2013 Positional Power Rankings: Starting Pitchers (#16-#30)

For an explanation of this series, please read the introductory post. The data is a hybrid projection of the ZIPS and Steamer systems with playing time determined through depth charts created by our team of authors. The rankings are based on aggregate projected WAR for each team at a given position.

Last week, we tackled the positional players, grading out each team’s options at each spot that is occupied by a fielder. You can see all those posts here, and yes, they’ve now been updated to reflect the correct park adjusted numbers. So, today, we move on to the pitching side of things. Because we’re dealing with 7-10 starters and an equal number of relievers for each club, we’re breaking these posts into two parts, less they become our own version of War and Peace.

We’ll start off with the starting staffs that occupy the 16th-30th spots on the list, but also keep in mind that the ordinal rank is often not that important, as there’s no real difference between the #13 and #17 teams in terms of projected outcome. The actual performance is the interesting thing here. And, since we’re starting in the lower half of the list, there are some pretty ugly projections to follow.

Also, note that the innings projections are not equal for every team. Due to durability and bullpen deployment, not every team gets the same amount of innings from their starters over the course of the season. We have equalized the innings at the team level, so teams that are projected for fewer innings from their starters will get a larger number from their relievers, but the IP totals for each team’s rotation and bullpen won’t match up like the PA totals did for each hitter. We’ve made sure they fall within a reasonable range, however, and think the overall distribution of playing time makes sense for each club.

All that said, on to the write-ups.

#16 Giants


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Matt Cain 218.0 7.7 2.4 0.9 .291 74.9 % 3.32 3.52 3.5
Madison Bumgarner 206.0 8.3 2.2 0.8 .304 74.0 % 3.27 3.16 4.3
Tim Lincecum 162.0 9.0 3.7 0.8 .308 73.4 % 3.65 3.49 2.6
Barry Zito 157.0 5.9 3.6 1.1 .295 70.3 % 4.51 4.54 0.6
Ryan Vogelsong 152.0 7.2 3.3 0.9 .300 72.0 % 3.86 3.88 1.8
Chris Heston 30.0 6.0 3.2 0.8 .308 68.9 % 4.36 4.09 0.3
Boof Bonser 24.0 5.7 3.9 0.9 .309 69.3 % 4.67 4.46 0.1
Eric Surkamp 10.0 7.4 3.8 0.8 .312 71.5 % 4.09 3.91 0.1
Total 959.0 7.6 3.0 0.9 .300 72.8 % 3.72 3.70 13.2

It’s easy to look at the first few names on this list and think that the Giants are being underrated here, but while ZIPS and Steamer see a nice rebound season for Tim Lincecum, neither see him getting back to his Cy Young peak, and neither are all that fond of the decision to give Barry Zito a rotation spot without having any serious alternatives should that go badly. The Giants have perhaps the least amount of depth beyond their starting five of any team in baseball, so they’re going to be relying heavily on the guys currently penciled in to the rotation.

The good news is that the front of their rotation is very strong. Since our WAR is based on FIP, you can bump Matt Cain up a little bit since his ERA is annually lower than his FIP. With a pair of +4-ish win pitchers heading up the staff and an above average hurler in Lincecum, the Giants should have an advantage on the mound more often than not. The big question for San Francisco will be whether or not they’ll have to give a bunch of replacement level innings to the back end because of their lack of depth. It isn’t a problem in October, but if they want to get to October, they might want to look at finding another decent starting pitcher to help get them through the regular season.

#17 Braves


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Tim Hudson 205.0 5.6 2.7 0.7 .297 70.9 % 3.75 3.82 2.9
Kris Medlen 202.0 7.3 2.2 0.8 .301 73.0 % 3.41 3.35 4.1
Mike Minor 173.0 8.0 3.0 1.1 .298 73.7 % 3.93 4.00 2.1
Paul Maholm 145.0 6.2 2.7 0.8 .301 70.3 % 4.01 3.93 1.9
Julio Teheran 122.0 6.6 3.5 1.1 .301 71.1 % 4.36 4.42 0.9
Brandon Beachy 50.0 8.8 3.1 1.0 .298 76.2 % 3.50 3.64 0.8
J.R. Graham 46.0 6.3 3.2 1.0 .303 69.7 % 4.39 4.27 0.4
Total 943.0 6.8 2.8 0.9 .300 72.0 % 3.84 3.86 13.1

Kris Medlen – not a fluke. Okay, well, he won’t be the second coming of Greg Maddux again, but the projections like him a lot, and suggest that he’ll be one of the best starting pitchers in the National League this year. He might not look like a traditional ace, but the BB/K/HR profile is very similar to Matt Cain. Medlen won’t start for the Braves on Opening Day, but by this measure, he looks like Atlanta’s best starter.

After him, it’s mostly decent rather than spectacular. Hudson, Minor, and Maholm should give the team a fairly stable rotation, but they don’t provide a ton of upside. That comes in the #5 spot, where Julio Teheran has had a ridiculous spring training, and is certainly capable of putting up better numbers than he has here. Spring training results don’t mean anything, really, but the variance on Teheran’s projection is quite large, and it wouldn’t be that surprising if he ended up throwing 150 good innings this year. If Teheran beats this projection handily, the Braves might give the Nationals a real run for their money in the NL East. If he doesn’t, they’ll be waiting anxiously for Brandon Beachy’s second half return.

#18 Angels


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Jered Weaver 211.0 7.5 2.3 1.1 .285 75.6 % 3.42 3.70 3.5
C.J. Wilson 182.0 7.8 3.6 0.7 .298 73.0 % 3.65 3.68 3.0
Jason Vargas 208.0 5.7 2.4 1.3 .291 70.8 % 4.35 4.44 1.6
Joe Blanton 167.0 6.7 1.9 1.1 .304 70.3 % 4.08 3.87 2.4
Tommy Hanson 151.0 7.8 3.1 1.1 .300 74.1 % 3.94 4.10 1.8
Jerome Williams 24.0 6.2 2.4 1.0 .305 70.1 % 4.14 4.00 0.3
Garrett Richards 16.0 6.0 4.0 1.0 .310 68.9 % 4.83 4.61 0.1
Total 960.0 7.0 2.7 1.1 .295 72.6 % 3.90 3.97 12.7

Like with Cain, Weaver’s WAR should be adjusted upwards a bit to account for his FIP-beating ways. Even the .285 BABIP projection here might not be low enough, based on Dan Rosenheck’s recent research. If the Angels are going to win this year, though, they’re going to need Weaver to be at his best, because the guys behind him are less than impressive.

Wilson’s still a strong starter, though coming off arm surgery, he’s also a bit of a wild card. Then there’s the back-end. Jason Vargas should be able to take advantage of the Trout/Bourjos/Hamilton outfield and a park that deflates home runs, but he’s still an average pitcher at best. Joe Blanton is the anti-Weaver, so if you’re bumping Weaver up for regularly beating FIP, you also have to downgrade Blanton slightly. The projections don’t hate Hanson, but he’s also a big question mark from a health perspective, and the options to replace him if things go south are not great. The Angels have the best group of position players in the game by this project, but that’s good, because this pitching staff doesn’t look like the kind of group that is going to lead anyone to the postseason.

#19 Rockies


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Jhoulys Chacin 146.0 7.0 3.9 1.0 .312 70.2 % 4.55 4.31 2.2
Jorge de la Rosa 140.0 7.1 3.9 1.1 .311 69.7 % 4.68 4.43 2.0
Jeff Francis 133.0 5.4 2.2 1.1 .319 67.0 % 4.87 4.34 2.0
Juan Nicasio 137.0 7.8 2.8 1.0 .321 70.5 % 4.26 3.79 2.8
Jon Garland 97.0 5.6 3.5 0.9 .297 69.5 % 4.45 4.40 1.4
Drew Pomeranz 56.0 7.6 4.1 1.0 .318 70.0 % 4.74 4.34 0.8
Tyler Chatwood 46.0 5.7 4.6 1.0 .316 68.1 % 5.27 4.88 0.4
Christian Friedrich 41.0 6.9 3.3 1.2 .322 67.9 % 5.03 4.47 0.6
Total 795.0 6.7 3.4 1.1 .314 69.3 % 4.64 4.30 12.2

Probably the most surprising placement of any team on the list. Because of the run environment, injury issues, and the Rockies experiments with getting rid of starters as we know them, Colorado doesn’t have very many big name pitchers in their rotation, but Zips and Steamer also look at this as a pretty deep group of solid average pitchers, though average pitchers who are unlikely to post ERAs that match their FIPs.

A big part of that is simply Coors Field, which annually is home to a .330 BABIP or so. While people talk about the home run effect, the extra hits really add up as well, and so judging Colorado’s pitchers from a park neutral standpoint can be a tricky task. But, we should acknowledge that guys like Chacin, Nicasio, Pomeranz, and Friedrich were all pretty interesting prospects and would likely be thought of very differently if they played in another home park. Add in some decent history from de la Rosa and the projections optimism about Garland and Francis, and this group isn’t completely hapless. There’s not an innings eater to be found, but if they mix and match again, they have enough interesting arms to put a rotation together that might not be so bad.

#20 Pirates


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
A.J. Burnett 181.0 7.4 3.3 0.8 .309 71.4 % 3.88 3.75 2.5
Wandy Rodriguez 197.0 6.6 2.8 0.8 .299 71.3 % 3.83 3.72 2.8
James McDonald 130.0 7.7 3.7 1.0 .299 72.5 % 4.08 4.10 1.3
Francisco Liriano 129.0 8.8 4.0 0.7 .306 71.9 % 3.73 3.51 2.2
Jeff Karstens 122.0 6.0 1.9 1.1 .300 70.8 % 4.04 3.95 1.4
Gerrit Cole 49.0 8.0 3.8 0.8 .310 72.5 % 4.04 3.86 0.6
Jeanmar Gomez 46.0 5.2 3.2 0.9 .307 67.7 % 4.72 4.39 0.3
Kyle McPherson 43.0 6.8 2.4 1.0 .305 70.7 % 4.08 3.98 0.5
Phillip Irwin 46.0 5.9 2.2 0.9 .305 68.7 % 4.22 3.97 0.5
Total 943.0 7.1 3.1 0.9 .303 71.2 % 3.97 3.84 12.0

The Pirates get one of the lower innings projections of any team, mainly because they’ve assembled a rotation of guys with extensive injury histories. Burnett and Rodriguez give the team a couple of mostly reliable starters, but they aren’t anyone’s idea of front-of-the-rotation arms either, and then it becomes a big jumble of guess work. Can Liriano stay healthy enough to pitch regularly? Zips and Steamer both see him pitching pretty well when he’s on the mound, but who knows how long that will last.

The good news for Pittsburgh is that help is on the way, and the kids on the farm might actually be upgrades over some of the back-end guys currently in place. Gerrit Cole might be the Pirates third best starter right now, and Cistulli-favorite Phil Irwin gets a pretty nice projection as well. Toss in Kyle McPherson and the eventual arrival of Jameson Taillon — though that might have to wait for 2014 — and there’s some interesting pitching in Pittsburgh’s future. It’s just not quite here yet.

#21 Mariners


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Felix Hernandez 229.0 8.5 2.4 0.7 .306 73.7 % 3.16 3.01 5.5
Hisashi Iwakuma 160.0 6.8 2.6 0.9 .304 71.3 % 3.93 3.82 2.2
Joe Saunders 186.0 5.4 2.7 1.1 .298 70.4 % 4.33 4.32 1.4
Erasmo Ramirez 107.0 6.0 2.5 1.0 .299 69.6 % 4.21 4.14 1.0
Blake Beavan 106.0 4.2 1.9 1.2 .297 67.4 % 4.69 4.60 0.5
Brandon Maurer 109.0 6.4 4.2 0.9 .301 69.2 % 4.61 4.49 0.6
Jeremy Bonderman 46.0 6.2 3.1 1.1 .300 69.9 % 4.59 4.45 0.3
Danny Hultzen 26.0 8.7 6.0 0.8 .305 71.0 % 4.57 4.45 0.2
Total 970.0 6.5 2.8 0.9 .301 70.7 % 4.07 3.97 11.7

The King is great, but his council are the kinds of assistants that get rulers deposed. Felix accounts for 47% of the entire rotation’s projected WAR, which is both a tribute to how amazing he is and a cautionary tale about everyone who follows him. Iwakuma is a decent enough pitcher who shouldn’t be anyone’s #2, and then it gets questionable in a hurry. I’d bet on Erasmo Ramirez beating this projection if the Mariners actually committed to giving him a rotation spot, but he very well could end up in Triple-A watching Blake Beavan pitch every fifth day.

