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Pitching Stats

The Pitching portion of the Register consists of the central pitching statistics of every man who has pitched in major league play since 1871, without exception. A complete batting or fielding record will be found in a separate portion of the Register for each category.

The pitchers are searchable by surname and, when more than one pitcher bears the name, alphabetically by “use name,” by which we mean the name that may have been applied to him during his playing career. On the whole, we have been conservative in ascribing nicknames, doing so only when the player was in fact known by that name during his playing days.

The record of a man who pitched in more than one season is given in one line for each season, plus a career total line. If he pitched for more than one team in a given year, his totals for each team are given on separate lines; and if the teams for which he pitched in his “traded year” are in the same league, then his full record is stated in both separate and combined fashion. (In the odd case of a man playing for three or more clubs in one year, with some of these clubs being in the same league, the combined total line will reflect only his play in that one league.) A man who pitched in only one year has no additional career total line since it would be identical to his seasonal listing.

Pitching records for the National Association are included in the Pitcher Register because the editors, like most baseball historians, regard it as a major league, inasmuch as it was the only professional league of its day and supplied the National League of 1876 with most of its personnel. In Total Baseball, we benefit from the SABR research project referred to in the Introduction to the Annual Record-which to date has produced games started, complete games, shutouts, saves, innings pitched, hits, bases on balls and, for 1871-1873, strikeouts, earned runs, and ERA. For the years 1874-1875 we have estimated ERA based on the teams’ average of 40 percent of runs allowed being earned. Unless Major League Baseball reverses the position it adopted in 1969 and restores the NA to official major league status, we will continue the practice of carrying separate totals for the National Association rather than integrating them into the career marks of those pitchers whose major league tenures began before 1876 and concluded in that year or after it.

Gaps remain elsewhere in the official record of baseball and in the ongoing process of sabermetric reconstruction. The reader will note occasional blank elements in biographical lines; these are not typographical lapses but signs that the information does not exist or has not yet been found. However, unlike the case of batting records, there are no incomplete statistical columns for pitchers except in the National Association years of 1874-1875 and Pitcher Defense 1871-1875. Where official statistics did not exist or the raw data have not survived, as with batters facing pitchers before 1908 in the American League and before 1903 in the National, we have constructed figures from the available raw data. For example, to obtain a pitcher’s BFP-Batters Facing Pitchers-for calculating Opponents’ On Base Percentage or Batting Average, we have subtracted league base hits from league at-bats, divided by league innings pitched, multiplied by the pitcher’s innings and added his hits and walks allowed and hit-by-pitch, if available. Research in this area continues, and we hope one day to eliminate the need for inferential data all the way back to 1871.

For a key to the team and league abbreviations used in the Pitcher Register, go to “Abbreviations.” For a guide to the other procedures and abbreviations employed in the Batter Register, go to “Glossary.”

Looking at the biographical section for any pitcher, we see first his use name in full capitals, then his given name and nickname. His date and place of birth follow “b” and his date and place of death follow “d.” Years through 1900 are expressed fully, in four digits, and years after 1900 are expressed in their last two digits.

Then comes the player’s manner of batting and throwing, abbreviated for a lefthanded pitcher who bats right as BR/TL (a switch-hitter would be shown as BB for “bats both” and a switch thrower as TB for “throws both”).

Next, and for most players last, is the player’s debut date in the major leagues, if known at this point. While we are able to report most of these thanks to SABR research, for some players we have had to list only the two digits representing their rookie years.

Some players continue in major league baseball after their playing days are through, as managers, coaches, or even umpires. A player whose biographical line concludes with an M can be located in the Manager Roster; one whose line bears a C will be listed in the Coach Roster; and one with a U occupies a place in the Umpire Roster. The select few who have been enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame at Cooperstown, NY, are noted with an H. They are also listed in the Hall of Fame Roster found toward the end of the “Awards and Honors” section. Finally, an F on this line denotes family connection–father-son-grandfather or brother who also played major league baseball.

The explanations for the statistical column heads follow; each stat definition is also avilable on the screen where its abbreviation apperas, in hypertext link from the batter’s record. For more technical information about formulas and calculations, see the Glossary.

We have made an upward adjustment to overall league performance in the Federal League of 1914-15 and the Union Association of 1884 (thus lowering individual ratings), because while both leagues are regarded as major leagues, there can be no doubt that their caliber of play was not equivalent to that in the rival leagues of those years. Suffice it to say here that league earned run averages were reduced by 20 percent for the UA and 10 percent for the FL. A full explanantion of the adjustment procedure may be found in the Glossary, under “League Performance.”

