Great article. Perfect example of a significant discrepancy between ERA and xFIP. Thank god we have the sabermetric to sort out the poor performances from the performances which only appear poor to the untrained eye.
I have a new outlook on pitching performances as well.
Case in point , Matt Cain’s last outing in Denver.
Following a Tulowitski double, a fastball over the inside corner which Todd Helton deflects with his elbow, a seeing eye ground ball a few feet from a double play , and a 3 run homer that was an out back home and 4 runs are on the board and the ERA is given a kick in the pants.
You must have missed MLB’s press release today. Any amazing pitching exploits from the last two weeks against the Chicago White Sox will be marked with an asterisk and are not to be considered for end of season award voting.
Control pitchers with less than elite stuff are going to be BABIP and HR/FB reliant the same way high contact batters are.
Generally, these guys concede hits instead of walks. The key is the HRs.
In cases like James, I’d be interested to see his 2010 stats comparing results of him being ahead v. behind in the count. That’s one of the keys for control guys. With non-elite stuff, you don’t battle back from 2-0 without giving the hitter something to hit.
The article about Charlie Morton showed the opposite approach, conceding walks versus allowing hits. The key for him as well has been lower HR/9.
Comment by CircleChange11 — April 25, 2011 @ 7:47 pm
@Rusty: no he still sucked last year. Luck and other elements may have been part of it, but he was still pitching, and the Rays still lost those games.
FIP and other stats showed us that Shields was very likely to rebound in 2011 because his underlying skills showed improvement.
But they still don’t change what happened last year at all. Shields sucked last year, plain and simple.