Because deception and mental toughness do not show up in any stats.

If they don’t show up in any stats, then *they have zero effect on the game*. Runs scored are “stats.” Outs are “stats.” Hits are “stats.” Any “intangible” you want to wave around that doesn’t influence those is just a lot of hooey to handwave yourself through an argument that you can’t otherwise support. You might as well be talking about the players’ horoscopes.

On the other hand, if those things matter then they’ll be captured in the data. Argue from the data, not from the mythic.

]]>This is the same stuff that was said about Papelbon all of 2009 when he was having walk-issues. Then game 3 of the ALDS happened.

Pitchers who give up baserunners eventually get cracked. And when it happens, they get hit hard. Ask Dice-K.

]]>John Grabow is the latter. The Pirates knew what they were doing when they traded him for Ascanio.

]]>Prove me wrong.

]]>1) That because he did it in 08-09, that we ignore his previous three years where he was pretty much around the league average of 70-71% (btw a lot of his high strand rate since 2008 was from 2008)

2) That Grabow (1.91 career K/BB) belongs in the same discussion as Papelbon (4.49), Wagner (3.93) and Saito (3.86). And Cordero, well, how did he do in 2009?

Sure, Grabow can strike some guys out. He was still only 78th of 138 relievers w/ 50+ IP. Also 17th in walks. And his HR/FB rate of 5.7%, well, that’s just not sustainable given that the rest of his marks are in the 10%-15% range.

So let’s say a pitcher in a few game gives up 100 balls in play. 20 liners, 40 grounders, 40 fly balls. Pretty standard. 70 go for outs. Also pretty standard, so 30 of those are hits. Pretty standard.

In Grabow’s case, strike out 8 per 9 innings, then you have 19 of those balls a game going for outs, and about 8.14 for hits. Add his walk rate of 4.15 per 9, get 12.29 WH per 9, or 1.365 per 9 innings. That’s a guy whose contemporaries are Jesse Chaves, Clay Zavada, and D.J. Carrasco.

For Grabow, it’s more like 19/46/35 distribution, so out of 100 batted balls, 35 are fly balls. You would expect 4 of them to leave the yard. You’d expect 69 to go for outs, and 27 more to go as non-HR hits. And you’d expect 19 batted out per 9, or 8.54 hits per 9. Last year in MLB, 49,117 bases were taken as a result of non HR hits, out of 38,482 hits that weren’t a result of HR. So what we can expect from Grabow is a (8.54)/(8.54+27) = .240 BA against. And for bases against, you’d have 27(49117/38482)+4(4) = 50.4618 bases per 100 batted balls. If Grabow gives up 27.54 batted balls per 9 innings, that’s 13.625 bases / 27 outs. 13.625/(8.54+27) = .383 SLG. His 1.365 WHIP yields a (1.365)/4.365 = .313 OBP.

So .240/.313/.383 OBP against is reasonable (and probably lowballing his BA and OBP). That probably works out to about a 3.80-3.90 ERA.

]]>Just explain to me what you know about deception. Because deception and mental toughness do not show up in any stats.

]]>Or he’s comparable to Papelbon, Takashi Saito, Chad Cordero, Billy Wagner, and a little better than Armando Benitez, if you set the number to 200 IP. Seriously, we’re not concerned with career numbers. We’re talking about a two year period. And how many relievers pitch 1000 innings in their career?

Fire away with a sample size argument if you like, but relief pitchers can sustain rates similar to this for at least a few years.

]]>http://www.fangraphs.com/careerleaders.aspx?pos=all&stats=pit&type=1&min=1000

He must be one of the greatest pitchers ever.

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