Do you want a DH?


#1

When you pitch do you prefer a DH, or do you like to hit?
This question is directed to those who are position players as well as pitchers :slight_smile:


#2

no. i like hitting. and i hate getting DHed for…also i always seem to hit better when i pitch.


#3

id rather not hit, i like sitting there and thinking about what i have to doo and just chillin until the next half inning, but then again im not a great hitter anyways:P


#4

i used to dont care, but now, im facing guys throwing 90+ mph and i just cant handle it. .170 last year as a pitcher/left fielder this year as yet to begin and i can already hear balls whistle by my worthless bat being swinged around blindly… god i love baseball!


#5

I miss the old days when pitchers hit. The woods were full of them—guys who knew what to do with a bat. I myself wasn’t much of a hitter, but I could bunt, and I could hit to the opposite field, and I got a few RBIs now and then. But now—you only see hitting pitchers in the National League, and all I can say is that either they should adopt the DH or the whole idea should be scrapped. 8)


#6

The DH and how its used has changed since the its earliest days in MLB, and continues to change as time goes by, so I don’t worry about it much, one way or the other.

As for how its used at the lower levels, I’m not quite sure. My son was a PO, and I missed seeing someone who was a pretty darn good hitter, not get the chance to swing, but when I thought about it dispassionately, I had a different feeling, and here’s why.

I don’t think people realize just how difficult it is to be considered an elite or very good pitcher, and at the same time hit well. And, its much more difficult the higher the level gets. But there are only so many practice minutes available, and in order to get the most out of a practice session whether its hitting, pitching, fielding, or base running, a player can’t walk through it. He can do that, but he won’t be maximizing his time.

Yes, there are players who do very well at both, but how many really can say they’re doing as well at each as they could if they only concentrated on one of them? So, IMO if a player is really good at one or the other and only tinkers with the one he’s not really good at, and has aspirations of getting drafted or getting a good ‘ship to a top notch program, he should quit tinkering and devote 100% of his time to the one he’s good at.


#7

Where I am at currently for college we get DH’ed for and I hate it. I love to hit, and I pulled .450 my senior year. What isn’t to say I can’t hit .250-.300 in college AND pitch like I did in high school? I love hitting just as much as pitching.


#8

Well, here’s where me as an advocate of using numbers for evaluating HS players, and the reality of college coaches and almost everyone else patting a player on the back and telling him how great it was he batted .450 in HS, then as soon as that player is out of earshot, has them tossing those stats in the round file, and laughing at the player’s naiveté behind his back, differ.

You see, that .450 BA in HS has absolutely no meaning because there’s no way to reference it. Was it a big school or a small one? Were most of the hits gathered against weak pitching

To bat .450 in 200 ABs, a player needs 90 hits. But just 25 fewer hits would bring the average down to .325, which is good in the ML, but wouldn’t inspire awe in even the poorest HS pitcher. Given that 100 ABs is about normal for most regular HS players, that would mean just 12 or 13 hits each year would bring a player from .325 to .450. My guess is, every HS team plays at least 5-6 game a season against weak pitching, and 2 hits a game would be all it would take.

But in the last 5 seasons, we’ve only had 1 player who had more than 100 ABs, and he only had 101, so it looks like it would be even more likely that a high BA was at best, “questionable”. But even it if weren’t for that reason, the likelihood of the scorer actually knowing how to judge the difference between a hit and an error, or no bias ever entering the equation, is very unlikely as well.

In short, while you may well have been a true .450 hitter in the HS environment you played in, the chances you’ll be a true .450 hitter in a college environment where they should be much better pitchers on average, is unlikely. Plus, knowing you’ll have to spend a lot more time working on your pitching because the hitters will be better on average means you’ll have less time to work on your hitting, it shouldn’t be too difficult to understand why the coach won’t let you hit.

He doesn’t want a .250-.300 hitter! Now if he’s a lousy coach and can’t find a DH that hits .300-350 out of 35 players he recruited, he’s a pretty bad coach. Would you give up 50 points or more if you were the coach, not to mention taking the chance on having one of you top pitchers get injured doing something he didn’t have to do so he could feel good?

Now I admit I’m a stat advocate, but not to compare players across teams. I don’t mind using them to compare players using league games only, but that’s because they’re all playing against he same teams. But even then, I’m skeptical. :wink:


#9

[quote=“scorekeeper”]You see, that .450 BA in HS has absolutely no meaning because there’s no way to reference it. Was it a big school or a small one? Were most of the hits gathered against weak pitching[/quote]I know exactly where you are coming from and I understand the concern. Coming out of a very competitive league made up of mid sized schools in CO, we faced average pitching, though some of the guys we played threw mid to upper 80’s, and I still managed to hit like this.

