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Define the Eras: Hitting or Pitching

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Originally posted by leecemark
    --There was a very significant difference in the two leagues in the 1930s. The AL enjoyed two decades of rabbit ball, but the NL made a change to their ball in 1931 after the offensive explosion peaked in 1930. The senior curcuit saw offense levels drop to historical norms nearly a full decade before the AL.
    This gives some info on those changes in the 1930s.
    Attached Files

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  • Ubiquitous
    replied
    The AL and NL pretty much had the same ball in use by 1934 or so.

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  • leecemark
    replied
    --There was a very significant difference in the two leagues in the 1930s. The AL enjoyed two decades of rabbit ball, but the NL made a change to their ball in 1931 after the offensive explosion peaked in 1930. The senior curcuit saw offense levels drop to historical norms nearly a full decade before the AL.

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  • 538280
    replied
    Originally posted by csh19792001
    The Golden Age
    1946-1960
    .259 .332 .387 2.29% 3.94
    First of all, great work Chris. It helps us see much more clearly which eras fit into different categories.

    A few things with eras I would have done differently though. I would have probably included 1919 and the 1920s as separate from the 1930s and the early 40s. I would have made the eras 1919-1929 (or '28) could be "The Birth of the Modern Game", and then 1930-1941 could be "Offense continues" or something like that. I don't know why you included 1940 and 1941 in the WWII era either, players really started getting called 1942-1945. After that, very minor. You just should have included 1961 in "The Golden Age" and 1969 should have been in "The Game Finds balance".

    One more question, why exactly do you call 1946-1960 "The Golden Age"?
    Last edited by 538280; 03-19-2006, 07:43 AM.

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  • csh19792001
    replied
    A systematic sketch of the eras

    Eras: I'll going to put the time in and try to be as comprehensive as possible. I'll try to report all the important statistics and we can pick them apart.

    I'll put the highlight the historical zenith in each respective category in RED, the nadir in BLUE. I won't comparatively include the pre foul strike rule eras because with that rule difference (along with many others) comparison of the rate stats is irreconcilable.

    I'll do it by rate stats first (batting average/on base percentage/slugging/home run percentage/ERA):

    The Nascent Years
    1876-1892
    .253 .305 .338 0.60% 3.32

    The Wild 90's
    1893-1900 (Foul strike rule- 1901 NL, 1903 AL)
    .287 .353 .383 0.73% 4.32

    The Deadball Era
    1903-1918
    .253 .316 .332 0.45% 2.83
    NOTE: The deadball era would easily be the lowest in OPS- making it the worst era for hitters in baseball history.

    The Birth of the Modern Game
    1919-1939
    .281 .344 .396 1.33% 4.11

    WWII
    1940-1945
    .260 .328 .362 1.36% 3.65

    The Golden Age
    1946-1960
    .259 .332 .387 2.29% 3.94

    The Decade of The Pitcher
    1961-69
    .249 .314 .374 2.42% 3.56

    The Game Finds Balance
    1970-1992
    .258 .324 .383 2.29% 3.79

    The Homerun Era
    1993-2004
    .267 .337 .423 3.10% 4.47

    Caveat: The Designated Hitter rule skews things a bit. The AL line since 1973 has gone .265/.333/.407, the DHless NL .259/.326/.392. Therefore, eras like 1919-39 should go up EVEN MORE in relative terms, since those kind of numbers were being put up with pitchers hitting.

    Guys: This took A TON OF TIME. I'd also like to go back and research the fluctuations of stolen bases, runs (as well as on a per game/rate basis) another time.

    Thoughts on my lines of demarcation, or general responses?

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  • leecemark
    replied
    --We are not comparing the 20s to the 90s so much as we are to all of baseball history. It was a decade very tilted in favor of batters. Batters approach, at least early in the decade, was the same as it had been in the previous one but the level of batting success was much higher - because conditions favored hitters.
    --The 1890s were an even more explosive offensive decade than the 1990s - and HR were even less common than the 1920s. Conditions can favor batters without being condusive to the HR ball.

