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Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Wadderboiz » Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:23 pm

Do you honestly feel that playing/pitching while you're ahead vs when you're behind has no bearing on how a game pans out?

If you're pitching with a 5-0 lead you're whole approach differs. You are more willing to give up a run to record an out, your outfielders are more willing to dive after a line drive rather than to play it on a hop, your SS/3B are less hesitant to eat a ball they field deep in the hole, and so on.

It works the other way as well if you're down 5 as a hitter your pressing, as a runner you're looking to stretch a single, take an extra base. If you're pitcher is pitching lights out, the offense spends less time standing on the field losing their rhythm and more time in the dug out studying the other pitcher.

If you think that a pitcher has no control over run production you are sadly mistaken.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby HOOTIE » Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:29 pm

While a pitcher may pitch different with a 5 run lead over a tie game, the pitcher has NO control on whether his team got him 5 runs or not.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Ernie.Whitt. » Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:55 pm

Chiming in... The yankees scored 104 more runs than Toronto over a 162 game season. That's a lot (for the team as a whole)

Phil Hughes pitched 176.2 innings... or about 12% of Yankee innings pitched. This means, Hughes should benefit, over the course of the entire season, by 12 more runs in support than a Toronto pitcher tossing the same number of innings. (104 runs over the season times 12% of innings pitched by Hughes)

Yes... 12 more runs can make a difference in a few more wins... but if you randomly drop 12 additional Toronto runs scored into all the innings Morrow pitched... I don't think his record would be wildly different. These runs are not strategically... just randomly into your support whether you have a 5 run lead or are tied. Overall How many wins will this create? Maybe 2? Technically... it could result in 12 more wins. That is extremely unlikely. My guess is 2-3.

Whatever difference that run support difference might make, it is also not guaranteed to happen again.

I think the more important factor is that (I think) the Yankees will be more reluctant to pull Hughes, given that their bullpen might need to be saved for when Jeter's girlfriends brother is asked to start. That additional reliance is worth maybe 2 more wins over the course of a season. (I have to give it a value and can't base this on provable "science"). As such, given all the considerations, I expect Morrow will win 15 and Hughes 19 games. (balanced by Morrow's much better and more reliably predictable K/IP)

Basically, I think both are very talented pitchers... with Morrow being slightly better as a pitcher, and the Yankees being slightly better as a team to pitch for. Overall, I prefer Morrow... but just by a little.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby raiders_umpire » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:14 pm

Give me Morrow here fairly easily. Morrow is the better pitcher and doesn't pitch half his games in Yankee Stadium like Hughes does. Hughes had one of the worst fly ball rates in baseball last year, and Yankee stadium is not the place to be giving up alot of fly balls. Hughes very well could get more wins this year, but I don't draft my fantasy baseball teams on wins. If I did, I would probably be drafting Derek Lowe quite a bit as he has been top 10 in wins the last 2 years along with his 4.3 era and 1.45 whip.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Padres Fan » Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:18 pm

raiders_umpire wrote:Give me Morrow here fairly easily. Morrow is the better pitcher and doesn't pitch half his games in Yankee Stadium like Hughes does. Hughes had one of the worst fly ball rates in baseball last year, and Yankee stadium is not the place to be giving up alot of fly balls. Hughes very well could get more wins this year, but I don't draft my fantasy baseball teams on wins. If I did, I would probably be drafting Derek Lowe quite a bit as he has been top 10 in wins the last 2 years along with his 4.3 era and 1.45 whip.



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this also why King Felix won over CC for the CY Young as well
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Wadderboiz » Thu Feb 17, 2011 8:44 am

Padres Fan wrote:this also why King Felix won over CC for the CY Young as well


Felix won over Sabathia because he is ERA was almost an entire point lower, he had a better WHIP, and 45 more K's.

Felix was better in 3 of 4 SP fantasy pitching categories, as was Hughes over Morrow last year. The only debate there was last year in terms of Cy Young was Felix's win total, which was a result of poor run support. Why such poor run support? The Yankees offense scored 346 more runs than Seattle. So explain to me again how run support is based on luck?
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Ernie.Whitt. » Thu Feb 17, 2011 10:41 am

Wadderboiz wrote:
Padres Fan wrote:this also why King Felix won over CC for the CY Young as well


Felix won over Sabathia because he is ERA was almost an entire point lower, he had a better WHIP, and 45 more K's.

Felix was better in 3 of 4 SP fantasy pitching categories, as was Hughes over Morrow last year. The only debate there was last year in terms of Cy Young was Felix's win total, which was a result of poor run support. Why such poor run support? The Yankees offense scored 346 more runs than Seattle. So explain to me again how run support is based on luck?

