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The AL/NL gap in hit-by-pitch rates

Posted by Andy on November 12, 2010

Following up on my earlier post about HBP rates, let's take a look at the split in HBP rates by league...

This data is taken straight from the AL and NL Batting Encyclopedia pages.

As you can see, they have tracked fairly closely for most of the last 110 years. There are, however, some fairly significant differences. You can see that around 1910 and 1920, the AL hit batters at a noticeably higher rate in numerous seasons. The latter bump was probably due to Babe Ruth and others hitting a lot more homers, resulting in pitchers trying to push hitters off the plate.

But check out what happened in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. The AL opened up a gap starting in the early 1970s that lasted until the mid-1990s.

The first thing that popped into my head was that this much be due to the DH. If AL pitchers didn't have to have their own turn at bat, then they might be more likely to plunk opposing hitters knowing that they didn't have to risk getting hit themselves. There we might expect to see AL HBP rates go up starting in 1973 (with the DH). Then, they might settle back down again starting in 1997, when interleague play started, meaning that AL pitchers had to hit again. True, they only had to hit a few times a year and only against certain NL teams, but perhaps they generally feared being plunked by any other team if they had a reputation as a plunker themselves.

Looking at the data more closely, though, this first instinct doesn't seem correct. The AL and NL rates actually diverged in 1967 and stayed apart (despite convergences in 1969 and 1982) until 1994, not 1997. So neither end of my initial theory seems to hold true, although it's possible that there are other fluctuations overlaid on top of a gap caused primarily by the DH. This is certainly possible, given the large differences we see at other years when there was no DH.

What else might be contributing? Here are some thoughts:

  • The gap that occurs roughly during the DH & no interleague play era (1973-1994) could be due to DHs themselves hitting. In other words, when pitchers bat, then tend to get hit less since the opposing pitcher is not too concerned with moving him off the plate. He might get hit just due to natural wildness (which I assume is why most HBP occur) or in retaliation for a previous hit batter, but he's not going to get brushed back too much just due to his merits as a batter. If this were the case, we might expect to see about 12% more HBP in the AL vs. the NL (that's one additional batter over the 8 non-pitchers in an NL lineup) and indeed that's about what we see for much of the 1970s. But throughout the 1980s, there were about 30% more HBP in the AL.
  • The HBP rates suddenly got a lot closer in 1993 and then crossed in 1994. This is probably due to the league-wide increase in offense that started in 1993. Pitchers probably started trying to move batters off the plate, thus increasing HBP. Whether the interleague play that started in 1995 had any affect is unknown, but it seems unlikely to be a big factor. It would seem to be unlikely to account for the complete elimination of the 12% increase in the AL we might have expected to the DH alone.
  • When offense levels dropped in the late 1960s and into the 1970s, HBP levels dropped with them. This makes sense. It may be the DH that kept the AL rate from dropping as much as the NL rate. What's weird is the sharp increase in HBP rates from the mid 1980s to 2000. Offense went up, sure, but the HBP rates really skyrocketed during that period, topping out roughly around 2001 when offense itself spiked. HBP rates have fallen off since then as offense has fallen off. As a commenter said in my previous HBP post, this is probably because approach at the plate has changed, with most batters really crowding the plate, trying to take reach outside pitchers. Closer to the plate means more hit batters.
  • I took a look at an Event Finder from the years 1976 to 1981, picked as a 6-year span with a big gap between the AL and NL in HBP. Overall, there were 4,122 in MLB over that period. Of those, 284 were DHs, all in the AL obviously, and 76 were pitchers, all in the NL (I checked.) If the rest of the HBP were split evenly between the leagues, that would be 1,881 per league, meaning the AL would have had an HBP "advantage" of 2,165 to 1,957. That would mean an average increase in the AL of about 10.6% vs. the NL. However, in reality, the AL led the NL by an average of 23.3% over that period. So it's not just the DH.

Hmm...what else is going on here?

This entry was posted on Friday, November 12th, 2010 at 7:30 am and is filed under Event Finders. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

38 Responses to “The AL/NL gap in hit-by-pitch rates”

  1. Interleague play began in 1997, not 1995.

    How does the HBP rate overall compare to the evolution of armor that batters started to wear that allowed them to hang over the plate?

    What hitting schools of thought (Walt Hriniak was mentioned a lot in the 80s) correspond with the chnages in HBP rate?

  2. I thought perhaps there might be an impact from expansion (because of talent dilution), but other than 1993 there doesn't seem to be much correlation.

