Page 8 of 14 FirstFirst ... 678910 ... LastLast
Results 176 to 200 of 338

Thread: Did Pitchers of Yesteryear Throw With "Much Less" Velocity Than They Do Today?

  1. #176
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    13,347
    Blog Entries
    2
    Quote Originally Posted by evetts18 View Post
    Here's the sort of thing your asking me to believe. The best sprinters in the world run the 100 meters in just under 9.7 seconds and probably, on average, run it in about 9.75 to 9.8 or so. However, suddenly some guy could come along who could consistently run the 100 meters in under 9.7 seconds and set the world record at 9.6 seconds, or maybe less. I don't believe that sort of thing is possible, no mater what Earl Weaver thinks.
    Actually if we use your analogy then according to that logic what did in fact happen in track would be an impossibility. Heading into the 90's 9.9 was the record for 100m at the end it was 9.79, now going into the 10's the record is down to 9.72. In 1988 the record was 9.93 and Ben Johnson came along and posted a 9.79.

  2. #177

    Dalkowski

    Quote Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post
    Actually if we use your analogy then according to that logic what did in fact happen in track would be an impossibility. Heading into the 90's 9.9 was the record for 100m at the end it was 9.79, now going into the 10's the record is down to 9.72. In 1988 the record was 9.93 and Ben Johnson came along and posted a 9.79.

    That's primarily because of better training techniques and nutrition. And the times get only marginally better, they move by 100's of a second, not 10th's of a second.

  3. #178
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    7,672
    Blog Entries
    8
    "I don't even know if it is even humanly possible to throw higher than 103 or so."

    Depends on the distance you throw at. Zumaya is timed at 45 feet with those off-the-charts, 105 mph readings. On a JUGS Radar gun...at 60'6", he likely throws about 99-100 mph.

    "I don't believe that sort of thing is possible, no mater what Earl Weaver thinks."

    Then you're wasting my time. Weaver saw Dalkowski and Ryan throwing at their fastest (if not best) within FOUR YEARS of each other. Fact is, even if there was a catcher who'd caught Dalkowski and Ryan within one year, you'd discount it. Even if Dalkowski managed to get a pitch over, you'd complain about the device being innaccurate like you did with Feller. But a parting thought unrelated to Steve Dalkowski.

    "One thing the radar guns over the last 20 years have told us, if nothing else, is that no one performs that far out of the norm. We know what the fastest pitchers throw and that the next really hard thrower who comes along isn't going to throw 107 or 108. He'll top out in the low 100's and probably not be able to sustain that for more than a couple of innings. You can bet on it."

    The radar guns over the last twenty years haven't told us much at all. Joel Zumaya threw a pitch at 107 mph. Mark Wohlers hit 103-104 with regularity. Well, at 45 feet. Ironically, we probably agree that Steve could top off in the low 100's for a couple innings. But it's you who foolishly believe it's at 45 feet and I believe, far more convincingly, that he could do it at 60'6".

    "This is all in good fun, isn't it?"

    Nope, not this time. You have never made a single post outside this thread. Every one of your responses save one has been to mock me. Your only evidence provided to the contrary is that you pitched in college once, which oh so obviously has to make you an expert on the physics of baseball. In one post, you even sarcastically asked how fast Bigfoot could throw. You are a TROLL.
    "They put me in the Hall of Fame? They must really be scraping the bottom of the barrel!"
    -Eppa Rixey, upon learning of his induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    Motafy (MO-ta-fy) vt. -fied, -fying 1. For a pitcher to melt down in a big game situation; to become like Guillermo Mota. 2. The transformation of a good pitcher into one of Guillermo Mota's caliber.

  4. #179
    Quote Originally Posted by Dalkowski110 View Post
    "I don't even know if it is even humanly possible to throw higher than 103 or so."

    Depends on the distance you throw at. Zumaya is timed at 45 feet with those off-the-charts, 105 mph readings. On a JUGS Radar gun...at 60'6", he likely throws about 99-100 mph.

    "I don't believe that sort of thing is possible, no mater what Earl Weaver thinks."

