Twins pitchers update

7 May

Below is an update on the Twins pitchers’ “OPS Against” stat. Though rudimentary, OPS is a remarkably accurate portrayal of run production, which means OPS Against is perhaps the best statistic to measure a pitcher’s effectiveness. ERA? Please. Doesn’t account for inherited runs or luck. WHIP? Better, but it counts all hits – from singles to home runs – as the same. Stat geeks, you’re better than that.

No, those stats won’t do. OPS Against is a much better tool, and as far as I’m concerned should be considered the standard. And that’s not just me saying it; last year I emailed two sharp baseball minds – Gleeman and my hero Ken Tremendous – to ask what they thought, and both agreed.

For some reason, however, this stat isn’t widely used or readily available. Which is why I’m collecting the numbers using ESPN.com (go to Player -> Splits) and presenting them here. Enjoy.

Jose Mijares — .284

Jesse Crain — .406

Matt Guerrier — .487

Glen Perkins — .617

Joe Nathan — .662

Craig Breslow — .682

Franchise Liriano — .742

Nick Blackburn — .766

Kevin Slowey — .861

R.A. Dickey — .966

Luis Ayala — .969

Scott Baker — .981

What do these numbers mean? Essentially, the main problems thus far are the uncharacteristic ineffectiveness of Slowey and Baker (which will improve, no doubt) and the over-usage of the terrible Ayala and Dickey due to having no other options.

The starters will come around, hopefully Crain can stay healthy and effective, and if we cross our fingers that one of the minor leaguers is called up and thrives, this could still be a better than average pitching staff.

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4 Responses to “Twins pitchers update”

  1. shall May 7, 2009 at 2:03 pm #

    For those of us still stuck in the dark ages it is hard to look at these numbers and know how to put them into perspective. What would an average number be? Great? Below average?

  2. B. May 7, 2009 at 5:18 pm #

    .760 is about average, far as I can tell. Some other OPS lines for your reference (all from ’08):

    Pujols: 1.114
    Ramirez: 1.031
    Morneau: .873
    Hunter: .810
    Jeter: .771
    Delmon: .741
    C. Figgins: .685
    Gomez: .657
    Tony Pena Jr*: .398

    * The worst hitter in the league to a hilarious degree

  3. Luke May 8, 2009 at 7:27 am #

    I didn’t know you were such a nerd. It’s great! :) Keep it up Brotha’

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Twins pitchers update #2 - World of B - June 3, 2009

    […] is an update on the Twins pitchers’ “OPS Against” on the year. I’ve stated my case before that OPS Against is the best measurement of a pitcher’s effectiveness and best indicator of […]

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