    I thought 1993 in the NL might have something to do with Coors field with pitchers having difficulty controlling the ball, but the Rockies were right around league average on both sides of the ball in 1993.

    I thought perhaps there might be a correlation between safety equipment and batters' willingness to get hit. I didn't do a lot of research so someone with better knowledge than me might be able to see something that I don't. Helmets were mandatory starting 1971, but I don't know how that affected the rate at which they were used. I'm not sure when elbow guards, shin guards and other body armor became popular.

    Might last thought was that there might be some correlation between the suspensions and HBP rates. It is at least plausible that the length and frequency of suspensions for HBP might affect the willingness of pitchers to hit batters and that changes in the decision makers could impact the trends. Perhaps someone with more knowledge of these disciplinary procedures might se some correlation.

  3. I have a hard time accepting that it's not at least in part related to the pitcher not having to bat but even looking at the numbers for Bob Gibson, Don Drysdale & Sal Maglie they don't really stand out a lot. Maglie was only hit once in his entire career. Gibson & Drysdale were hit more often (8 & 7 respectively) but in longer careers and they had some reputation as hitters themselves. Gibson & Drysdale's numbers are right in line with Warren Spahn & Robin Roberts who also had some ability with the bat in their hands but didn't have reputations as head hunters (at least for the era in which they played... in todays game they would be notorious for it).

    Maybe this is a case where what seems to be the obvious answer isn't the right answer. Or maybe these guys just had quick reflexes.

  4. Doug Drinen and I examined this in two papers a few years ago.

    Crime and Punishment in Major League Baseball: The Case of the Designated Hitter and Hit Batters -- http://bit.ly/9UYmxJ
    The Designated Hitter, Moral Hazard, and Hit Batters: New Evidence From Game-Level Data -- http://bit.ly/9kc7Hp

    Brief summary of our findings -- http://bit.ly/bVzBCo (old post, includes some dead links)

  5. "at least for the era in which they played... in todays game they would be notorious for it"
    I doubt it. HBP numbers for the listed pitchers, and a couple more:

    Walter Spahn - 42
    Robin Roberts - 54
    Bob Gibson - 102
    Don Drysdale - 154
    Greg Maddux - 137
    Bert Blyleven - 155

    As shown in the post, overall rates have gone up a lot.

  6. Ken- I suspect that's because hitters are standing on top of the plate nowadays- or maybe not, since the obvious answer as to why rates were higher in the AL is questionable- but that would be my guess. Heck, even Maglie, who no one questions if he was a head hunter, only hit 44 batters in his career.

    I can still remember Gibson backing hitters off the plate in televised World Series games in the 60's.

  7. Nonlinear data

  8. joe baseball Says:

    HBP may be dirrectly related to the wildness of the pitchers. How about comparing HBP with Walks. The umpires strikezone may also have something to do with it. During the 1990s, strikes were being called 2 inches outside so batters maybe needed to crowd the plate and stay in there.

  9. Wow Maddux was getting hit 6 times a year? Seems like an awful lot for a guy playing every 5th game and probably only averaging 3 pa's per game....!!!

  10. I wonder if the increased use of body armor such as elbow pads
    might help explain the increase in HBP in the mid 90's.

  11. Johnny Twisto Says:

    I wonder if the increased use of body armor such as elbow pads
    might help explain the increase in HBP in the mid 90's.

    I'm sure it does, and I think it also helps explain the increase in offense. When batters don't have to worry about getting hit, it changes the whole pitcher-batter dynamic.

  12. Maybe with each AL team carrying 1-2 DH types, perhaps there is a little less $$ spent on 1 or 2 lesser Relief Pitchers. Maybe this could cause another slight bump in HBP for the AL (assuming a lesser relief pitcher hits more batters than a better one would over the same time period - which is a HUGE assumption). Obviously just a theory.

    To me, the biggest question is why there is such a big disparity between the AL and NL in the late 1960's (1967-68). Maybe there are a few individual pitchers that can cause a difference like that - since in that era there was probably many less total batters per game, so a few specific pitchers with high HBP rates could cause a discrepancy in that time frame. (assuming the overall HBP rate rises with the Batters per game number).

    For the years 1967-1968, counting up the top 12 pitchers in HBP the AL had 100+ more than the NL (which is consistent with the overall league data). Jim Lonborg led with 30 (next most had 21). and since the overall difference between the leagues those years was roughtly a little over 100 HBP total (if my rough calculations are correct), it COULD be attributed to just those guys from the AL that were among top 12 (as opposed to a function of the entire league) - for the small sample of 2 seasons.