I think what they are saying is that something is luck if it is not within your control. A team like the yankees will score more runs than the Mariners, but an unlucky Yankee pitcher may actually end up with fewer runs in support than a lucky Mariners pitcher. That is an extreme situation (the highest and lowest scoring teams) so no doubt almost all of us would downgrade a Seattle SP over a Yankee.
That said, the Jays are not the Mariners.
Given that by last seasons numbers, a Yankee SP pitching 176 innings (Hughes) could expect just 12 more runs in support over an entire season than a Jays SP with the same # of innings... I am not sure how you could argue that luck wouldn't play a major role in how important of an impact just 12 runs would make.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Wadderboiz » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:32 pm

If you'll see my earlier post you'll see that 6 of the 10 winningest pitchers had a top 5 offense behind them. If you have the top offense and top defense in the league most of the time you're going to be playing with a lead, which in turn affects how you pitch situationaly, how your defense plays behind you, and your team's offensive approach each at bat.

Just look at the closer role:
If you come into pitch with a 1 run lead in the 9th, and you go 3-1 to a good hitter, you have to go after him. If you're up 3 you'd be more willing to pitch around him and issue the walk, WHIP goes up.

Its more about situation which is dictated by your offense to a large degree.

There is exactly 1 pitcher in the top 50 in run support from Seattle, Houston, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, the bottom 4 run scoring teams in the league. It seems like even the luckiest guys on the team didn't fair as well as the unluckiest on a top offensive team.

"Luckiest" Mariner SP - Jason Vargas 3.2 runs of support.
"Unluckiest" Yankee SP - Javier Vazquez 4.1.

Its not entirely about luck, its more about odds.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby The Artful Dodger » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:12 pm

The problem about run support is it's a very fickle stat. Take for example, Jon Lester. He was in the top 30 for run support the last three years running. In 2010, he had less run support and managed his highest win total. Kyle Kendrick was only second to Phil Hughes in run support and in 180 innings, only managed 11 wins. Joe Blanton threw nearly the same number of innings as Kendrick, had as much RS as Kendrick, but only earned 9 wins. The Phillies have been both a good offensive and defensive team, but had some bad luck with injuries. Yet when Kendrick/Blanton were on the mound, the Phils' bats presumably had given them enough chance for them to be on the winning side of the ledger. Of course, both had thrown for an ERA in the high 4's, which speaks more to their talent level as well.

I think to look at just run support, as well as the teams' collective offense and defense, is statistical bias. It's sort of like how some say that closers on losing teams aren't as valuable as those on winning teams because they won't get enough chances to close. Those who say that also neglect the fact that average offensive teams are likely to score less runs even when they are winning. Hence, the chance for more saves.

The run support stats are just one way to evaluate a pitcher, but not the complete picture either. Stats that are more within the pitcher's control like LD/GB/FB, BABIP, HR/FB, FIP/xFIP are better indicators of performance. Hence, why Morrow could be potentially more valuable than Hughes if he pitches closer to last season's FIP/xFIP, throws 180 innings (good bet for 200 K), and cuts down on the walks. Also, if Hughes' run support dwindles by a couple of runs to say a Lester 2010 level, the chances of getting a near 20-win count aren't as good. Hughes proved to be hittable last year with his pitches not getting quite enough movement. If that continues, his ERA/WHIP will be affected by that too.
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Re: Hughes or Morrow? WHIR

Postby Ernie.Whitt. » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:39 pm

Wadderboiz wrote:If you'll see my earlier post you'll see that 6 of the 10 winningest pitchers had a top 5 offense behind them. If you have the top offense and top defense in the league most of the time you're going to be playing with a lead, which in turn affects how you pitch situationaly, how your defense plays behind you, and your team's offensive approach each at bat.

Just look at the closer role:
If you come into pitch with a 1 run lead in the 9th, and you go 3-1 to a good hitter, you have to go after him. If you're up 3 you'd be more willing to pitch around him and issue the walk, WHIP goes up.

Its more about situation which is dictated by your offense to a large degree.

There is exactly 1 pitcher in the top 50 in run support from Seattle, Houston, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, the bottom 4 run scoring teams in the league. It seems like even the luckiest guys on the team didn't fair as well as the unluckiest on a top offensive team.

"Luckiest" Mariner SP - Jason Vargas 3.2 runs of support.
"Unluckiest" Yankee SP - Javier Vazquez 4.1.

Its not entirely about luck, its more about odds.


By the way, I agree with your general premise... that a pitcher with a better offence behind them has an increased chance at victories... and in a way, I think that's all you are saying. I maintain however, that it is a relatively minor consideration except in the most extreme of circumstances (NYY vs SEA). The 12 runs of additional support Hughes could expect last year on average (given the rate at which NY scores and the # of innings he pitched) vs a toronto pitcher with the same # of innings isn't likely to translate into a huge increase in wins. Maybe 2-3?

He might end up with 5 more wins... or 1 (because in the end it's lucky whether those 12 runs scored at meaningful times or not)... but in fantasy there are MANY things to consider (the ballpark, team defence, injury history, player age, key skills you think reflects potential growth, expected draft position, team bullpen (for SP), player track record...) such that if your primary consideration in determining the value of Player A vs Player B is 12 runs of anticipated additional run support over an entire season, then I am not surprised if a lot of people don't feel that is any more relevant than many other factors they might be considering.

In my case, I value K/IP highly... and this approach has served me well with five wins and four 2nd place finishes in a ten team league over 10 years. I do also consider the team they are pitching on however when building my staff... again... a lot of factors come into play.
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