Saturday, September 29, 2007
Starting pitcher: M.C. O'Connor
"Hits allowed per 9 IP" is a nerd stat. Although it is simple on the face, and obvious, no one argues about HA/9IP over beers. But ERA, a more convoluted calculation, is well-established in the minds of baseball fans. Students of the game know that ERA is skewed by the actions of relief pitchers, ballpark effects, fielding, and other whatnots. So stat nerds like indicators like HA/9IP. San Diego's tandem of Chris Young and Jake Peavy lead the NL with 6.25 and 6.59 respectively--no surprise. Matt Cain is 5th at 7.79 (Oliver Perez and Carlos Zambrano are ahead of him, Brandon Webb and Ted Lilly just behind him). So, I like HA/9IP. Anything that shows our boy to be studly is cool by me. Matt's Achilles' Heel, of course, is Bases on Balls. A glance at the league leaders shows Carlos Zambrano as number one, but Noah Lowry is 3rd with 87, Barry Zito 5th with 83, and Matt tied with Livan Hernandez for 7th place with 79. Giants (and ex-Giants) like to walk people! Sheesh! How can our team WALK SO MANY PEOPLE!!! OK, OK, I'm over it. Matt will improve, I have no doubt. His 1.26 WHIP (BB+H per IP) puts him just behind Greg Maddux (at #11). When he gets his pitch counts down, and walks fewer guys (like Mr. Maddux), we will see some serious ass-kicking going on. Looking forward to Spring already!