    Then you're wasting my time. Weaver saw Dalkowski and Ryan throwing at their fastest (if not best) within FOUR YEARS of each other. Fact is, even if there was a catcher who'd caught Dalkowski and Ryan within one year, you'd discount it. Even if Dalkowski managed to get a pitch over, you'd complain about the device being innaccurate like you did with Feller. But a parting thought unrelated to Steve Dalkowski.

    "One thing the radar guns over the last 20 years have told us, if nothing else, is that no one performs that far out of the norm. We know what the fastest pitchers throw and that the next really hard thrower who comes along isn't going to throw 107 or 108. He'll top out in the low 100's and probably not be able to sustain that for more than a couple of innings. You can bet on it."

    The radar guns over the last twenty years haven't told us much at all. Joel Zumaya threw a pitch at 107 mph. Mark Wohlers hit 103-104 with regularity. Well, at 45 feet. Ironically, we probably agree that Steve could top off in the low 100's for a couple innings. But it's you who foolishly believe it's at 45 feet and I believe, far more convincingly, that he could do it at 60'6".

    "This is all in good fun, isn't it?"

    Nope, not this time. You have never made a single post outside this thread. Every one of your responses save one has been to mock me. Your only evidence provided to the contrary is that you pitched in college once, which oh so obviously has to make you an expert on the physics of baseball. In one post, you even sarcastically asked how fast Bigfoot could throw. You are a TROLL.


    Sorry for the Bigfoot remark. I admit that one was over the top. Also, I didn't realize that your's was the only thread to which I've been posting.

    Hey, look, I'm just asking some fundamental questions. For example: (A) How do you know he pitched the previous day before being timed? Is this actually documented somewhere? (B) How do you know that he pitched continuously for 15 minutes before getting the ball through the machine? (C) It's fair to assume that he pitched off of flat ground, but how do we know he did? (D) How do you even know the effects of these things when put together? They would have no doubt have reduced the velocity of his fastball to some extent, but by how much? (E) How do you know the distance from which he threw into the machine? (F) What was the velocity recorded by the machine? There seems to be some confusion on that.

    I'm not arguing that Dalkowski didn't have a great fastball, otherwise the Orioles wouldn't have sent him to the Army facility to have his fastball clocked. Although, I wonder if they sent others, as well. But as far as Earl Weaver's (who I really like by the way) comments are concerned, Dalkowski appears to have been his special project. Don't you think that he might have been tempted to exaggerate just a little when talking about him? Also, I'm not sure that the other comments, when read on their own, indicate that Dalkowski was anything other than simply the hardest thrower these players believed they had ever seen. In other words, I don't think that they (Williams, Gillick, etc.) thought Dalkowski was in a league by himself.

    There's no need to go through it again. Because you're right, I'm not going to believe it. I think that you make the best case possible, but I just don't think that the evidence is strong enough.

    P.S. Here's a quote from Bobby Cox and/or Pat Gillick from an article on Dalkowski in the Dayton Daily News (4/29/07):

    Gillick, Cox (the Atlanta Braves' manager, who batted against Dalkowski) and others say "it was definitely over 100, perhaps 105."

    I can believe this, but you could say the same about Ryan or Zumaya.
    Last edited by evetts18; 07-27-2008 at 10:42 AM.

  5. #180
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    7,672
    Blog Entries
    8
    "For example: (A) How do you know he pitched the previous day before being timed? Is this actually documented somewhere? (B) How do you know that he pitched continuously for 15 minutes before getting the ball through the machine? (C) How do you know the distance from which he threw into the machine? (D) How do you even know the effects of these things when put together? (E) What was the velocity recorded by the machine? There seems to be some confusion on that."

    A) I know it because I've seen the boxscore. He pitched against the Reno Silver Sox (was with Stockton at the time) and was yanked in the sixth after walking 12 batters. I've also talked to Steve, and even he thought at the time it was kinda illogical to get him the next day after he started.

    B) Based on estimates from Steve and his sister. They said the 45 minute figures from Sports Illustrated's 1970 article on Steve had been exaggerated and that while he was struggling to get one over, it was more like "15 or 20 minutes, not 45."

    C) The distance was actually specified and recorded by the Baltimore Orioles. You can find that Harry Brecheen, the guy who asked for the test, wanted the same device that recorded Feller for a reason: it was about the width of home plate.