    Two points on the HBP stats:
    1) Doesn't necessarily prove much, but I figured if I were going to put out some theories I might as well do a little research.
    2) Surprisingly, to me, Bob Gibson was NOT in the top 12. I guess at that point in his career players knew not to dig in against him. Or maybe he had mellowed a little bit from the timeframe of all those Tim McCarver stories of Gibson throwing at guys.

  13. Most likely, these changes are just a function of random changes in personnel. Lots of people, including Bradbury/Drinen, have tried to find larger meaning in the gap. But the fact is that HBP rates are driven to a large extent by a few extreme players, while the gap between the leagues is actually quite small. For example, B&D argue that the DH factor increased the AL HBP rate by 8%. But just two 1970s-80s players -- Don Baylor and Chet Lemon -- themselves raised the AL rate by 4%, half of the entire effect claimed. If they had played in the NL, we might not even be having this discussion. (And the fact that the AL advantage was about as large in the 5 years before 1973 as in the next 5 years, as you say, strongly suggests the DH did not create a "moral hazard" effect.)

    The AL edge disappearing in the mid-1990s again can be explained by a few high-HBP players, this time in the NL. Biggio and Jason Kendall arrived and started putting up huge HBP numbers -- in 1997, these two alone accounted for 8% of all HBP in the NL! (Pedro arriving helped a bit too, although pitchers are less extreme than hitters.) Basically, the gap depends on which league a handful of high-HBP hitters happen to play in (and academics who study the issue need to account for this in tests of statistical significance).

  14. Guy--excellent points.

  15. To continue @12,

    Conversely, for 1967-68, the top 12 batters in HBP showed the AL with only around 70 more than the NL. So it is not like it was only a few batters getting hit causing the discrepancy.

    Ironically, Bill Freehan led overall (44) with the next highest exactly 9 behind (ol' Ron Hunt with 35). Lonborg led all pitchers by 9 also. I wonder how many times Lonborg hit frehan over those 2 years?

  16. @13 Guy,

    That is what I was trying to say @12 (regarding 1967-68), if I was capable of making a clear concise point. :)

    Nice explanation.

  17. Frank Clingenpeel Says:

    My uestion would be how these numbers come out in interleague play, with and without the DH rule. I am not certain how to go about determining this stat -- 75-year-old Buckeye farmers are not normally known for these things, you see -- but that might be in and of itself a significant indicator.

  18. The thing that's interesting to me about what Tmckelv and Guy both brought up is that specific players--either pitchers OR batters--can swing the stats significantly. Clearly a Baylor or Biggio or Hunt is a guy who gets hit way more than often and whichever league he is in has a decent shot at an overall edge in HBP. Some pitchers throw more than their fair share of HBP. It's a small enough percentage of players (who have a large enough HBP rate as compared to the average) that individual player movement really can matter. Couple that with the league-wide increases thanks to changes in batting stances, body armor, and strike zone...and I think there's a pretty good explanation for the variation.

  19. Yes, pitchers and hitters can both play a role. But there seems to be much more variance on the hitter side, and more hitters who lead the league multiple times. I think the hitters are the bigger factor here. For example, if Utley had been drafted by an AL team, that shift alone is about as big as the moral hazard effect theorized by Bradbury and Drinen. And if Hunt hadn't retired from the NL right after the DH was established, the whole theory of a systemic league difference would likely never even have been developed.

  20. It also seems odd the AL isn't ahead by a wide margin these days when you consider that all of the top five active HBP guys have mostly played in the AL: Kendall, Delgado, Giambi, Jeter and A-Rod. (This post was lacking a Jeter reference, even though he's a top HBP guy — couldn't let that happen!)

  21. I'm glad that discussion of HBP is no longer simply a "Don Baylor got hit a lot" thing. I think it has long been undervalued as a stat. Even though I suspect it is more pitcher-related than batter-related, I bet there's some correlation between HBP and smart batters. Either they walk a ton, work the count or play smart ball, finding any way to reach possible. There's so much value in turning a DP into a fielder's choice, reaching on an error because of hustle and forcing HBPs or wild pitches through patience and the ability to foul the ball off. HBPs alone are not a big deal, but compounded with the other factors (like Giambi's walks, Kendall's hits, Biggio's ability to do everything) make a player great.

