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9/13 Post GameS Thread


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1 hour ago, Photo-Realistic Billy said:

Um... Do you have any citations for that?

 

56 minutes ago, marlinsmaniac said:

I’m assuming you’re joking lol 

Yeah, this has been shown fairly often to have given increased velo to many pitchers, again as MM said due to the rehab process.

Which begs the question - why aren't pitchers just doing those rehab drills as normal drills? If it increases velo and is meant to lessen arm strain ...

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54 minutes ago, marlinsmaniac said:

I’m assuming you’re joking lol 

No. I'm fairly certain that's not true, like, even a little.

https://www.uhhospitals.org/Healthy-at-UH/articles/2015/07/can-tommy-john-surgery-make-you-pitch-faster

Quote

“The idea that a pitcher can throw faster after Tommy John surgery is a myth that people ask me about all the time,” Dr. Leland says.

The reason for the misperception is that analysts tend to measure a pitcher’s post-surgical pitching velocity against the speed at which they threw near to the day when they injured their ulnar collateral ligament (UCL), Dr. Leland says. The UCL is the ligament that is replaced during Tommy John surgery.

“The problem with that is, although a single painful pop will usually reveal a rupture of the UCL, in most cases the ligament has been wearing down for two or three years leading up to the rupture,” he says. “That wearing down may have diminished the pitcher’s velocity prior to the injury.”

I mean, I'd be open to the idea that TJS improved velo, but I ain't ever seen evidence for it. I honestly think, for a good number of guys, they never get their velo back, and burn out during the rehab process. I believe it's something like 20% of fellas never return to the majors after TJS.

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And again:

https://www.stopsportsinjuries.org/STOP/Blog/Posts/The Myths Surrounding Tommy John Surgery

Quote

The public perception that Tommy John surgery will make a pitcher throw faster and improve their control is one of the most common – and no research has ever demonstrated this to be true.

But y'all, there are TJS databases out there and FanGraphs velocity data. I am open minded about this, but I just need to see it to believe it.

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1 hour ago, Photo-Realistic Billy said:

No. I'm fairly certain that's not true, like, even a little.

https://www.uhhospitals.org/Healthy-at-UH/articles/2015/07/can-tommy-john-surgery-make-you-pitch-faster

I mean, I'd be open to the idea that TJS improved velo, but I ain't ever seen evidence for it. I honestly think, for a good number of guys, they never get their velo back, and burn out during the rehab process. I believe it's something like 20% of fellas never return to the majors after TJS.

Well since you wanna get all pretentious and act like it's high school debate class, sure, i've got time.

I'm assuming you understand the difference between causality and correlation. Clearly, the surgery itself does not increase velocity (only in the sense that an injured UCL will almost guarantee a drop in velocity at some point and repairing it will help to recover that velocity). Even your "blog article" you're passing off as research, even though it's just a doctor giving his opinion, admits it; "in most cases the ligament has been wearing down for two or three years leading up to the rupture,” he says. “That wearing down may have diminished the pitcher’s velocity prior to the injury.” (meaning a net positive in velocity from having A SUCCESSFUL PROCEDURE DONE is expected)

Surgery isn't perfect, and every person heals differently, and sometimes not at all (explaining your 20% figure that you got from the first google search that came up lol). Also, that number more than likely has a huge outlier of guys who had it late in their careers and had nothing left in the tank anyway, and/or decided it was best to hang up the cleats (ex. Josh Johnson in 2014). And one more, most studies I've seen are averaging from 1974 (when the first surgery was performed) to now. What is the distribution on that? Maybe from 1974-2013 there was no real uptick in velocity. But I guarantee you that with an increase in surgery quality and rehab techniques, the latest TJ recipients are gaining more from having the surgery than their elders. Not to mention there could be players who changed their approach to pitching after the surgery in order to not aggravate it again. So as someone who would consider themselves a man of science, this "study" is half-assed and full of inconsistencies.