    D) This question is pretty fuzzy, but read any article by anyone from ASMI or Adair's book on physics in baseball and you 1) lose 1-2 mph from not throwing off a mound and 2) depending on who you are, you lose 5-7 mph off your fastball when it decelerates from 45 feet to 60'6". You lose about 30 mph from your hand to the plate; the area of most rapid deceleration is from your hand to the 45' marker.

    E) The velocity recorded was 93.8 mph at 60'6", which at LEAST translates to 99.8 mph at 45 feet.

    "Although, I wonder if they sent others, as well."

    Nope. The Orioles were actually quite reluctant to let Paul Richards and Harry Brecheen set the tests up and because Dalkowski just reared back and fired for fifteen minutes to no avail, they considered the tests a waste of time and a failure.

    "But as far as Earl Weaver's (who I really like by the way) comments are concerned, Dalkowski appears to have been his special project. Don't you think that he might have been tempted to exaggerate just a little when talking about him?"

    No. Absolutely not. And in fact, talk to Steve and if anyone was interested in getting Steve to the Majors, it was Paul Richards and Harry Brecheen. They acted through Weaver, who initially didn't even like Steve much, though was very impressed by his stuff from the get-go. The only reason one would get that impression about Earl Weaver is because back then, the Orioles were very hands off with regards to their pitchers. Steve Dalkowski essentially forced a change in that policy and the guy who best implemented it was Weaver (due to him already employing the hands-on approach he'd become famous for in the Majors).

    "In other words, I don't think that they (Williams, Gillick, etc.) thought Dalkowski was in a league by himself."

    Then there is clearly no way in hell you've ever spoken with Pat Gillick.

    "There's no need to go through it again. Because you're right, I'm not going to believe it. "

    So why the hell did you ask me a bunch of questions? And what exactly is your angle on this forum, other than to second guess me in the silliest ways possible?
    Last edited by Dalkowski110; 07-27-2008 at 10:44 AM.
    "They put me in the Hall of Fame? They must really be scraping the bottom of the barrel!"
    -Eppa Rixey, upon learning of his induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    Motafy (MO-ta-fy) vt. -fied, -fying 1. For a pitcher to melt down in a big game situation; to become like Guillermo Mota. 2. The transformation of a good pitcher into one of Guillermo Mota's caliber.

  6. #181
    Quote Originally Posted by evetts18 View Post
    But as far as Earl Weaver's (who I really like by the way) comments are concerned, Dalkowski appears to have been his special project. Don't you think that he might have been tempted to exaggerate just a little when talking about him?
    Ok, truthfully, I don't have one sliver of knowledge about dalkowski, but I can say this in his defense: A manager doesn't just pick a favorite player if they don't have something special. there are a few famous cases of managers with pet players, but look at who they were: John McGraw was crazy for Christy Matthewson, Connie Mack had Rube Waddell, Clark Griffith had Walter Johnson. You think they loved these guys because they told good knock-knock jokes? Heck no, you don't become a manager's favorite unless they know you've got some serious special talent. I do think you're being a bit harsh with the incessant questions, you'll never get anywhere asking about every detail like that. I would say that Walter Johnson said it best when rating the fastest of the fastballers. (This isn't an exact quote) There isn't that much of a difference between a fast pitcher and the fastest pitcher, but that tiny difference makes a big difference.

    I'd say that guys like Zumaya, Feller, Dalkowski, Johnson (Walter) and Rusie could all throw with a top speed differential of about two mph. Once you get to 101, a guy throwing 102 isn't that big of a deal, you can barely get a bat around fast enough to make contact.

  7. #182
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    7,672
    Blog Entries
    8
    Well-put. BTW, here's one of only a handful of period articles about Steve and both his wildness and speed. It appeared in Time Magazine in July, 1960...

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/ar...9618-1,00.html

    Steve is referred to as "Steve Dalkowski Jr." because his father, Steve Sr., was a semi-pro and I believe briefly pro shortstop. Nobody called him Steve though...he was "Ratsy." If he played pro ball, both Steve and his sister claimed he anglicized his name. Steve thought he played as "Steve Dalko" and his sister wasn't sure either way.
    Last edited by Dalkowski110; 07-27-2008 at 11:28 PM.
    "They put me in the Hall of Fame? They must really be scraping the bottom of the barrel!"
    -Eppa Rixey, upon learning of his induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    Motafy (MO-ta-fy) vt. -fied, -fying 1. For a pitcher to melt down in a big game situation; to become like Guillermo Mota. 2. The transformation of a good pitcher into one of Guillermo Mota's caliber.

