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2020 Baseball Strategy


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I'm still not so sure that we're ultimately going to have baseball this season, but I am keeping my fingers crossed. There have, however, been a couple things that I've thought of, based upon some of the early proposals, with regards to the number of games that will be played, strategy-wise. Now, this may not necessarily apply if they played 100+ games, but I think it'd be worth looking at for 82, and certainly 50-60 games.

 

1.) Go with a 4 man pitching staff (for multiple reasons)

--- The season will no longer be a "marathon", it'll be more of a sprint. I want my best horses out there as much as possible. Even with 82 games, you'd be looking at only 20 starts.

--- You never know when you may lose one of your starting 4 to the coronavirus. I'd rather have my #5 guy step in and fill that spot, than to pull a guy up who'd normally be at Triple-A, even if it's just for 2 or 3 starts.

--- There may be more double-headers due to the compacted season. Same reasoning as above...I'd rather have that #5 guy for the nightcap, than a minor leaguer. No reason to settle for a split.

--- If you do make it to the post season, your guys are much better prepared for going on what everyone else would consider "short rest".

 

2.) I'm assuming there's going to be expanded rosters...so, use them. Get at bats for everyone. Substitute defensively. Use pinch runners. You've got to go at it hard for the first 5 or 6 innings with your best players, pretty much every day...then see how the game has played out, and substitute accordingly. No more forfeit lineups on Sundays with all the regulars getting the day off.

--- For the same reason with the pitchers, you never know when you may lose one of your starting 8 to the virus/protocol. Having guys actively involved beforehand will give you a better chance of not dropping off as far with a sub in there. Plus, it'll give you a better idea of who to chose, given the possibility of multiple players.

--- This would be an ideal situation to have a Billy Hamilton type of player on the schedule. Someone who could actually steal you a run late in the game, and be an actual upgrade on defense when out in the field.

 

3.) If someone is in a bad slump...I don't know that you can afford to let them play it out. If the entire team is struggling, then yeah, you may not have much of an alternative. But, if a guy goes 1-15 with 9 K's during a week...there's got to be someone else you can put in there for the weekend. Same thing for pitchers. If a guy can't hold a lead in 3 straight games...try someone else. There may be other "more favorable" situations to get these struggling guys back on the line, without it costing you games.

 

 

 

I know that #1 will be difficult. A lot of today's pitchers have been babied. But, I don't think it's that much different than asking a Lorenzen or Iglesias to go out there 3 straight days from the pen. Yes, you'll have to be much more situationally aware early on in games. But again, expanded rosters.

 

I just see a shortened season needing to be done differently than 162. You really can't afford to just ride out a 7 or 8 game losing streak in that type of scenario. Am I wrong?

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With spring training ending back in March, and only a couple weeks of prep time at the most, I don’t see any way you could run starters out every 4th day. Arms just simply won’t be prepared for it. With deeper rosters, teams will likely have a bunch of arms to choose from, and I see shorter outings from starters and lots of pitchers being used every day. With rosters carrying more players, there’s no need to worry about overusing guys. I get you want your best out there in a short season, but you also don’t want to injure guys or jeopardize careers either. The short season also likely comes with expanded playoffs, so getting to the dance isn’t the issue. By playoff time, arms should will be ready to go on short notice if necessary.

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2.) I'm assuming there's going to be expanded rosters...so, use them. Get at bats for everyone. Substitute defensively. Use pinch runners. You've got to go at it hard for the first 5 or 6 innings with your best players, pretty much every day...then see how the game has played out, and substitute accordingly. No more forfeit lineups on Sundays with all the regulars getting the day off.

--- For the same reason with the pitchers, you never know when you may lose one of your starting 8 to the virus/protocol. Having guys actively involved beforehand will give you a better chance of not dropping off as far with a sub in there. Plus, it'll give you a better idea of who to chose, given the possibility of multiple players.

--- This would be an ideal situation to have a Billy Hamilton type of player on the schedule. Someone who could actually steal you a run late in the game, and be an actual upgrade on defense when out in the field.

 

Like you, I'm certain rosters will be expanded. I'm curious, though, if expanded rosters means more active players? I think the 40-man rosters typical in September will last all season but are those 40 players eligible every night out? Could players have to be declared active/inactive before the game, like the NBA?

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Baseball might be the only major sport not to return. This will cause some short term harm for the game.

 

My only disagreement here are the words "short term." I'm afraid they are doing long-term damage to the popularity of the game with all the internal squabbling.

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My only disagreement here are the words "short term." I'm afraid they are doing long-term damage to the popularity of the game with all the internal squabbling.

 

Agree. A game already struggling

with fans.

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Agree. A game already struggling

with fans.

 

Baseball doesn’t seem to struggle regionally but rather nationally. I’m not sure everything would have been fixed by playing, but exposing your players to a nationwide audience with zero other sports happening couldn’t have hurt baseball. Now it appears they’ve missed their chance.

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Baseball doesn’t seem to struggle regionally but rather nationally. I’m not sure everything would have been fixed by playing, but exposing your players to a nationwide audience with zero other sports happening couldn’t have hurt baseball. Now it appears they’ve missed their chance.

 

Agree. I would watch more than just my team right now.

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