Yes. Rich Harden has faced the toughest batters in baseball this year as a full-time starter with over 50 IP (.782 OPS). Then it goes Matt Garza, Edwin Jackson, Brian Moehler, Justin Duchscherer, Felix Hernandez, Andrew Sonnanstine, Tim Redding, Josh Beckett, Livan Hernandez, Luke Hochevar, Nick Blackburn, Roy Halladay, Kevin Slowey, Scott Kazmir, James Shields, Jesse Litsch, Dave Bush, Gil Meche, Zach Greinke to round out the top 20.
That is 17 AL pitchers (8 AL East, 6 AL Central, 3 AL West) and 3 NL Pitchers (2 NL Central, 1 NL East). Volquez comes in at a .740 OPP OPS which is 9th in the NL.
Based on this...what Rich Harden has done this year (a 2.64 FIP) is extremely impressive.
It does make Rich Harden look even more dominant. Cliff Lee ranked 503rd out of 535 pitchers. That makes his numbers make a little more sense.
deerayfan072 wrote:I think if you have two pitchers that are close in numbers, but one has faced the toughest competition and the other has faced crap, it should come into play.
IE -- Harden's numbers v. Cliff Lee's numbers
OK but how do you quantify competition in a meaningful way? Team record? Runs scored? OBP? SLG? Or do you just look at the lineup strength? Also, do you account for who is out of the lineup during those starts? What if a team's offense is struggling at the time?
"Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that." ~George Carlin
Also whos to say who they have faced will change? Lincecum is in the NL West with some horrid offenses. You say he has faced weak competition sure. But that doesnt mean he wont continue to. Same with Lee. Who is to say he wont continue to face crap offenses or good teams with hurt players or people getting the day off or sitting because of him being a lefty? Why cant we just compare the stats at face value and not try to over-analyze?