Wednesday, July 16, 2014

By the Numbers

Runs Allowed

The Giants have allowed 350 runs in 95 games. The 350 is tied for fifth-best in the NL and the RA/G (3.65) is tied for fourth. Seattle and Oakland lead the majors with the fewest runs allowed, so bump everyone in the NL down two spots.

If you like saber-stats, the Giants rate fourth in the ML with a 3.47 FIP (tied with San Diego), and fourth in xFIP (3.57). Some of that is good pitching. Some of that is due to the run-suppressing environments the Giants play in (AT&T, PetCo, etc.). The Giants don't look good when the stats are adjusted: their FIP- is 100, good for the 17th spot, and their ERA+ of 102 is 14th overall. In those schemes 100 is league-average.

If WHIP is more your style, the Giants rate third (1.172) behind Seattle and Oakland. Teams bat .237 against the Giants, the fifth-lowest mark, and their BABIP of .284 is tied for fourth-best. The Mariners and Athletics are the best in both categories. Despite what seems like a lot of homers allowed, the Giants fare well (0.74/9, 4th-lowest). Their line-drive rate (20.7%) is middle-of-the-pack stuff, but they get a lot of ground balls (47.5%, 4th-highest) and few fly balls (31.8% 5th-lowest). Ground balls turn into hits more frequently than fly balls, but fly balls do the most damage when they are hits. So, make of that what you will.

I think the Giants have the pitching they need if Matt Cain and Sergio Romo return to the form we expected. The Giants 2012 pitching actually rates worse than this current squad--but that team could score runs (particularly after the ASB).

Runs Scored

I expected more offense from this club. They started hot but have since faded. They've totaled 373 so far which puts them 10th of the 15 NL teams and 23rd of the 30 teams in the majors. A little more production from the middle of the order (Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval in particular) might be all it takes to improve the scoring. Angel Pagan's absence has hurt, not so much because he was so valuable, more so because his replacement Gregor Blanco has been terrible with the bat. The Giants actually rate near league-average with an OPS+ and wRC+ of 97, so they aren't that far away. A little more luck with sequencing, some improvement at the top of the lineup, and perhaps a bench-bolstering bat and they can stay in the thick of it.

Wins, of course, are the only currency that counts. They Giants won a lot early on, and couldn't buy a win over the last month and a half. The real Giants have to be somewhere in that mix--not a .667 team (42-21) but certainly not a .313 team (10-22) either. If the season ended now, the Giants and the Braves would be the wild-card teams with the Cardinals, Reds, and Pirates just missing out. There are eight teams in the hunt for the five spots: two in the West (LA and SF), four in the Central (MIL, STL, CIN, PIT), and two in the East (WSN and ATL). Those eight clubs have the only winning records in the senior circuit. Certainly the Giants have their fate in their hands--if they play good baseball the rest of the way they have a great chance of making the post-season.



1 comment:

M.C. O'Connor said...

OGC posted his ASB thoughts about the Giants: