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Strasburg out for up to 2 years... what we can learn from it.


glorydays

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This isn't new info, and it says something that organizations have not latched on to this as a be-all ding for high-priced items.

Well, I think it's a fixable issue but people are scared to mess with a legit prospect's mechanics if he's getting guys out and throwing gas. Is that accurate in your opinion?

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As I said when Nats fans were punching Strasburg's HOF ticket the day he was drafted: the future is unwritten. The guy could come back from this and pitch for 15 years at the ML level, or he could never pitch again. He (and the Nationals) may choose to completely rebuild his delivery, or they may not. This story will be over when it's over...and we don't know if it's over yet.

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Well, I think it's a fixable issue but people are scared to mess with a legit prospect's mechanics if he's getting guys out and throwing gas. Is that accurate in your opinion?

Not entirely. Simply saying "inverted W" ignores the fact that flexibility and durability varies from player to player. Yes, the motion can potentially cause stress, but that doesn't alone mean that particular player is likely to get injured. Further complicating the matter is that pitchers without an "inverted W" run into health issues a fair amount as well, so how are we then distinguishing between whether the cause of a given problem is the high elbow or something else?

I don't disagree that bio-mechanics can help to determine injury potential, but at the broad stroke level of "he has an inverted W", I don't think it holds much water.

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Well, I think it's a fixable issue but people are scared to mess with a legit prospect's mechanics if he's getting guys out and throwing gas. Is that accurate in your opinion?
Critics who blame the torn elbow ligament suffered by Stephen Strasburg on faulty pitching mechanics may or may not have a point, but the bigger point is, not much could have been done to effectively change Strasburg's form.

There's not a whole lot that can be done prudently to change the arm action that allows an advanced pitcher to throw as hard as Strasburg did.

Says who?

http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2010/08/27/mark-prior-on-stephen-strasburg-pitchers-arm-action-tough-to-c/

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There is no such thing as a pitching prospect. I would rather have Brad Bergesen right now than Strasburg.

(Okay, Tony, I'm ready for my time in the penalty box. I'm going to risk it.)

Are you kidding me?

Sorry, but I don't subscribe to the theory that Strasburg is done. So he misses a year. He comes back and odds are he's still got a top 5 arm in baseball...and the Nats will still control him for 4 more seasons.

Brad Bergesen likely wouldn't start for another team in the division. Hell, on any other team in the division he'd be in AAA. And would likely stink there too.

Bergesen over Strasburg? That might be the single dumbest thing I've ever read here. Ever. And that includes JTreas' posts.

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(Okay, Tony, I'm ready for my time in the penalty box. I'm going to risk it.)

Are you kidding me?

Sorry, but I don't subscribe to the theory that Strasburg is done. So he misses a year. He comes back and odds are he's still got a top 5 arm in baseball...and the Nats will still control him for 4 more seasons.

Brad Bergesen likely wouldn't start for another team in the division. Hell, on any other team in the division he'd be in AAA. And would likely stink there too.

Bergesen over Strasburg? That might be the single dumbest thing I've ever read here. Ever. And that includes JTreas' posts.

Bergesen surely was awful at the start of the year, but if you've been watching the games you've seen he's actually pretty good lately. Couple that with his performance last year and don't think he's in AAA of ANY club in this division. And heck, I think it's possible BB would be in the back of the rotation of the Yankees' lineup because they have such big questions after their number 1 or 2 guy.

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(Okay, Tony, I'm ready for my time in the penalty box. I'm going to risk it.)

Are you kidding me?

Sorry, but I don't subscribe to the theory that Strasburg is done. So he misses a year. He comes back and odds are he's still got a top 5 arm in baseball...and the Nats will still control him for 4 more seasons.

Brad Bergesen likely wouldn't start for another team in the division. Hell, on any other team in the division he'd be in AAA. And would likely stink there too.

Bergesen over Strasburg? That might be the single dumbest thing I've ever read here. Ever. And that includes JTreas' posts.

