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The 3400 Club

Longtime RotoAuthority reader finite24 brought up an interesting topic recently: injury risk the following season for pitchers who threw 3500+ pitches.  I decided to dig more deeply into this topic, pulling the benchmark down to 3400 pitches thrown in a season.  I included playoff pitches, as well as an estimate of minor league pitches thrown by Brett Myers this year.

First up, your 2008 class (19 pitchers):

  1. Cole Hamels - 3914
  2. C.C. Sabathia - 3912
  3. Brett Myers - 3781
  4. Jon Lester - 3738
  5. Tim Lincecum - 3682
  6. A.J. Burnett - 3650
  7. Matt Cain - 3606
  8. Johan Santana - 3598
  9. Roy Halladay - 3560
  10. Gil Meche - 3555
  11. Joe Blanton - 3547
  12. Chad Billingsley - 3543
  13. James Shields - 3543
  14. Justin Verlander - 3528
  15. Ervin Santana - 3526
  16. Mark Buehrle - 3490
  17. Javier Vazquez - 3462
  18. Ryan Dempster - 3450
  19. Bronson Arroyo - 3436

How great is the injury risk for these guys?  I'll go into detail on past years' results in future posts, but I'm seeing anywhere from 15 to 61% of those in this "club" deal with significant injury the following year.  Best I can estimate is that anywhere from 3 to 12 of these 19 will be significantly injured in 2009.

My top ten pitchers for the risk averse (did not cross 3400 in '08 or '07 or have a major pitching injury in either year):

  1. Roy Oswalt
  2. Yovani Gallardo
  3. Cliff Lee
  4. Derek Lowe
  5. Kevin Slowey
  6. Ted Lilly
  7. Zack Greinke
  8. Scott Baker
  9. Andy Sonnanstine
  10. Joe Saunders

That list gets really tough at the end.  It is a fact of life that you're going to have several injury risks on your staff.

Tomorrow we'll look at those who threw 3400+ pitches in 2007 - a group that responded horribly in 2008.


Full Story |  Comments (50) | Categories: Injuries


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