With Brandon Maurer, there’s some interesting long term upside, but he’s also never pitched above Double-A, and the secondary stuff probably isn’t good enough yet for him to be a real asset in the rotation. Joe Saunders is what he is, and the fences coming in at Safeco won’t do him any favors, especially considering his problems with right-handed hitters. While the Mariners “Big Three” pitching prospects have received a lot of hype, none of them look anywhere near big league ready. Take away Felix and this rotation would be among the worst in the league. As it is, he pushes them up to 20th through his greatness alone.

#22 Royals


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
James Shields 221.0 7.8 2.4 1.0 .311 72.1 % 3.82 3.60 4.4
Jeremy Guthrie 180.0 5.3 2.6 1.2 .301 70.1 % 4.54 4.59 1.5
Ervin Santana 182.0 6.6 3.1 1.3 .302 70.0 % 4.65 4.60 1.5
Wade Davis 162.0 6.9 3.4 1.1 .301 71.9 % 4.37 4.42 1.7
Bruce Chen 81.0 6.2 2.7 1.3 .303 70.0 % 4.71 4.62 0.7
Luis Mendoza 40.0 5.0 3.3 0.9 .308 68.9 % 4.66 4.54 0.4
Will Smith 48.0 5.4 3.2 1.1 .304 68.8 % 4.77 4.55 0.4
Danny Duffy 18.0 8.2 4.1 1.1 .307 72.1 % 4.33 4.26 0.2
Felipe Paulino 19.0 8.2 3.6 1.0 .316 71.8 % 4.21 3.95 0.3
Total 951.0 6.6 2.9 1.1 .304 70.8 % 4.39 4.32 11.0

The great rotation overhaul of 2013 looks like a dud. The projections still love James Shields, though without the Rays shifting defense around to deflate his BABIP, the results aren’t expected to be quite as good as they have in the past. But, man, the non-Shields starters…

There isn’t an above average pitcher to be found anywhere after Shields, with a collection of innings eaters piling on top of each other to combine for something less than mediocrity. The Royals have bet the farm on an improved rotation carrying their young position players into contention, but based on these projections, it just isn’t going to work out as KC had hoped. There’s probably more hope for Davis than this suggests, given the complexities involved with reliever-to-starter conversion projects, but there just isn’t much upside in guys like Guthrie, Santana, and Chen, and most of the Royals young arms have either fizzled or just aren’t ready for prime time. If these projections hold, it’s only a matter of time until we begin hearing rumblings of teams calling the Royals to check on Shields availability.

#23 Mets


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Jon Niese 201.0 7.5 2.5 0.9 .310 71.6 % 3.81 3.54 3.2
Matt Harvey 168.0 8.9 3.9 0.9 .305 73.4 % 3.85 3.82 2.1
Shaun Marcum 134.0 7.5 2.6 1.0 .296 73.5 % 3.68 3.73 1.8
Dillon Gee 137.0 7.3 3.1 1.0 .307 70.3 % 4.23 4.07 1.3
Jeremy Hefner 81.0 5.9 2.7 1.0 .308 70.1 % 4.42 4.24 0.6
Johan Santana 97.0 7.5 2.8 1.1 .301 72.9 % 4.01 3.96 1.1
Collin McHugh 40.0 7.1 3.7 1.0 .310 70.4 % 4.51 4.38 0.2
Zack Wheeler 48.0 8.5 4.5 0.8 .305 71.9 % 4.08 3.97 0.5
Total 906.0 7.6 3.1 1.0 .305 71.9 % 3.98 3.87 11.0

In a year, the Mets should be quite a bit higher than this. Jon Niese remains a good breakout candidate, and Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler both project as average starters right now, with serious potential for more than that down the line. The core of a good rotation is in place. Now, the Mets just have to be patient enough to wait for those guys to develop into a really good front three.

With Marcum, Santana, and Gee, they have some interesting and potentially decent supporting pieces in place while the team makes that transition, but health concerns hang over all three and limit the amount of innings we can project for any of them. That leaves a chunk of innings going to placeholders like Hefner and McHugh, which drags down the Mets overall total. If Santana can get healthy and Marcum can stay healthy, though, the Mets could have a pretty interesting group of five for the second half of the season, especially if Wheeler gets to the show before the All-Star break. There’s reasons for hope here. That hope just needs a little more seasoning, though.

#24 Orioles


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Jason Hammel 174.0 7.5 3.1 0.9 .304 71.6 % 3.97 3.82 3.2
Wei-Yin Chen 163.0 6.2 2.4 1.2 .291 72.1 % 4.16 4.35 2.0
Chris Tillman 158.0 6.9 3.3 1.2 .295 71.4 % 4.46 4.52 1.6
Miguel Gonzalez 146.0 6.8 3.5 1.2 .301 71.3 % 4.49 4.57 1.4
Jake Arrieta 122.0 7.3 4.0 1.1 .305 69.4 % 4.71 4.49 1.3
Zach Britton 44.0 6.3 3.9 0.9 .310 69.0 % 4.68 4.35 0.5
Jair Jurrjens 47.0 4.6 3.0 1.6 .304 67.2 % 5.57 5.35 0.1
Dylan Bundy 40.0 7.5 3.7 1.0 .307 71.5 % 4.30 4.23 0.5
Total 894.0 6.8 3.3 1.1 .300 70.9 % 4.41 4.38 10.7

One quick note here – Kevin Gasuman isn’t included because we don’t have ZIPS/Steamer projections for him, but given that he was a polished college arm who marauded his way through the minors after signing, I wouldn’t be surprised if he spent a decent chunk of the season in Baltimore and pitched pretty well to boot. So, feel free to bump this projection up a bit in order to include him in the overall plan.

Somewhat like the Pirates and Mets, the seeds of a good rotation are here, but the young guys are more potential than performance at this point, and the lack of a real ace up front holds the overall projection down. There aren’t any huge glaring weaknesses here, but five average (or in Hammel’s case, slightly above average) starters doesn’t make a great rotation, and that’s essentially what the Orioles have here. With Bundy, Gausman, and maybe a couple of holdovers from the current group, there’s some interesting long term potential for the Orioles, but 2013 looks like a bit of a step backwards from last year’s surprisingly strong run.

