I believe that an individual cannot compare between baseball players of different Era’s. The reason why I say this is because the game has changed dramatically. Over the years American League has allowed designated hitters since 1973, while the National League hasn’t. A designated hitter is a batter who bats instead of the pitcher. In the 1960’s pitchers did not have relief pitching, so you basically threw until your arm fell off. It was also rare to see a pitcher throw a 100 mph. Now days you see a pitcher throw 100 mph fastballs, as well as relief pitcher warming up and throwing the same speed to help the starter pitcher get out of any problems they get into. In the 1960’s the mound height was set at 15 inches high, until 1968. That year, the baseball commissioner dropped the mound height to 10 inches. The height difference of a mound drastically changes how a pitcher throws. In the 1960’s more pitchers reached over 300 wins within their careers. In modern days it is rarely to see a pitcher throw over 300 wins. This effect is caused by the downward motion of the ball. For example, when the pitcher threw from a 15 inch mound it made it easier for the pitcher to throw and harder for the hitter to hit, due to the downward motion that the ball had traveled. When the mound dropped to 10 inches it made it more evenly match and fair for the hitter to hit.
The only person to get more than 300 wins in today’s era since the 1960’s was Randy Johnson on June 4, 2009. This was only because he was 6 feet 10 inches tall, talented, left hander, and he dropped his arm to a 9 o’clock position, which made it seem to the left handed batters he was throwing behind them. He also stood on the right side is the rubber of the mound to create a greater allusion, which has scared lefties even more.
Furthermore the reason why you cannot compare different baseball players from different era’s is because a few baseball players now a day’s use steroids; which are illegal, to enhance their performance. In the 1960’s steroids were not introduced into the game of baseball yet. One type of steroid mostly used in the Major Leagues is HGH (human growth hormones). There was an investigation called the Mitchell Report, which named 150 ball players who used HGH steroids in December of 2007. Big name players like Roger Clemens, Jason Giambi, Andy Pettitte, Miguel Tejada, and Jose Canseco. Moreover, in the 1960’s baseball players used diet drugs like Asenlix or better known as Greenies. This drug helped ball players accelerate their hearts and give faster reflexes. These drugs were undetectable in the 60’s, but now they are easily detected and are illegal in the game of baseball.
We can take Barry Bonds, the best homerun hitter from our era and Babe Ruth for his era and you still could not compare them for those reasons. However, I do believe that there are more talented players overall then there were in the 1960’s. In the 1960’s there were only a handful of great ball players; although, now a day’s baseball players are so gifted that they enter the MLB of the age of nineteen and twenty, phenoms like Bryce Harper and Mike Trout. Mike Trout holds the lead for hits and stolen bases in the major leagues as a twenty year old in this 2012 season. While Bryce Harper being the youngest player ever to play in the 2012 All Star Game. Why are younger players getting into the major league baseball organization more now than before you might ask?
Well one explanation would be that the life expectancy of the 1960’s was late 60’s and now in 2012 it is set at late seventies. This mean that there are more people today that are in better health and more athletic. In addition there are better programs, better training methods, and facilities. As well the Major Leagues draft ball players at a young age to help developed them into their potential.
The reason why I’m interested in this topic is because of course I love baseball and it is something I’m very passionate about. I’ve been playing baseball at a very young age and I consider something I like to talk about because it something that I’m very good at and I can’t say that I’m good at a lot of things. Plus it helps me relief my mind of stress, of any problems that I may have and relax. However, a huge reason why I wrote about this topic is because I always find people saying, “if we had such and such on our team to this day our team would be unstoppable.” Those people got to understand that a lot has changed over the years and baseball isn’t the same as it was in the 1960’s or whatever era. The game has adapted and will continue to change without you whether you want it to or not.