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Fangraphs: The Orioles Don't Care About Our Expectations


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http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/we-dont-respect-the-orioles-and-it-never-matters/

I am guessing the link is to the original title. ;)

Think instead about how much has gone terribly wrong. So much, in fact, that we?re going to lightning-round it with a list of unfortunate calamity ? some that seemed obviously bad at the moment, only to turn out much differently, and others that have been a slow train wreck over the course of the season. In rough but not necessarily precise chronological order:
They’re not on the way to 100 losses, of course. They’re in first place at the All-Star break, with the fourth-most wins in the American League and the third-largest division lead in the game, and are the overwhelming favorites to stay in first place according to our projections. Just like we all expected, of course. Never change, baseball. You’re the best.
I’m not going to sugarcoat that for you, really. This rotation isn’t good. Only the Rockies and Twins strike out fewer; only the Rockies walk more. Only five rotations allow more homers. They don’t generate many ground balls, despite the spectacular left-side infield defense behind them. Perhaps there’s hope, though; less Jimenez means more Kevin Gausman, which can only be an upgrade, and Duquette has a few weeks to further improve it. No, this isn’t a landing spot for David Price, though an Ian Kennedy-type might be a fit.
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Thank you for this. It should be required reading.

So, which is it going to be? Are they playing wildly over their heads, not unreasonable given all the negatives they’ve had to overcome? Or have we just continued to underestimate Dan Duquette, Buck Showalter and friends?
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This is a really good article. However, I don't think that FIP necessarily defines our starting pitching. I've been hearing this FIP stuff about Tillman, Gonzalez and Chen for three seasons now. To me, they are what they are. I have some concerns about Chen because he faded a bit in the second half each of the last two years, but overall, I think these three guys will continue to post 4ish ERA's and keep us in ballgames.

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This is a really good article. However, I don't think that FIP necessarily defines our starting pitching. I've been hearing this FIP stuff about Tillman, Gonzalez and Chen for three seasons now. To me, they are what they are. I have some concerns about Chen because he faded a bit in the second half each of the last two years, but overall, I think these three guys will continue to post 4ish ERA's and keep us in ballgames.

I made a comment under the article regarding ERA vs. FIP. When we're looking at the quality of a pitcher, I'd prefer to use FIP. However, when we're looking at what wins games (giving up fewer runs), FIP is only half of the equation. I'd rather look at ERA since it's a product of pitching and defense.

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It’s the pitching that’s a concern, as you can see above; without a single elite starter, and with the worst (non-Rockies division) pitching FIP in baseball, we’re actually seeing them be outscored over the remainder of the division. Perhaps unsurprisingly, only two teams have a larger negative discrepancy between their ERA and FIP, and it looks like regression is coming.

I’m not going to sugarcoat that for you, really. This rotation isn’t good. Only the Rockies and Twins strike out fewer; only the Rockies walk more. Only five rotations allow more homers. They don’t generate many ground balls, despite the spectacular left-side infield defense behind them. Perhaps there’s hope, though; less Jimenez means more Kevin Gausman, which can only be an upgrade, and Duquette has a few weeks to further improve it. No, this isn’t a landing spot for David Price, though an Ian Kennedy-type might be a fit.

Hmmm. Ian Kennedy, huh?

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I made a comment under the article regarding ERA vs. FIP. When we're looking at the quality of a pitcher, I'd prefer to use FIP. However, when we're looking at what wins games (giving up fewer runs), FIP is only half of the equation. I'd rather look at ERA since it's a product of pitching and defense.

FiP is not a perfect predictor of future ERA, but is actually better than using past ERA.

(This is mostly because ERA is a pretty awful statistic, but whatevs)

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Whether its FIP or ERA the O's starters rank in the bottom third of the AL in the first half. They have the worst ERA among AL East starters. But as the article points out there will be a new member of the rotation in the 2nd half that will probably be have the best ERA and replace the worst ERA on the starting staff. That should help.

Gausman will make a big difference from here on IMO. The rookie may shame some of the rest of the starters into doing better. I know Tillman and Gonzo are better than they have shown so far.

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Whether its FIP or ERA the O's starters rank in the bottom third of the AL in the first half. They have the worst ERA among AL East starters.

April: 4.74 ERA

May: 4.29 ERA

June: 3.47 ERA

July: 3.73 ERA

I kinow the overall numbers still don't look that good, but we've been getting good starting pitching since May 29 (3.42 ERA since then).

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http://www.fangraphs.com/library/pitching/fip/

Back in the early 2000s, research by Voros McCracken revealed that the amount of balls that fall in for hits against pitchers do not correlate well across seasons. In other words, pitchers have little control over balls in play.

McCracken outlined a better way to assess a pitcher?s talent level by looking at results a pitcher can control: strikeouts, walks, hit by pitches, and homeruns.

FIP = ((13*HR)+(3*(BB+HBP))-(2*K))/IP + constant

I could be wrong, but isn't a homerun a ball in play? Exactly how can a pitcher have little control over balls in play, yet have control over homeruns?

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