MLB Insights

August 24, 2009 3:08 AM

Power Outage At The Top Of The American League

The American League is often considered a stronger league than the National League and I think I have found a very small reason why.  It has to do with the number of home runs hit by the top players, at least this year.

In the AL, there has been an average of 141 home runs hit by each team, good for a total of 1974.  In the NL, these numbers are 119 and 1904.  However, in the NL, a much greater percentage of these HR are being hit by the elite players.  The top 10 hitters in the NL have hit 317 HR, good for 16.65% of total HR.  In the AL, the top 10 have hit 258 HR, or 13.07%.  This means that the secondary players are hitting more home runs in the AL, meaning at least offensively, most teams are deeper in terms of power than the NL.  This could be a reason why most people consider the junior circuit to have generally stronger teams than their senior counterparts. 

When you look at the top players in each league, it is pretty comparable.  Pujols, Ramirez (Hanley), Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder, Adrian Gonzalez, Adam Dunn and Ryan Howard could all hold their own against the likes of Mark Teixeira, Joe Mauer, Alex Rodriguez, Justin Morneau, Miguel Cabrera, Evan Longoria and Kevin Youkilis.  I dare say the NL even has better elite players.  It is the secondary players where the AL holds the advantage.  Unsung guys like Mike Napoli and Jose Lopez have 17 home runs apiece, while the NL trots out guys like Jason Kendall (seriously, he is still in the league?) and David Eckstein at these positions.   

Anyways, this was just something interesting that I came across while browsing stats, so I thought I would share it.  Feel free to discuss. 

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