Comments on: The (continually) dying art of the complete game This and that about baseball stats. Tue, 16 Jul 2013 17:01:55 +0000 hourly 1 By: On the Exchange « Fantasy Baseball Trade Market Wed, 25 Feb 2009 17:47:37 +0000 [...] published a piece a couple of months ago, that might catch your interest, called, “The (continually) Dying Art of the Complete Game”. It is an [...]

By: apreziosi Mon, 29 Dec 2008 19:06:51 +0000 It's nice to see a graphical representation of the deterioration of a big part of the game. Those of us who have been around a while have seen it. You can trace the real decline to the specialization of pitching, especially the closer, who became a "position player" in the 1970s.
Now, pitching is specialized to the point that there are guys who only pitch the middle innings, others who set-up the closer and a smaller class of "long relievers" who come in when the starter fails early.
In today's game, managers don't allow pitchers to pitch out of trouble. They have so many relief pitchers (earning giant salaries) that they yank the starter either at the magical 100-pitch mark (there's another research topic for you - number of pitches per game per starter) or when he gets to the sixth inning and puts a couple of runners on, regardless of the size of the lead.
100 pitches has become some sort of "perfect" pitch count, as though the human arm knows what a round number is. Why not 120 pitches or 136? Who came up with this horrible game-ruining habit?