Thorburn: Raising aces: time to recalibrate

From Doug Thorburn at Baseball Prospectus on November 27, 2018:

A lot can change in two years.

The last article that I published with Baseball Prospectus was more than two years ago, at the end of the 2016 regular season. It was a celebration of the professional baseball life of Jose Fernandez, possibly the greatest young pitcher of this generation, and an athlete whose pure joy for the game was infectious. It was a farewell, not just to Fern, but to a BP family that I had been lucky enough to call my own for five years.

The MLB game has morphed in the two years since I last walked these hallowed halls. Pitchers and managers have changed the way they approach the management of a pitching staff. Consider that starters are throwing fewer pitches per game and fewer total innings per season as relievers infiltrate the middle innings. The word “bullpen” has morphed into the gerund “bullpenning.” We not only have closers but now we have “openers,” too. Pitchers are piling up strikeouts at an astounding rate, walks are up in general, and home runs are on the spike, harkening a golden era of Three True Outcomes.

Let’s dive a bit deeper into some of the specific trends that have emerged in MLB over the past few years.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: November 27, 2018. Last Updated: November 27, 2018.