It’s time for Huddy, and hunting the Phils

Miami – Well, well. Opportunity is knocking, kiddos. The Phillies are flopping right now, and here’s the door: the Braves are only 2 ½ games back in second place behind the Phillies, and Tim Hudson is on the mound tonight against the Marlins with a chance to take the series and make some noise.

Not only has Hudson had a great month (4-0 with a 1.26 ERA), not to mention a very solid season (5-1, 2.09 ERA), and oh by the way, a great stretch at the plate (he’s hitting .261, had a three-game hitting streak and is 6-for-his-last-17 with two RBIs), he is quite the Fisherman.

In his career, Hudson is 8-2 with a 2.92 ERA in 15 starts against the Marlins. This is the team he beat going into surgery – he had six shutout innings against them down here with his elbow all but falling off on July 23, 2008. Then he beat them his first start back from Tommy John last Sept. 1, holding them to two runs in 5 1/3 innings.

He did get a no decision in Sept. 29 against the Marlins in Atlanta. So, wait, quick, let me find a stat to counterbalance that. Yep. Here it is. He’s 6-1 with a 2.67 ERA in nine career games at Sun Life Stadium, so it’s called now. (You know, the stadium with blue and orange seats, the jagged center field wall, and the terrible attendance.)

Anyway, Hudson is going against Ricky Nolasco, who is 4-3 with a 4.50 ERA. He’d been doing all right, with three consecutive quality starts to begin the month but then he got blown up by the White Sox – for eight runs on 10 hits in 5 1/3 innings on Friday night.

In the not so distant past, though, Nolasco has had his moments against Atlanta. In his last start against them last Sept. 30, he had a Marlins’ franchise record 16 strikeouts against the Braves in 7 2/3 innings of a 5-4 Marlins win. Oh yeah, you say here. He struck out nine consecutive batters at one point, falling one strikeout shy of Tom Seaver’s major league record from 1970.

Nolasco had had a day the likes of which the Braves have only seen in recent years against Sid Fernandez (16 Ks in 1989), Ramon Martinez (18 Ks in 1990) and Ben Sheets (18 Ks in 2004) and he did it in only 7 2/3 innings. And he manhandled the Braves at a time when they were desperately fighting for a wildcard spot.

Come to think of it, maybe this will be a more interesting matchup than I think. But before anybody starts to worry, let’s get back to those Phillies for just a minute.

Phillies woes

It’s hard to believe, given the kind of thunder they have in that lineup, but the Phillies have been shut out in back-to-back games by the Mets and three times in the last four games. Really? Yep.

Wednesday night it was six shutout innings from the Mets’ Hisanori Takahashi. Tuesday night it was six shutout innings from Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. And Saturday it was eight shutout innings from Boston’s Daisuke Matsuzaka, who no-hit them until the eighth inning.

Completing the four-game losing streak was Sunday’s 8-3 loss to Boston in which Tim Wakefield pitched eight shutout innings. So the Phillies saw two knuckleballers in back-to-back games Sunday and Tuesday (with an off day Monday).

Thanks to Paul Hagen of the Daily News and our notes group, and Elias Sports Bureau, we know that the last time the Phillies faced knuckleballers in back-to-back games was against the Niekro boys: Phil Niekro at Atlanta on April 27, 1983 and Joe Niekro vs. Houston on April 29. They won the first game and lost the second.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel wound up calling a closed-door 15-minute meeting in the clubhouse after last night’s game.

Here’s Hagen’s account:

He basically told the players that they needed to go back to the one-game-at-a-time approach that has served them so well the last few years.

It wasn’t the losing, exactly, even though they’d dropped four straight and 6 of their last 8. They’re still in first place and, besides, it’s not even June yet.

It’s not the lack of offense, even though they’re batting .203 as a team (52-for-256) in those games while being shut out three times and been held to a single run twice going into Thursday night’s series finale. Elite lineups are sometimes going to make mediocre pitchers look like Steve Carlton and Bob Gibson all rolled into one for awhile. It happens.

“He just said to play with some intensity. That’s it,” center fielder Shane Victorino said. “It’s not about winning and losing. It’s about conducting ourselves in the right way. No reaming. No yelling.”

In that context, the flippant remark made by general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. before the game seems pretty pointed. After he observed that the Phillies “hitting stinks right now” he was asked if he anticipated a turnaround. He said he hoped so. “They’re paid not to stink,” he zinged.