  8. #183
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Northern NE
    Posts
    3,467
    I guess we need to quantify what we mean when we say a guy "throws 100".
    The pitch that Ryan got his 100mph reputation for was measured crossing the plate. Feller's pitch just below 100 was measured the same way.
    Based on that, I firmly believe that Dalkowski would have been over 100mph at the plate (assuming he could get it there), and substantially higher on a gun reading. I don't see hitting 93+ at the plate without a mound on the night after a start and after spending quite a bit of time throwing pitches and trying to get a reading to be inconsistent with that...especially when people there said that ball didn't have much steam on it, compared to others that night. If Zumaya could touch 107 on a particular night on a particular gun calibrated who knows how, maybe Dalko could have touched 110 on that night on that gun...?
    Dalko was supposed to have thrown a ball from home over a fence 440 feet away on a dare...I wonder what the rough initial velocity on that would have been? I think that was supposed to have been in street clothes without a warmup (no wonder his arm blew out with abuse like that and the O's testing him right after a start).

    I guess I wonder how Ryan and Feller would have compared in reputation if they had just been firing 100% full steam pitches all over the place like Dalko did. Most pitchers are going make big adjustments if they keep throwing the ball 8 feet high, but Dalko didn't seem to have that usual feedback mechanism. Some accounts indicate that Weaver had Dalko taking a bit off the ball for control until he had a pitcher's count, and would then allow him to just let it fly...partly, I would assume, to intimidate the batter.
    Can't we send an email to Earl Weaver to ask him about this?!?!!?
    "I throw him four wide ones, then try to pick him off first base." - Preacher Roe on pitching to Musial

  9. #184
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    7,672
    Blog Entries
    8
    "Dalko was supposed to have thrown a ball from home over a fence 440 feet away on a dare...I wonder what the rough initial velocity on that would have been? I think that was supposed to have been in street clothes without a warmup (no wonder his arm blew out with abuse like that and the O's testing him right after a start)."

    Nope. I asked him about that. He said he warmed up for it. I know he destroyed a mannequin with no warmup (as is mentioned in the period article in Time Magazine), but he did warm up for throwing it over the fence.

    "(no wonder his arm blew out with abuse like that and the O's testing him right after a start)."

    It was worse than that. The Orioles warmed him up twice as much as their average pitcher. They were convinced that if he were tired, the ball would finally sink. They also had him run two to three extra laps in the outfield before every start on the same logic. Steve supposedly had a rubber arm, but even rubber breaks if you put too much stress on it.

    "Some accounts indicate that Weaver had Dalko taking a bit off the ball for control until he had a pitcher's count, and would then allow him to just let it fly...partly, I would assume, to intimidate the batter."

    Partially true. Weaver didn't want him using the four-seam, or "rising" fastball (didn't actually rise, though due to his release point problems and speed, it sure must've been a hell of a scary illusion) on first pitches. Rather, he either wanted him to throw a slider or a two-seam fastball (which Steve referred to as his "sinking fastball" and said it "didn't go quite as fast" as the four-seamer) with that first pitch.

    "Can't we send an email to Earl Weaver to ask him about this?!?!!?"

    Now there's an email addy I'd love to have...
    "They put me in the Hall of Fame? They must really be scraping the bottom of the barrel!"
    -Eppa Rixey, upon learning of his induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    Motafy (MO-ta-fy) vt. -fied, -fying 1. For a pitcher to melt down in a big game situation; to become like Guillermo Mota. 2. The transformation of a good pitcher into one of Guillermo Mota's caliber.

  10. #185
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Northern NE
    Posts
    3,467
    Thanks for the info, D110.
    Did you publish anything based on your discussion(s) with Steve?

    A few quotes from a Ron Shelton essay on Dalko which, unfortunately, seems to have a number of factual errors in it...I hope that the quotes are correct!

