Time for another breakdown, the most enjoyable yet (which also means the longest). If you are looking for a quick read, put this on hold. But, when you are craving some baseball later today, load this guy up, sit down, concentrate, and enjoy yourself while you follow me through a jungle of ambiguity to a clearer view of Justin Masterson’s 2010 campaign.
Justin, how does your "xFIP" stack up?
This article begins with my boy Dave, the Super 7 Foundation’s 2010 ‘Best Young Chef’ award winner and fellow Lebrontourage columnist, asking me about Tribe starter Justin Masterson: “break him down Z. He K’s dudes but lets up too many hits. And, it’s like he doesn’t trust the fielders.” What’s Masterson’s deal, head case? Get ready for the most complicated statistics (mathematically and theoretically) we’ve used yet (I’ll ease them in) and let’s take a closer look.
Dave’s first observation is that Masterson “K’s dudes.” Indeed he does. At 9.63 K/9 he has the 9th highest rate of strike-outs for any starter in the bigs (min. 40 IP). Masterson is striking out over a batter an inning, which means strike-outs account for 1/3rd of the outs he gets. Thank God, because he isn’t getting many other guy’s out.
When guys aren’t striking out, most are getting on base. Masterson is allowing an average of 11.25 hits per 9 innings pitched (H/9). Which, confirms Dave’s 2nd observation- “dude let’s up too many hits.” Typically, you want your pitchers closer to 8 and hopefully more like 7 H/9. Read the rest of this entry »