FanGraphs Baseball

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  1. I’m thinking the Marlins don’t care.

    Comment by Hurtlockertwo — November 28, 2012 @ 1:06 pm

  2. I’m thinking the Reds don’t care

    Comment by ArodinmyPujols — November 28, 2012 @ 1:55 pm

  3. You can bet that Toronto Cares.
    Johnson, Romero, Buehrle, Morrow, ______ is still a pretty good rotation.
    Is it good enough to contend in the AL East? That depends on if johnson is an Ace, or just a solid pitcher. Can Romero bounce back? Can Morrow stay healthy?

    Comment by Gleb — November 28, 2012 @ 2:28 pm

  4. Is it possible for these results to improve? Could Johnson gain his velo and K’s back? Or is a steady decline expected (especially with the move to the AL)

    Comment by Paul — November 28, 2012 @ 2:30 pm

  5. The ‘move to the AL East’ stuff is getting heavily overblown. The Boston offense is not what it was, Tampa is built on defence and pitching, and the O’s are likely to fall back to Earth. The best offense in the division might be the one JJ doesn’t have to face

    Comment by Phil — November 28, 2012 @ 2:46 pm

  6. If I am not mistaken, I thought I read somewhere that Johnson had some very solid numbers against the AL East so maybe numbers will increase. I wonder the same about his velocity though.

    Comment by Pete — November 28, 2012 @ 3:42 pm

  7. Perhaps. But the Rays and Yanks were one-two in walks, and the Yanks and the Orioles were one-two in home runs. One-third of Johnson’s starts will be against teams with a lot of power and/or that wear pitchers down with deep counts. Efficiency has never been Johnson’s strength, and the drop in velocity and heavier reliance on breaking balls makes him more prone to longer at bats. Toronto may not be a good fit.

    Comment by GMH — November 28, 2012 @ 4:00 pm

  8. This holds true for many other pitchers – Roy Halladay, for one – who start out as fireballers then start throwing fewer fastballs, and at lower velocities, as their game develops. With a fastball that he can throw for strikes at 92 and pump up to 95 if necessary, Johnson’s still got ace material as long as he has nasty breaking stuff to get batters out. Which he does.

    Comment by Bruce — November 28, 2012 @ 4:55 pm

  9. You could say the same about any pitcher – who wouldn’t pitch better in the NL West in a cavernous ballpark?

    If the O’s are top two in HRs again next year I will eat my hat, your hat and everyone else’s who has ever visited Fangraphs. The Yankees line up will obviously be tough, and the Rays may walk alot but they also don’t hit that much. I don’t know how different it is to other divisions – I saw an interesting comp showing the AL central had better overall rankings in Runs scored than the East last year

    Comment by Phil — November 28, 2012 @ 5:05 pm

  10. he’s going from a division with almost all neutral or slightly pitcher’s parks to a division with almost all hitter friendly parks. i think that’s very relevant.

    Comment by jim — November 28, 2012 @ 5:20 pm

  11. Johnson doesn’t need to return to 95 MPH to be effective. You can’t reasonably expect him to gain 2 MPH on his fastball with advancing age can you (how was his velocity last half of the 2012 season compared to first)? Besides, who doesn’t want a 3.4 FIP and 3.8 WAR on their roster? Whether that disqualifies him as a legitimate ace (whatever that means) he’ll probably give the Jays exactly what they expect and what they need. As a Jays’ fan, the only concern for me was 2012′s HR/9 as Johnson moves to a more hitter-friendly park against teams that generally hit more dingers. If he can gain even a bit of steam on his fastball he could improve to maybe a 4.5 WAR which the Jays would likely be thrilled with. Being on a more competitive team might also give him confidence and incentive to improve.

    Comment by Jake — November 28, 2012 @ 5:31 pm

  12. Looking more into this, his velocity seemed to peak in June/July as did his K/9 rate. Maybe his arm started to fatigue after that? With a full summer of health, perhaps his velocity can hover around 93.5 with a K/9 around 8.5.

    Comment by Jake — November 28, 2012 @ 8:01 pm

  13. Can Reyes stay healthy and not decline, can Bautista stay healthy and not decline, can encarnacion keep it up? Lots of question marks.

    Comment by Antonio bananas — November 28, 2012 @ 8:05 pm

  14. I think more savvy Jays fans realize we are probably getting a good #2 type starter. But the mainstream media has definitely made it seem like he is all but guaranteed to be a top 5 AL pitcher.

    Comment by ALEastbound — November 28, 2012 @ 10:24 pm

  15. 2012
    AL East: 3663 runs in 2012, 19443 runs last five years
    NL East: 3,374 runs in 2012, 17,705 runs the last five years

    They are very different scoring environments. You may want to chalk it up to some bias about the Yanks and Sox, but it just happens to be true.

    Comment by Preston — November 29, 2012 @ 1:15 am

  16. I will not let you eat my hat!

    Comment by TheGrandSlamwich — November 29, 2012 @ 2:20 am

  17. Not exactly perfect. Neutralize for the do and instead of looking at the divisions as a whole, only look at the 4 teams he didn’t/won’t be playing for.

    Comment by Antonio bananas — November 29, 2012 @ 2:40 am

  18. For the DH, not the do

    Comment by Antonio bananas — November 29, 2012 @ 2:40 am

  19. Not gonna do the last 5 years. But al east runs scored (minus Toronto) 4.55, al average 4.4. NL east minus Mia, 4.25, NL average 4.2.

    When you break it down, only the Yankees 5 runs/game is the only AL east team that is above the AL average. The NL east had both the Nats at 4.5 and Atlanta at 4.3 above NL average. So in the l east, he had to face more teams with better than league average offense. In the al east, based on last year, he’ll be facing mostly league average offenses and one way above average offense.

    Comment by Antonio bananas — November 29, 2012 @ 2:51 am

  20. As a Marlin fan who watched a number of JJ’s starts this year. The loss of FB velocity was highly significant in the way he works the counts. He is effectively a two pitch pitcher – the change up is nothing special and was always reliant on the FB, both as a set up for the slider and to put hitters away. This year hitters were able to run the counts deeper as they could catch up with and foul of the FB.

    I wouldn’t expect the FB velocity to return, and rarely would he ‘pump it up’ to 95 it was usually less even when running a 4 seamer up in the zone. The old JJ could run the 4 seamer high at 97. Also remember that the Marlins went with a 6 man rotation for a period during the summer to increase rest on all their arms and there was no spike in velocity as you might expect.

    Personally I think he will be good for a 3.5 WAR but not the pitcher he was at his peak. He is good value this year but I would be cautious about extending.

    Comment by Mike — November 29, 2012 @ 6:10 am

  21. Didn’t Keith Law say that the high end fastball velocity returned at the end of the year?

    Comment by Mark — November 29, 2012 @ 6:50 am

  22. The fact that they are hitter friendly parks is not only true for Josh Johnston, but the opposing pitcher as well, so whilst true it doesn’t affect Johnson’s chances of helping his team win games

    Comment by Phil — November 29, 2012 @ 2:19 pm

  23. Looking at the fangraphs velocity chart that doesn’t seem to be the case but it’s hard to tell without raw data. It actually looks like June/July his velocity was the highest which seemed to result in a K/9 around 8.5 but that’s just eyeballing it. Would be nice if the author could look into it.

    Comment by Jake — November 29, 2012 @ 3:10 pm

  24. Romero was the worst pitcher in baseball last year basically. He has a long way to bounce back.

    Comment by nilbog44 — November 29, 2012 @ 10:06 pm

  25. Orioles top the majors in home runs for 2013. Hope you like eating hats.

    Comment by The Party Bird — November 18, 2013 @ 8:02 pm

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