    Ted Williams - "Fastest ever. I never want to face him again."
    Harry "The Cat" Breechen - "The best arm in the history of baseball."
    Cal Ripken Sr. - "Nobody else was close."
    "I throw him four wide ones, then try to pick him off first base." - Preacher Roe on pitching to Musial

  11. #186
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Middle-of-Nowhere, VA
    Posts
    1,281
    Blog Entries
    1
    My take is there have been guys around that could put it in 95+ (maybe Walter Johnson was the first, maybe even Amos Rusie, whatever).


    But, what I beleive is that there were probably less % of pitchers who could put above 90 overall. ANd today you'd never see a guy in the majors who cant throw 80 except maybe a knucleballer. Whereas back then you probably did like Stu Miller and Eddie Lopat and Dave LaPoint.


    It probably doesnt matter.

  12. #187
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Middle-of-Nowhere, VA
    Posts
    1,281
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by HitchedtoaSpark View Post
    So far the responses have been pleasantly intelligent, thanks guys. I wonder, though, where the crowd is who literally ascribe old-time pitchers' fastballs as equivalent in velocity to today's batting-practice pitches? Believe it or not, but I have read just such a sentiment expressed multiple times on this forum.
    Yeah, that is a bit far fetched. I'd say the avg. would be a max of 5 miles slower. ANd likely less (maybe way less) than that.

  13. #188
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Where all students live...nowhere.
    Posts
    8,900
    That's probably true for pitchers prior to 1890.

    They weren't throwing it hard back then...they were supposed to throw the ball over the plate and let the defense work back then. Pitching didn't become a significant skill until the 1890s IMHO.

    But quickly thereafter, guys figured out that if you threw it harder, you had more margin for error.

  14. #189
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Northern NE
    Posts
    3,467
    Weren't very early pitchers required to throw the ball with a stiff arm and no wrist snap? Then there were a lot of arguments about whether pitchers were REALLY snapping their wrists, and that was dropped because there was no high speed video to settle the argument at the time , and then guys started bending their arms a little, then a lot, and finally it was all dropped.
    I think that the batter could also signal whether he wanted a high or low pitch. Clearly, the emphasis was on getting a pitch for the batter to hit.
    "I throw him four wide ones, then try to pick him off first base." - Preacher Roe on pitching to Musial

  15. #190
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    location, location
    Posts
    190
    Quote Originally Posted by Death to Crawling Things View Post
    what I beleive is that there were probably less % of pitchers who could put above 90 overall.

    But why? Why do you believe this? What is your argument?
    A swing--and a smash--and a gray streak partaking/Of ghostly manoeuvres that follow the whack;/The old earth rebounds with a quiver and quaking/And high flies the dust as he thuds on the track;/The atmosphere reels--and it isn't the comet--/There follows the blur of a phantom at play;/Then out from the reel comes the glitter of steel--/And damned be the fellow that gets in the way.                 A swing and a smash--and the far echoes quiver--/A ripping and rearing and volcanic roar;/And off streaks the Ghost with a shake and a shiver,/To hurdle red hell on the way to a score;/A cross between tidal wave, cyclone and earthquake--/Fire, wind and water all out on a lark;/Then out from the reel comes the glitter of steel,/Plus ten tons of dynamite hitched to a spark.

    --Cobb, Grantland Rice

  16. #191
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Chicago area
    Posts
    233
    Quote Originally Posted by SABR Matt View Post
    That's probably true for pitchers prior to 1890.

    They weren't throwing it hard back then...they were supposed to throw the ball over the plate and let the defense work back then. Pitching didn't become a significant skill until the 1890s IMHO.

    But quickly thereafter, guys figured out that if you threw it harder, you had more margin for error.
    Baseball in the early days was constantly tinkering with the rules. Originally the pitcher had to deliver the ball underhanded with a stiff arm. But I'm sure that pitchers routinely ignored the "stiff arm" requirement and tried to whip the ball in with more speed. The rules were eventually modified to later allow sidearm and then overhand deliveries. While this was happpening the pitching distance was pushed back. The pitcher originally threw from a "box" with the front line just 45' away from home. This was moved to 50', and then in 1893 the modern pitching distance was established. This was a direct response to pitchers such as Amos Rusie and Cy Young, who both threw very hard. I would guess that by 1893, with no restrictions on the pitching motion, pitchers were able to throw as fast as today.