The real "x factor" in increasing velocity is that all of the rehabbing and exercises required during the process of rehabilitation strengthen all of the muscles, tendons, and ligaments involved in throwing. You're doing rotator cuff exercises, weighted ball routines, mobility exercises, etc., in addition to working with kinesiologists whose job is to make your throwing motion is as efficient as possible (ex: making sure you're not opening your front shoulder too early causing an undue "pull" on your pitching arm). So assuming the player did the right things (variable 1), in the right amounts (variable 2), had a doctor perform the procedure as well as it can be done (variable 3), had their body successfully "accept" the procedure (variable 4), didn't change their pitching mechanics after returning (variable 5) replacing a broken ligament with a functioning one is going to increase velocity.

Source: my degree in Biology and years of watching pitchers come back with higher velocities and crediting the rehab process.

 

 

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1 hour ago, marlinsmaniac said:

Well since you wanna get all pretentious and act like it's high school debate class, sure, i've got time.

I'm assuming you understand the difference between causality and correlation. Clearly, the surgery itself does not increase velocity (only in the sense that an injured UCL will almost guarantee a drop in velocity at some point and repairing it will help to recover that velocity). Even your "blog article" you're passing off as research, even though it's just a doctor giving his opinion, admits it; "in most cases the ligament has been wearing down for two or three years leading up to the rupture,” he says. “That wearing down may have diminished the pitcher’s velocity prior to the injury.” (meaning a net positive in velocity from having A SUCCESSFUL PROCEDURE DONE is expected)

Surgery isn't perfect, and every person heals differently, and sometimes not at all (explaining your 20% figure that you got from the first google search that came up lol). Also, that number more than likely has a huge outlier of guys who had it late in their careers and had nothing left in the tank anyway, and/or decided it was best to hang up the cleats (ex. Josh Johnson in 2014). And one more, most studies I've seen are averaging from 1974 (when the first surgery was performed) to now. What is the distribution on that? Maybe from 1974-2013 there was no real uptick in velocity. But I guarantee you that with an increase in surgery quality and rehab techniques, the latest TJ recipients are gaining more from having the surgery than their elders. Not to mention there could be players who changed their approach to pitching after the surgery in order to not aggravate it again. So as someone who would consider themselves a man of science, this "study" is half-assed and full of inconsistencies.

The real "x factor" in increasing velocity is that all of the rehabbing and exercises required during the process of rehabilitation strengthen all of the muscles, tendons, and ligaments involved in throwing. You're doing rotator cuff exercises, weighted ball routines, mobility exercises, etc., in addition to working with kinesiologists whose job is to make your throwing motion is as efficient as possible (ex: making sure you're not opening your front shoulder too early causing an undue "pull" on your pitching arm). So assuming the player did the right things (variable 1), in the right amounts (variable 2), had a doctor perform the procedure as well as it can be done (variable 3), had their body successfully "accept" the procedure (variable 4), didn't change their pitching mechanics after returning (variable 5) replacing a broken ligament with a functioning one is going to increase velocity.

Source: my degree in Biology and years of watching pitchers come back with higher velocities and crediting the rehab process.

 

 

Sorry, I didn't mean to start anything or come across nasty. It's hard to write tone online, and I definitely didn't mean to offend or nothing.

All I was trying to get at is I have never seen data to back up the adding velo idea. You're pretty convincing, though, so I wanted to do my due diligence and dig into the data a bit. I went ahead and combined the MLBPlayerAnalysis Tommy John Injury database:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1gQujXQQGOVNaiuwSN680Hq-FDVsCwvN-3AazykOBON0/edit

With some Pitch Info FanGraphs velocity data:

https://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=all&stats=pit&lg=all&qual=0&type=17&season=2020&month=0&season1=2012&ind=1&team=0&rost=0&age=0&filter=&players=0&startdate=2012-01-01&enddate=2020-12-31&sort=1,a

I then compared the top velo pitch for TJS pitchers (2014 through 2018) against their previous year's velo, and in case that year was the injury year (as lower velo can indicate the need for TJS), I compared their post-TJS year against the 2-years-prior velocity. It's not the most rigorous study here, but it's a bunch of meaningful case studies at the MLB level.

And the data would suggest that most folks lose some velo:

OTWvkFN.png

The red line here shows a 1-one-1 ratio, so that blue line crossing under it suggests that everyone throwing 92 or harder was more likely to lose some velo. (Though much of this may be skewed by Brent Suter adding 3 mph.)

All the blue and orange dots on the right side of the red dots are fellas who lost velo. And that's where the majority of the players are. And the most notable guy, Adam Ottavino, didn't really increase his velo. He just lost a whole heckuva lot right before needing surgery (in other words, he returned to his Y-2 velo).

I think the biggest note here, though, is that this focuses on MLB players, not college or minor league players. Those guys, especially if they're early in their careers and not yet in full-on professional athlete training regimens, make a lot of sense to add some velo when introduced to MLB-style training. But again, those fellas may have added velo anyway just as a part of the natural course of getting older, taller, and further in the minors.

So it may be true that TJS recovery can add velo, but we don't see it happening among MLB players in the data here.

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20 minutes ago, Photo-Realistic Billy said:

Sorry, I didn't mean to start anything or come across nasty. It's hard to write tone online, and I definitely didn't mean to offend or nothing.

All I was trying to get at is I have never seen data to back up the adding velo idea. You're pretty convincing, though, so I wanted to do my due diligence and dig into the data a bit. I went ahead and combined the MLBPlayerAnalysis Tommy John Injury database:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1gQujXQQGOVNaiuwSN680Hq-FDVsCwvN-3AazykOBON0/edit

With some Pitch Info FanGraphs velocity data:

https://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=all&stats=pit&lg=all&qual=0&type=17&season=2020&month=0&season1=2012&ind=1&team=0&rost=0&age=0&filter=&players=0&startdate=2012-01-01&enddate=2020-12-31&sort=1,a

I then compared the top velo pitch for TJS pitchers (2014 through 2018) against their previous year's velo, and in case that year was the injury year (as lower velo can indicate the need for TJS), I compared their post-TJS year against the 2-years-prior velocity. It's not the most rigorous study here, but it's a bunch of meaningful case studies at the MLB level.

And the data would suggest that most folks lose some velo:

OTWvkFN.png

The red line here shows a 1-one-1 ratio, so that blue line crossing under it suggests that everyone throwing 92 or harder was more likely to lose some velo. (Though much of this may be skewed by Brent Suter adding 3 mph.)

All the blue and orange dots on the right side of the red dots are fellas who lost velo. And that's where the majority of the players are. And the most notable guy, Adam Ottavino, didn't really increase his velo. He just lost a whole heckuva lot right before needing surgery (in other words, he returned to his Y-2 velo).

I think the biggest note here, though, is that this focuses on MLB players, not college or minor league players. Those guys, especially if they're early in their careers and not yet in full-on professional athlete training regimens, make a lot of sense to add some velo when introduced to MLB-style training. But again, those fellas may have added velo anyway just as a part of the natural course of getting older, taller, and further in the minors.

So it may be true that TJS recovery can add velo, but we don't see it happening among MLB players in the data here.

It’s alright pal, I forgive you ♥️ 
 

and wow great job putting some work into your position on the topic! That’s some solid fuckin data lol 

I think the fact that it shows fire ballers throwing slower after the procedure points to them changing their pitching style and or throwing motion in order to reduce their susceptibility to a further injury. One of the few studies Ive looked into that seems empirically viable and is a little easier to extrapolate is that those with a higher use of their fastball (above 48%) are more likely to require the procedure. So it makes sense that guys would build around their off speed and focus more on a slower two-seamer with movement than a 95mph+ 4-seamer.
 

It would be interesting to layer the data you pulled along with fastball usage before and after the surgery. I feel that if it showed the fastball usage went down, it may suggest a change in their gameplan which would include bringing the “effort level” down on their 4-seamer. 
 

think about it, we used to see a lot more knuckleballers and so many of them had the same story; used to throw heat, hurt their elbow, and became knuckleballers. So there’s definitely a history of an injury changing a pitcher’s “style”

Either way, very convoluted process with SO many variables and it’s one that maybe we’ll never know the true answer to lol but nice to have an intellectual conversation on it with you, man 👍🏻

 

 

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