Daily Notes, Largely Concerning Gio Gonzalez

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

1. Featured Game: Washington at Atlanta, 20:05 ET
2. Other Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
3. Today’s Complete Schedule

Featured Game: Washington at Atlanta, 20:05 ET
Who You’re Watching When You’re Watching This Game
If and when you’re watching this game, you’re watching — in Washington left-hander Gio Gonzalez — the pitcher who currently has the highest strikeout rate (31.5%) and fifth-best SIERA (2.81) and third-highest WAR (2.0) among qualified pitchers.

What Might Be Surprising About That
What might be surprising about that — to the equally bespectacled and muscular reader — is how effective Gonzalez has been so far, given that his season-high strikeout rate entering 2012 was last year’s 24%.

A Question the Reader Might Be Asking
A question the reader might be asking is, “Is Gonzalez throwing anything different this year that would merit such an improvement?”

The Answer to that Question
The answer to that question is, “No, not really.” And continues: “Per PITCHf/x, Gonzalez is throwing the same pitches as in 2011 at basically the same rates. To wit: four-seam fastball, 38.2% (30.9% in 2011); two-seam fastball, 31.4% (34.1%); curveball, 20.0% (27.8%); changeup, 10.5% (7.2%).”

The Most Likely Explanations for Gonzalez’ Improvement
League change and/or randomness, probably.

A Brief Note on This Broadcast
This is the ESPN Sunday Night Game.

Another Note on This Broadcast
Because it’s the ESPN Sunday Night Game, this broadcast might not feature Atlanta’s usual and excellent center-field camera. An off-center camera angle would, unfortunately, distort the trajectory of the left-handed Gonzalez’s pitches.

Other Notable Games
Colorado at Cincinnati | 13:10 ET ***MLB.TV Free Game***
Jamie Moyer starts for the Rockies. Here’s a Status Update on him: 48.2 IP, 14.7% IP K, 7.4% BB, 44.2% GB, 4.39 SIERA, 119 xFIP-, 111 FIP-, 0.5 WAR.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Neither, Sort Of.

Philadelphia at St. Louis | 14:15 ET
Roy Halladay (70.1 IP, 90 xFIP-, 1.7 WAR) and the Phillies’ nearly league-average offense (95 wRC+) faces Adam Wainwright (52.2 IP, 84 xFIP-, 0.6 WAR) and the Cardinals league-best offense (122 wRC+).

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Philadelphia 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 4.7.

Regard, a magnificent and sortable table:


Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Jamie Moyer COL 3 7 4 3 5 CIN Mat Latos 13:10
Edinson Volquez SD 4 4 6 1 10 NYN R.A. Dickey 13:10
Matt Cain SF 7 5 5 4 4 MIA Ricky Nolasco 13:10
Matt Garza CHN 6 3 5 1 6 PIT Erik Bedard 13:35
Luke Hochevar KC 5 6 4 5 3 BAL Brian Matusz 13:35
Jeremy Hellickson TB 3 6 3 5 1 BOS Clay Buchholz 13:35
Ubaldo Jimenez CLE 0 4 3 5 4 CHA Gavin Floyd 14:10
Rick Porcello DET 7 4 5 2 5 MIN P.J. Walters 14:10
Roy Halladay PHI 7 4 7 10 8 STL Adam Wainwright 14:15
Kyle Drabek TOR 3 6 5 10 6 TEX Yu Darvish 15:05
Hiroki Kuroda NYA 3 5 4 3 4 OAK Tommy Milone 16:05
C.J. Wilson LAA 4 3 4 5 3 SEA Hector Noesi 16:10
J.A. Happ HOU 5 6 5 6 5 LAN Chris Capuano 16:10
Randy Wolf MIL 1 7 4 5 6 AZ Daniel Hudson* 16:10
Gio Gonzalez WAS 9 4 7 7 5 ATL Brandon Beachy 20:05

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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Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Julian
Guest
Julian
4 years 2 months ago

Jamie Moyer: 48.2 IP, 14.7% IP, 7.4% BB.. you mean 14.7% K, right? % IP sounds like a fun stat. % of team’s innings pitched?

Vin
Member
Vin
4 years 2 months ago

I would have liked one of the Daily Notes to acknowledge Daniel Hudson’s return.

JeffMathisCera
Member
JeffMathisCera
4 years 2 months ago

Fifth best (lowest) SIERA, right?

Travis
Guest
Travis
4 years 2 months ago

95 wRC+ is good for 6th/16 and league average is 93. So doesn’t that count as slightly above average?

TheGrandslamwich
Member
TheGrandslamwich
4 years 2 months ago

Gio led the minors in back to back years in K’s. If he keeps his walk rate down (big if) he’s an ace.

MikeS
Guest
MikeS
4 years 2 months ago

That’s what the White Sox, Phillies, White Sox, A’s and Nationals all have hoped.

bluejaysstatsgeek
Member
4 years 2 months ago

““Per PITCHf/x, Gonzalez is throwing the same pitches as in 2011 at basically the same rates.”

The Chi-squared stat on the differences of those rates is 50.04, which has a p-value of 7,8165×10^-11. That hardly seems like the same rates.

henry
Guest
henry
4 years 2 months ago

the pitcher rankings are off if yu and jamie are that low, there needs to be some novelty area of the pitcher formula.

theDAWG
Guest
theDAWG
4 years 2 months ago

I agree. The age curve should have a curve up at the tail, like the nike swoosh. And mysterious imports from the Orient need their own category.

Can “knuckleball factor” be changed to “arbitrary, but universally acknowledged to be interesting, novelty factor”? (ANT-uatbi)

jorgath
Guest
jorgath
4 years 2 months ago

I like the concept, but not the designation of the variable. How about ARBUNI (Arbitrary Universal)?

Bill
Guest
Bill
4 years 2 months ago

He’s throwing his fastball 7+ percent more this year. That hardly seems to be insignificant…

CJ
Guest
CJ
4 years 2 months ago

I dislike the lack of sample size here. I’m not saying you’re obfuscating the truth, just that I’d like to know that Gio’s thrown 877 pitches. 7% change is what, 60-ish pitches? One offspeed pitch per inning in 2011 turned into a fastball in 2012.

Pitch values say that his fastball has gotten a LOT better. They also say that his changeup has gone from being not very good to being quite good. I can imagine you could make an argument that a better fastball = more fastballs = better change, but why would his fastball be better to start with?

Elias
Member
Elias
4 years 2 months ago

Obligatory percent/percentage point correction: http://xkcd.com/985/

Larry
Guest
Larry
4 years 2 months ago

Wasn’t it practically predicted that Gio Gonzalez would be sort of Oliver Perez Part II and the A’s got the better deal with the prospects they got?

Undocorkscrew
Guest
Undocorkscrew
4 years 2 months ago

Isn’t it May 28th?

Marc Hulet
Guest
Marc Hulet
4 years 2 months ago

Except for one smart lad who stated in his analysis of the trade that Gio was underrated and Oakland did not get enough for him.

brocean
Member
brocean
4 years 2 months ago

2.4% HR/FB. Totally sustainable, you guys.

JW
Guest
JW
4 years 2 months ago

With Gio’s current rate stats, he’s still easily one of the best pitchers in baseball when that regresses.

John C
Guest
John C
4 years 2 months ago

One thing that sticks out about Gio’s K rate this season is how much it is aided by facing opposing pitchers. Following the Atlanta game he has recorded k’s on 15 of 19 PA against opposing pitchers (plus 2 sac and 2 GO). Maybe there’s something about his stuff that dominates non-mlb level hitters.

John C
Guest
John C
4 years 2 months ago

Adding onto that his k% falls from 32.4% to 27.1% if his PA against opposing pitchers are disregarded.

Antonio Bananas
Guest
Antonio Bananas
4 years 2 months ago

You guys beat me to the punch. I was about to ask what you guys just said. Good job.

John C
Guest
John C
4 years 2 months ago

Edit: k% falls from 32.4% to 28.4%

jorgath
Guest
jorgath
4 years 2 months ago

Which is an interesting stat…because an increase to 32% from 24% doesn’t look sustainable…but from 24% to 28%? That’s a bit less likely to regress.

monkey business
Member
monkey business
4 years 2 months ago

I’m confused, don’t other NL starters see pitchers at the plate too? If striking them out is so easy, why don’t the other starters just do that?

monkey business
Member
monkey business
4 years 2 months ago

So, after this start the K rate is up to 32.4%. Yes, it is one start, but when a player is way off the map, the decline tends to be very fast.

I’m not saying he will end the year with a 32.4% K rate, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him end in the top five, since everyone at the top will likely see a decline (regression and all).

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