    However, there were good reasons NOT to throw as hard as one could. Pitchers were expected to finish the game and had to pace themselves. And don't forget the catchers. While face masks appeared in the late 1870s the shin guards and chest protectors came much later. Catchers originally played several paces behing the plate and had to receive the pitch either on the bounce or very near the dirt. The difficulty of fielding a 90+ MPH pitch in the dirt should not be underestimated. Pitchers would have to take it easy so their catchers could survive the game intact.

    The choice of pitchers to not throw as hard as possible should not be confused with the inability to to so. On reason Walter Johnson was able to throw fastballs all game long is because the catchers in his day had sufficient protection. His career nearly coincided with the introduction of shin guards.

  17. #192
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Northern NE
    Posts
    3,467
    I think stevebogus has made a lot of good points.
    I do think that the fact that the early pitchers didn't "stretch it out" on a regular basis would have tended to make their maximum speed just a tad slower than modern pitcher. If you trained for a sprint by running almost all long distances, your sprint time would probably suffer somewhat. If a pitcher didn't fire it up full speed very often, his full speed probably wouldn't develop as it would with more "exercise".
    Probably not a huge effect, but I think that it must have been a factor. But, even Walter Johnson claimed that he threw full effort all the time as a very young pitcher.
    "I throw him four wide ones, then try to pick him off first base." - Preacher Roe on pitching to Musial

  18. #193
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Q.U. Hectic
    Posts
    5,170
    Quote Originally Posted by HitchedtoaSpark View Post
    But why? Why do you believe this? What is your argument?
    Isn’t that always the key?

    What I find to be particularly damning to this argument is that when going through the possible defenses, most of them seem to be circumstantial. Simply following Occam’s Razor in search of the explanatoin, we’d have to go quite far down the list before arriving at profound changes in biophysiology that are anomalous to the normal rate of evolution.

    One possibility is that technique and exercise-specific training (yeah we know guys were strong, but how developed were programs intended to harness that strength specifically into throwing a baseball hard and accurately?) were less evolved. That, even assuming the above was true, would be a function of getting less out the same, not getting less out of less.

    Another possibility is that talent scouting and mining hadn’t evolved to the point that baseball was drawing as great a percentage of those with the most gifted arms on the planet. Add segregation arguments here as well. Again, this is circumstantial. The sample didn’t represent the best of the pool to the extent that today’s does.

    Another possibility is that the conditions of the game didn’t require it, at least not as such a high priority. Different skills have been prioritized throughout different eras as responses to macro conditions of said eras. Hopefully, I needn’t elaborate.

    To me, while some of these arguments, if true, might prove the conclusion that previous pitchers didn’t throw as hard, with regularity and frequency, that doesn’t mean they couldn’t (as the function of simply their era or something). There’s a material difference between “didn’t” and “couldn’t” and the former doesn’t necessarily imply the latter.

    Here’s a question though, Mark McGwire used a 35-ounce bat. Joe Dimaggio swung a 42. Is that evidence that pitching has gotten generally faster over the years (even if it’s a function of “did” and not necessarily “could”)?

    I'm not saying I even agree with the above arguments - but they sound a lot better than Walter Johnson being a girly man in comparison to Kip Wells.
    Last edited by digglahhh; 07-29-2008 at 08:32 AM.
    THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT COME WITH A SCORECARD

    In the avy: AZ - Doe or Die

  19. #194
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Where all students live...nowhere.
    Posts
    8,900
    Agreed with pretty much all of that steve...

    The rules made it nearly impossible for pitchers to ac tually demonstrate real skill until they allowed overhand deliveries and side-arm deliveries in the late 1880s...after which, pitchers like Cy Young and Amos Rusie IMMEDIATELY surfaced...that's when pitching became a skill...before that it might as well have been an automatic pitching machine in the box.

  20. #195
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Northern NE
    Posts
    3,467
    Quote Originally Posted by digglahhh View Post
    ...
    Here’s a question though, Mark McGwire used a 35-ounce bat. Joe Dimaggio swung a 42. Is that evidence that pitching has gotten generally faster over the years (even if it’s a function of “did” and not necessarily “could”)?

