sox only have three legitimate starting pitchers in their organization. I understand he isn't part of the future, but in the meantime somebody needs to pitch. It might as well be Danks. And given his salary, I don't think he would fetch the Sox a bounty of elite prospects anyway. Trading him would be nothing more than a salary dump, IMO.
There may well be idiots in the Chicago media, and sports media tends to be a refuge for idiots anyway, but the idea that it's a bad thing to have three lefties in the starting rotation goes way back to the point of traditon. It goes back to the days when the best teams had four-man rotations sent out right-left-right-left.

Part of it is the tendency for fans and analysts to put too much emphasis on statistical trends and splits. Not all lefties are Chris Sale or even Mark Buehrle. There are lefties who have occasional success in no small part because they throw left handed, upsetting hitters' pitch recognition and timing. You seldom hear of a crafty righty. Look at splits, and you make assumptions that teams do better against every lefty starter the game after facing another lefty starter, becoming acclimated to lefties, which is the case on a lot of teams, and you might make the assumpton that you are a disadvantage if you have three or more lefties in a starting rotation. This ignores the question of who the lefties are, but many managers don't want to start lefties back to back against the same team to get the most out of their pitchers.

It's mostly about percentages, and analyzing baseball by percentages is a simplistic thing even if higher math is involved. Managers will relieve lefties in favor of righties to face Jose Abreu, even though Abreu hits righties better than lefties, because they are playing global percentages.
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