Friday, May 1, 2009

MLB pitchers not built like they used to be

Sandy Koufax of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitched a complete game shutout in deciding Game 7 on two days rest in the 1965 World Series.

Mark Fidrych of the Detroit Tigers pitched 24 complete games in 29 starts in 1976.

Randy Jones of the San Diego Padres pitched 25 complete games in the same season.

Yes, it used to be that a starting pitcher was considered to have a successful outing if he pitched a complete game every four days.

Then why is it that now, a pitcher is believed to have done his job if he works six innings every fifth day?

And on top of that, why do so many starting pitchers get injured nowadays?

Consider the staff aces that couldn’t even make it through the second week of the 2009 season without going on the disabled list:

Among them are Daisuke Matsuzaka of the Boston Red Sox, Brandon Webb of the Arizona Diamondbacks and Hiroki Kuroda of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Then there is World Series MVP Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies, whose first start was pushed back five days due to injury and hasn’t exactly been lighting things up since.

Lone gone are the days of players signing one-year contracts.

But one has to wonder: Would pitchers (and many hitters for that matter) be much more productive if they were paid year-by-year based on what they did the previous season?

Just asking …

1 comment:

kareem said...

Without a doubt today's pitchers are not expected to pitch like pitcher of even twenty to thirty years ago. If a club tried to make a pitcher today throw 25 complete games the union and the player's agent would be having a cow. Today with long term contracts pitcher and hitters get lazy but when they had only one year contracts they worked harder to be more successfull to make sure they had a place to play the next year. This is just another prime example of today's pampered athlete.