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Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, yes?

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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby SecretAgentMan » Fri Jul 26, 2013 12:24 am

Yeah he has Matt Cain-itis. Two of the biggest fantasy pitching flops this season. Fortunately I do not own Verlander in any league, but do own Cain in a couple so I know the frustration. Proves the old adage that no pitcher can truly be trusted. We have Ervin Santana pitching like Verlander and Verlander pitching, well like Ervin is supposed to lol. This can be a hard game to figure sometimes.
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby TheTrith » Fri Jul 26, 2013 12:34 am

Im not sure why people have been "buying low" on him for the past month+ and are still doing so.
He is not ok, and probably wont be this year.

I was shocked to see that the Fangraphs consensus rankings (published earlier this week) had him ranked 3rd overall for the rest of this season.
Thats seems like just sticking your head in the sand, ignoring everything you've seen this season (or perhaps *not* seeing him pitch?), and then looking at his career stats and saying "Oh he will be fine".

They actually had him ranked ahead of
Scherzer
Darvish
Harvey
Lee
Wainwright
Sale
Bumgarner

Who in their right mind would give up any of those pitchers for Verlander at this point?
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby Skin Blues » Fri Jul 26, 2013 7:38 am

His velocity is fine. A lot has been made about the 91 MPH cutoff; it's always been there, and looking at seasonal game charts he's only down to about 92.5 MPH average from 93.5 last season, and his slider velocity is pretty much identical, if not higher than last season. Pretty much every peripheral statistic (the ones that stabilize much faster than ERA/WHIP and are a better indicator of talent/effectiveness) is close to where you'd expect it. K% is down a bit (entirely because of July - his K% from the first 3 months was higher than last season's total) and BB% is up a bit, but nothing drastic. His BABIP is way out of whack which is causing most of the trouble. If his BABIP was at his career average then his WHIP would drop to at most 1.26 instead of 1.41. Still not great, but it goes to show that WHIP is not the stable stat people assume it to be. How much different would people be viewing him if he had a 3.5 ERA and 1.26 WHIP right now? Obviously it would still be a disappointment, but there'd probably be a lot less panic. That's basically how I view him. And I don't own him on any teams, so I'm not just biased towards assuming he's still "got it". And of course you only see posts like the one above after bad outings, not after the two starts in July against the Rangers and Blue Jays where he gave up a total of 4 hits and 0 runs in 14 innings. The first few months were fine. July has been pretty awful overall but there are still flashes of the old Verlander, and I'm not gonna panic too much based on one month of stats from a healthy pitcher with such a long track record.
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby Ray Zorback » Fri Jul 26, 2013 9:40 am

He thinks he has found his problem:

“Obviously the results weren’t what I would have liked, not even close,” Verlander said. “But I think we found something the other day in my mechanics that seemed to make everything crisper today. I thought it might make me a little more erratic for a start or two, but I know when it feels right, it feels right. It was definitely the right move to make.

From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/2013 ... z2a9u2Wi9m
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby SecretAgentMan » Fri Jul 26, 2013 11:28 am

Ray Zorback wrote:He thinks he has found his problem:

“Obviously the results weren’t what I would have liked, not even close,” Verlander said. “But I think we found something the other day in my mechanics that seemed to make everything crisper today. I thought it might make me a little more erratic for a start or two, but I know when it feels right, it feels right. It was definitely the right move to make.

From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/2013 ... z2a9u2Wi9m



Maybe, but how many times have you heard that line from a struggling pitcher? And almost always it has little or any effect. Stats are nice but they are not always conclusive and stuff like BABIP is an indicator, not necessairly a consequence of ability imo. A pitcher can be unlucky in any given game, but over the course of the season, if you consistently see mistakes being made that lead to runs, homers being allowed and large numbers of runs\blow ups occurring, then it is not luck that is the main culprit...it is bad pitching resulting from whatever dropoff has occurred be it in velocity, command, control, etc. Verlander is now 30 and has thrown a lot of IPS over the years...maybe we are seeing the beginning of the end or maybe he or theTigers are hiding an injury (it would not be the first time a teamm or player has refused to admit something is wrong). We have seen the same speculation on Cain who a few starts ago got pulled in the first inning after getting shelled and everyone denied the guy is hurt and claimed he is healthy. One has to wonder, esp with Cain who is only 28.
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby Skin Blues » Fri Jul 26, 2013 1:24 pm

He's not allowing a lot of HRs. His FB% and HR/FB% are almost identical to his career averages. It's pretty much just his BABIP. At least, for the first three months it was. He's been tinkering around a lot (I think this is the second time I've heard him say he found a flaw in his delivery that he's fixing), probably because of the bad results, and consequently his July was terrible. I'm not saying there's zero concern to be had, but it's a bit overblown, and if he just goes back to what he was doing earlier in the season he'd be fine. The most important thing is that he's healthy, so he just needs to get his head straight.
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby TheTrith » Fri Jul 26, 2013 5:47 pm

Skin Blues wrote:His velocity is fine. A lot has been made about the 91 MPH cutoff; it's always been there, and looking at seasonal game charts he's only down to about 92.5 MPH average from 93.5 last season, and his slider velocity is pretty much identical, if not higher than last season. Pretty much every peripheral statistic (the ones that stabilize much faster than ERA/WHIP and are a better indicator of talent/effectiveness) is close to where you'd expect it. K% is down a bit (entirely because of July - his K% from the first 3 months was higher than last season's total) and BB% is up a bit, but nothing drastic. His BABIP is way out of whack which is causing most of the trouble. ..


...July has been pretty awful overall but there are still flashes of the old Verlander, and I'm not gonna panic too much based on one month of stats from a healthy pitcher with such a long track record.

Yes, I get that all of his peripherals are looking similar to his career average. But thats exactly my point.
Without watching him pitch youd think it was all bad luck.
Its not. By Verly standards, both his command and control have been brutal. He's walking nearly 50% more batters, and he's leaving pitches right over the fat part of the plate where they are getting whacked. More hits allowed than innings pitched cannot simply be chalked up to bad luck.

Another thing thats scary, if you want to dig into the underlying stats, is that his SwSt% is way down.
Last year it was 11.7%
This year under 10%, (down to 9.9, a drop of nearly 20% !)

Also look at his max velocity for this year. According to pitch f/x he hasnt cracked 100mph on either 2 seam or 4 seam fastballs this year, something he had done regularly over the past few seasons. You'd think if everything is ok he would have hit 100 at least once.
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby Skin Blues » Fri Jul 26, 2013 11:54 pm

TheTrith wrote:He's walking nearly 50% more batters

37% more. That's not good, obviously, but it's not a death knell. Yu Darvish has been doing just fine with an 8.5% BB rate this season.
TheTrith wrote:More hits allowed than innings pitched cannot simply be chalked up to bad luck.

Over half of a season? Sure it can. Cliff Lee gave up a hit per inning last year and is perennially amongst the league leaders in WHIP/ERA.
TheTrith wrote:Another thing thats scary, if you want to dig into the underlying stats, is that his SwSt% is way down.
Last year it was 11.7%
This year under 10%, (down to 9.9, a drop of nearly 20% !)

15% drop. But again, who's counting? James Shields is also down 15% from last season, with a BB-rate that is up 21% over his career average. But I don't see anybody hitting the panic button on him, probably because his BABIP is in line with his career numbers. The difference between Verlander being "broken" and Shields putting up an amazing season comes down to half a season of Verlander being 42 points above his career BABIP.
TheTrith wrote:Also look at his max velocity for this year. According to pitch f/x he hasnt cracked 100mph on either 2 seam or 4 seam fastballs this year, something he had done regularly over the past few seasons. You'd think if everything is ok he would have hit 100 at least once.

Fair enough, his fastball velocity has dropped about 1 MPH on average from 93.5 to 92.5 (you need to actually look at the seasonal chart since the pitch classification is all messed up). He still has the fastest average fastball in the league, and I'm pretty sure no AL starter has even touched 100 MPH this season. The list of pitchers that have lost 1 MPH from last year is not exactly short, either. But again, slider velocity is actually up this season, which is a pretty clear sign that he's healthy. Same thing Felix Hernandez has been dealing with for the past handful of seasons; max/avg fastball velocity dropping, slider holding tight (although down this year, which is kind of worrisome).

So we have a healthy pitcher that has had one terrible month. His suckitude is essentially limited to his past 8 games. And among those 8 games includes 2 against the Rangers and Jays where he went 14 innings and allowed 4 total hits and no runs. I suppose he could be broken, but I'd wait it out. I'm definitely glad I didn't draft him, though. Even if he has a low-3s ERA from here on out the final stats won't be near what was expected.
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby TheTrith » Sat Jul 27, 2013 2:53 am

1. Nobody had the same expectations for Darvish that they had for Verlander.
And you're completely missing the point because Darvish has DECREASED his BB rate from 10.5 last year to 8.9% this year :-?
Its the trend, not the absolute number that concerns everyone.

2. Cliff Lee doesnt walk anyone. By comparison Verlander has been walking the park.

3. Shields is doing exactly what most people expected him to do. The past 2 seasons were the surprise.
Verlander is doing nothing close to what people expected. Big difference.
And by the way, you can always find at least one pitcher somewhere out there with flukey stats to try to disprove every single thing I say, but really they have nothing at all to do with Verlander's struggles.

4. Can you show me a source that shows slider velocity is more indicative of good/poor health than fastball velocity? I have honestly never heard that before.

5. Only 1 terrible month, and only his past 8 starts have been bad?
Well he had a good April.
Then May, June, and July happened... where his WHIP has not been below 1.44 for any single month, and his ERA has been 6.4x, 3.9x, and 4.7x
Thats a lot more than just his past 8 games.
And if you prefer FIP, that has been around 4.5 for the past 2 months as well.

6. How does all that make you conclude with 100% certainty that "we have a healthy pitcher" ?
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Re: Okay, so we can now admit Justin Verlander is broken, ye

Postby Philly_05 » Fri Aug 23, 2013 11:23 am

I'm about over Verlander in my roto league. If his last name wasn't Verlander he would be on the WW at this point. Ugh what a crap season in his last season on my team. Have to throw him back into the draft next year. Only thing this can do is help make him drop making him a decent bounce back keeper option during next seasons draft.
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