Absolutely Adequate wrote:Here is a quick list of pitchers in the NL this season with a higher VORP than Hoffman:
(Then I skipped a bunch because I think I've made my point...)
Hoffman 23.1 (That's 69th overall)
Now, obviously, VORP weighs heavily in favor of starters (I would argue that it does so accurately). Last year Rivera had a VORP of 32.2 but came in second in the AL Cy Young race.
I think what the problem is that we're so accustomed to seeing incredible years from starters that when we have a year without a SP putting up unbelievable numbers we're disappointed. But we shouldn't forget how much more valuable starters are than closers. Hoffman won't win and won't get a lot of consideration - not because of a East Coast bias but because he's simply not as valuable as Carp, Oswalt, Webb, and 20 other guys in the NL.
You are simultaneously showing why VORP isn't always a good measure. Would anyone seriously vote for Cook or HArang or Lowe or Francis?!?! As we go higher up the list Arroyo or Jennings? Cook with his 1.39 WHIP? Harang with his 1.33 WHIP? Francis who doesn't even have a 2:1 K/BB ratio? Same with Jennings? Oswalt, for all his decent numbers, is letting up hits at a .265 BAA! That isn't Cy-worthy to me. Cook's BAA is .288!!!! Arroyo has given up 29 HR, the second most among NL starters. So in reality, only a handful of those pitchers you listed should be considered for the award.
It always baffles me how relievers can be compared across the same scales as to their value. You may personally discount RP to SP. I see it differently. That is, how well are RP doing respectively to other RP? Correspondingly, how are SP doing respectively compared to other SP? There is a definite bias against DH and RP in deciding awards that I just don't share with many of you.
Carpenter has the best stats except for wins. I suspect that Webb is the one who will win, and he his slightly off, but not too far off Carpenter. Hoffman, on the other hand, does seem to be a significant step ahead of other RP this year. Wagner is the only other one who has decent numbers across the board (and Gonzalez is hurt). Saito has even better numbers, but I can't imagine he'll get any votes. So that leaves a handful of players like Hoffman, Carp, Smoltz, Webb, and perhaps a couple of others who should get the award. I would agree, however, that Hoffman deserves consideration, and that doesn't mean I would vote for him.
VORP, on its own, misses just too much in this comparison.