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  • The "second dead ball era

    I've read a lot on here about the "2nd dead ball era" I'm assuming that it refers to 1963-68 when the mound was high and the strike zone was big. But looking at the power numbers, it was far from a dead ball era.

    Let's compare that 6 year era, against the 70's and 80's, looking at 40 HR seasons.

    63-68
    66 Allen 40
    63 Stuart 42
    67 Killebrew 44
    67 Yaz 44
    63 McCovey 44
    68 Howard 44
    63 Aaron 44
    66 Aaron 44
    64 Mays 47
    66 Robinson 49
    64 Kiilebrew 49
    65 Mays 52

    1970s
    70 Yaz 40
    70 Perez 40
    73 Aaron 40
    72 Bench 40
    70 Killebrew 41
    73 Evans 41
    70 Williams 42
    73 Johnson 43
    73 Stargell 44
    70 Howard 44
    79 Thomas 45
    70 Bench 45
    78 Rice 46
    71 Aaron 47
    71 Stargell 47
    77 Foster 52

    1980s
    83 Schmidt 40
    85 Evans 40
    80 Oglivie 41
    80 R Jackson 41
    84 Armas 43
    87 Murphy 44
    89 Mitchell 47
    87 Bell 47
    80 Schmidt 48
    87 Dawson 49
    87 McGwire 49

    So for that 6 year period, there were more 40 HR seasons that the 10 years of the 80s, and not many less than the 10 years of the 70s. Deadball?? hardly
    Last edited by JR Hart; 09-09-2012, 09:41 PM.
    This week's Giant

    #5 in games played as a Giant with 1721 , Bill Terry

  • #2
    Originally posted by JR Hart View Post
    I've read a lot on here about the "2nd dead ball era" I'm assuming that it refers to 1963-68 when the mound was high and the strike zone was big. But looking at the power numbers, it was far from a dead ball era.

    Let's compare that 6 year era, against the 70's and 80's, looking at 40 HR seasons.

    63-68
    66 Allen 40
    63 Stuart 42
    67 Killebrew 44
    67 Yaz 44
    63 McCovey 44
    68 Howard 44
    63 Aaron 44
    66 Aaron 44
    64 Mays 47
    66 Robinson 49
    64 Kiilebrew 49
    65 Mays 52

    1970s
    70 Yaz 40
    70 Perez 40
    73 Aaron 40
    72 Bench 40
    70 Killebrew 41
    73 Evans 41
    70 Williams 42
    73 Johnson 43
    73 Stargell 44
    70 Howard 44
    79 Thomas 45
    70 Bench 45
    78 Rice 46
    71 Aaron 47
    71 Stargell 47
    77 Foster 52

    1980s
    83 Schmidt 40
    85 Evans 40
    80 Oglivie 41
    80 R Jackson 41
    84 Armas 43
    87 Murphy 44
    89 Mitchell 47
    87 Bell 47
    80 Schmidt 48
    87 Dawson 49
    87 McGwire 49

    So for that 6 year period, there were more 40 HR seasons that the 10 years of the 80s, and not many less than the 10 years of the 70s. Deadball?? hardly
    Contact hitting and BBs suffered more than HRs. I often call the '2nd Deadball Era' the 'ERA Era'. The 70s saw increased aggressiveness on the base paths especially on the turf fields of 3 Rivers, Riverfront, Veterans, Candlestick, Busch and the Olympic.

    The ERA era saw relief pitching become more imp[important every year. Gloves became bigger and catchers, led by Randy Hundley; adapted the 1-handed catching style. My first 2 or 3 years as a fan were in the ERA era and the lowering of the mound and the adjustment of the strike zone were big stories at the time.

    Why was it ALWAYS Jim Ray Hart? Middle names are rarely used on an everyday basis. It is interesting that Hart's best years were during the ERA era.

    stevegallanter.wordpress.com
    Last edited by Steven Gallanter; 09-13-2012, 09:59 AM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Runs per game were quite low. Since 1871, there have been 22 seasons in which teams averaged under 4.00 runs scored per game, and 7 of them were between 1963 and 1972. 1968 was the 2nd lowest ever.

      Comment


      • #4
        Looking at power numbers, 1963-1968 DID see HRs more often than the 70s or 80s.

        But I don't think Dead Ball only relates to power. The 1st Dead Ball Era saw less HRs than the 20s, true; but it was also called the Dead Ball Era because batting averages seemed less inflated that the decades BEFORE.

