Daily Notes, Featuring a Perfect NERD

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

1. Featured Game: St. Louis at Detroit, 19:05 ET (MLB.TV Free Game)
2. The College World Series: Still Happening
3. Today’s Complete MLB Schedule

Featured Game: St. Louis at Detroit, 19:05 ET
The Significance of This Game
This — so far as the author can tell — is the first game of the season to register a perfect NERD score of 10.

What Is NERD, For Those Who Don’t Know
NERD represents an attempt to measure the likely interest a player or team or game might have to the baseball nerd (which is probably you, by virtue of the fact that you’re reading this).

Links That Exist on the Internet
Click here for more information on Pitcher and Team NERD scores and here for how Game NERD Scores are calculated.

This Game, In Particular — What’s So Good About It
Firstly, that Justin Verlander is starting it for Detroit. Here are some of his notable numbers (with ranks among 112 qualified starters in parentheses)*: 101.2 IP (1st), 25.9% K (8th), 5.8% BB (27th), 2.95 SIERA (8th), 77 xFIP- (6th), 3.5 WAR (1st), 94.5 mph average fastball (4th), +10.1 fastball linear-weight runs above average (6th), +5.3 curveball linear-weight runs above average (3rd).

*Doesn’t include Monday games.

This Game, In Particular — What Else Is Notable
Here are three other notable qualities of this game, presented in bullet-point fashion:

• The entirely proficient Lance Lynn (81.2 IP, 84 xFIP-, 2.0 WAR) pitches for St. Louis.
• The Cardinals have the best offense in the league by wRC+ (which is how you tell which team has the best offense in the league).
• Both team are very much in pennant races. Per Cool Standings (as of Monday), St. Louis’s and Detroit’s playoff odds are 57% and 23%, respectively.

What Would Make the Game a Little Better
What would make the game a little better is if it were being played in front of a better center-field camera.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast
Per the results of our offseason crowdsourcing project, FanGraphs readers prefer St. Louis Radio (link).

The College World Series: Still Happening
The Sherman Johnson World Series
The College World Series continues tonight at 8pm ET as Sherman Johnson and the Florida State Seminoles play the team Sherman Johnson is facing. The loser is eliminated.

For more on Sherman Johnson, click here.

Today’s Complete MLB 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 4.8.

Note: the following Game Scores include the poorly conceived playoff-odds adjustment discussed in a recent edition of Daily Notes. Also note: the following table is entirely sortable.

Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Tim Hudson ATL 6 6 5 6 4 NYA Hiroki Kuroda 19:05
Mike Leake CIN 7 4 5 3 5 CLE Josh Tomlin 19:05
Josh Outman* COL 6 10 6 5 10 PHI Cole Hamels 19:05
Scott Diamond MIN 7 3 3 2 0 PIT Kevin Correia 19:05
Lance Lynn STL 9 10 10 5 10 DET Justin Verlander 19:05
David Price TB 9 5 6 4 2 WAS C-M Wang* 19:05
Tommy Hunter BAL 4 4 6 1 6 NYN Johan Santana 19:10
Mark Buehrle MIA 4 2 3 5 3 BOS Clay Buchholz 19:10
Luke Hochevar KC 5 6 3 5 4 HOU Wandy Rodriguez 20:05
Travis Wood CHN 3 3 3 6 5 CHA Jake Peavy 20:10
Undecided TOR 5 6 6 6 5 MIL Undecided 20:10
Erasmo Ramirez* SEA 7 4 6 4 7 AZ Daniel Hudson 21:40
Aaron Harang LAN 3 4 4 4 4 OAK Bra. McCarthy 22:05
Barry Zito SF 0 5 4 3 4 LAA C.J. Wilson 22:05
Scott Feldman TEX 2 10 2 5 3 SD Edinson Volquez 22:05

To learn more about Pitcher and Team NERD scores 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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12 Responses to “Daily Notes, Featuring a Perfect NERD”

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  1. Romogenized Melk says:

    Zito gets a zero? No avocado omelettes for you tomorrow morning.

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  2. My echo and bunnymen says:

    I love how watching an undecided pitcher is better than watching Zito.

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  3. Johan Santa says:

    Would you mind explaining how the Rocky Mountains get a team score of 10, while the Metropolitans get a 1?

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    • Resolution says:

      The Rockies currently represent a train wreck. The sort of train wreck that people just can’t look away from. Why this also doesn’t apply to the Twins, I can’t say.

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    • FanGraphs Supporting Member

      The Rockies’ score is so high because of their crazy-high team speed score — which, I’m not saying that’s a good and proper thing, but that’s what’s happening.

      For the Mets, team defense hurts pretty bad, looks like. And speed. And bullpen.

      Their games when Dickey pitches all still get good ratings, though, because starting pitchers are rated (three times) more heavily.

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  4. Pinner says:

    Brewers – Blue Jays Matchup is Tyler Thornburg vs. Jesse Chavez

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  5. Jmag says:

    I think starters that throw hard and have no idea where the ball is going are fairly entertaining. Volquez should be at least a 6 or 7 SP NERD in my opinion.

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    • CJ says:

      J. Sanchez of the Royals agrees with you.

      I don’t. I dislike guys who don’t throw strikes, and NERD agrees, unless they generate a ton of swinging strikes. Walks against, say, Cliff Lee are exciting. Walks against Volquez aren’t really. Of course, I like strike throwers primarily because they don’t take forty minutes to throw two innings and I’d love watching a wild pitcher if he could work quickly about it.

      On a related note, Mark Buehrle makes games about a point or two more watchable simply because of his pace.

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  6. Jason H says:

    These NERD scores never come close to predicting what is actually interesting to me as a baseball fan. I wonder if this is the case for other people as well? For example, CJ Wilson is an interesting pitcher, and the Angels are an interesting team to me. On the other hand, I can’t fathom why I would ever be interested in the Colorado Philadelphia game, the Toronto Milwaukee game or especially the Seattle Arizona game.

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  7. YanksFanInBeantown says:

    How does Harper not give the Nationals a NERD score of 11?

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