AL vs. NL
In 1973, the AL introduced Major League Baseball Rule 6.10. The Designated Hitter. The designated hitter idea first originated in 1906 by Philadelphia Athletics manager, Connie Mack. And the rule has been argued back and forth by baseball fans ever since. Here are some points of view from our fellow Pinetar coaches:
Bagwellbluff(Houston Roughnecks): Hard to believe that the DH rule is over 30 years old now, but my
feelings have remained constant: it dumbs down the game. A NL manager
has to actually manage, make decisions and weigh risks when to pinch hit for a pitcher? More is required of a NL manager as far
as strategy and roster decisions. This is true in both RL and HBD. No
reflection on those AL managers; I own an AL club. I'm just stating that
with this particular rule, HBD does a great job of reflecting real life. Just plug in some
neanderthal who can't play the field any more but can still hit with
power, then never worry about pinch-hitting for your pitcher. AL
baseball is baseball-lite.
Horvie78(Milwaukee Magnitude): This is my first HBD season in the AL. I think that I'm going to like it for the following reasons:
1) I can put a sub-par defensive player in the lineup and not worry about him making costly def plays. 2) With more players in the lineup, it will be easier to find hitters who are on a "hot streak"
3) While reading the play-by-play, I will no longer get frustrated when I
get the bases loaded and my pitcher just happens to be up next....OR
when my opponent's .100 hitting-pitcher just happens to get a hit
against me in a critical situation.
Fantasy Frea(New Orleans Zephrs): I am a NL guy but I don't hate the DH. They should just change the rules
where all teams have a DH, but also have the pitchers have to hit.
Everybody wins, except for maybe the pitchers.You get offense, players might stay on the same teams longer, people
that still like the old school way will still get to see the pitchers
hit and all managers would have to deal with double switches and that
kind of thing.
Arfy(Louisville Arf Arf Arf Arfs): I am NL, all the way. The strategy of the game is why I love the game. It is a weakness in the middle of the lineup that you must work around. Do I let the pitcher hit? Do I use one of my pitch hitters? Is it too early to be going to the bullpen? I could always do a double switch. There are just so many more strategy factors to the NL And that is why I love it!
Brentcnb(Oklahoma City Prariedogs): I have mixed feelings like I suppose most people do. Baseball is one
of the few sports that has such a long history that makes it really fun
to compare today's players to say those who played in the 1920s, and for it to continue you can't change the game much, and I appreciate
that. On the other hand my favorite ML team is in the AL and I really
enjoy seeing a DH hit rather than a P. I guess I like both leagues but
for different reasons.
Ghutton9(Seattle Strikers): I'm a fan of the DH. I don't see any reason a pitcher should have to bat. It's boring to watch a guy bat that has no clue and is usually an
automatic out. While it takes some strategy out of the game, I
personally would rather see a pitcher not get removed from a game just
because he's coming up to bat.
Thanks guys for pitching in. So how have the AL and NL matchup up in Pine Tar? Well let's take a look.
World Series Victories:
But the NL has won 5 of the last 8 titles.
Now does the DH make the game more exciting? My first thought was....perhaps. What would a stat be that we could look back upon and determine if games were more exciting? One of my first thoughts was, "how about 1 run games?". So I started there, I'll look back at the last 10 seasons. How many teams have won at least 30 games by 1 run? With the American League the answer was 2. Dover in Season 20 being the highest with a 31-15 record in 1 run games. When I looked at the NL I came up with 16 teams winning at least 30+ by one run or more. The highest being Iowa City in Season 21 going 39-23 in 1 run games. So then I thought...maybe it's just because the NL teams have been winning more. So I decided to go back all the way back and look at season 1-15. National League: 16 teams win 30+ 1 run wins and American League: 5. It seems to me at least from a numbers stand point that the NL would win the Statistical battle. What do you think?
Single Season records to aim for:(X means coach is no longer in Pine Tar and therefore is dead to me)
Home Runs- Jim Blair 69 in Season 3 for Tampa Bay Thunder
At Bats- Del Broome 747 in Season 23 for Fresno Regulators
Hitting Streak- 38 by 3 different players
RBI's- Bob Wood 203 in Season 6 for X
Stolen Bases- 166 in Season 5 for X
Complete Games- 15 by Wilt Sizemore in Season 25 for Fresno Regulators(17-13 record that season)
ERA 1.79(Min 162 inn) by John Rucker in Season 20 for Seattle Strikers
Saves- 54 by 2 different Players
Strikeouts- 273 in Season 10 by X
Wins- 25 in Season 1 by X
Runners caught stealing- 103 in season 25 by X(This one shocked me!)
Good Play by a SS- 38 in Season 17 by X
25th Anniversary of Pine Tar- One thing that sucked about not doing Ary's Ramblings at all last season is that I had plans to do some recognition to all of the original Pine Tar owners. So I will be doing this all season long with most every episode of AR, even though we are currently in our 26th season..
A special thanks to all 6 of our original Pine Tar owners.
Starbuckdc Fargo Wood Chippers 2 WS wins
Greygoose123-Jacksonville Juice 1 WS win
Jbburner- Cincinnati Firestorm 3 Div titles
Phillies26- Philadelphia Moneymakers 4 Div titles
Toe64- Colorado Springs Night Watchmen 1 WS win
Nw1- Tampa Bay Thunder 2 WS wins
And one last shoutout to Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux for being elected into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame today. I grew up a Braves fan in the 80's and remember Tom Glavine's first season in the Major's in which he lost 17 games. I didn't think he was ever going to get his shit straight. And then throughout his career we always knew that if he could get out of the first inning, he would be okay.
And for Maddux, how many 2 hour games did he pitch? I never saw anyone work so fast as he did. Strike strike strike, let's go home. Stats say that he pitched 6 complete games in his career in which he threw less than 90 pitches, including a 78 pitch performance in 1997. And what about that season that he nearly had as many wins as walks in a season? 19 wins and 20 walks in 1997. That's crazy! Congrats to Frank Thomas as well, even though I never really followed the AL teams.