Maybe Amaro meant to throw a dart at a $137 million payroll and an entire starting lineup with the exception of Jayson Werth signed beyond this year. Maybe he didn’t. But even before last night’s dull thud, Manuel talked about how his team had been “outplayed and outhustled” the night before.

Did I neglect to mention if the Braves win this Marlins series and take care of things over the weekend at home against the Pirates, then things could get real interesting when the Phillies come to Turner Field on Monday for the start of a three-game series? Well, might as well throw that in before it’s too late.

OK, time to post. I will have an update on Brian McCann from the yard this afternoon, but I wouldn’t bet on him being in the lineup. Why risk injuring the quadriceps further at this point?

2,086 comments Add your comment

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:02 pm

Fire Charlie..he is awful.

39yrBravesFan

May 27th, 2010
1:02 pm

First?? (Couldn’t resist)

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
1:05 pm

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:06 pm

ill take BA over BABIP.

Carroll Rogers

May 27th, 2010
1:06 pm

thanks for the explanation on BABIP Brian……course i’m not sure i need a math degree to understand that of the balls you hit it play, whether or not you hit ‘em where they ain’t has something to do with luck.

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
1:07 pm

So who remembers Nolasco’s 16 K debacle last September.

Yeeaaaaaahhhhhhh that’s what I thought…

flange1

May 27th, 2010
1:07 pm

Thanks for the new blog Carroll.

By the way, I really like the postgame comments sections. Very interesting!

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
1:08 pm

Just had a good BABIP everyone.

Thought you should be aware of it…feelin REAL good about the BABIP

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
1:08 pm

(in Seinfeld voice)

unbelievable

May 27th, 2010
1:08 pm

check out the players overall numbers vs Nolasco, pretty much top to bottom (outside of Nate) has had success vs him.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:09 pm

it was September, no one remembers cause everyone tuned out by then.

jeffrey d

May 27th, 2010
1:10 pm

Thanks, great work Carroll!

Hey, is there a reason DOB doesn’t cover the Marlins? I think I read a snippet from someone on here a few months ago that DOB didn’t cover away games in Miami

18 Wheels of Love

May 27th, 2010
1:11 pm

Damn, sad news. My dude and song that inspired my screen name has passed.

http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendId=8004581&blogId=534982359

Might have to retire 18 Wheels of Love in honor….like anyone cares…

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
1:12 pm

Colin – It was actually a massive game in Florida. And if i remember correctly Kawakami was pitching for the Braves and they were down 4-1 in the 6th or 7th when Matt Diaz hit a 1 out 3-run shot to tie the game at 4’s.

Unfortunately KK game up a run in the bottom of the inning and we couldn’t come back ending our 7 game winning streak and taking the wind out of our sails.

AJJ

May 27th, 2010
1:13 pm

Hey Carroll any word on how this Cuban player we signed will compare to Mclouth and if he is even expected to have a chance to play in Atlanta?

Mixxo

May 27th, 2010
1:13 pm

Nova Scotia Steve – 8)

I think I feel something coming on.

Oh wait…… :oops:

18 Wheels of Love

May 27th, 2010
1:14 pm

18 Wheels of Love is officially retired and will know be known as Turk 182.

TnBrian

May 27th, 2010
1:14 pm

They don’t need to worry about the Phillies. Just focus on the Marlins and Pirates coming in.

Turk 182

May 27th, 2010
1:14 pm

Ahhh, much better.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:15 pm

I should add that, at least IMO, BABIP is a better tool to use when talking about pitchers than hitters. While there is less variance with BABIP than BA, the BABIP does fluctuate some for the same reasons BA does. If you don’t hit balls hard, then you’re not as likely to have a high BABIP or BA.

For pitchers, BABIP against remains quite a bit more constant, not just to a career average, but to the league average. This is why for a guy like Jurrjens, who had an outstanding ERA last year, but gave up an extremely low BABIP of .253, you say he’s due to regress some in the ERA department.

Tim Hudson this year is an extreme example: hitters have a BABIP of .218 against him this year. No pitcher in the history of baseball has ever maintained something like that. He’s been very lucky, and if you’ve watched his games, you should be able to objectively agree.

Hanson has in a lot of ways pitched better than Hudson this year: more strikeouts, fewer walks, but he’s given up a .327 BABIP, which is high. So you can conclude that he will take a turn for the better. This is not something made up…it’s been proven time and again by extensive research on just about every game in the history of baseball.

