Don't miss

Thursday, July 17, 2014

2014 mid-season DL statistics

By on 7/17/2014 12:00:00 PM

It's that time again; we're at the All-Star break and while every MLB team takes the opportunity for a much-needed rest, let's take a look at who has suffered most on the injury front so far, in the form of some disabled list statistics.

Some readers may remember that we looked at this in the middle of the 2013 season and at the end of the year too. This year, I have gone straight to and used their transaction page to log every DL move made by team, player, the full time the player was on the DL, and the injury type and location.

A note on the methodology: this time I have been able to include all the dates the moves were retroactive to, therefore including days that players missed before the move was officially made. These figures will therefore be slightly higher than last season's marks, although in the majority of cases, that difference amounts to a day or two at most, with many moves being made on the first day after the injury occurred. In a future article, we'll take a more detailed look at the comparison between the years.

The stats below have also been calculated from Opening Day (March 31st) up to the start of the All-Star break. While the Dodgers and Diamondbacks started the season earlier, roster rules were different for the Australia series and for the sake of comparison, it made more sense to start all teams from the same date.

So, without further ado, here is the full list of how many moves each team has made, along with their days lost and average per move:

TeamDL movesDays lostAverage per stint
Blue Jays1438827.71
Red Sox1138334.82
White Sox1048448.40

Those who follow the Texas Rangers will not be unfamiliar with the fact that the team has had to put a lot of players on the disabled list. They may still be alarmed to see that the Rangers lead the way with an incredible 1244 days lost to the DL so far. No other team has even broken 800 days. The Rangers account for just over 8% of all the days lost to the DL so far in 2014 and have actually beaten more than half of the team totals from the end of the 2013 season. Five players on their roster - Derek HollandJurickson Profar, Engel Beltre, Geovany Soto and Joe Ortiz - have not played a single game yet in 2014, and for Profar at least, that may not change in the second half.

Unsurprisingly, the Rangers also lead the way in total moves, although there the difference is not quite so pronounced, as the Dodgers and Reds both have 17. The Dodgers were last year's leaders at the break, with 22 moves, but had far less in the way of long-term DL stints. Notable is the fact that we do not have an extreme outlier in the other direction like the Royals last season: Kansas City had put just two players on the DL in the first half in 2014, a stat that looks increasingly unusual.

The Central division leaders in each league, the Tigers and Brewers, are tied for least DL moves made, while the Indians have the lowest average per stint at 21.73 as well as the lowest overall number of days. Cleveland is among the teams that have not  had to place a pitcher on the DL (and hopefully will not) for a lengthy period of time.

Of course, a lot of this is down to luck and as we saw last year, these do even out to some extent: the Royals did end up having to make seven moves in the second half, and the Dodgers ended up with only 25 moves, not the 35-40 it seemed like they were heading for at one stage. Unfortunately for the Rangers, any change in injury fortunes is going to come too late to salvage their season.

Some other interesting notes:

-Pitchers accounted for 193 of these 369 moves, or 52.3%, so they have not been placed on the DL much more often than hitters in 2013. However, they accounted for 9291 days of the total, a much higher 62.5%, with an average DL stay almost 8 days longer than the overall average: 48.14 days. Much of that, of course, is down to the fact that Tommy John surgery has put a number of pitchers out for the maximum duration.

-A strain was by far the most common cause cited for a DL move, with 132 occurrences in MLB's transaction data, just under 36% of the total. In many cases this terminology would later be altered by the team as further evaluation took place - A.J. Griffin and Josh Johnson are among the players who fall into this category, for instance. Inflammation actually came in second with 39 occurrences, with tear at 33.*

-177 injuries were listed as being on a player's right side, with 146 to the left side. 10 players were put on the 7-day concussion DL for concussions or concussion-like symptoms, all of whom were catchers or outfielders.

-155 players (42%) who have gone on the DL so far have yet to come off the DL. That includes 15 of the 21 Rangers players, 11 of the 15 Padres and 10 of the 14 Diamondbacks. Jason Giambi is the only player to have the dubious distinction of hitting the DL on three separate occasions.

*Terminology was not consistent throughout the transaction data and naturally depends on the information the team releases at the time of the move. I placed the moves into categories based on this information where possible and left it blank or vague where it was not. This is something we'll again be returning to examine in a future piece.

A note regarding the list of Rangers players: Matt Harrison was originally listed as one of the players who had not appeared yet, when it should have been Geovany Soto. Harrison did return at the end of April before going back on the DL a few weeks later.

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to our email list for daily injury updates!

For more commentary and analysis, visit our friends at Last Word on Sports!


Post a Comment