#25 Brewers


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Yovani Gallardo 199.0 9.0 3.2 0.9 .310 73.6 % 3.71 3.50 3.7
Marco Estrada 187.0 8.4 2.6 1.1 .306 72.9 % 3.89 3.73 2.9
Mike Fiers 136.0 8.2 3.1 1.1 .298 74.0 % 3.91 4.02 1.7
Chris Narveson 122.0 7.1 3.4 1.1 .311 69.9 % 4.62 4.27 1.1
Wily Peralta 129.0 7.8 5.0 0.8 .309 70.6 % 4.51 4.31 1.1
Mark Rogers 81.0 7.0 6.0 0.8 .302 71.0 % 4.69 4.74 0.3
Johnny Hellweg 40.0 6.4 7.7 1.2 .313 68.8 % 6.18 6.11 -0.4
Total 894.0 8.0 3.8 1.0 .307 71.9 % 4.22 4.08 10.4

Remember when I said the Giants maybe had the least pitching depth beyond their starters in baseball? If it’s not them, it’s Milwaukee. Rogers looked like he had harnessed his impressive stuff last summer, but a miserable spring (7 IP, 12 BB, 3 K) has him ticketed for the bullpen simply because he’s out of options, and there’s just not much in the way of interesting options after that. There’s a reason the team keeps getting tied to Kyle Lohse – he would be a pretty big upgrade over the internal candidates for the Brewers rotation.

That isn’t to say that the front four don’t have any potential. Gallardo’s a good pitcher, while Estrada and Fiers are going to look good on the nights they don’t give up any home runs. HR rate has a lot of fluctuation, and there will be stretches where these guys keep the ball in the park and look like world beaters. We saw stretches like that from both last year. The problem is that they probably can’t sustain those stretches, so there’s also going to be nights where they’re throwing Home Run Derby. If they had another quality starter, having two interesting upside guys with big variance at the back of the rotation would be more palatable. As it is, the Brewers look like they’re at least one good pitcher short of being a contender this year.

#26 Twins


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Scott Diamond 191.0 4.9 2.5 0.8 .313 68.0 % 4.46 4.05 2.7
Kevin Correia 146.0 4.9 2.8 1.3 .305 67.1 % 5.05 4.75 0.9
Vance Worley 157.0 6.8 3.1 1.0 .313 70.3 % 4.37 4.09 2.1
Mike Pelfrey 143.0 5.0 2.9 1.0 .309 68.2 % 4.76 4.45 1.3
Liam Hendriks 91.0 5.5 2.8 1.1 .307 68.2 % 4.76 4.47 0.8
Cole DeVries 83.0 5.4 2.4 1.4 .309 67.8 % 5.04 4.74 0.5
Kyle Gibson 90.0 6.6 3.3 1.1 .310 70.0 % 4.65 4.44 0.8
Total 901.0 5.5 2.8 1.1 .310 68.5 % 4.69 4.38 9.2

When your #1 starter has a projected strikeout rate of 4.9 K/9, you’re probably in for a long year. I don’t even know what to say about this group, honestly. Kevin Correia isn’t the worst pitcher in baseball, but he’s just here to eat innings and try not to embarrass the state of Minnesota too badly in the process. Mike Pelfrey is a relcamation project who cost millions, while everyone else got reclamation projects for free. Those guys might be good for keeping the innings count down on Kyle Gibson and Liam Hendriks, but they’re not moving the organization forward in any kind of meaningful way.

I get that the Twins wanted to rebuild. I liked the decision to swap Ben Revere for Vance Worley and Trevor May. I just don’t know why rebuilding includes so many guys with no real future in Minnesota, nor any real hope to turn into interesting trade chips at the deadline. This looks like deck chair rearranging more than building for the future.

#27 Indians


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Justin Masterson 181.0 6.7 3.3 0.7 .312 69.3 % 4.17 3.83 2.7
Ubaldo Jimenez 193.0 7.8 4.1 0.9 .307 70.8 % 4.39 4.17 2.2
Brett Myers 152.0 5.9 2.5 1.1 .305 69.7 % 4.34 4.14 1.8
Zach McAllister 136.0 6.5 2.9 1.1 .316 69.2 % 4.70 4.31 1.3
Scott Kazmir 91.0 5.9 4.6 1.3 .300 68.4 % 5.36 5.38 -0.2
Carlos Carrasco 87.0 6.4 3.4 1.1 .306 68.8 % 4.78 4.53 0.6
Trevor Bauer 44.0 9.2 4.9 1.0 .310 72.8 % 4.27 4.19 0.5
Corey Kluber 16.0 7.2 4.0 1.0 .320 69.4 % 4.69 4.36 0.1
Daisuke Matsuzaka 16.0 7.2 3.9 1.3 .306 69.9 % 4.86 4.79 0.1
Total 916.0 6.8 3.5 1.0 .309 69.7 % 4.53 4.29 9.1

Thing you don’t really want to write about a contender: “Their season probably hangs on whether or not Scott Kazmir can resurrect his career.”

But that’s basically where the Indians are. Kazmir has shown decent velocity in spring training, so he’s won the fifth starter job and will try and make these projections look silly. He hasn’t been good for a while, but if his stuff is actually back to where it was in his Tampa Bay days, it’s not impossible to think that he could be a useful starter for Cleveland. Which is good, because they need their #5 starter to pitch well in order to compensate for the fact that their first few starters don’t stack up well against other contenders.

Masterson, Jimenez, and Myers would be a terrific #3-#5, offering both upside and some durability, but as a #1-#3 on a team trying to win, they don’t inspire much confidence. The Indians hitters should be good enough to keep them hanging around the Wild Card race most of the summer, but if they’re serious about making a run at this thing, they need to upgrade at least one rotation spot. Maybe Trevor Bauer can be that mid-season boost. If not, they’ll probably have to look outside the organization.