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    The hitters of the 1990s are not doing bad at all, it's not just home runs. The NL batting average from 1990-1999 was .261. The NL batting average in the previous decade 1980-1989 was .254. Going seven points higher in one decade is a fair leap considering there were no major rule changes. Especially when you consider ther are probably more hitters in the 1990s going for the long ball. I'm sure the words expansion will appear, the ball, the strike zone, all to be considered but all that doesn't change the fact, seven points in a decade is a fair leap.

    NL batting average.
    1960-69----.254
    1970-79----.258
    1980-89----.254
    1990-99----.261

    I used the NL since I went back to the 1960s and it was an easier comparison than the AL over that period with the DH coming into baseball during that period.

    Batting average of DH only
    1980-89-------.263
    1990-99-------.272

    The 1990s hitters have more than home runs going their way in the 1990s.
    Last edited by SHOELESSJOE3; 03-18-2006, 02:43 PM.

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Originally posted by leecemark
    --Plus it wouldn't make sense to call only one era a hitters era with the rest nuetral or pitchers. The 20s favored average over power, but was just as offensive. BAs from the 20s/30s need to be taken with the same dose of salt as HR totals form the 90s/present.

    Go light on the salt on the 1920s. One of the reasons for much of the high scoring was hitters going to the plate with one thought in mind, make contact, hitters shortening up on the bat with two strikes. It's not all that hitters had their way much of it had to do with it being contact baseball at the time.

    I don't dismiss the changes in 1920, the ball, banning trick deliveries and replacing dirty scuffed up balls with new clean balls.
    Last edited by SHOELESSJOE3; 03-18-2006, 02:17 PM.

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  • leecemark
    replied
    --Plus it wouldn't make sense to call only one era a hitters era with the rest nuetral or pitchers. The 20s favored average over power, but was just as offensive. BAs from the 20s/30s need to be taken with the same dose of salt as HR totals form the 90s/present.

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  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    bill james analysis:

    1876-77 normal era
    1878-80 pitcher era (slightly weighted as such)
    1881-86 normal or transition era
    1887-97 hitters era (heavily weighted)
    1898-02 normal or transitional era
    1903-19 pitchers era (heavily weighted)
    1920-28 transition era
    1929-39 hitters era (moderately weighted)
    1940-62 normal era
    1963-72 pitchers era (moderately weighted)
    1973-93 normal era
    1994-05 hitters era (moderately weighted)

    Leave a comment:


  • plask_stirlac
    replied
    Just off my head. Maybe a little off.
    1870s-1890 Pitching
    1891-1904 Hitting
    1908-1919 Pitching
    1920-1941 Hitting
    WWII - Pitching?
    1946-1962 Hitting
    1963-1986 Pitching... seriously. Definitely the 70's.
    1987 Hitting, with good pitching
    1988-1992 Pitching
    1993-present Hitting

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  • 538280
    replied
    Originally posted by bkmckenna
    outrageous pitching stats put up in the 1880s and 1910s - unsure how they could be hitter's eras
    In the 1870s and 1880s most teams didn't have more than three to five pitchers (some had only one), and that caused the out of this world IP totals. That doesn't mean the pitchers were successful though. They pitched lots of innings, but not at a high level of effectiveness. Of course, until the 1890s it is completely unclear how good the pitchers were because they often pitched underhand and were asked to put the ball where the hitters wanted it. Defense back then was probably like 75% fielding and 25% pitching as opposed to the other way around today.

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  • RuthMayBond
    replied
    Originally posted by 85cards
    1900-1919 pitchers
    1920-1940 hitters
    1941-1960 average
    1961-1968 pitchers
    1969-1993 average
    1994-2004 hitters
    2005-????
    Both 1943 and 1950 were average? 1901 was pitcher but 1943 was average?

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  • 85cards
    replied
    1900-1919 pitchers
    1920-1940 hitters
    1941-1960 average
    1961-1968 pitchers
    1969-1993 average
    1994-2004 hitters
    2005-????

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  • Ubiquitous
    replied
    The 50's wasn't a pitchers era nor the first part of the 60's.
    Nor would I call anything pre 1900's as a pitchers era. Way too primitive of a game.

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