  22. Kahuna Tuna Says:

    Tmckelv @ 15,

    I wonder how many times Lonborg hit Freehan over those 2 years?

    Lonborg hit Freehan five times over 16 plate appearances in 1967 and 1968. He did not hit any other batter more than once.

  23. Goof: Kendall has mainly been an NL guy (12.5 out of 15 seasons). And he has almost as many as Jeter and A-Rod combined.

  24. Huh. I naturally think of Kendall as the A's leadoff hitter for some reason. I mean, he left the 'Rates years ago.

  25. The Goof @21, I agree with all you have to say except, "I suspect it is more pitcher related than batter related". I think if we got the average # of HBP/PA we would find more variation on the hitters side than the pitchers, i.e. the standard deviation would be higher for batters. Now if I had the database skills I would do this myself, but I don't.
    An earlier comment asked about the relationship between BB and HBP. Let me note that for a few years after WWII there were huge numbers of walks. (Look at the World Champion 1949 Yankees pitchers, for example.) If we look at the chart above we see that this was one of the lowest periods for HBP. So we cannot say that wildness produces both walks and hit batters.

  26. Kds, good point. However, there are different kinds of wild, and that would create no direct line, at least for pitchers. There's the guy who just misses everything too often (a Wild Thing or Burnett), and there's the guy who (and we have lots of these today) is just so picky and timid that he misses by a little bit on four pitches. I can't tell you how many times I've seen pitchers disintegrate that way against the Yankees, and there was that huge inning in this year's World Series with two outs when the pitchers just wouldn't throw strikes.I suspect that with the return of the sluggers from the war in the late 40s, you had a lot of pitchers tinkering too much as the game shifted back to offense. And there's the other kind of HBP — the angry pitcher showing you a thing or two, completely in control and not wild.

  27. Johnny Twisto Says:

    The elevated walk-rates post WWII were primarily in the American League. I don't know all the reasons but it seems the different umpiring crews influenced this. I think a study showed that even in the World Series of this era, the walk-rates were quite different depending which league's umpire was behind the plate.

  28. RE: He might get hit just due to natural wildness (which I assume is why most HBP occur) or in retaliation for a previous hit batter...

    I once produced a rough typology for getting-hit-by-pitch. Wildness is a factor, clearly, but most HBP are batter-driven. If of interest, the typology is under the title Why Frank Robinson is Like Saudi Arabia But Craig Biggio is Like North Korea.

  29. My first thought was that HBP would be influenced more by the pitcher than the batter, after all he is the one throwing the ball. But the more I have thought about it, and especially in light of the studies that some other commenters have referenced there is a lot of reason to think the batter would control this more.

    Putting aside retaliatory acts, where the batter sets up in the box, how he approaches the pitched ball (diving over, more neutral) and how willing or able he is to avoid the pitched ball should all influence how likely he is to get hit. On the other hand pitchers pitching inside and those who throw breaking balls that start at the batter and break over the plate (most of the time) are apt to hit more batters as well. The wildness, I think, is a bit of a red herring the more you look at it. It seems unlikely that a pitcher (or a significant number of them) who is so wild that he is hitting enough batters to influence the league average will be able to keep his spot in the big leagues. It is even more unlikely that the wild pitcher will stick around to have a long enough career to influence a year-to-year trend.

  30. Tangent: It's funny that Bob Gibson's name always comes up in this type of discussion, even though the statistical record is at odds with his reputation. Meanwhile, one of the foremost practitioners of the purpose pitch (judging by HBP rates) is a Hall of Fame pitcher whose name I don't recall seeing in this context: Jim Bunning.

    A quick comparison of the two:
    -- Gibson hit 0.65% of all batters faced in his career -- an above-average rate, but below the 70th percentile. He never led the league in HBP, and just once ranked above 4th.
    -- Bunning hit 1.02% of all batters faced. He led his league in HBP 4 straight years (1964-67) and ranked 2nd 4 other times; from 1957-67, only once was he notin his league's top 4 in HBP.

    Furthermore, Gibby's HBP are arguably more a product of his overall control than are Bunning's. Gibson had a career rate of 3.1 BB per 9 IP, about average for his era; the years when he had a high HBP rate roughly correspond to the years of his highest walk rates. Bunning had outstanding control, 2.4 BB/9, and there is no correlation between the annual changes in his HBP and BB rates. In the 4 years that he led the league in HBP, Bunning averaged a mere 1.8 BB/9.