#28 Padres


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Edinson Volquez 137.0 8.4 4.7 0.7 .304 71.8 % 4.03 3.92 1.2
Clayton Richard 156.0 5.2 2.5 0.9 .299 69.8 % 4.16 4.09 1.1
Jason Marquis 143.0 5.9 3.0 0.9 .307 69.1 % 4.40 4.21 0.8
Cory Luebke 146.0 8.3 2.9 0.8 .295 73.9 % 3.37 3.42 2.3
Andrew Cashner 124.0 9.0 3.6 0.8 .303 72.9 % 3.54 3.40 2.0
Tyson Ross 81.0 6.7 4.0 0.8 .307 71.6 % 4.14 4.11 0.5
Eric Stults 43.0 5.8 3.3 0.9 .300 70.5 % 4.31 4.32 0.2
Anthony Bass 40.0 7.2 3.4 0.8 .300 71.8 % 3.89 3.79 0.4
Robbie Erlin 40.0 8.3 2.6 1.0 .304 72.5 % 3.69 3.61 0.5
Total 911.0 7.2 3.3 0.8 .302 71.4 % 3.94 3.86 9.0

Luebke, Cashner, Erlin, and Bass wouldn’t be a terrible front four if you could pencil them in for 200 innings apiece. Unfortunately, it’s not even clear that the Padres will get 200 innings combined from that group, so the rest of the rotation is fill-ins and placeholders, and not a great collection of placeholders at that. Their raw numbers will look okay thanks to Petco Park, but once you account for the run environment, it becomes pretty clear that the Padres have real pitching problems.

Losing Casey Kelly to Tommy John surgery didn’t help matters any either. While the Padres are theoretically both trying to win now and building for the future, they seem stuck in between two directions, and don’t have a rotation that points towards either plan working out that well. A strong healthy season from Cashner would be a positive step, but they’re going to need more than that to fix this rotation long term.

#29 Marlins


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Ricky Nolasco 200.0 6.2 2.1 1.0 .313 69.6 % 4.17 3.79 3.0
Henderson Alvarez 160.0 4.9 2.5 0.8 .306 68.9 % 4.28 4.09 1.8
Wade LeBlanc 146.0 6.5 2.8 1.1 .310 70.6 % 4.43 4.19 1.5
Nathan Eovaldi 130.0 6.6 4.1 0.9 .306 69.8 % 4.57 4.38 1.0
Jacob Turner 135.0 6.0 3.7 1.0 .305 68.7 % 4.68 4.45 1.0
Kevin Slowey 46.0 5.8 2.1 1.3 .305 68.8 % 4.72 4.51 0.3
Alex Sanabia 40.0 5.6 2.8 1.3 .304 69.2 % 4.81 4.71 0.2
Brad Hand 45.0 6.8 5.7 1.2 .299 70.2 % 5.24 5.27 -0.1
Total 902.0 6.0 3.0 1.0 .308 69.5 % 4.48 4.25 8.7

“Hey, that Ricky Nolasco projection looks pretty good.”
“Look at his expected BABIP and strand rate again.”
“Oh. Same old Ricky.”

On the one hand, I’ll give the Marlins credit. If you’re not going to win, it’s probably better to not win with guys like Turner, Eovaldi, and Alvarez. Collect enough interesting arms with flaws and one or two might figure things out, giving you a base to build off for 2014. On the other hand, this rotation is dreadful, and Nolasco probably won’t last the year in Miami. Jose Fernandez can not get to Miami soon enough.

#30 Astros


Name IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BABIP LOB% ERA FIP WAR
Bud Norris 192.0 8.4 3.6 1.2 .307 72.1 % 4.35 4.22 1.7
Lucas Harrell 135.0 5.9 3.9 0.8 .310 68.1 % 4.63 4.21 1.2
Philip Humber 129.0 6.4 2.8 1.3 .309 68.9 % 4.80 4.50 0.8
Erik Bedard 85.0 7.9 3.8 1.1 .314 70.3 % 4.64 4.28 0.7
Brad Peacock 87.0 7.3 4.6 1.2 .318 69.5 % 5.20 4.90 0.1
Alex White 83.0 6.1 4.0 1.1 .307 69.2 % 4.89 4.71 0.3
Jordan Lyles 43.0 6.1 2.7 1.1 .311 67.8 % 4.64 4.23 0.4
John Ely 40.0 7.1 3.1 1.1 .312 70.5 % 4.44 4.16 0.4
Jarred Cosart 40.0 6.4 5.0 1.2 .312 69.4 % 5.20 5.17 -0.1
Dallas Keuchel 42.0 4.5 3.0 1.1 .313 65.9 % 5.28 4.73 0.1
Total 877.0 6.9 3.7 1.1 .310 69.5 % 4.73 4.44 5.8

This might not be the worst rotation anyone has ever put together on purpose, but it’s in the conversation. This is the kind of group you expect to finish the season when your original starters got into a huge fight at a bar and all landed on the disabled list. The Astros are taking “throw a bunch of stuff at the wall and see what sticks” to a whole other level. And they’re probably going to trade Bud Norris at some point this year, so it’s only going to get worse.

The Astros plan makes sense if they can keep from alienating the entire city of Houston in the process. This is the kind of rotation that might make an entire city turn away from baseball for a while, though. This is why the Astros are going to be terrible. They’re going to give up a lot of runs this year. Long term, it may be worth it. Short term? It’s going to be ugly.




Print This Post



Dave is a co-founder of USSMariner.com and contributes to the Wall Street Journal.

104 Responses to “2013 Positional Power Rankings: Starting Pitchers (#16-#30)”

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
  1. Will says:

    This article would work a lot better if it was ordered in descending order (30-16) rather than 16-30.

    In fact, all of the articles in this series would be better if they went from worst to best.

    +25 Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Anon21 says:

      For all instances of “would be better” and variations, substitute “I would prefer.”

      +17 Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Kevin says:

        No, I think objectively and logically you would want to ascend in rankings rather than spoil the surprise.

        +13 Vote -1 Vote +1

        • Steve says:

          Maybe the surprise is “who will be last”?

          +9 Vote -1 Vote +1

        • King of the Byelorussian Crunkers says:

          I don’t think this series is meant to surprise people, just inform them.

          +11 Vote -1 Vote +1

        • King of the Byelorussian Crunkers says:

          My comment responded to Kevin; Steve’s response to Kevin is also plausible; and we jointly support Anon21′s point, in case any one is scoring at home.

          Vote -1 Vote +1

        • TheHoustonian says:

          Speaking as an Astros fan, there’s no suspense in “who will be last?”

          +18 Vote -1 Vote +1

      • kylemcg says:

        This is a message board, and quite a bit of what is written here is just opinion. Shocker. There’s no need to qualify that it is an opinion or personal preference. It’s better to just say what you mean and move on. But that’s just my preference, I guess.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • bgburek says:

      I scrolled down and did it backwards anyway

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Baltar says:

      I strongly disagree. I want to read about the best and, if I have time and inclination, then the rest.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  2. JoshEngleman says:

    I think it would be interesting to see the starting pitching rankings with respect to playoff rotations, as well. Some sort of weighted FIP ranking?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  3. Well-Beered Englishman says:

    2013 Cool Name Power Rankings: Starting Pitchers (Bracket 1)
    11. Nathan Edward Eovaldi
    10. Yovani Gallardo
    9. Julio Alberto Teheran Pinto
    8. Blake Bill (William) Beavan
    7. Jeanmar Alejandro Gomez
    6. Jhoulys Jose Chacin Molina
    5. Vance Richard Worley
    4. Ubaldo Jimenez
    3. Boof Bonser
    2. Jair Francoise Jurrjens
    1. Bruce Kastulo Chen

    2013 Noteworthy for Being Decidedly Humiliating Name Power Ranking
    1. Madison K. Bumgarner

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  4. Paul S says:

    Where would you rank the Brewers now that they just signed Lohse?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  5. Ivan Grushenko says:

    “As it is, the Brewers look like they’re at least one good pitcher short of being a contender this year.”

    Apparently the Brewers read this and acted quickly.

    +17 Vote -1 Vote +1

    • A Truck's Worth of Porridge says:

      The early Brewer catches the good pitcher for a very moderate 3 yr, 33 mil with 1 mil in performance bonuses.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  6. Hurtlockertwo says:

    The Gianst at #16 and Rockies at #19?? What?? The Rockies were terrible last year, the Giants won the World Series. The Astros may lose 115 games.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • CJ says:

      I wondered how long it would take a Giants fan to start whining about the ranking. Cain and Bumgarner are great….but the rest are meh.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Stuck in a Slump says:

      They also suffered injuries to every pitcher in their rotation. I’m sure that if the Giants lost five of the SP’s that they opened the season with that they too would be awful.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Greg says:

        I think the biggest difference between the Giants rotation and the Rockies is durability. Lincecum, Cain, or Bumgarner have never been on the disabled list and Zito/VogelsongRevival have managed to stay relatively healthy as well. Whether you wanna call that luck or skill is up to you, but if I had to bet on which rotation stays the healthiest, I would definitely put my money on SF.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Scott says:

      The Giants aren’t really at #16 though, because Cain is one of the pitchers who has shown a consistent ability to outperform his FIP. Like the author said, bump it up (say, 0.5-1.0 WAR) for Cain and the ranking probably goes up.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • brendan says:

      big reason giants won: incredible playoff pitching from barry zito!

      projections take a lot more into acct than just last years results.

      funny, but giants have won 2/3 WS, and neither year IMO did they have one of the 2 or 3 strongest teams (I’m a giants/As fan)

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Andy says:

      Last year the Indians were top 5. Sometimes the projections turn out weird things.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Terence says:

      Before we account for the bullpen, Fangraphs is projecting the Astros for 22.5 WAR. That’s a country mile from 115 losses.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  7. AdamJ says:

    City of Minnesota? Come on, Dave.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  8. znc1 says:

    No Jeff Locke in the Pirates’ projections? Or unfortunately for the team, Jonathan Sanchez? Both are likely in the rotation as of now with Liriano and Karstens out.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • pitnick says:

      Wide variation on Locke predictions. Steamer likes him (3.82 ERA / 3.86 FIP); ZIPS does not (4.68 ERA / FIP 4.43). Steamer projects more relief appearances, which might explain some of the difference.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  9. Alex says:

    On Teheran’s spring:

    “Spring training results don’t mean anything, really”

    I like this wording a lot better than what you have used previously. The performance itself has been somewhat meaningful based on the good reports about his improved breaking stuff and command, but I agree that the actual results coming from that performance don’t matter.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  10. King of the Byelorussian Crunkers says:

    Daisuke Matsuzaka was cut by the Indians today, not that it matters greatly.

    I would be shocked to see 151 innings out of Tommy Hanson.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Candy LaChance says:

      Rumor is that the Daisuke cut was just to save the $100,000 retention bonus and that he will stay with the org and head to the minors.

      Also, Kazmir hasn’t officially won the 5th spot in the Tribe rotation yet. Carasco is still a possibility, though he could probably use some more time regaining his command/control after TJ. And even if Kaz wins the spot to start the season, it seems unlikely the Tribe will stick with him for 90+ innings if he’s putting up numbers like these projections.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  11. Timeghoul says:

    Is #1-#15 getting posted today or tomorrow?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  12. Daniel says:

    I’m excited to see the final post.

    When I did this some time ago with ZiPS alone and much worse depth charting I got this:

    1. Angels
    2. Tigers
    3. Nationals
    4. Reds
    5. Blue Jays

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  13. Caveman Jones says:

    Absolutely stunned the Red Sox aren’t projected in the second tier of of rotations.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  14. Ender says:

    The Brewers just signed Lohse. How much does that move them up the rankings. I’d have to assume he is at least like a 2 WAR pitcher which should stick them like #19 or so?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Baltar says:

      I assume he’s about a 2 WAR player, but you have to deduct some WAR from the pitchers who lose innings to him. This may move the Brewers up a few places in the rankings, but it is not a great actual improvement.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  15. O's Fan says:

    I’m a homer but consider:

    “[For the Orioles,] 2013 looks like a bit of a step backwards from last year’s surprisingly strong run.”

    Except, it’s the same guys! They’re missing 6 starts by Joe Saunders, 3 starts by Randy Wolf, and a handful of starts by AAAA types like Dana Eveland. Also, Tommy “5-runs-all-earned” Hunter won’t be starting.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Caveman Jones says:

      These projection systems use a lot of regression, especially for guys with short samples at the major league level.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • JoeFish says:

      The more imprecise way of saying what Caveman Jones said is this: Just about everyone on the Orioles outperformed expectations last year. Sometimes it comes together like that. It very rarely comes together like that twice in a row.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  16. KCDaveInLA says:

    Royals rotation worse than Rockies’ and Pirates’?? (Folds arms, creases brow hard and pouts).