        Look at players who batted .300+ in any one season from 1963-1968 (must qual. for batting title):
        In 6 seasons of 20 teams:
        41 players batted .300 = .342 per team per season
        83 times = .692 per team per season

        70s (24-26 teams [I averaged for 25]):
        121 players batted .300 = .480 per team per season
        235 times = .936 per team per season

        80s (26 teams [adjusted for 1981]):
        128 players batted .300 = .492 per team per season
        247 times = .950 per team per season

        Comment


        • #5
          That's the league runs per game avarages from 1947-2008. To the untutored eye 1963-1972 seem to stand out. But then again perhaps I am wrong and it was the bandbox era are the OP is trying to imply.

          1947 4.355
          1948 4.579
          1949 4.607
          1950 4.852
          1951 4.547
          1952 4.176
          1953 4.607
          1954 4.376
          1955 4.485
          1956 4.452
          1957 4.306
          1958 4.283
          1959 4.383
          1960 4.314
          1961 4.525
          1962 4.461
          1963 3.947
          1964 4.036
          1965 3.988
          1966 3.994
          1967 3.769
          1968 3.418
          1969 4.072
          1970 4.342
          1971 3.889
          1972 3.686
          1973 4.214
          1974 4.125
          1975 4.213
          1976 3.995
          1977 4.471
          1978 4.103
          1979 4.458
          1980 4.288
          1981 3.998
          1982 4.298
          1983 4.308
          1984 4.257
          1985 4.331
          1986 4.409
          1987 4.723
          1988 4.138
          1989 4.132
          1990 4.256
          1991 4.308
          1992 4.117
          1993 4.598
          1994 4.923
          1995 4.847
          1996 5.036
          1997 4.767
          1998 4.79
          1999 5.085
          2000 5.14
          2001 4.775
          2002 4.618
          2003 4.728
          2004 4.814
          2005 4.592
          2006 4.858
          2007 4.797
          2008 4.493

          Comment


          • #6
            I believe the 1960's are referred to as the" Second Dead Ball Era" because of the low batting averages, low OBP, and low runs scored.
            Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by PVNICK View Post
              That's the league runs per game avarages from 1947-2008. To the untutored eye 1963-1972 seem to stand out. But then again perhaps I am wrong and it was the bandbox era are the OP is trying to imply.
              Imply- to indicate or suggest without being explicitly stated Because I showed the number of power hitters who did well, does mean that I said it was a "band box" era. I meant that it was improperly named.

              You used this: A straw man argument - an attempt to refute a given proposition by showing that a slightly different or inaccurate form of the proposition (the "straw man") is absurd or ridiculous, relying on the audience not to notice that the argument does not actually apply to the original proposition.
              This week's Giant

              #5 in games played as a Giant with 1721 , Bill Terry

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by JR Hart View Post
                Imply- to indicate or suggest without being explicitly stated Because I showed the number of power hitters who did well, does mean that I said it was a "band box" era. I meant that it was improperly named.

                You used this: A straw man argument - an attempt to refute a given proposition by showing that a slightly different or inaccurate form of the proposition (the "straw man") is absurd or ridiculous, relying on the audience not to notice that the argument does not actually apply to the original proposition.
                whatever. You conveniently omitted commenting on the runs per game data that was the actual basis but I 'm glad you have access to the modern dictoniary of sophistry.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by JR Hart View Post
                  You used this: A straw man argument - an attempt to refute a given proposition by showing that a slightly different or inaccurate form of the proposition (the "straw man") is absurd or ridiculous, relying on the audience not to notice that the argument does not actually apply to the original proposition.
                  And you can you can take it from a man who knows, the creator of the OPS Hall of Fame thread--and this one too, come to think of it. "The Sixties were the "Second Dead Ball Era,'" is the original proposition; the one attacked is "The Sixties were marked by a decline in the number of forty-home-run seasons."

                  I gotta admit, JR, you've got a pair, and they're solid brass.
                  Indeed the first step toward finding out is to acknowledge you do not satisfactorily know already; so that no blight can so surely arrest all intellectual growth as the blight of cocksureness.--CS Peirce

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    So JR Hart, your argument is that they shouldn't call it a "dead ball era" because the ball wasn't dead enough to prevent guys from hitting 40 homers in a season?
                    Baseball Junk Drawer

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      here is the annual HR totals from 1947 - 2007
                      I have made no effort to prorate based on the assorted expansions. People can draw their own conclusions.

                      AL NL total
                      679 886 1,565 1947
                      710 845 1,555 1948
                      769 935 1,704 1949
                      973 1,100 2,073 1950
                      839 1,024 1,863 1951
                      794 907 1,701 1952
                      879 1,197 2,076 1953
                      823 1,114 1,937 1954
                      961 1,263 2,224 1955
                      1,075 1,219 2,294 1956
                      1,024 1,178 2,202 1957
                      1,057 1,183 2,240 1958
                      1,091 1,159 2,250 1959
                      1,086 1,042 2,128 1960
                      1,534 1,196 2,730 1961
                      1,552 1,449 3,001 1962
                      1,489 1,215 2,704 1963
                      1,551 1,211 2,762 1964
                      1,370 1,318 2,688 1965
                      1,365 1,378 2,743 1966
                      1,197 1,102 2,299 1967
                      1,104 891 1,995 1968
                      1,649 1,470 3,119 1969
                      1,746 1,683 3,429 1970
                      1,484 1,379 2,863 1971
                      1,175 1,359 2,534 1972
                      1,552 1,550 3,102 1973
                      1,369 1,280 2,649 1974
                      1,465 1,233 2,698 1975
                      1,122 1,113 2,235 1976
                      2,013 1,631 3,644 1977
                      1,680 1,276 2,956 1978
                      2,006 1,427 3,433 1979
                      1,844 1,243 3,087 1980
                      1,062 719 1,781 1981
                      2,080 1,299 3,379 1982
                      1,903 1,398 3,301 1983
                      1,980 1,278 3,258 1984
                      2,178 1,424 3,602 1985
                      2,290 1,523 3,813 1986
                      2,634 1,824 4,458 1987
                      1,901 1,279 3,180 1988
                      1,718 1,365 3,083 1989
                      1,796 1,521 3,317 1990
                      1,953 1,430 3,383 1991
                      1,776 1,262 3,038 1992
                      2,074 1,956 4,030 1993
                      1,774 1,532 3,306 1994
                      2,164 1,917 4,081 1995
                      2,742 2,220 4,962 1996
                      2,477 2,163 4,640 1997
                      2,496 2,568 5,064 1998
                      2,635 2,893 5,528 1999
                      2,688 3,005 5,693 2000
                      2,506 2,952 5,458 2001
                      2,464
                      2,595 5,059 2002
                      2,499 2,708 5,207 2003
                      2,605 2,846 5,451 2004
                      2,437
                      2,580
                      5,017
                      2005

                      2,546
                      2,840
                      5,386
                      2006

                      2,252
                      2,705
                      4,957
                      2007

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The term is also used because pitchers had a significant advantage over batters.
                        "Allen Sutton Sothoron pitched his initials off today."--1920s article

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JR Hart View Post
                          I've read a lot on here about the "2nd dead ball era" I'm assuming that it refers to 1963-68 when the mound was high and the strike zone was big. But looking at the power numbers, it was far from a dead ball era.

                          Let's compare that 6 year era, against the 70's and 80's, looking at 40 HR seasons.

                          63-68
                          66 Allen 40
                          63 Stuart 42
                          67 Killebrew 44
                          67 Yaz 44
                          63 McCovey 44
                          68 Howard 44
                          63 Aaron 44
                          66 Aaron 44
                          64 Mays 47
                          66 Robinson 49
                          64 Kiilebrew 49
                          65 Mays 52

                          1970s
                          70 Yaz 40
                          70 Perez 40
                          73 Aaron 40
                          72 Bench 40
                          70 Killebrew 41
                          73 Evans 41
                          70 Williams 42
                          73 Johnson 43
                          73 Stargell 44
                          70 Howard 44
                          79 Thomas 45
                          70 Bench 45
                          78 Rice 46
                          71 Aaron 47
                          71 Stargell 47
                          77 Foster 52

                          1980s
                          83 Schmidt 40
                          85 Evans 40
                          80 Oglivie 41
                          80 R Jackson 41
                          84 Armas 43
                          87 Murphy 44
                          89 Mitchell 47
                          87 Bell 47
                          80 Schmidt 48
                          87 Dawson 49
                          87 McGwire 49

                          So for that 6 year period, there were more 40 HR seasons that the 10 years of the 80s, and not many less than the 10 years of the 70s. Deadball?? hardly
                          That's interesting. I always considered the time from about 1960 all the way through 1992 to be a period where pitching and defense got more and more effective at reducing offense. You see little blips in 1977 and 1987 which were both suspected of being due to a livlier ball on average, but basically the rules changes helped offense rise only slightly over the entire period because teams were using specialized relievers and fielders were at an all time high, so I consider 1960-1992 to be a big continuum, It is odd that expansion did not raise offense. Both league shot up around '93 and '94 with expansion, even if you exclude Mile high stadium. I really believe that around '93 and '94 the best hitters started to use better mechanics to drive the ball. We also got more smaller ballparks.


