Tommy John, Tommy John Surgery, Otani discussed on Effectively Wild: A FanGraphs Baseball Podcast
So there's been a lot of handwriting about Tommy John surgery in the past few days just because kopech and Otani kind of coincide. Ended here and I asked John when we had him on last week, what the larger trend is, because it can be easy to lose sight of that when you are morning though temporary loss of one particular pitcher, and he said, and JJ fee has an article up at fan graphs. Now showing the actual data that if anything were passed peak, Tommy John, or we're not currently at peak, Tommy John just eyeballing the graph that Jay has in his post here. It looks like we've had the fewest Tommy John surgeries this year, at least so far that we've had in any year since two thousand eleven. It looks like both for all professionals and for MLB pitchers only and you know, pretty close to some previous years, but it's definitely not worse than the last few years than it appears to be slightly better. And as Jay said, it's cold comfort because we're still going to lose kopech and seems like Otani even though he is not for. Really made that decision yet. But I think as bad as the problem is and as seemingly unsolvable as it is at least so far, it's not getting worse which I guess his kind of victory even though pitchers are throwing harder and harder all the time. It's kind of like the the degree to which we moan about Tommy John surgery depends on who has recently had Tommy John surgery like a few years ago when there was just a a stack of young impressive pitchers who were having Tommy John surgery all at once than it looked terrible in this is destroying baseball, and it actually was worse at that time than it is now and now kopech it's an attorney seemingly we'll have to get it. And so we're all kind of, you know, back to talking about Tommy John surgery where it seemed like we just hadn't really been talking about it much for the previous year, so it's still bad. It's not worse than it was, but it was really. Bad before. So it's as Jay said, cold comfort, right? It's hard to imagine that this trend is going to get better anytime soon, like meaningfully better, just as teams prioritise velocity and throwing all the time at cetera. And I think you're you're absolutely right that this is one of those areas where when you have anecdotal evidence, if one high profile, a really exciting pitcher needs Tommy John surgery, then it just becomes the conversation because there's always enough Tommy John surgery going around that there's more than one case you can point to, and you can just say, like, has as Japan tweeted out last week after the kopech news. This is the worst thing about baseball is the UCLA that there is. There are plenty of things like baseball's a slow sport in September roster expansion is ridiculous. But when you have really, really promising young pitchers getting hurt and having this happening going away for fifteen eighteen months. That sucks because baseball, his better for having the really exciting young players able to perform good pitching. I know I'm a self-described pitching dork, but good. Pitching is really fun. I find it more appealing than good hitting your or good defense. I think it's so much fun to watch pitchers, throw things that move in. They move really fast and they move in these incredible directions with chart. Reagan when that's taken away and then you replace Otani with someone on the angels tips charter, you replace kopech with someone on the White Sox steps start. It gets worse. Post players aren't as good. I don't mean to denigrate the players down to the death strip, but let's face. It is fun to watch worse for the sport. It's hardly like we, we can talk about how there's not a demonstrated correlation between philosophy and Tommy John surgery. I don't have all the evidence in front of me. I know that there's evidence pointing about the Russians, but I, I think that if you look at a case like kopech could, let's I think we can just say it's not a surprise when you throw so hard like there is a limit to how much your body can tolerate..