Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Contours of the Steroid Era

My latest at FanGraphs Community is here. In it, I look at the so-called Steroid Era in baseball. As you probably know, offense was way up during the late 1980s, through the 1990s, and until the introduction of drug testing in 2004. I looked at whether the increase was even across positions, and it wasn't. Positions we usually associate with slugging--specifically, designated hitter, first base, and corner outfield (left and right)--had, in aggregate, a disproportionate share of the increase. So while everybody hit better, players at the bat-first positions got more of a boost than players at the glove-first positions. It's not a huge difference, but enough of one to be of note.

For those of you who have waded into the untreated cesspool that is the comments section of political websites and pretty much any newspaper, I encourage you to check out the FanGraphs comments to my piece. They are a model of intelligence, clarity, and civility. One of the many reasons I vastly prefer baseball to politics: It draws a higher class of people.

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