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John Means - Playoff Starter


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25 minutes ago, Sports Guy said:

Maddux got his share of Ks and he had 15 years of a BB rate of 1.5 or lower and his career BB rate was 1.8.

And for most of his career, his swingstr% was at or above league average and for his career, he was a little under league average in that stat but that was mostly pushed down by the last few years of his career, where his missed bats really dropped.  And those years were some of the worst of his career as well.

 

He was never considered a strikeout pitcher though. He was a guy who had most of his success on exceptional command, which produced a lot of weak contact, and as you said, he didn’t walk many batters. High strikeout pitchers tend to walk more guys which offsets not being as hittable a bit. 

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27 minutes ago, Sports Guy said:

Maddux got his share of Ks and he had 15 years of a BB rate of 1.5 or lower and his career BB rate was 1.8.

And for most of his career, his swingstr% was at or above league average and for his career, he was a little under league average in that stat but that was mostly pushed down by the last few years of his career, where his missed bats really dropped.  And those years were some of the worst of his career as well.

 

There is this revisionist view of him as some slop ball pitcher for his whole career.

 

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3 minutes ago, dystopia said:

He was never considered a strikeout pitcher though. He was a guy who had most of his success on exceptional command, which produced a lot of weak contact, and as you said, he didn’t walk many batters. High strikeout pitchers tend to walk more guys which offsets not being as hittable a bit. 

I don’t think that’s really true at all and again, it’s one of those myths that I dont believe there is any evidence for.

Walks are the biggest factor in driving up pitch count.

And btw, using Maddux as some kind of example is really using an extreme outlier. He is arguably the greatest pitcher all time in terms of the combo of command and control. So yes if Means can be the greatest ever in that while still missing bats and K’ing guys at around league average rates, he will do just fine.

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Just now, dystopia said:

He was never considered a strikeout pitcher though. He was a guy who had most of his success on exceptional command, which produced a lot of weak contact, and as you said, he didn’t walk many batters. High strikeout pitchers tend to walk more guys which offsets not being as hittable a bit. 

Wildcard said the same thing.

Do high k guys throw more pitches?  

He declined to provide evidence.

I think base runners are the main driving factor in higher pitch counts.

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1 minute ago, Billy F-Face3 said:

I don't think the skill of being able to force a batter to roll over on top of a pitch and induce a ground ball right to an infielder for a double play should be minimized. That's part of the art of pitching and it's part of winning baseball.

I don't think it's a repeatable skill.  (in the vast majority of cases)

Ever read Mike Fast?

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34 minutes ago, Sports Guy said:

It’s one start. It means nothing, literally nothing.

Project those starts out over a longer period of time.

Which starter would you expect to be more successful? The one throwing more strikes, missing more bats and getting more Ks or the one who is dependent upon luck? 
 

Most of this is elementary school math that simply can’t be argued against, at least intelligently.

Back in the day this type of discussion would be titled-- "pitcher or thrower"-- Of course GROD is more than a thrower, but ,to me , there is a significant difference wrt "pitching skill".

Palmer talks about it all the time, particularly when he is critical of a pitcher. Leaving it in the middle of the plate is a mortal sin to him.

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7 minutes ago, Sports Guy said:

I don’t think that’s really true at all and again, it’s one of those myths that I dont believe there is any evidence for.

Walks are the biggest factor in driving up pitch count.

And btw, using Maddux as some kind of example is really using an extreme outlier. He is arguably the greatest pitcher all time in terms of the combo of command and control. So yes if Means can be the greatest ever in that while still missing bats and K’ing guys at around league average rates, he will do just fine.

The problem for you here is that Maddux exists. Doesn’t matter if he’s an outlier. If you think every ball in play is either a hit or an out by random chance, then a career like Maddux isn’t possible. 
 

And he’s far from the only good pitcher with a lower (or at least average) K rate. 
 

Jimmy Key had a 5.3 K/9 lifetime and wasn’t far off from the HoF. 
 

Hell, Jim Palmer had a lifetime K/9 of 5.0. 

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15 minutes ago, Sports Guy said:

I don’t think that’s really true at all and again, it’s one of those myths that I dont believe there is any evidence for.

Walks are the biggest factor in driving up pitch count.

And btw, using Maddux as some kind of example is really using an extreme outlier. He is arguably the greatest pitcher all time in terms of the combo of command and control. So yes if Means can be the greatest ever in that while still missing bats and K’ing guys at around league average rates, he will do just fine.

Yeah, he might pitch 2 no hitters in the big leagues lol

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6 minutes ago, zweem said:

Back in the day this type of discussion would be titled-- "pitcher or thrower"-- Of course GROD is more than a thrower, but ,to me , there is a significant difference wrt "pitching skill".

Palmer talks about it all the time, particularly when he is critical of a pitcher. Leaving it in the middle of the plate is a mortal sin to him.

GRod isn’t even remotely a “thrower”. He may have been that in the first part of his season but he is far from that now.

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2 minutes ago, dystopia said:

The problem for you here is that Maddux exists. Doesn’t matter if he’s an outlier. If you think every ball in play is either a hit or an out by random chance, then a career like Maddux isn’t possible. 
 

And he’s far from the only good pitcher with a lower (or at least average) K rate. 
 

Jimmy Key had a 5.3 K/9 lifetime and wasn’t far off from the HoF. 
 

Hell, Jim Palmer had a lifetime K/9 of 5.0. 

Do you just compare Ty Cobb's HR total with Ronald Acuna?

Context matters.  The K rate when Palmer pitched was hugely different than the rate in 2023.

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3 minutes ago, dystopia said:

The problem for you here is that Maddux exists. Doesn’t matter if he’s an outlier. If you think every ball in play is either a hit or an out by random chance, then a career like Maddux isn’t possible. 
 

And he’s far from the only good pitcher with a lower (or at least average) K rate. 
 

Jimmy Key had a 5.3 K/9 lifetime and wasn’t far off from the HoF. 
 

Hell, Jim Palmer had a lifetime K/9 of 5.0. 

No, that’s not a problem for me. That’s 100% a problem for you because you are taking an extreme outlier and trying to make it mean something when, in fact, it means nothing. Anything that is an extreme is an example to throw out.

Just because something is possible doesn’t mean it’s probable, will be repeated or anything like that.

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Not that I am comparing them at all… but the one thing great pitchers have is their tempo.. they push the hitter usually faster than they are comfortable and they stay ahead in counts. 
Means at his best has wonderful tempo and Maddux was the best ever at that.  Mike Cuellar was a master tempo artist as well. 

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26 minutes ago, Sports Guy said:

How are you defining pitch to contact guy

I'd say below average K/9. Granted it would be extremely unusual for Means to sustain his ERA with current 3.1 K/9. We will probably see both normalize. From what I saw last night though I would love for him to bring that kind of command to a playoff start and see what happens.

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