Live Tommy John Research Chat With Bradley Woodrum
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Bradley Woodrum
8:02
There's only so much time in a player's viability, if that makes sense.
Noah
8:02
Did you consider to use Logistic Regression for predicting TJS?
Bradley Woodrum
8:03
No, but only because I am not as comfortable with log models.
If anyone else wants to take up the task and look to improve the model by using a log model, then I highly recommend. I'd love you read your results.
8:04
My method was to find each player's TJS year and count up to that.
8:05
So, let's say John Doe makes it to the majors in 2010, but has TJS in 2013. Well, his first season will be 4. His 2011 season will be 5. 2012 = 6, and 2013 = 7.
Thomas
8:06
This is a very cool thing you guys did, and I was wondering what you all ultimately hope people in the industry will do if they read up on your findings?
Bradley Woodrum
8:06
Continuing studying this issue.
If we can isolate some definitive, strong factors for UCL injuries -- not just TJS -- then maybe we can make UCL injuries a historical footnote.
8:07
That's ambitious, obviously
And short-term, teams are more likely to just avoid players with high TJS risk -- but, again, I wouldn't really consider 6% (the highest result from my model) a "high" risk.
Ethan Linehan
8:07
Do you agree that pitchers of previous decades had larger workloads than pitchers of today?
Bradley Woodrum
8:08
Well, it is fact they pitched more in a season.
But, I've heard -- can't remember from whom, maybe on Tom Tango's blog -- that research has shown that pitchers all have had about the same amount of bullets in their arms, so to speak.
8:10
So, for instance, Greinke will almost certainly finish with fewer MLB IP than Old Hoss Radbourn, but Radbourn did not pitch in the high school as long or in the minors at all.
8:11
And cumulatively, they will have pitched about the same amount -- except Greinke will have pitched much more during the much more intense vetting process of the minor leagues.
Brandon
8:11
Does the altitude in Colorado really have that much of an impact on a pitcher's ability to recover after pitching?
Bradley Woodrum
8:11
Well, we thought -- having heard that every now and then -- that altitude might impact TJS events.
8:12
But from what we saw, it didn't seem to impact it.
But that's not to say pitchers don't get more winded and require more recovery time after pushing their body to the limits in thin air.
8:13
That makes intuitive sense, so I would need to see someone prove it's a negative placebo effect before I assumed Coors is a normal pitching recovery experience.
Joe
8:13
Do you think changing from starting rotation to bullpen and viceversa during the same season, can affect a players arm
Bradley Woodrum
8:13
Not sure.
It certainly requires pitchers to alter their warmup approach, and if they cannot find the rhythm they normally had in their previous role, that could be problematic.
8:14
You could see release point volatility, which could presage TJS.
That said, I was very intrigued to find that many of the inputs to our model did not really differentiate between relievers and starters.
8:15
I expected we might need to cull relievers from the data or add a dummy variable to differentiate them, but when the TJS factors were principally handedness, injury history, and release point volatility and so on, even relievers have enough data to be reliably estimated.
JeffZimmerman
8:16
Why are you so handsome?
Bradley Woodrum
8:16
Because you taught me everything I know.
Jeremy
8:16
How do you see a guy like Yu Darvish faring this year? May seems like an early return date, no?
Bradley Woodrum
8:16
I LOVE Darvish. He's the only reason I watch Rangers games.
That said...
8:17
I don't expect he will have a great season.
I really hope they take it easy on him and let him rediscover his delivery.
8:18
That first year back from TJS is critical. It is a rough year for many, if not most, pitchers.
Side armer
8:18
Has a sidearm pitcher ever needed TJ surgery? If not, why don't more pitchers throw side arm if risk is less?
Bradley Woodrum
8:18
Not sure on the numbers.
8:19
But I think one of the beauties of throwing sidearm is that your delivery is doing a lot of the work in creating deceptive, competitive pitches.
8:20
IF there is a lower rate among side-armers -- and that's IF because I don't know -- then I would not be surprised to find it's because their "hard" pitches are still lower effort and easier wear and tear on the elbow than typical deliveries.
Side armer
8:20
Do softball pitchers have TJ surgery?
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