Wayne in Utah

May 27th, 2010
1:16 pm

Turk

Don’t know who you were referring to, but my condolences anyway.

Bob in SF

May 27th, 2010
1:17 pm

The Wolf in Pulp Fiction had the perfect line for this situation, to paraphrase “Well, let’s not go out for popsicles quite yet.” It’s not even June and the Bravos still have some issues; Chipper is not hitting, Escobar is not hitting (although last night was encouraging), McLouth is back to not hitting, McCann’s injury could be touch and go and there are still the issue with Lowe and KK struggles as well as Cox’s mysterious decision to keep Jesse Chavez as a gainfully employed relief pitcher. They’ve played better lately but they have also made hay vs. some bad teams. Lets wait and see how they do vs. the Phils before getting too excited.

flange1

May 27th, 2010
1:17 pm

Sad news about Patterson’s step Dad.

Back to Turk 182 18 Wheels? Was that your old handle?

Rob from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:18 pm

if everything goes according to plan we should have Hanson-Hudson-Lowe against the Phillies

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
1:18 pm

Need more BABIP ASAP – 10-4 10-4 Red Devil Red Devil….BINGO at the back of the hall.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:19 pm

I say Hudson needs a comeplete game tonight.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:19 pm

Kawakami never loses so Nova, I am sure your facts are wrong :-P .

Rob from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:20 pm

Brian from SC

But if Huddy can cut down on the walks, a slight rise in BABIP shouldn’t matter that much.

RHR

May 27th, 2010
1:20 pm

Not too interested in hosting a Phillies team coming in on a long losing streak. Would be fine with me if they win tonight and the rest of the weekend before coming to atlanta on monday.

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
1:20 pm

Brian, I’m not a big luck person. Hudson has been stingy, has not given in, and has done a great job at keeping balls out of the middle of the strike zone. Hanson, when he has been hit has been hit hard, leaving balls up and in the middle of the strike zone.

Statistics mean something. But I think they can get too much attention. I think you have to balance what you see in the stats with what you see with your eyes.

TennesseePaul

May 27th, 2010
1:22 pm

Turk 182: So the name dies with the legend? I’m not sure I approve. After all we do call this the Braves/MIB blog after a fallen legend… I’d say keep it going.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:23 pm

14 days till the World Cup..enough said.

Innocent Bystander

May 27th, 2010
1:23 pm

BABIP, I believe, is more a stat to be used as a red flag than anything. A pitcher with a high BABIP (over .300) is probably getting unlucky, whereas a hitter with a high BABIP (Hinske’s is currently .423) is likely to regress some later on.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:25 pm

Glen, Hudson is a ground ball pitcher (this year to an extreme), which naturally helps with the BABIP a little. But not the extreme of .218. Hudson is doing a great job of battling, and getting huge ground ball outs when he needs them. But the laws of baseball, and statistics in general, say that some of those ground balls are going to start getting through the holes instead of going right at one of the infielders. Because of this, yes, Hudson needs to cut down on his walks and, more importantly, raise his stunningly low strikeout rate, to maintain the success he’s had. He can do it. But don’t count on him keeping an ERA around 2 all year…3 would be more than fine.

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
1:26 pm

I’m sure there is some deeper statistical analysis out there. But I think one of the reasons JJ has such a low BABIP last year is because he pitched ahead in the count so effectively. I would have to guess that BABIP is lower, collectively, when hitters are hitting behind in the count versus hitters that are hitting ahead in the count.

Carroll Rogers

May 27th, 2010
1:28 pm

AJJ don’t know yet. I imagine that’s about re-stocking Gwinnett with some outfield help, then they’ll see what they got.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:29 pm

who is JJ I dont even remember him??

Carroll Rogers

May 27th, 2010
1:29 pm

i feel like there should be a moment of silence, 18 Wheels, er um Turk 182.

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
1:29 pm

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/

Chipper on a radio interview with a Miami station… its the first link.

Bat Masterson

May 27th, 2010
1:31 pm

Colin, shouldn’t you be in school?

