Other than things like park effects, managerial tendencies (e.g. steals), I don't think there's much to it. Or maybe it's better to say, there may be an effect as a player adjusts, but I don't think you can predict it in advance, so I wouldn't let it influence your thinking.
I don't think that switching leahues is that big of a deal for hitters but I usually expect below average numbers for the beginning of the season if it is the player's first time facing the pitchers in his new league. Then again, interleague play has allowed hitters to see the pitchers from the opposite league more so the effect is much less now.
As for pitchers, if a guy goes from the NL to the AL, I expect his ERA and WHIP to go up some b/c of the DH and vice versa for a guy going to the NL. Othercategories such as wins or saves are very dependant on the new team the player is on. Also, a lot of times pitchers will have good success their first time facing the teams in their new league, but on the second and third time around they will come back to Earth.
Last edited by KPucks on Thu Jan 29, 2004 1:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Pitchers have to face a DH in the AL which does make a difference from the "free K" every 9th batter in the NL. I move era/whip up slightly for pitchers going to the AL and down slightly for pitchers going to the NL depending on home ballparks of course .
As to hitters, the ballpark is the biggest factor for me. Are they going from somewhere like LA, to Kansas City? Which division are they in? Starting rotation for the teams in their new division? There are quite a few factors involved for me. Easier to do hitters on a case by case basis for me.
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A lead-off hitter moving from the NL to the AL should get somewhat more runs and RBIs. Because the 9th batter will be a professional hitter rather than a pitcher, the AL leadoff guy will have runners on base more often (RBIs chances) and will get on base with fewer outs (because of the 9th hitter's better OBP), which will increase his runs. Not a huge effect. That said, for #3 hitters like Sheff and Vlad, the NL-to-AL effect is pretty minimal, although the other factors (lineup, park factors) can still make a difference.
So what was Alomar's excuse last season back in the AL.
He is not a good example at all. Nagging injuries and the simple fact that he now is no where near the player he used to be at 36 makes more sense for his decline than his excuse of finding the adjustment difficult. If so why is he now back in the NL? I guess 'cos Arizona was the only team that wanted him!
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