                          Now I have always felt that hitters actually got worse on the whole over this period! not because of their stats which could be explained by pitching and defense, but because of their mechanics. I see all star game footage of Joe Morgan and Cesar Cedeno, and they are swinging the bat around with their arms but barely using their lower bodies to drive it. The swings on the 70s and 80s in general look weak, and disconnected. Maybe it is because of the high strike and hitters not being able to set up their mechanics to just drive the low pitch. To drive a high strike requires a swing that does look different and more like those swings I described from the 70s. The best power hitters drove the ball well, but the real question is if you took the good contact guys who also hit with solid power, and could have concentrated on the low stike, could they have hit big time home run totals. I think so.

                          I think the biggest issue with plate approach was that with the high and low strike, hitters could guess half the time, and the quality of breaking balls and fastballs were note great enough that hitters HAD to look for one or the other. When breaking balls got better, hitters had to guess high-low and fast or breaking (or changeup).

                          I do think that the low offensive setting resulted in hitters being willing to just put the ball in play though rather than drive it optimally, but we never really have seen great hitting numbers in a league with a high strike, and pitchers with modern stuff.


                          But no one ever suggested that the ball was actually deader during that period.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by brett View Post
                            That's interesting. I always considered the time from about 1960 all the way through 1992 to be a period where pitching and defense got more and more effective at reducing offense. You see little blips in 1977 and 1987 which were both suspected of being due to a livlier ball on average, but basically the rules changes helped offense rise only slightly over the entire period because teams were using specialized relievers and fielders were at an all time high, so I consider 1960-1992 to be a big continuum, It is odd that expansion did not raise offense. Both league shot up around '93 and '94 with expansion, even if you exclude Mile high stadium. I really believe that around '93 and '94 the best hitters started to use better mechanics to drive the ball. We also got more smaller ballparks.


                            Now I have always felt that hitters actually got worse on the whole over this period! not because of their stats which could be explained by pitching and defense, but because of their mechanics. I see all star game footage of Joe Morgan and Cesar Cedeno, and they are swinging the bat around with their arms but barely using their lower bodies to drive it. The swings on the 70s and 80s in general look weak, and disconnected. Maybe it is because of the high strike and hitters not being able to set up their mechanics to just drive the low pitch. To drive a high strike requires a swing that does look different and more like those swings I described from the 70s. The best power hitters drove the ball well, but the real question is if you took the good contact guys who also hit with solid power, and could have concentrated on the low stike, could they have hit big time home run totals. I think so.

                            I think the biggest issue with plate approach was that with the high and low strike, hitters could guess half the time, and the quality of breaking balls and fastballs were note great enough that hitters HAD to look for one or the other. When breaking balls got better, hitters had to guess high-low and fast or breaking (or changeup).

                            I do think that the low offensive setting resulted in hitters being willing to just put the ball in play though rather than drive it optimally, but we never really have seen great hitting numbers in a league with a high strike, and pitchers with modern stuff.


                            But no one ever suggested that the ball was actually deader during that period.
                            This is just one of the reasons among a few others that played a part in the home run derby that began in the early to mid 1990s. the umps not calling the high "rule book" strike, a joke. In the book it was and still is a point midway between the belt and the shoulders, the 1990's saw the high strike brought down around the belt by the umps not by the rule book, hitters delight.

                            Years ago the batter would swing more often at the "borderline high" strike, because at that time it might be called a strike, a batter in the count with two strikes could not take a chance. Today, hitter almost always watch it go by, almost always called a ball.

                            I saw Mantle Killebrew and some other past strong hitters have some difficulty "driving getting on top of that high pitch." Now and then today you will see some batters missing, fouling back or pop up on that high pitch.

                            If you watched Mariano Rivera, almost always using the cutter to get two strikes and then he goes upstairs and it worked for him, the high borderline pitch.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Jeter and 4000, you just never can tell in this game, about the player, late career.
                              Remember Ken Griffey Jr, then Arod with the home run totals.
                              Looks great this year but who can say how he performs in a couple of years.
                              Not writing him off...................just saying, you never can tell what may take place down the road.

                              Comment

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