Now that Shields has been named opening day starter for the Rays over Price, I thought I'd bring this up. So for Shields the innings have been there with 200+ IP the last 5 years, however until 2011 when he had his breakout year, he had an average ERA of well over 4. Also, because he threw a league high 11 complete games and 4 shutouts in 2011, his IP and strikeouts increased last year. So is this 2011 performance even remotely repeatable? I'm thinking something like 15-16 wins, 3.30 ERA, 205 SO, 220 IP, 4 CG 2 Shutouts. Realistic? Top 10 starter?
What should I expect from Shields this year and what should his draft value be?
He's much better than 2010, but 2011 was lucky. Career best BABIP. He did increase his GB% which explains why his HR #s were so good, but none of this is significantly different than his career. He's a slightly above average fantasy pitcher, ranking him in the 80-100 range.
If you're looking for a 3.30 ERA or 205 Ks you're probably gonna be disappointed. I'd never project a guy for close 250 innings which is what he'd need to get those Ks. And in that division I can't see him keeping his ERA down like that again. But he's a tough guy to project. If he had a season like that without all the mediocrity beforehand, and if he was 25 or 26 instead of 30, it would have been easier to assume he just moved to the next level. The division really scares me though. He faces 3 of the top 6 offenses in baseball on a regular basis and the Orioles are gonna have a ton of HR power which is his kryptonite. And his peripherals weren't all that different from his 2010 season except his strand rate went way up and his BABIP went way down. Whenever those two things accompany a "breakout" it makes me sceptical. Pay for a 3.60 ERA and 1.25 WHIP and be happy if he gets you anything better than that. Judging by his MDP nobody believes his season was for real anyway so you don't have to reach for him if you really want him.
I don't expect him to have as good of a year this year, but I believe it will be closer to last season than the year before. Shields worked on his delivery last off-season because he was falling off at the end of the pitch. I think the change in delivery gave him more control over certain pitches and made him a better pitcher. Still in a tough division, but I expect another consistent season.
I know its early and it is SPRING TRAINING, but here are some of Shield's spring training stats, 6IP, O ER, 3 H, 2BB, 4K. Obviously it doesn't mean much, but could he just have hit a turning point in his career last year?
I think he's about the 25th to 30th starting pitcher off the boards this season....around where Garza/Latos/Beachy are going...I see him as interchangable with all of them for drafting purposes..
He fundamentally changed something last season...but it did cause him to get really lucky BABIP wise..I'm with everyone else...2011 is much closer to the real Shields than 2010. He's got that great change up and his two seamer can get in a groove sometimes..
I'd love him as my #3 SP in 12-teamers...if he's your #2 though he's probably just good enough for you to be okay..
Why don't they just get a house that's already painted?
I think 07-08 numbers are a good baseline for him. His BABIP will go up but not be as bad as 2010, nor will his strand rate. His K rate has improved. With the variable of luck, anything can happen, but he 2010 was definitely a fluke numbers-wise.
In a points league his CGs were outstanding to have last year. He's proven to be a horse on the mound which is nice. It's almost a throwback to a couple decades ago when 250 innings wasn't all that odd.
ironman wrote:In a points league his CGs were outstanding to have last year. He's proven to be a horse on the mound which is nice. It's almost a throwback to a couple decades ago when 250 innings wasn't all that odd.
Though to be fair a couple decades ago the average AB saw fewer pitches. The overall pitches per season of the top pitchers haven't changed all that much, they just need more pitches to go fewer innings. In 2009, starting pitchers averaged 95 pitches per game. In 1988, it was 96 per game. In 1988 it was 3.59 pitches/PA and in 2009 it was 3.83 pitches/PA an increase of 6.7%. Pitchers aren't getting 'softer', hitters are just getting better.