    I have read that Gibson is mystified and irritated by the collective memory that focuses so much attention on his "intimidation" factor. He likes to think that he could pitch a little bit, too.

    The HBP rates do not, in an of themselves, prove anything about who did or didn't like to play the ol' chin music. But they're a legitimate part of the picture.

    P.S. In 9 WS starts (all CG), Gibson hit just 2 of the 312 batters he faced, both coming in his first 2 WS starts. There was absolutely nothing in the circumstances of either HBP that suggested either intent or indifference on his part; each came with a runner on 1st in a tie game.

  31. JT and The Goof,
    I mostly agree with you two, but if you look at the 60 top single season walk numbers, (130 or more). It is almost all sluggers, except for 1945 to 1956. The player showing up the most times then was Eddie Stanky, a National Leaguer.

  32. One of the Reasons for the increased walk Rates prior to the late 1970s might have been because:

    For a long time, National League umpires wore relatively small chest protectors underneath their coats, while American League umpires used bulky "balloon-style" protectors. The difference in protector style was supposed to have led to differences in pitch calling. NL umpires, who could crouch lower behind the catcher, were supposed to call more low strikes, while the AL umpires were forced to stand upright and called more high strikes. AL umpires switched to the inside protector in the late 1970s when all new hires in the league were mandated to use the inside protector.

    The above is from our favorite Baseball Web Site - BB-Ref.com

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/bullpen/Chest_protector

  33. dukeofflattbush Says:

    A few ideas...
    1. Smaller leagues meant teams faced each other far more times, and before free agency there was far less player turnover, resulting in not just more 1-on-1' match-ups but more team on team matchups/rivalries. So with eight team leagues fielding essentially the same team (+ or -1) for years, the rivalries could of been higher, resulting in more protection for your players.
    2. Supposed unwritten/unbroken baseball codes rarely are enforced anymore. Things like talking about other players to the media and closing ranks are generally ignored.
    3. Someone mentioned this earlier, but the middle reliever and set-up men (i don't know numbers) rarely ever hit. I wonder if they HBP at a higher rate.
    4. Everyone mentioned body armor and crowding the plate, but also the 'opened stance' saw a resurgence in the 90's. I remember Galaraga started opening his stance at Colorado, the year he hit .370, and his HBP went way up. Even though his stance was opened, it forced him to stride into the plate, leaving him virtually no time to dodge the ball.
    5. Don't under estimate showboating, The way Bonds and many others stood in the box after connecting started in the late 80's.

    A couple of memorable HBP.
    Clemens hit Piazza during interleague. I think the Mets had to wait two years to get a crack at Clemens. Shawn Estes was the Mets pitcher, whom wasn't even a a Met during the original beaning. The NYC media talked non-stop about it for weeks. Estes ended up throwing a pitch 3 ft behind Clemens. So much for retaliation.

    Another Clemens.
    He was asked what he thought about Bond's body armor and volunteered he would hit him if he faced him. He got his wish a few weeks later. Delivered on said promise and wasn't even fined.

    In the mid 90's Terry Pendelton walked off the field after a Atlanta reliever failed to 'retaliate' for an earlier HBP. Never saw anything like it.

    During the famous Redsox/Yankees fight, where Pedro threw Zimmer to the ground. For all their 'history and tradition' - the Yankees let an old man fight for them and put their tail between their legs

  34. I remember the Shawn Estes/Roger Clemens thing, but you forgot to mention that Estes later hit a homer off Clemens, so he got even.

  35. Rk
    Player
    HBP
    PA
    From
    To
    Age
    G
    AB
    R
    H
    2B
    3B
    HR
    RBI
    BB
    IBB
    SO
    SH
    SF
    GDP
    SB
    CS
    BA
    OBP
    SLG
    OPS
    Pos
    Tm

    1
    Sandy Alomar
    3
    5160
    1964
    1978
    20-34
    1481
    4760
    558
    1168
    126
    19
    13
    282
    302
    17
    482
    77
    18
    58
    227
    80
    .245
    .290
    .288
    .578
    *46/537D9
    MLN-ATL-TOT-CHW-CAL-NYY-TEX

    2
    Jerry Mumphrey
    4
    5545
    1974
    1988
    21-35
    1585
    4993
    660
    1442
    217
    55
    70
    575
    478
    49
    688
    29
    41
    108
    174
    80
    .289
    .349
    .396
    .745
    *879
    STL-SDP-NYY-TOT-HOU-CHC