Agree that the Strasburg-for-Bergesen trade is pretty far removed from reality. Here are the best pitchers since 1990 who averaged < 5.0 K/9 (min. 1000 IP):

                       Rk             Player  WAR SO/9     IP From   To   Age   G  GS CG SHO  GF   W   L W-L% SV    H    R   ER  BB   SO  ERA ERA+  HR    BF IBB HBP BK WP                                  Tm   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+  SH SF  2B 3B GDP  SB CS PO1         Jon Garland 22.1 4.81 1993.1 2000 2010 20-30 338 315 10   6   9 130 111 .539  1 2085 1059  958 667 1066 4.33  105 243  8512  34  59  0 46                     CHW-LAA-TOT-SDP .272 .333 .430 .763   99  59 63 404 39 236  59 56  82      Scott Erickson 22.1 4.77 2360.2 1990 2006 22-38 389 364 51  17  10 142 136 .511  0 2586 1306 1203 865 1252 4.59   98 228 10284  32 103  3 68                 MIN-TOT-BAL-LAD-NYY .282 .348 .417 .765  101  67 70 452 54 317 210 76  83       Bob Tewksbury 18.6 4.09 1592.0 1990 1998 29-37 256 243 28   6   2  99  89 .527  1 1789  768  687 229  723 3.88  105 125  6680  16  33  3 20                     STL-TEX-SDP-MIN .285 .311 .415 .726   98  84 64 354 43 146 101 44  04         Mike Morgan 17.9 4.85 1833.2 1990 2002 30-42 400 273 22   7  35  99 107 .481  6 1908  916  833 592  989 4.09  101 178  7800  57  56  4 58             LAD-CHC-TOT-CIN-TEX-ARI .272 .332 .411 .742  102  93 52 343 46 211 138 80 145          Jim Abbott 17.0 4.66 1492.2 1990 1999 22-31 234 225 27   4   5  75  96 .439  0 1589  785  712 546  773 4.29  100 141  6423  27  28  9 45                 CAL-NYY-TOT-CHW-MIL .276 .340 .401 .741  100  59 42 267 14 177 124 70 236          Bill Swift 15.9 4.80 1059.0 1990 1998 28-36 276 142  4   3  53  71  44 .617 26 1070  474  415 301  565 3.53  119  86  4443  28  31  9 21                         SEA-SFG-COL .264 .318 .382 .700   89  35 18 189 17 142  50 30  37           Paul Byrd 15.8 4.90 1697.0 1995 2009 24-38 345 256 17   6  30 109  96 .532  0 1857  929  831 401  923 4.41  103 247  7266  23  62  7 35     NYM-ATL-TOT-PHI-KCR-LAA-CLE-BOS .277 .321 .455 .776  101  39 57 372 41 124 109 48 118       Omar Olivares 12.7 4.82 1591.2 1990 2001 22-33 349 229 16   2  42  77  86 .472  4 1678  889  826 685  853 4.67   94 159  6966  30  80  7 46             STL-TOT-DET-ANA-OAK-PIT .275 .353 .419 .772  106  46 53 331 35 198  81 61 129          Aaron Cook 12.6 3.76 1204.0 2002 2010 23-31 218 187 11   2   5  67  58 .536  0 1382  638  592 366  503 4.43  108 102  5222  38  42  2 32                                 COL .291 .345 .423 .768   97  39 34 254 31 171  43 22 1410      Ryan Franklin 12.6 4.97 1160.2 1999 2010 26-37 500 106  6   3 187  61  72 .459 78 1179  557  522 343  641 4.05  107 162  4932  32  51  6 18                         SEA-TOT-STL .263 .321 .434 .755  101  26 34 230 24  92  41 35 1411        Jeff Suppan 12.5 4.96 2483.0 1995 2010 20-35 435 406 16   5  15 136 141 .491  0 2783 1420 1299 848 1368 4.71   97 331 10884  55  93  6 87                 BOS-TOT-KCR-STL-MIL .285 .346 .458 .803  108 108 79 559 65 268 141 57 1912         Zane Smith 12.2 4.32 1018.1 1990 1996 29-35 170 163 18  10   1  61  56 .521  0 1075  469  405 198  489 3.58  110  75  4192  25  12  2  7                         TOT-PIT-BOS .274 .309 .397 .706   96  38 23 190 33 137 107 30 1013        Kirk Rueter 12.1 3.84 1918.0 1993 2005 22-34 340 336  4   1   1 130  92 .586  0 2092 1004  911 582  818 4.27   98 220  8210  41  25  0 24                         MON-TOT-SFG .281 .333 .435 .767  105  93 60 406 40 219  34 65 3014      Brian Moehler 11.1 4.93 1567.1 1996 2010 24-38 332 252 11   6  40  84 107 .440  1 1834  897  837 454  859 4.81   93 199  6844  37  36  3 25                     DET-TOT-HOU-FLA .293 .343 .462 .805  111  58 42 365 48 159 106 37  815    Armando Reynoso 11.1 4.62 1079.2 1991 2002 25-36 198 186  8   1   4  68  62 .523  1 1185  615  569 376  554 4.74  101 138  4698  34  60 15 35                     ATL-COL-NYM-ARI .283 .349 .456 .804  105  48 34 231 37  87  49 30 4316     Brian Anderson 11.0 4.21 1547.0 1993 2005 21-33 291 245 12   4  11  82  83 .497  1 1743  906  814 337  723 4.74   98 264  6532  28  23 28 22                 CAL-CLE-ARI-TOT-KCR .287 .324 .486 .811  108  49 60 346 34 154  54 56 5817   Terry Mulholland 10.7 4.63 2359.2 1990 2006 27-43 636 298 42   8 122 117 127 .480  5 2595 1277 1150 603 1214 4.39   95 279 10111  60  64  3 54 PHI-NYY-SFG-TOT-CHC-ATL-CLE-MIN-ARI .281 .326 .435 .761  105 116 82 505 43 246  23 44 4418          Tomo Ohka 10.7 4.96 1070.0 1999 2009 23-33 202 178  5   1  11  51  68 .429  0 1182  568  506 302  590 4.26  104 140  4620  27  34  2 35             BOS-TOT-MON-MIL-TOR-CLE .281 .332 .448 .780  103  47 28 250 17  97  37 33 1119       Steve Sparks  8.8 4.49 1319.2 1995 2004 29-38 270 182 16   2  45  59  76 .437  3 1451  800  716 520  658 4.88   95 154  5832  11  52  5 54                 MIL-ANA-DET-TOT-ARI .280 .348 .443 .791  107  27 54 314 33 128  71 39 2020         Scott Karl  8.4 4.61 1002.0 1995 2000 23-28 178 161  5   1   4  54  56 .491  0 1164  594  536 369  513 4.81  100 120  4444  18  33  3 26                             MIL-TOT .293 .356 .454 .810  106  40 25 245 19 121  46 28 1321       Carlos Silva  7.4 4.00 1236.2 2002 2010 23-31 315 179  6   2  39  70  69 .504  2 1487  681  639 237  550 4.65   94 152  5295  25  45  4 32                     PHI-MIN-SEA-CHC .301 .337 .462 .799  110  42 34 282 29 160  55 31  022       Jamey Wright  6.2 4.96 1745.0 1996 2010 21-35 454 246  6   3  51  83 118 .413  0 1888 1082  973 864  961 5.02   95 184  7789  56 136 13 70             COL-MIL-TOT-KCR-SFG-TEX .283 .374 .433 .807  108  66 49 363 43 240 153 74 5323        Ricky Bones  5.3 3.97 1278.1 1991 2001 22-32 375 164 11   1  58  63  82 .434  1 1422  754  689 464  564 4.85   95 167  5634  34  50  6 36             SDP-MIL-TOT-KCR-BAL-FLA .283 .346 .450 .796  107  37 54 253 43 133  89 32  624      Jaime Navarro  5.1 4.89 1945.2 1990 2000 23-33 342 292 31   8  15 109 118 .480  2 2194 1159 1040 658 1057 4.81   89 208  8551  41  66  6 89                     MIL-CHC-CHW-TOT .285 .343 .426 .769  106  50 86 368 45 178 211 71  425         Mike Moore  3.5 4.43 1133.0 1990 1995 30-35 188 188 17   4   0  76  69 .524  0 1167  651  602 538  558 4.78   87 131  4984  29  24  0 76                             OAK-DET .268 .349 .422 .771  111  28 38 230 23 109 117 52  2Rk             Player  WAR SO/9     IP From   To   Age   G  GS CG SHO  GF   W   L W-L% SV    H    R   ER  BB   SO  ERA ERA+  HR    BF IBB HBP BK WP                                  Tm   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+  SH SF  2B 3B GDP  SB CS PO26          Josh Fogg -0.1 4.87 1159.0 2001 2009 24-32 243 194  2   1  17  62  69 .473  0 1293  702  648 397  627 5.03   89 165  5081  54  58  2 20                     CHW-PIT-COL-CIN .284 .347 .474 .821  114  43 35 289 40 122  63 31  9

