Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
October 6, 2006
BASEBALL: Hard to Get Good Help

If you count tonight's liklely starters and the likely starters for the remaining divisional series games that are certain to be played (counting tonight, 2 in the Yankees-Tigers series and 1 in each of the others), 26 different starting pitchers will have taken the mound - and of those 26, the cream of the major league crop after a long season, the frontline starters for the best teams in baseball, 12 are either (1) rookies, (2) age 40 or older, or (3) had ERAs of 4.89 or higher (the league ERAs were 4.55 in the AL, 4.48 in the NL). And this is before Oliver Perez (6.55 ERA), Carlos Silva (5.94 ERA), Rich Harden (9 starts all season) and Brad Penny (6.25 ERA after the All Star Break) take the mound, in Perez and Silva's cases replacing 40-something Orlando Hernandez and rookie Francisco Liriano. The guys who are counted as OK here include second-year starters Chien-Ming Wang and Chris Young, 37-year-old Mike Mussina, Jeremy Bonderman (4.72 career ERA), Jeff Suppan (4.60 career ERA, 5.83 ERA before the All Star Break), Brad Radke (pitching with a career-ending stress fracture in his shoulder), and Jaret Wright (career ERA of 5.07; this year, 4.49 ERA an an average of 5.05 innings per start). If you include Wright, you can conclude that half of the frontline playoff starters are very old, very inexperienced or below-average pitchers.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 12:10 PM | Baseball 2006 | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
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