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Left-handed Pitchers Newsbeat

Friday, May 22, 2020

Where have all the top lefty pitchers gone?

Last year, there were nine 3-WAR southpaws in baseball (Matthew Boyd, Patrick Corbin, Marco Gonzales, Cole Hamels, Kershaw, John Means, Mike Minor, Eduardo Rodríguez, and Ryu; there were 28 from righties). Dating back to the start of divisional play in 1969, so spanning 51 seasons, that’s the third-fewest in a season—with one enormous caveat.

Fewest 3-WAR lefties in a season, 1969-2019

7—1994
8—1981
9—2019
9—1992
10—five seasons tied
11—five seasons tied, including 2018

You see the issue there, right? 1994 was a strike year, where teams averaged 115 games. 1981 was also a strike year, where teams averaged 107 games. WAR is a counting stat, so fewer games played means less time to pile up stats. (Only one hitter in 1981, for example, reached even 25 home runs.) So if we’re talking about fewest great lefties in a full season, then we just saw the smallest number in a half-century. Maybe there’s something here!

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 22, 2020 at 06:09 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: left-handed pitchers

 

 

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