The explanations for the statistical column heads follow; for more technical information about formulas and calculations, see the Glossary.

YEAR = Year in which a man pitched

TM-L= Team and League

W = Wins

L = Losses

PCT= Win Percentage (Wins divided by decisions)

G = Games pitched

GS= Games Started

CG = Complete Games

SHO= Shutouts (Complete-game shutouts only)

GF= Games Finished

SV= Saves (Employing definition in force at the time, and 1969 definition for years prior to 1969)

IP= Innings Pitched (Fractional innings included, as discussed above)

H= Hits allowed

H/G = Hits per Game (Hits divided by innings, times nine)

HR = Home Runs allowed

BB= Bases on Balls allowed

BB/G = Bases on Balls per Game (Bases on balls divided by innings, times nine)

SO = Strikeouts

R= Runs allowed

ER= Earned Runs allowed

SO/G= Strikeouts per Game (Strikeouts divided by innings, times nine)

RAT= Ratio (Hits allowed plus walks allowed, divided by innings, times nine)

ERA = Earned Run Average (Calculated as earned runs times nine, divided by innings pitched. In a handful of cases, a pitcher will have faced one or more batters for his full season’s work yet failed to retire any of them [thus having an innings-pitched figure of zero]; if any of the men he put on base came around to score earned runs, these runs produced an infinite ERA, expressed in the pitcher’s record as “@”.)

ERA+= Earned Run Average Plus, or Adjusted Earned Run Average: normalized to league average and adjusted for home-park factor. (See comments for /A.)

OAV =Opponents’ Batting Average (Figured as hits over at-bats; mathematically meaningless averages created through a division by zero are rendered as dashes)

OOB= Opponents’ On Base Percentage (Figured as hits plus walks plus hit by pitch, divided by at bats plus walks plus hit by pitch)

TBF = Total Batters Faced

SH = Sacrifice Hits allowed

SF = Sacrifice Flies allowed

IBB = Intentional Bases on Balls (recorded since 1955)

HB = Hit Batsmen

WP= Wild Pitches

BK= Balks

PF = Park Factor (the extent to which a pitcher’s home park assists or detracts from his performance, an average park is rated at 100; a “hitter’s park” at a figure greater than 100; and a “pitcher’s park” as less than 100. The ratings are based on the number of runs scored at the park in a given year compared to other parks in that year. See Glossary)

PB = Pitcher Batting (Expressed in Batting Runs. Pitcher Batting is park-adjusted and weighted, for those who played primarily at other positions, by the ratio of games pitched to games played. For more technical data about Runs Per Win and Batting Run formulas, see Glossary.)

CPI = Clutch Pitching Index (Expected runs over actual runs, with 100 being a league-average performance and marks over 100 being superior; see Glossary.)

WAT = Wins Above Team (How many wins a pitcher garnered beyond what was expected of an average pitcher for that team; see Glossary.)

PR = Pitching Runs (Linear Weights measure of runs saved beyond what a league-average pitcher might have saved, defined as zero [see Glossary for further detail]. Occasionally the curious figure of -0 will appear in this column, or in the columns of other Linear Weights measures of batting, fielding, and the TPI. This “negative zero” figure signifies a run contribution that falls below the league average, but to so small a degree that it cannot be said to have cost the team a run.

PR/A = Adjusted (This signifies that the stat to the immediate left, in this instance Pitching Runs, is here normalized to league average and adjusted for home-park factor. A mark of 100 is a league-average performance, and superior marks exceed 100. Total Baseball uses three-year averages for pitching park factors. If a team moved, or the park changed dramatically, then two-year averages are employed; if the park was used for only one year, then of course only that run-scoring data is used.)

PD = Pitcher Defense (Expressed in Fielding Runs. See comment above on PB and see Glossary.)

TPI = Total Pitcher Index (The sum, expressed in wins beyond league average, of a pitcher’s Pitching Runs, Batting Runs-in the AL since 1973, this is zero–and Fielding Runs, all divided by the Runs Per Win factor for that year, which is generally around 10, historically in the 9-11 range; see Glossary.)

Total = For pitchers whose careers include play in the National Association as well as other major leagues, two totals are given, as described above; in notation “Total 2 n,” for instance, 2 stands for the number of years totaled and n stands for National Association. For pitchers whose careers began in 1876 or later, the lifetime record is shown alongside the notation “Total x,” where x stands for the number of post-1875 years totaled.

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