Last season, 26 percent of the 795 pitchers who appeared in an MLB game were left-handed, which was more than double the national population. The left-handed advantage is a centuries-old idea that dates back to when the Kerr clan of Scotland allegedly taught its men to swordfight left-handed, and it is still in use today. Although many modern baseball pitchers are left-handed, most of them are also trained as right-handers first.
In the modern era (1901-present), there have been only five left-handed pitchers who have won the Cy Young Award: Randy Johnson (1995), Pedro Martinez (2000), Cliff Lee (2010), Jacob deGrom (2017), and Stephen Strasburg (2018). Of those five, three (Johnson, Martinez, and Lee) had stellar right arms too. There have been nine other lefties who have finished in the top five votes for the award. All but one of them — Joe Nuxhall — threw right-handed first.
There are currently two left-handed pitchers in the MLB: Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke. Both are elite-level starters who have their own problems with their off-arm (Kershaw has elbow issues, while Greinke has shoulder problems). However, both were also drafted after they ran away with their high school states' batting titles; thus, they were given the opportunity to throw left-handed first.
As a result, the left side accounts for more than 40% of MLB plate appearances. The pitching aspect of this story, on the other hand, does not hold up under investigation. Pitchers do face left-handed hitters more frequently than the general population, but it isn't the most important aspect in the race for pitching employment.
In baseball, a pitcher's handedness is frequently thought to provide him an advantage over a hitter (i.e., left-handed vs. right-handed). Right-handed pitchers, I believe, have an edge over left-handed batters, and vice versa.
In 2018, around 35% of all Major League Baseball (MLB) hitters were left-handed, compared to 10% of the general population. My primary purpose for this experiment was to determine whether there was a statistically significant difference in performance between hitters facing a same-handed pitcher and batters facing an opposite-handed pitcher. As expected, there was: left-handers batting against right-handers outperformed by about 10 points of average (.275 vs.265), but that's about it.
In conclusion, there is no advantage to be had by a batter who knows he's going up against a right-hander. The slight edge left-handers have over right-handers is due to the fact that they're not forced to adapt as quickly when facing a new pitcher.
In baseball, left-handedness and right-handedness are extremely important. A player who bats left or right usually gives away the location where the ball will fly, and a pitcher's hand might be advantageous or disadvantageous depending on who is up to bat. There are more left-handers in the world than right-handers, so the fact that all major league players are right-handed is not surprising. However, many successful left-handed pitchers have played in the majors including Carl Hubbell, Randy Johnson, and Pedro Martinez.
Being left-handed is more common than you might think: about 80% of the population is right-handed. Being left-handed can be a disadvantage for baseball players because they are often given the tough assignments - like batting cleanup or pitching after midnight when the field is dry - that other players avoid. Lefties also tend to get less money to play baseball because they are assumed to be too expensive to keep.
However, there are many advantages to being left-handed. For starters, it is not necessary to write any special rules for left-handers (or right-handers for that matter). They are treated exactly like their right-handed counterparts. Also, since they cannot use a hidden hand to break up a no-hit bid, left-handers are not as likely to suffer through such tragedies.
Forget it when a left-handed sidearm pitcher throws a crisp breaking ball to a left-handed hitter. That's when you see lefties holding opposing batters to batting averages of less than.300.
We believe that left-handed pitchers have a hidden edge that is unrelated to their ability to toss a baseball and is entirely dependent on the fact that they throw with their left hand. This "southpaw advantage" is significant enough to produce a massive excess of lefty pitchers on teams and profoundly change the game.
Throwing right-handed will always give you a little edge. Right-handed throwers, for example, are virtually usually used as catcher, middle infielder, and third baseman, according to Pomrenke. Right-handers are just as good as left-handers at first base and in the outfield corners. However, they have an advantage at the plate because there are more pitches to hit out of the hand throwing right-handed. Overall, research shows that right-handedness is associated with offense even after taking gender into account.
The strongest evidence for this conclusion comes from studies of large populations where it can be assumed that exposure to right-handed pitching is equally distributed between players. In these studies, right-handedness is associated with increased batting average and slugging percentage, even after controlling for other factors such as age and league quality.
There are several theories about why right-handed pitchers might give up more hits than left-handers. One theory is that right-handed hitters get a better look at fastballs thrown by right-handers because they're less likely to see curves or sliders. Another theory is that right-handed batters are given better pitches to hit because right-handers use more cutters and slower balls in their arsenals.
When the pitcher's handedness is the same as the batter's, the pitcher has an advantage, and when they are opposite, the batter has an edge. Furthermore, because the majority of pitchers are right-handed, left-handed batters have less expertise facing left-handed pitchers. However, research has shown that a left-handed batter does not have an advantage against right-handed pitchers.
Other factors such as pitch selection and velocity also play a role in who wins the matchup between a left-handed and right-handed batter. For example, left-handers tend to pitch around right-handed hitters because there's less risk of damage if the pitch isn't hit. Right-handers on the other hand, tend to attack left-handers because there's more chance of success if they do connect.
In addition, left-handed batters have an advantage over right-handed batters because left-handed pitchers throw faster and have better control. Also, left-handed batters get more pitches to hit because most pitchers are right-handed. Finally, left-handed batters have an advantage over right-handed batters because there are more of them than right-handed batters.
Overall, left-handed batters don't have an advantage over right-handed batters; it's just that there are more of them who can hit right-handed pitching.
Professional baseball players were 7.6 times more likely than less competent controls to throw with their right hand and hit with their left (high school and grammar school students). Left-handed throwing and batting were likewise frequent, but only 2.5 times more common among professional baseball players than the less skilled controllers. Right-handed throwing and batting were rare occurrences among both groups.
In conclusion, professional baseball players were seven times more likely than less competent controls to throw with their right hand and hit with their left.
Left-handed throwing and batting were likewise frequent, but only twice as common among professional baseball players as the less skilled controls.