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The DH: Curse or Menace?

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The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby bigh0rt » Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:40 am

I love the bolded part... :-b
At first, the DH position was mostly filled by old cripples whose legs had betrayed them. But it gradually became a refuge for those who were unwilling to learn or simply unable to field a position well enough to stay on a major league roster, but whose bat a team might be loathe to lose. Think Jason Giambi, Jim Thome, Edgar Martinez, and of course, the poster boy for the DH, David Ortiz.

Ortiz, although overweight, is probably a good enough first baseman to stand for most of the game rather than sit. But his is an interesting case, because it demonstrates the perfidious nature of the DH.

Boston chooses not to play Ortiz full time in order to maximize his value at the plate. In other words, they feel he can produce more for them by being able to fully concentrate on his hitting, absent the stress of playing in the field. The effect of that on the record book is the same as the effect of steroid-fueled home run binges. They both produce distorted results. That’s what makes it unfair to include a DH on the ballot for MVP over a player who must play the entire game, concentrating on the other team’s hitting as well as his own.

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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby KCollins1304 » Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:44 am

bigh0rt wrote:I love the bolded part... :-b
At first, the DH position was mostly filled by old cripples whose legs had betrayed them. But it gradually became a refuge for those who were unwilling to learn or simply unable to field a position well enough to stay on a major league roster, but whose bat a team might be loathe to lose. Think Jason Giambi, Jim Thome, Edgar Martinez, and of course, the poster boy for the DH, David Ortiz.

Ortiz, although overweight, is probably a good enough first baseman to stand for most of the game rather than sit. But his is an interesting case, because it demonstrates the perfidious nature of the DH.

Boston chooses not to play Ortiz full time in order to maximize his value at the plate. In other words, they feel he can produce more for them by being able to fully concentrate on his hitting, absent the stress of playing in the field. The effect of that on the record book is the same as the effect of steroid-fueled home run binges. They both produce distorted results. That’s what makes it unfair to include a DH on the ballot for MVP over a player who must play the entire game, concentrating on the other team’s hitting as well as his own.

Dugout Central | FULL STORY


He's probably about as athletic at Da Meat Hook.
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby Bloody Sox » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:12 am

Wow, where to begin...

- Curse or Menace? How about neither - I'd much rather see Ortiz or Hafner or Thome hit than a pitcher who will bat .120 for the season and reduce the batting lineup to 7 spots (since the 8th hitter has no one protecting him).

- I'd agree that there is some validity to a DH needing to go "above and beyond" to win an MVP, but by no means should a DH be excluded. You need to factor the lack of defensive contribution into the equation, but a DH's defensive contribution should basically be treated as that of a 1B who neither helps nor hurts his team in the field.

- Comparing the benefits of a DH to a steroids user is simply retarded.

- Ortiz is certainly not chiseled, but I don't think he's that overweight or out of shape in any way. He's just a big dude with a football body.

- Any benefit a guy might get by not getting tired while playing the field is certainly balanced by the fact that a guy can get cold/rusty on the bench. A DH is effectively pinch hitting 4-5 times a game.

- There are plenty of guys who perform as well or better at the plate when they actually play in the field as when they DH. I haven't done an exhaustive search, but the first four guys I thought of to use for comparison were Manny, Giambi, Sheffield and Damon. All have hit the same or worse in their careers as DHs than while playing in the field.

Yes, I took the bait :-)
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby MTUCache » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:13 am

So the solution to the DH dilemma is to make them stand in the dugout while their team is on defense? Or do we need a designated standing area within the field of play? ;-7
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby hot4tx » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:18 am

Maybe make them stand just behind the pitcher and field that position (like in little league coach pitch). :-)

Oh, and I liked the title. They think you're giving them a choice to voice their opinion and the BAM! the other choice is the same as the first one. That's how we do it in the oil and gas industry - you can buy high priced oil or... BAM! you can buy the higher priced oil. ;-D
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby noseeum » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:23 am

It's 2008, and we still are forced to read articles lamenting the DH?

Next we'll read an article entitled "Horseless carriage: Curse or Menace?" or "The Personal Computer - Are we really better off?"
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby AussieDodger » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:39 am

Nothing wrong with the DH.

Is it the 1970s or is it 2008?

Do you have issues with the wild card as well?

It's called evolution of the game. Go with it. ;-D
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby bigh0rt » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:44 am

Bloody Sox wrote:but a DH's defensive contribution should basically be treated as that of a 1B who neither helps nor hurts his team in the field.

But he does hurt his team (in the sense that) his team needs to go out and pay starting player salary to another bat to play 1B; money that could be spent elsewhere, such as pitching, as an example. It's indirect, and you may disagree, but if I'm a GM in the AL, and my owner is stingy, I'm certainly not thrilled about having to pay 9 starting bats instead of 8.

Bloody Sox wrote:- Any benefit a guy might get by not getting tired while playing the field is certainly balanced by the fact that a guy can get cold/rusty on the bench. A DH is effectively pinch hitting 4-5 times a game.

This is definitely a presumption.

AussieDodger wrote:Is it the 1970s or is it 2008?

The DH hasn't started sucking any less in the last 30 years... If I got kicked in the nuts every day for 30 years, I somehow doubt I'd start to like it after awhile.
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby Bloody Sox » Tue Jan 29, 2008 12:02 pm

bigh0rt wrote:
Bloody Sox wrote:but a DH's defensive contribution should basically be treated as that of a 1B who neither helps nor hurts his team in the field.

But he does hurt his team (in the sense that) his team needs to go out and pay starting player salary to another bat to play 1B; money that could be spent elsewhere, such as pitching, as an example. It's indirect, and you may disagree, but if I'm a GM in the AL, and my owner is stingy, I'm certainly not thrilled about having to pay 9 starting bats instead of 8.

Well, seeing as that every team has a 25 man roster, they are all paying 25 guys just the same. The NL pays just as many offensive guys as the AL, they just use them differently. And the fact that an AL GM might pay more than an NL GM for his 9 lineup spots is irrelevant, as all AL GMs would be forced to do the same - there is no inherent disadvantage.

bigh0rt wrote:
Bloody Sox wrote:- Any benefit a guy might get by not getting tired while playing the field is certainly balanced by the fact that a guy can get cold/rusty on the bench. A DH is effectively pinch hitting 4-5 times a game.

This is definitely a presumption.

As is "The effect of that on the record book is the same as the effect of steroid-fueled home run binges. They both produce distorted results." Show me numbers that prove that guys benefit more at the plate from DH'ing than playing the field and we can talk.
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Re: The DH: Curse or Menace?

Postby Yoda » Tue Jan 29, 2008 12:06 pm

I think DH should be used at every level. While pitchers can be strategically used to move runners over, double switches, etc, they are essentially automatic outs. You have a few pitchers like Willis, Zambrano and Owings who can hit better than the Neifi Perez's of the world but still, I'd rather see guys who can swing the bat.
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