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WHIP: The most important pitching category.

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WHIP: The most important pitching category.

Postby Zito is God » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:18 pm

So I have been analyzing pitchers for years and it has been a long path. I started out like a rookie simply looking at wins and HR given up. I then went on to strict ERA. After reading moneyball I was obsessed with K/BB ratios, I swore by them. Upon further review I figuired out that WHIP is by far the most accurate way of prediting a pitcher's future, value, and stuff.

Just think about it: The less hits you are giving up the better your chances are of winning the game, have a better ERA, and giving up less runs in general. The less you are walking means that you have been having good control and are throwing your pitches where you want them. Combine those two and it seems like the perfect formula for an ace pitcher.

I don't think I have to explain why W don't mean much because of the unlucky situations and poor team offense. Now ERA can always be inflated by HR. The problem with giving up HR could be making 1 bad pitch. That one bad pitch does not make you a bad pitcher, but it does on the statistics because of the inflated ERA. Your WHIP however shows how many guys are actually hitting off of you and based on that you can tell whether this HR was a fluke or guys are teeing off of you.

By strictly statistic ERA (extreme example coming up), 2 pitchers could have the exact same numbers. One could have went 9, given up 2 ER, thrown a 2 hitter, and gotten knocked out of the park twice The other could have gone 9, given up two, but walked 5, gave up 7 more hits, and got out with the exact same ERA as the first guy. The WHIP however differenciates between them.

This is my analysis of WHIP being the most efficient and accurate category on portraying a pitcher's stuff, skill, and control. Hoping to get an interesting discussion out of this from all of you.
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Postby The_Met_Threat » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:28 pm

You can't just look at whip. I guess its better than looking at ERA and wins of course, and whip is a much better indicator of a pitchers skills than those two. But a pitcher can have a low whip but an inflated era pretty easily too. Look at Eric Milton for example, he has a 1.12 whip but a 4.10 era, its because he gives up so many HR. I think a combination of low whip/low hr, is a great analyzer of how a pitcher will do.
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Postby Pogotheostrich » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:30 pm

The problem I have with going on WHIP is that for most pitchers it fluctuates just as much as ERA year to year. K's are much more reliable stat IMO.
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Postby Yoda » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:31 pm

Pogotheostrich wrote:The problem I have with going on WHIP is that for most pitchers it fluctuates just as much as ERA year to year. K's are much more reliable stat IMO.


Yep. I look at K's before anything else. Then BB's, HR's, G/F, WHIP.
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Postby garf112 » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:43 pm

Yoda wrote:
Pogotheostrich wrote:The problem I have with going on WHIP is that for most pitchers it fluctuates just as much as ERA year to year. K's are much more reliable stat IMO.


Yep. I look at K's before anything else. Then BB's, HR's, G/F, WHIP.


I agree with Yoda...

You can be lucky with your hit rate... Very rarely do you get lucky with the number of hitters you k and bb.

I look at g/f before i look at HRs, though, because some pitchers can have inflated hr% (the league average is about 11%)
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Postby WittyC » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:45 pm

The problem with your argument is that giving up home runs, or rather, not giving up home runs, is a repeatable skill. The "one bad pitch" that leads to a home run happens with much greater frequency for some guys than it does for others.

WHIP tends to fluctuate with supposed "luck" statistics like BABIP. Plus, when you have the ability to make K's, you don't have to worry about whether the ball in play will land for a hit or be fielded for an out.

WHIP isn't a bad indicator, but consider that Pedro's career WHIP is 1.02 and RJ's is 1.17. Has Pedro really been that much better over his career? :-?
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Postby Zito is God » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:48 pm

The thing is, I agree that Ks are arguably the most solid stat because you are not giving the hitter even a chance to beat out a grounder or get a sac fly etc. However, there are many pitchers who simply are not K pitchers, yet do a solid job on the mound. This is where WHIP comes in. There are so many sinkerballer pitchers who just get infinite groundouts during their starts but have a low K ratio so they get passed by.
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Postby Zito is God » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:52 pm

WHIP isn't a bad indicator, but consider that Pedro's career WHIP is 1.02 and RJ's is 1.17. Has Pedro really been that much better over his career?


Well, when your WHIP is that low you're both pretty good. I don't want to get into comparing Pedro to RJ and get off topic, I also don't want to pull up their stats because as I am typing this I am actually also typing a paper which I really should be doing instead but that doesn't matter. I assume RJ has more W and more Ks, but he has also played longer (meaning obvious more wins and more Ks). In general with these two, if your WHIP is below 1.20 your very good, and thus its like arguing Chaberlin vs Jordan. With THOSE kinds of stats they are just both very good.
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Postby garf112 » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:56 pm

Zito is God wrote:The thing is, I agree that Ks are arguably the most solid stat because you are not giving the hitter even a chance to beat out a grounder or get a sac fly etc. However, there are many pitchers who simply are not K pitchers, yet do a solid job on the mound. This is where WHIP comes in. There are so many sinkerballer pitchers who just get infinite groundouts during their starts but have a low K ratio so they get passed by.


Doesn't this make gb/fb ratio the most important stat? Not WHIP

It actually could be debated that it is.
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Postby RugbyD » Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:01 pm

if you had to pick just ONE stat, I agree that WHIP is probably the one i would pick. Like someone else mentioned, you'll get screwed on guys that like to give up the longball, but still maintain a solid WHIP (Radke comes to mind).

For overall evaluation, in order of importance I'll look at WHIP, ERA, K/9, K/BB, HR/9
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