[quote=“scorekeeper”]To bat .450 in 200 ABs, a player needs 90 hits. But just 25 fewer hits would bring the average down to .325, which is good in the ML, but wouldn’t inspire awe in even the poorest HS pitcher. Given that 100 ABs is about normal for most regular HS players, that would mean just 12 or 13 hits each year would bring a player from .325 to .450. My guess is, every HS team plays at least 5-6 game a season against weak pitching, and 2 hits a game would be all it would take. [/quote]My senior year I had around 75 at bats or so? I say that loosely because I cannot remember extremely well, but I know we played about 25-30 games, and assuming I got in 3 at bats each game (I hit in the 5 spot), that number of at bats is attainable.

[quote=“scorekeeper”]In short, while you may well have been a true .450 hitter in the HS environment you played in, the chances you’ll be a true .450 hitter in a college environment where they should be much better pitchers on average, is unlikely. Plus, knowing you’ll have to spend a lot more time working on your pitching because the hitters will be better on average means you’ll have less time to work on your hitting, it shouldn’t be too difficult to understand why the coach won’t let you hit.[/quote]Once again you are completely right. Pitching and hitting both take a lot of work, however, I simply think that it is the power of will that will either make or break a hitter and here is why I say that. While most guys at college go out and party on a friday night, I unwind by hitting an hour in the shed. My free time is spent understanding hitting and pitching, making sure I am in the best shape possible (currently hard with a pulled groin, but you know what I mean). I bought myself a tee to work off of as my birthday present and it sits in the back of my car, always, with a bat and some balls. I always have the chance to go out and hit anywhere I am at. I try to get hitting in 1-2 times a day, 30 minute period each, and on the weekends, I look more towards hitting for an hour. Guaranteed that I’m doing most of this off of tee work and drills, but my mechanics from it have become extremely sound. You can consistently work on things with hitting, where pitching you can only throw so much and then your arm falls off.

[quote=“scorekeeper”]He doesn’t want a .250-.300 hitter! Now if he’s a lousy coach and can’t find a DH that hits .300-350 out of 35 players he recruited, he’s a pretty bad coach. Would you give up 50 points or more if you were the coach, not to mention taking the chance on having one of you top pitchers get injured doing something he didn’t have to do so he could feel good? [/quote]I’m not saying to settle with this average, but let’s think for a moment. A .250-.300 average isn’t bad, nor is it great, but in context of a freshman hitting this average first year in college baseball, I would say that is pretty decent. DH’s where I am at are just position players who have a bat, and not a glove, if you get my drift.

[quote=“scorekeeper”]Now I admit I’m a stat advocate, but not to compare players across teams. I don’t mind using them to compare players using league games only, but that’s because they’re all playing against he same teams. But even then, I’m skeptical. ;)[/quote]There are lies, damn lies, and then statistics as mark twain once said, but you do prove a valid point. I just hate to see some people labeled as a statistic when they can be so much more. The heart I am willing to give cannot be measured by the mark of a pen, which is where I find many people cannot see. We automatically expect results but don’t bother to focus on how a player chooses to react to opposition, to grow, to learn, and to understand. I would rather develop someone who is willing to give it all, then someone who doesn’t. That is all I am saying.


#10

[quote=“CSOleson”]I know exactly where you are coming from and I understand the concern. Coming out of a very competitive league made up of mid sized schools in CO, we faced average pitching, though some of the guys we played threw mid to upper 80’s, and I still managed to hit like this.

One of the things I’ve never been able to come to grips with, and believe me I’ve tried, is to find a “factor” I could use to “normalize” hitting and pitching performances. What I ended up doing, was using the opponent’s record. FI, if the team was 6-3 at the start of the game and we won, the factor would be .6, and if we lost, it would be .7.

What I’d do then, is use that factor to compute an additional set of numbers. Ex: if one of our hitters had gone 3-4 and the factor was .7, he’d get credit for 2.1 hits, and if it was .6 1.8 hits. The thinking being, the hits were more valuable against a team with the better record. Then, when I compute BAs, I compute them using both the real # of hits, and the factored number to get a “normal” BA, and as “weighted” BA. And I’d do the same with pitchers, where I’d use the factor to compute primarily ERA, but it could be done to find any other stat as well.

That works well in theory, but unfortunately in HS it doesn’t work well in practice, and here’s the problem. Let’s say your team is pretty good. In HS that usually means the opposing coach will juggle his pitchers to put his best against the best teams he has to play. If that’s true, while the other team may have a really bad record, its entirely possible they have 1 really good pitcher, so the factor works against you.

But if you play on a weak team, chances are the opposing coaches will throw pitchers who are not the best, so the factor works for you. In the end, since HS teams seldom work on a fixed rotation, while using the winning percentage of the opponent does work to some degree, it really isn’t worth the trouble in most cases. It would probably be a lot more accurate to use the opponent pitcher to come up with a factor, but that’s extremely difficult because you’d have to get numbers which may not be available or valid.

The problem is, the “average” player in HS is so much worse than in the college or above, and the range from bad to good so much wider, its really an impossible task to equate numbers from HS to any level above. :frowning:

LOL! Its true that it is generally easier to work on hitting than pitching. But something that makes it even more difficult because of the physical limitations of the arm, is that its really tough to have a good pitching session without a catcher, and getting a catcher to put in more time than he already does, is tough.

You just threw something new into the mix. Expecting to get at bats as a Fr is pretty presumptuous. Even at a 2 year school there are usually players running around who have been there at least 3 and are bigger, stronger, and have earned their time. At a 4 year school its even worse. I’m not saying a Fr can’t or shouldn’t get PT, but I am saying a Fr getting lots of ABs might just be one of the top 3 hitters on the team, and a top 3 hitter is gonna be in the lineup every day, and pitching as a side thing.

Examine your roster as dispassionately as possible. Eliminate all POs and regular starters, then ask yourself if you’re a better hitter than all players who are left. Sometimes that will strengthen your resolve, and sometimes it will at least help you understand why things are happening the way they are.

Hey, believe it or not, I’m on your side! I’m a result oriented guy, stuck in a place in the system where results just don’t mean a great deal to the people who weild the power over decisions. You can’t believe how many times I’ve heard the story of a player who in HS was a great pitcher or hitter according to his numbers, but was never given the opportunity to compete at a higher level because of some physical attribute, while a player who had much less success but met whatever mystical physical characteristics were the requirement, got opportunity after opportunity.

What you’re doing is hoping someone with the power to get you some at bats, will somehow learn of your work ethic and drive. My daddy would say, “Doo doo in one hand, and wish in the other, then see which hand fills up 1st.” IOW, you’re gonna have to seize the moment and see if you can’t somehow get one of the coaches to witness how hard you work to be ready to hit if you get the opportunity.

See if you can get one to throw you some BP after everyone else is gone, or at least put balls on a tee for you when no one else is around. If you really are worthy of a chance and aren’t getting it, you have to assume no one knows, or at least hasn’t recognized it yet. You have to do something to change that. Seize the moment!

Good luck!


#11

Scorekeeper, I’m not saying I disagree with you on any of that. I know I am not the greatest hitter to ever live, my point is that I think a lot of coaches are very shortsighted (I’m not saying that necessarily about my current college), I am just saying that sometimes certain players should be recognized where their strengths and weaknesses are, and if a player has a lot more potential in a certain area, then he should be developed there. If a pitcher is also a position player who can be developed there as well, I say let the said player hit. Though it is rare, there are cases where players believe that they may be a pitcher and they instead are put at another area on the field. That is all I am saying, but I agree with you on what you are saying 100% as well.


#12

Well, I have to say I agree with you 100% that there are coaches who are shortsighted as you noted. I don’t know if I’d characterize the number as a lot or a few, but my guess is it’s a much higher percentage than people would think.

However, in their general defense, I don’t know that there’s really a lot of coaches who even if they really wanted to, could mitigate the kind of shortsightedness we’re talking about here. What gets lost sight of in discussions like this is, developing players is a major consumer of resources, time being the major one.

Its bad enough on a LL roster where there’s only 12 players, but on a HS roster with 15-25 players its a real chore, and I can only imagine what its like when there are 35 as happens on many college rosters. There’s just no way 1 person could do it, so there has to be a pretty good coaching staff, and that’s getting more and more difficult all the time.

The problem is, asst coaches get paid so little, if at all, so they can’t often just walk away from work to get to a field at say 2:30 for practices. And even of they can, there are certain things that need to be done at practices by everyone, so it doesn’t leave a lot of time for individual instruction.

In a perfect world, I’m sure most coaches would love to have 4 or 5 great assistants and do 10 times more to develop players, but there just aren’t enough hours in the day. So many times they have to go with the hand they’re dealt, and do what they can to improve the players.


#13

[quote=“scorekeeper”]Well, I have to say I agree with you 100% that there are coaches who are shortsighted as you noted. I don’t know if I’d characterize the number as a lot or a few, but my guess is it’s a much higher percentage than people would think.

However, in their general defense, I don’t know that there’s really a lot of coaches who even if they really wanted to, could mitigate the kind of shortsightedness we’re talking about here. What gets lost sight of in discussions like this is, developing players is a major consumer of resources, time being the major one.

Its bad enough on a LL roster where there’s only 12 players, but on a HS roster with 15-25 players its a real chore, and I can only imagine what its like when there are 35 as happens on many college rosters. There’s just no way 1 person could do it, so there has to be a pretty good coaching staff, and that’s getting more and more difficult all the time.

The problem is, asst coaches get paid so little, if at all, so they can’t often just walk away from work to get to a field at say 2:30 for practices. And even of they can, there are certain things that need to be done at practices by everyone, so it doesn’t leave a lot of time for individual instruction.

In a perfect world, I’m sure most coaches would love to have 4 or 5 great assistants and do 10 times more to develop players, but there just aren’t enough hours in the day. So many times they have to go with the hand they’re dealt, and do what they can to improve the players.[/quote]
Once again, I agree with you completely, as most coaches don’t choose to be shortsighted with one player or another, they just cannot do everything that they wish, and if you look at a roster like ours at the college I go to, we have 45 guys between JV and Varsity rosters, so this exacerbates the issue even more.