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ERA & WHIP verus W/L

ERA & WHIP verus W/L

Postby jimpchip » Sun Jun 10, 2007 7:05 pm

I'm brand new to this (fielding my first team) so bear with what is probably a silly question. I'm not sure I quite understand the emphasis placed on W/L versus what I think is a better representation of a pitcher's performance, namely ERA and WHIP. This may be some sour grapes since I had Gutherie (O's) and, although he had a very respectable performance on Saturday, ended up with a no decision due to lack of run support (typical for an O's starter). I was hoping someone could fill me in on the logic.
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Re: ERA & WHIP verus W/L

Postby Leena » Mon Jun 11, 2007 1:14 am

There's not really any logic about it... most recognize that wins are poor individual statistic.

Wins and losses are general baseball stats that have been kept record of for a long time, and that's what you always see on TV.

If you want, you can create leagues without wins as a stat.
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Re: ERA & WHIP verus W/L

Postby Fritzenhammer » Mon Jun 11, 2007 10:57 am

Generally, you want to target pitchers with good Strikeout (K) rates, and Whips as close to 1.00 as possible. A low whip indicates a pitcher has the ability to keep batters off the basepaths, and pitchers that can get Ks are generally more capable of getting out of any trouble they may get into. A good strikeout to walk ratio (called K\BB) is an indicator of a pitcher with good control of the strikezone. In general, good pitchers will have a K:BB ratio of at least 2.25 - 3+ strikeouts per walk. (Higher the better)

If you focus on these metrics instead of Wins/Losses and ERA, it can help you identify quality pitchers, which is what you want in fantasy baseball. It can also help you identify pitchers likely to improve, for example, a pitcher with a 4.50 era may have a low whip (1.15) and a good strikeout to walk rate (ie 3:1) indicating that he may have just had a run of bad luck, and could be primed to improve upon his overall numbers.

This isn't an exact science, but if you can understand what the peripheral stats mean, you'll be better equipped to evaluate the pitchers you'll run across during the course of a year.

Now if you have a pitcher with a solid track record, decent to good peripheral numbers, and that pitcher plays on a team with a good bullpen and a high powered offense (think the Mets, etc) you may bump their value up a bit, since they are likely to end up with more wins in the long run.

Hope this helps,

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Re: ERA & WHIP verus W/L

Postby A Fleshner Fantasy » Mon Jun 11, 2007 12:32 pm

I don't think there's nearly as much of an emphasis on record as you think there is. Almost any experienced fantasy baseball player would tell you that those things happen (or in Guthrie's case happen 5 times). Get the good WHIP and ERA pitchers, and the wins will come.

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Re: ERA & WHIP verus W/L

Postby RyeWhiskey » Wed Jun 13, 2007 2:50 pm

Fritz really hit it on the head: low WHIP and good K/BB rate are generally the most consistent solid pitchers.

Now when you look at a guy like John Maine (SP - NYM) he is valuable, but for different reasons. Here's his line so far:
79 IP, 6 W, 68 K, 3.05 ERA, 1.28 WHIP
The first thing that jumps out at you is that 1.28 WHIP - eww.... BUT, you say to yourself, he seems to be a solid pitcher with a pretty 3.05 ERA, and he plays for the Mets. An ERA of low 3s and playing for the Mets translates to lots of wins. So you know that Maine will give you wins, decent K numbers, a fine ERA, but an inflated WHIP. Is he worth keeping? Of course. But you need to be sure that you have a couple pitchers with low WHIP numbers, like Haren, Peavy, or Rich Hill. They will balance your squad.

Fantasy baseball is all about balance.
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