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  17. Stuck in a Slump says:

    Any team that starts Beavan when they have more interesting, much higher upside options for their rotations that are MLB ready should be openly mocked.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Andy says:

      It’s funny how he’s dominated the Rangers on a semi-regular basis over the last couple years in spite of their excellent offense, which does not at all jibe with his results against other teams.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  18. Average_Casey says:

    This will be interesting to see as I think these ranking systems tend to discount rookies a little too much. I think it’s entirely plausible that the Mariners young pitchers beat their projections by a decent margin. However, to counter that I just have to say Joe Saunders.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  19. Huh? says:

    Julio Teheran: 122 IP, 6.6 k/9, 3.5 bb/9, 4.42 FIP, 0.9 WAR
    Jorge de la Rossa: 140 IP, 7.1 k/9, 3.9 bb/9, 4.43 FIP, 2.0 WAR

    How is DLR getting more than 2x the WAR from 18 more innings? FIP is the same and Teheran has (slightly) better K/BB stats. Similar comparo’s elsewhere suggest Teheran has about 1/2 the WAR it seems like his peripherals suggest. WAR is park-adjusted, correct?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Alex says:

      WAR is park adjusted while FIP is not. A 4.43 FIP playing your home games in Denver is significantly better than a 4.42 FIP playing your home games in Atlanta.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Baltar says:

        So, unlike with the other players, we are look at park-adjusted WAR for the pitchers?

        Vote -1 Vote +1

        • Stuck in a Slump says:

          They went back once they realized that the WAR for position players wasn’t park adjusted and reexamined them.

          Vote -1 Vote +1

        • Stuck in a Slump says:

          They went back once they realized that the WAR for position players wasn’t park adjusted and reexamined them.

          Vote -1 Vote +1

  20. Antonio Bananas says:

    How much better/worse do good bullpens make pitchers? A great pen means that a manager should feel more confident in pulling a guy when he’s on the brink. One less bad inning per start can make a guy’s numbers look better. I’d like to see a nice study with graphs and correlations and such. We’re is the request bin?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  21. Joe says:

    I don’t understand why Ryan Vogelsong never gets any respect. The guy has been great for the past two seasons, minus one bad stretch of 7 starts last August. Before that he had a fantastic May-July and was close to being an all-star for the second straight season. There’s a reason Torre slotted him in the 2-hole for USA.

    Granted, the Giants DO have little depth past their top 5, but they have a really solid 1-3, Timmy should have a decent bounce-back, and Zito is looking better than he ever has in a Giants uni because his head is finally on straight.

    Also, does health factor into this at all? None of the Giants 5 have any history of injury. Shouldn’t that count for something?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Baltar says:

      Lack of injury history presumably was factored into the projections for innings pitched?

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Joe says:

        Maybe, but Lincecum’s, Zito’s, and Vogey’s IP prediction all seem low, considering they all consistently pitch more innings than that every year, except for Zito in 2011, when he had that weird ankle injury (his only DL stunt of his career)

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • CJ says:

      What exactly is it that makes you think “Timmy” will have a decent bounce-back? His ERA so far in ST is 10.97 so it isn’t that.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Joe says:

        1) because ST stats are flawed, especially for pitchers, who spend more time getting a groove on their pitches than trying to get players out.

        2) because he’s in way better shape this year than he was last year. He went in to 2012 thinking that swimming was the best way to get in shape; he was smarter going into 2013. One of his biggest problems in 2012 was with his stamina. He would pitch a great first 3-4 innings then give up a 4-spot in the fifth. The inning varied, but he would always hit a wall relatively early.

        3) because of basic regression. Lincecum honestly can’t do much worse than he did in 2012, and has shown that he can be very effective (see 2012 playoffs, and 2008-2011). I don’t think it was a downward trend as much as a major blip for him. If he does it again in 2013, then it’s a different story.

        4) because you learn from mistakes. 2012 was the first time he faced real challenges as a pitcher, and he didn’t know what to do, and he spiraled more and more out of control. He’s had an offseason to think about that and to figure out what went wrong and where, as opposed to trying to do it in a few days time during the regular season.

        I don’t expect him to regain his Cy Young status, apologies if that’s what my comment sounded like, but I think he’ll be at least an average to above-average pitcher this year.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • bigboneded says:

      Fellow Giants fan here.

      -”Great except for…” The “except for” counts.
      -Joe Torre made him the #2 because AT LEAST 30 other American pitchers weren’t on the US roster.
      -”his head is finally on straight” has zero statistical meaning and does not explain anything. Zito is the same pitcher he’s been for the last 6 years. In fact, Zito’s K-rate was down last season and he had the second WORSE WAR that he’s had as a Giant. The worst being 2011. If Zito has changed, it’s that he is striking out LESS batters.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Joe says:

        The one bad stretch was a problem with his cutter command that he’s since fixed. It in no way undoes the year and a half of great pitching that he had. Please, list off 30 American starters who are better than Vogelsong.

        And if you follow any Giants writer who’s been following Spring Training, they all agree that they’re seeing a Zito they haven’t seen before, and that’s why his ST stats are better than they’ve ever been in Orange and Black. His walk rate last year was also the best that it’s been since 2004, and his HR/FB was also among the best of his career, and his LD% was second best since 2006. He’s striking out people less, but he’s also doing things right, like walking hitters less, and producing more lazy fly balls. He also has 2 big things going for him, confidence, and the fact that it’s his first walk year since 2006.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

        • bigboneded says:

          Thank you for using numbers to back up your assertions. Much more effective.

          The problem with writers is that they write for people who think Brett Pill should be a Major Leaguer. I pay attention to Schulman, Baggarly, Haft, etc. inasmuch as they report transactions. The rest is dubious hyperbole.

          1. Kershaw
          2. Gio Gonzales
          3. Zimmerman
          4. Lee
          5. Medlen
          6. Latos
          7. Cain
          8. Bumgarner
          9. Lohse
          10. Verlander
          11. Price
          12. Harrison
          13. Sale
          14. Hellickson
          15. Weaver
          16. Sabathia
          17. Peavy
          18. Grienke
          19. Miley
          20. Scherzer
          21. Wainright
          22. Parker
          23. Burnett
          24. Cahill
          25. Dempster
          26. Smardzija
          27. Lester
          28. Kennedy
          29. Lynn
          30. Bailey
          (Based on 2012 fWAR; Vogey ranked 46th right there with Tim Hudson and Scott Diamond)

          Vote -1 Vote +1

        • Dave G. says:

          This list of pitchers is missing a Dickey.

          Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Joe says:

        I disagree with several that you listed, and you can’t only base it on 2012 when Vogey also had a great 2011, and, as is the case with other Giants pitchers, Vogelsong is very capable of pitching better than his peripherals, which fWAR is very dependent on. He has a different mindset with runners on, which is why his ERA and WAR rankings never match up. http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/asking-ryan-vogelsong-about-his-fip/

        Vote -1 Vote +1

        • bigboneded says:

          Well, whatever year it is belies the fact that Dickey was the only pitcher on that USA staff better than Vogey. And you can disagree with “several”, I can remove them and then hat? there are only 40 pitchers better?

          I get what you’re saying, and I LOVE Vogey. I ate #RallyEnchiladas before all of his post-season starts. He is one of the best few stories in MLB in the last few years. I paid $6 to keep him in my keeper league.

          The problem is when you use hyperbolic assertions like “head is on straight.” It’s the same as saying a team won because of “chemistry” or they “wanted it more.” It’s just not justifiable.

          BUT, your last two replies did contain statistical assertions that I am on board with. Thank you.

          Vote -1 Vote +1

  22. Scott Clarkson says:

    FDP wins would be a nice column to add to these rundowns since guys like Cain, Dickey etc. etc. will be understated in WAR.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  23. eric says:

    Cain, Bumgarner and Lincecum have more rings than Maddox, Glavine and Smoltz. LOL ZiPS.

    -6 Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Joe says:

      So does Eli Whiteside, doesn’t mean I’d rather have him than any of those three.

      +9 Vote -1 Vote +1

      • eric says:

        No I wouldn’t say Yogi Berra’s backup C was better than Carlton Fisk, but Yogi Berra on the other hand has a good case.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Anon21 says:

      I can’t even… is someone seriously making the “rings” argument? On Fangraphs?

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • eric says:

        That is a fair point. I am not sure what is wrong with this article. It says it is a hybrid of ZiPS and Steamer. But the Giants all have 1-2 WAR shaved off each one. For example, clicking the Matt Cain link brings you to his Fangraphs page. ZiPS shows as 4.7 for the coming year, Steamer is 3.4. While there is disagreement, the average would be 4.05. This article has it as 3.5. Bumgarner is 5 and 4.6, for an average of 4.8, and is listed as 4.3. I can list all 5, but I will just go ahead and say whatever “method” was pulled out of Steamer and ZiPS severly under valued the players, especially against the very systems individually.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

        • Joe says:

          This is a good argument, the original rings one was not.

          To list the other 3:
          Vogelsong is projected at 2.3 and 2.5 between Steamer and ZiPS respectively, but 1.8 here.
          Zito at 1.1 and 1.2, but .6 here.
          Lincecum is at 3.5 and 3.6, but 2.6 here.

          It’s not across the board either. After looking at Hudson and Medlen for the Braves, Cameron appears to have given them a INCREASE in their WAR over the ZiPS and Steamer predictions.

          Something does appear to be awry in these projections…

          +6 Vote -1 Vote +1

    • jim says:

      obvious troll is obvious

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  24. Ruki Motomiya says:

    Predict Santana and Guthrie will both beat their predictions. I like a 4.00 ERA or so for Santana and around a 4.10 ERA or so for Guthrie (Though probably with a 4.40 or so FIP). Still doesn’t leave the Royals all that well off, though.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  25. Jay29 says:

    You mean “lest they become .. War and Peace.”

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  26. Bab says:

    Guard play wins the NCAA championship.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  27. Bryan says:

    Honestly, I would take these numbers for Lincecum. But I don’t see it happening. I hope he can make a Dennis Eckersley like move to the bullpen. His body is just too small to throw 200 innings anymore.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  28. Marver says:

    FYI Dave,
    Cory Luebke was recently shut down in his rehab with pain in his surgically repaired elbow. If he gets to 146 innings this season, I will give everyone here $1.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  29. CJ in Austin Tx says:

    Why is Lucas Harrell shown with only 135 IP for the Astros? He pitched 192 innings last year and he is projected for 153 – 198 IP by the various projection systems.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Antonio Bananas says:

      Yea he’ll probably throw more. It’s not like he’s got people lining up outperforming him, pushing him to the pen either.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  30. Visnovsky says:

    “I just don’t know why rebuilding includes so many guys with no real future in Minnesota, nor any real hope to turn into interesting trade chips at the deadline. This looks like deck chair rearranging more than building for the future.”

    +infinity

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  31. SecondHandStore says:

    The Brewers depth chart is a bit inaccurate. Hiram Burgos and Tyler Thornburg are well ahead of Johnny Hellweg and possibly/probably ahead of Rogers, at least for the immediate future. I’m not trying to criticize or troll, but I do think it’s an oversight.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  32. Antonio Bananas says:

    So if Teheran pitches 2 WAR better than this, which is possible, the Braves are at 8th place. Good.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  33. Dave G. says:

    Seattle seems too high on this list thanks to Felix. I’d place them closer to 25 to 30.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  34. Gabe says:

    This should be weighted to just the 5 predicted members of the rotation. We know WAR is cumulative, so innings pitched is affecting these rankings too. The average starter went 5.9 innings per start last year, so there are lots of innings missing from here which would alter values.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  35. Ben Hall says:

    Without disagreeing with the general point that Gausman could be a factor, 15 innings doesn’t feel like enough time to do an actual marauding. Perhaps one can destroy, but a full maraud feels like it needs at least, what, 70 innings? Am I alone on this one?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  36. Brodie says:

    Giants at 16?!?! I know Lincecum’s struggled lately and Barry Zito is Barry Zito but c’mon!!!! Where’s the love for the pitching staff that’s won 2 World Series in 3 years? Yes, they have no depth, their prospects are all a couple years away from being ready, but if it came down to injuries I think Sabean could find somebody. Lincecum is likely to bounce back a bit as you said (and they seemed to have no problem winning despite his poor performance last year). Bumgarner is just coming into his own, Cain is the man, and Vogelsong is no slouch at the 5 spot. Plus they have a guy by the name of Righetti and another guy by the name of Bochy who are pretty dang good at what they do. In fact, two of the best at what they do. Oh yeah, and a catcher named Buster Posey who’s already called a perfect game. I know you’re ranking the starting pitchers only and not the team as a whole but a little respect for the World Champs, please! They certainly didn’t get those rings with their hitting. I’m not saying they’re #1 but top ten at least. You guys Dodgers fans or what?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Current day month ye@r *