    I'm not saying I even agree with the above arguments - but they sound a lot better than Walter Johnson being a girly man in comparison to Kip Wells.
    I think that WJ actually wrote the "Lumberjack Song"...he really did want to be a girly just like his dear mama!


    Interesting point on the bat weights. 31-33 ounces is probably the heart of the ML range now. Even immensely strong guys like Mantle and Killebrew used fairly light bats...Dick Allen is the last guy I've heard of over 40 oz (Jim Kaat wrote that Allen swung a 42 ouncer). Ruth was over 50 oz on occasion, typically in the 40s. Hornsby swung a bat in the 40s and ridiculed the tiny bats that players were using around 1960. Ted Williams was an avid proponent of a "light" bat (I think 33-34 ounces at 35") while Clipper was swinging his heavy bat.
    This shift has also been attributed to a greater variety of pitches being used by the average pitcher...the lighter bat gives the batter a bit more time to adjust to a pitch he isn't expecting. Musial said that he liked a light bat because he felt it allowed him to watch the pitch as long as possible and "flick" it out of the catcher's mitt if he desired (his M159 is a fairly thin model that is still popular).
    Many of the old models were not really that huge compared to modern bats, but much heavier wood stock was used (sometimes hickory). Players certainly could have gone lighter with ash if they had wanted to without changing models. I suspect that the shift in bat weight probably reflects an increasing sophistication amongst pitchers and hitters, and possibly better fastballs to deal with, especially since the old timers weren't striking out much with their heavy bats. I think there was also some machismo to deal with early on...real men were supposed to use meaty bats. I think that Splinter wrote that he used a much heavier bat until he met a guy in the minors using a very light bat that wasn't made from ash, believe that he called it Cuban Wood. Ted thought that it was pretty funny, but then tried the bat for the heck of it. He popped a HR, not a bomb but a good shot, and it got him thinking. He ended up dropping weight with ash, not to toothpick range but lighter than he had been using.
    "I throw him four wide ones, then try to pick him off first base." - Preacher Roe on pitching to Musial

  21. #196
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Location
    Yountville, CA (Napa Valley)
    Posts
    2,584
    Quote Originally Posted by HitchedtoaSpark View Post
    It happened again. While perusing the threads this afternoon, I once again ran across the curious statement that pitchers of 20/50/100 years ago threw with "much less" velocity than they pitchers of today do.

    What with all the talk of records and records being broken recently, this doctrine seems to be on just about every Fever-er's lips these days. As I have provided partial rebuttals to these claims in several threads, I thought it would be a good idea to collect them and centralize the argument in this one thread.

    As for myself, I can offer at least four strong reasons/evidences that pitchers of yesteryear threw no slower than today, but I thought I would first toss the question out there.

    Why do you think pitchers 20/50/100 years ago threw with much less velocity than their modern counterparts do?
    Ask anyone who batted against pitchers like Walter Johnson, Lefty Grove, Bob Feller, et al.

    Bob

  22. #197
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    13,347
    Blog Entries
    2
    Apparently the same device used to measure Feller's fastball at 98.6 mph also measured second baseman Mark Koenig's fastest throw at 127 mph. Somehow I doubt that. Years later Bob Turlet was measured at 94.2 mph.

  23. #198
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    6,505
    Blog Entries
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post
    Apparently the same device used to measure Feller's fastball at 98.6 mph also measured second baseman Mark Koenig's fastest throw at 127 mph. Somehow I doubt that. Years later Bob Turlet was measured at 94.2 mph.
    What did they use to measure it, I gather this wasn't the motorcycle that you see in newsreelsy type stuff.

  24. #199
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    13,347
    Blog Entries
    2
    According to study done by Frank Gilbreth, of Cheaper by the Dozen fame Fromme in 1916 threw pitches that had an average speed of between 117 to 148 mph.

  25. #200
    Quote Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post
    Apparently the same device used to measure Feller's fastball at 98.6 mph also measured second baseman Mark Koenig's fastest throw at 127 mph. Somehow I doubt that. Years later Bob Turley was measured at 94.2 mph.
    I'm also in doubt, for sure an error in the method used.

Page 8 of 14 FirstFirst ... 678910 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •