The Poor Man’s Analyst

Injuries

with 3 comments

One of the most difficult aspects of predicting pitcher performance is the seeming inevitability of injuries. Some pitchers are more injury-prone than others. There are reasons that Greg Maddux has been on the DL once in his career (for a back injury) and A.J. Burnett has been on the DL practically every year except this past one. For a mechanical analysis on why this may be, I’ll direct you here.

But I’d like to compare the injury histories of A.J. Burnett and Ben Sheets. The Yankees were apparently scared off somewhat by Sheets’ medical records, and apparently didn’t seem to hesitate after seeing Burnett’s. Without further ado, I present the injury history of A.J. Burnett:

Aug 19,2002 – 15 Day Disabled list – (bone bruise on his right elbow)
Mar 29,2003 – 15 Day Disabled list – (right elbow inflammation)
Apr 26,2003 – 15 Day Disabled list – (right elbow inflammation) Resulted in Tommy John Surgery
Mar 26,2004 – 15 Day Disabled list – (right elbow injury, scar tissue removed)
Apr 1,2006 – 15 Day Disabled list – (Injury unknown)
Apr 22,2006 – 15 Day Disabled list – (right elbow soreness)
May 29,2006 – 15 Day Disabled list – (Injury unknown)
Jun 19,2007 – 15 Day Disabled list – (Right shoulder)
Jul 1,2007 – 15 Day Disabled list – (Right shoulder)

That’s a whole lot of elbows and shoulders. What about the oft-disabled Ben Sheets?

Aug 14,2001 – 15 Day Disabled list – (rotator cuff tendonitis in right shoulder)
Apr 29,2005 – 15 Day Disabled list – (vestibular neuritis in his left ear)
Aug 27,2005 – 15 Day Disabled list – (torn latissimus dorsi muscle)
Mar 30,2006 – 15 Day Disabled list – (right posterior shoulder strain)
May 10,2006 – 15 Day Disabled list – (tendinitis in his right shoulder)
Jul 16,2007 – 15 Day Disabled list – (Right finger sprain)

And then this past season he had a pulled muscle in his forearm, but did not hit the DL because rosters had already expanded. I don’t know about you, but I feel much more comfortable relying on Sheets than Burnett to start every 5th day. Most of what Sheets has had were fluke-type injuries, or at least aren’t serious arm injuries. It’s possible the Yankees just didn’t want to go near another National League pitcher after the problems that guys like Vazquez, Pavano, Randy Johnson, and Kevin Brown had adjusting to the AL East.

Advertisements

Written by dcn29

December 12, 2008 at 9:45 PM

Posted in asides

Tagged with ,

3 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Burnett was a great acquisition. He is only 32 and is a big improvement over pretty much everyone last year. (Except Moose and Wang).

    But with Moose retiring I think the younger and efficient AJ Burnett is the next perfect candidate.

    Also as I recall, despite the injury in 2003, he still dominated the Yankees in the World Series.

    I’m not worried.

    sportsheavenwithmarkandevan

    December 13, 2008 at 2:45 PM

    • Actually, Burnett didn’t pitch in the 2003 world series–he was still recovering from Tommy John surgery when that was going on. I didn’t mention it here, but I do think Burnett is an extremely good pitcher. I just don’t see how he’s not going to get hurt again.

      dcn29

      December 13, 2008 at 3:14 PM

  2. I was confused with Beckett. My bad

    sportsheavenwithmarkandevan

    December 13, 2008 at 3:16 PM


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: