Sunday, February 27, 2011

Bert Blyleven's peak vs. Sandy Koufax's Peak

I raise this issue because it came up the other day at "The Hardball Times." See Visual Baseball: Blyleven vs. (dare I say) Koufax? by Kevin Dame. Here is something I wrote in the comments:

In 2007 at “Beyond the Boxscore” I posted an article called

"Bert Blyleven: As Dominating as Sandy Koufax

Over a 5 year stretch, both of them were 22 runs better than the 2nd best pitcher."

That was using a stat called RSAA or Runs saved against average. "It's the amount of runs that a pitcher saved vs. what an average pitcher would have allowed," as explained in the Lee Sinins Complete Baseball Encyclopedia. It is also adjusted for park effects.

I then went on to show that Blyleven was comparable to Koufax in strikeout-to-walk ratio and HRs allowed when park effects were factored in. Blyleven may have been a dominant pitcher during that time and no one really noticed.

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