    3
    Jim Hegan
    4
    5318
    1941
    1960
    20-39
    1666
    4772
    550
    1087
    187
    46
    92
    525
    456
    14
    742
    72
    14
    113
    15
    24
    .228
    .295
    .344
    .639
    *2
    CLE-TOT-CHC

    4
    Rollie Hemsley
    4
    5509
    1928
    1947
    21-40
    1593
    5047
    562
    1321
    257
    72
    31
    555
    357
    0
    395
    101
    0
    54
    29
    18
    .262
    .311
    .360
    .671
    *2/738
    PIT-TOT-CHC-SLB-CLE-NYY-PHI

    5
    Jose Cruz
    5
    5448
    1997
    2008
    23-34
    1388
    4724
    713
    1167
    252
    36
    204
    624
    658
    38
    1147
    23
    38
    74
    113
    39
    .247
    .337
    .445
    .783
    897/D
    TOT-TOR-SFG-TBD-LAD-SDP-HOU

    6
    Otis Nixon
    5
    5800
    1983
    1999
    24-40
    1709
    5115
    878
    1379
    142
    27
    11
    318
    585
    10
    694
    67
    28
    72
    620
    186
    .270
    .343
    .314
    .658
    *87/9D6
    NYY-CLE-MON-ATL-BOS-TEX-TOR-TOT-MIN

    7
    Gus Mancuso
    5
    5025
    1928
    1945
    22-39
    1460
    4505
    386
    1194
    197
    16
    53
    543
    418
    0
    264
    97
    0
    111
    8
    0
    .265
    .328
    .351
    .679
    *2
    STL-NYG-CHC-BRO-TOT-PHI

    8
    Sam West
    5
    6972
    1927
    1942
    22-37
    1753
    6148
    934
    1838
    347
    101
    75
    838
    696
    0
    540
    123
    0
    6
    54
    56
    .299
    .371
    .425
    .796
    *8/793
    WSH-SLB-TOT-CHW

    9
    Granny Hamner
    6
    6291
    1944
    1962
    17-35
    1531
    5839
    711
    1529
    272
    62
    104
    708
    351
    10
    432
    71
    24
    173
    35
    14
    .262
    .303
    .383
    .686
    *64/51
    PHI-TOT-KCA

    10
    Vern Stephens
    6
    7240
    1941
    1955
    20-34
    1720
    6497
    1001
    1859
    307
    42
    247
    1174
    692
    0
    685
    37
    8
    169
    25
    22
    .286
    .355
    .460
    .815
    *65/79
    SLB-BOS-TOT-BAL

    11
    Ruben Sierra
    7
    8782
    1986
    2006
    20-40
    2186
    8044
    1084
    2152
    428
    59
    306
    1322
    610
    102
    1239
    1
    120
    193
    142
    52
    .268
    .315
    .450
    .765
    *9D7/8
    TEX-TOT-OAK-CHW-SEA-NYY-MIN

    12
    Ozzie Guillen
    7
    7133
    1985
    2000
    21-36
    1993
    6686
    773
    1764
    275
    69
    28
    619
    239
    25
    511
    141
    60
    114
    169
    108
    .264
    .287
    .338
    .626
    *6/5347
    CHW-TOT-ATL-TBD

    13
    Jose Cruz
    7
    8931
    1970
    1988
    22-40
    2353
    7917
    1036
    2251
    391
    94
    165
    1077
    898
    142
    1031
    27
    82
    119
    317
    136
    .284
    .354
    .420
    .774
    *798/D3
    STL-HOU-NYY

    14
    Garret Anderson
    8
    9177
    1994
    2010
    22-38
    2228
    8640
    1084
    2529
    522
    36
    287
    1365
    429
    104
    1224
    13
    87
    197
    80
    47
    .293
    .324
    .461
    .785
    *78D9
    CAL-ANA-LAA-ATL-LAD
    No idea if this will work... but I think it's of interest if it does...

    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool UsedGenerated 11/13/2010.

  36. Ooops. Can't figure out the new share thing. I don't even see the old share link option.

  37. [...] The AL/NL gap in hit-by-pitch rates (Baseball-Reference). From the article: “As you can see, they have tracked fairly closely for most of the last 110 years… But check out what happened in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. The AL opened up a gap starting in the early 1970s that lasted until the mid-1990s.” The comments include links to other relevant work. [...]