This is the Bergesen peer list. You could reasonably expect him to be in this range if he's good enough to last for 1000 innings.

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I guess the real question is if Bradley can accumulate enough WAR over the next 18 months to outlast Strasburg's rebuilt resurgence.

I guess you guys are right. 85% is pretty good odds.

If I were Strasburg, I'd go get whoever did Simon.

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This is the Bergesen peer list. You could reasonably expect him to be in this range if he's good enough to last for 1000 innings.

And that's what Bergesen has over Strasburg. He's a better bet to last 1000 IP. And there are some solid SPs on that list.

What good is Strasburg if he can't stay healthy?

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I guess the real question is if Bradley can accumulate enough WAR over the next 18 months to outlast Strasburg's rebuilt resurgence.

I guess you guys are right. 85% is pretty good odds.

If I were Strasburg, I'd go get whoever did Simon.

No, a Berg in hand is worth more than a Burg in the bush. :laughlol:
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Well the inverted W in itself isn't terrible unless it is exaggerated to the point where it puts the shoulder in a compromising position, it does have a greater tendency to lead to timing problems, which in Strasburg's case, his entire arm was playing catch up to the rest of his body at near 100 mph. It's no surprise that he broke down give the stress and timing, but guys like Randy Johnson have excellent timing and were still able to throw near 100 mph for many years. I think it would benefit Strasburg to take some time off and recover while making a few minor tweaks to his delivery to improve his timing. Maybe this will be a blessing in disguise that will save his shoulder for a few more years and give him the time he needs to reevaluate his delivery.

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And that's what Bergesen has over Strasburg. He's a better bet to last 1000 IP. And there are some solid SPs on that list.

What good is Strasburg if he can't stay healthy?

Actually, I think you're wrong. Most pitchers who've had TJ surgery come back, and many are just as good as before. Some better. There's probably about a 75% chance Strasburg comes back as good as ever. And if he does that and he's more durable, which is certainly likely, he's a lock to pitch 1000 innings many times over.

Bergesen is basically a league-average starter with a small margin for error. Even if he stays healthy (and no one has mentioned that he's as likely as any pitcher to get hurt) he probably has a, I don't know, 30% chance of not making it to 1000 innings just because he's not consistenly good enough to stick in the majors. The list I presented was the BEST 26 pitchers who'd had a K/9 rate under 5.0.

There are actually 152 pitchers since '90 who have a K/9 under 5.0 and started at least 30 games. About 100 of them had a career WAR of 4.0 or less. And about 1 in 8 got to 10.0 WAR.

Chien-Ming Wang is Bergesen's dream case, and we saw that one fairly innocuous injury may well have ended his career at 670 innings.

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