Daily Notes: An Ideal Occasion for Enjoying Felix Hernandez

Table of Contents
Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes.

1. Featured Game: Seattle at Pittsburgh, 12:35 ET
2. Other Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
3. Today’s Complete Schedule

Featured Game: Seattle at Pittsburgh, 12:35 ET
Regarding This Game, One of Its Virtues
One of the virtues of this game is how, in Felix Hernandez (50.2 IP, 65 xFIP-, 1.6 WAR) and A.J. Burnett (42.0 IP, 68 xFIP-, 1.2 WAR), it features two of the major leagues’ strongest pitchers.

Regarding This Game, Another of Its Virtues
Another of this game’s virtues is how, owing to Pittsburgh’s excellent center-field camera, it will facilitate a much better angle for watching Felix Hernandez than the right-hander’s home stadium and camera do.

By Way of Example, Harang at Safeco
By way of example, here’s a screenshot from the first inning of Aaron Harang‘s May 1st start against Baltimore at Safeco:

Harang Mariners

By Way of Example, Harang at PNC
By continued way of example, here’s another screenshot — in this case, from the first inning of Harang’s start yesterday (Tuesday) in Pittsburgh:

Harang Pirates

Regarding the Camera Angles, Their Relevance to Hernandez
The straight-on camera is particularly well-suited for watching Hernandez, who throws an excellent changeup — the considerable armside movement of which pitch is muted by an off-center outfield camera.

In the previous entry, the author referred to Felix Hernandez’s changeup as excellent, when what he actually meant was that it’s capable of invoking religious experience.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast
Per the results of our crowdsourcing project from the 2011-2012 offseason, FanGraphs readers prefer Seattle Radio (link).

Other Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
Miami at San Diego | 15:40 ET ***MLB.TV Free Game***
With regard to this game, the author is reminded of a pearl of wisdom courtesy his own mother. “Carson,” she said, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, you are going to love participating in internet comment threads” — this, in fact, years before the internet was available for easy home use.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: San Diego Television.

Detroit at Washington | 19:05 ET
This was yesterday’s featured game. Due to rain, however, it is also a game today, as well.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Washington Radio.

Today’s Complete Schedule
Here’s the complete schedule for all of today’s games, with our very proprietary watchability (NERD) scores for each one. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and RotoWire. The average NERD Game Score for today is 5.1.

Note: the following table is entirely sortable.

Away SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Mike Minor ATL 6 8 5 4 4 CIN Mike Leake 12:35
Felix Hernandez SEA 10 4 9 8 9 PIT A.J. Burnett 12:35
Jake Westbrook STL 1 2 3 4 5 CHN Carlos Villanueva 14:20
Ricky Nolasco MIA 2 0 1 4 0 SD Jason Marquis 15:40
Jon. Pettibone* PHI 7 2 4 5 2 SF Barry Zito 15:45
Anibal Sanchez DET 10 7 8 3 7 WAS Jor. Zimmermann 19:05
Luis Mendoza* KC 3 6 4 7 3 BAL Chris Tillman 19:05
A.J. Griffin OAK 4 7 6 10 5 CLE Justin Masterson 19:05
Jake Peavy CHA 9 0 5 7 2 NYN Jeremy Hefner 19:10
Pedro Hernandez* MIN 3 3 6 9 9 BOS Allen Webster* 19:10
Ricky Romero* TOR 4 5 5 7 5 TB Matt Moore 19:10
Joe Blanton LAA 2 4 3 5 3 HOU Bud Norris 20:10
Derek Holland TEX 9 3 7 6 6 MIL Kyle Lohse 20:10
David Phelps* NYA 6 6 5 7 3 COL Juan Nicasio 20:40
Wade Miley AZ 4 5 6 3 9 LAN Clayton Kershaw 22:10

To learn how Pitcher and Team NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
To learn how Game NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
* = Fewer than 20 IP, NERD at discretion of very handsome author.

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Carson Cistulli has just published a book of aphorisms called Spirited Ejaculations of a New Enthusiast.

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I realize that neither pitcher is extremely fun to watch, but this is the problem with NERD scores… The Cubs/Cards should never be lower than a 5 in NERD rating regardless of pitcher/lineup. This is the only time throughout our long grueling season that the Cubs actually play well. If we can’t beat a majority of the Major league teams, we can still crush the Cardinals. Anyone have the Cards-Cubs record for the last 10 years? It has to be the Cubs right?


13-20 since 2011 against with a -52 run differential.

NERD correctly keeps biased opinions out of its ratings so I think the score is just fine.

Brazen Reader

Or, rather, NERD systematically incorporates biased opinions into its ratings. Dear Author has erected NERD to incorporate Ganymede bias. Consider, please, that he inserts “Fastball Velocity” and “Age”, thereby scientifically justifying Dear Author’s preference for stout young men (“Ah, Jose Fernandez is poured into that uniform”, Dear Author might rhythmically murmur to himself, sitting in the dark just beyond glowing corona of his TV).

Aetius would remind NERD that there are many ways to throw baseballs (and, less relevant, that infinite worlds are generated from apeiron and they are destructed there again). Until Dear Author takes such reminding (or discovers Internet solutions to his Ganymede fetish), you’ll have to rely on Tennyson, a huge fan of Ted Lilly, Joe Blanton, Jake Westbrook:

Old age hath yet his honour and his toil
Death closes all: but something ere the end,
Some work of noble note, may yet be done…

Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

Well-Beered Englishman
Well-Beered Englishman

Brazen Reader, I hope you are invited to be a guest on a FanGraphs Audio episode, so that I may play an exuberant drinking game to the sound of you in heated rhetorical battle with Carson Cistulli.

Brazen Reader

Naw, he does a good job for someone who couldn’t make Andover and settled for a counterfeit Classics education. But your idea is sound: Fangraphs Radio should have a call-in show, like the CBS guys (Difino, Melchior, Miller). Shots for every Cameron burst of impatience, and better save an extra bottle for when anon21 calls in.

I enjoyed your piece on the Community Blog re: Babips. Maybe you can propose an alternative Watchability Score, or open a competition for Watchability Score formulas. The winner is the W.S. formula that produces its highest score for this .gif


I don’t need a watchability score and find NERD boring. I can easily decide which game(s) I would prefer to watch on my own.