Carroll Rogers

May 27th, 2010
1:31 pm

Jeffrey D, i think DOB being the veteran writer he is, and with a thorough knowledge of this area, realizes that the percentage of rain delay possibilities here is off the charts….ha. no, who knows. perhaps he’s spent enough time here for one lifetime in his days as a Marlins beatwriter. He was actually down to come in late July but we switched for other reasons.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:33 pm

done sir finals were couple weeks ago, waiting for work to start soon..hopefully this coming monday or the 7th of June at the latest…can’t wait.

bravesfan1984

May 27th, 2010
1:34 pm

Carroll Rogers

May 27th, 2010
1:35 pm

For those worried about Heyward and a possible Home Run derby, some good news:

Through Tuesday, May 25, the leaders in the State Farm® Home Run Derby Fan Poll are:

American League National League

1. Joe Mauer, Minnesota Twins 1. Ryan Howard, Philadelphia Phillies

2. Carlos Pena, Tampa Bay Rays 2. Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers

3. Mark Teixeira, New York Yankees 3. Albert Pujols, St. Louis Cardinals

Bat Masterson

May 27th, 2010
1:36 pm

Colin_ Glad to hear it, good luck with the job.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:36 pm

I wish Heyward would do the HR derby, thatd be dirty!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! he should for sure.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:37 pm

thank you!, ill be down everyone’s way in NC a little closer to the actual action :-P so hopefully, I am praying maybe the Braves will be on TV more..idk what NC has to offer for Bravos games tho.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:38 pm

The participants aren’t decided by fan vote, are they? Won’t half of the ones invited decline anyway?

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
1:39 pm

From the Chipper interview:

“Chipper, how does 20-year-old Heyward compare with 20-year-old Chipper?”

Chipper: “Its not even close. When I was 20 I was in my first major league spring training and completely overmatched.”

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:40 pm

I love Chipper’s honesty about how much better Heyward is prepared than he was at that time.

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
1:41 pm

Also from the interview, Chipper says he is “seriously considering” retiring at the end of the year.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:45 pm

The only pitchers in the NL with a BABIP lower than Hudson’s .218 are Livan Hernandez, who is sporting a very low and very temporary 2.08 ERA, and Todd Wellemeyer, whose ERA is 5.36. The guy’s been lucky as all get-out and still has a 5 ERA. Look at the numbers…striking out less than six per 9 innings, walking more than 5, given up 9 homers. Ouch.

The lowest BABIP in the NL last year for the season was Randy Wolf’s .256. The year before, Dave Bush was the only one under .260. You can see how impossible it would be to maintain one in the .220 range.

njbraves

May 27th, 2010
1:46 pm

Chipper is a good dude and has been a great Braves for a long time. Fans should be supporting him during his struggles, not trash talking the guy.He has done a lot for Braves baseball and he deserves a chance to try and work through this. I know plenty of people will say OK, but not at the expense of the ballclub, and that’s fine, I get that argument. However, whether you like it or not he will most likely finish the year batting third. Hopefully he gets it going sooner than later.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:47 pm

what is Ubaldo’s BABIP?

SlickWillie

May 27th, 2010
1:49 pm

Wish Chipper would would go tell Bobby he hasn’t got the stuff anymore to bat 3rd in the lineup. Now that would be honesty I would love!

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:49 pm

easy Slick…easy.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:50 pm

what is Ubaldo’s BABIP?

A very low .233. But it stands to reason that you can’t maintain a 0.88 ERA, right? Luck not included, he probably still projects to an ERA in the 2.00 range. But the 0.88 is obviously unsustainable, along with his .233 BABIP.

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
1:51 pm

Brain SC, I appreciate the discussion. I am not saying that Hudson is not due for a correction. What I am saying is that I think that Hudson’s current numbers reflect that he has been pitching his best baseball over the first two months of the season. To me, that is what his numbers look like when he is at his best… consistently getting weak ground balls.

The correction, for me, is that it is very unusual for a pitcher to throw his best baseball over the course of a full season. His numbers will look different when he goes through a period when he is not throwing his best baseball.

So my view is that he has not been lucky… he has been very, very good. So good, that it would be unrealistic for him to remain this good across the entire season.

Maybe we are both kind of saying the same thing, re: a “correction” coming.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:52 pm

yeah that is true, that .88 would be impossible to keep unless he got matched up against bad teams every 5th day.

THB

May 27th, 2010
1:53 pm

Just wondering, seeing as a BAPIP under .250 is considered extremely lucky and unsustainable, what are some of the lowest BAPIP’s for an entire season? I’d have to imagine Bob Gibsons year where his ERA was around 1 would be high, some of Clemen’s and Maddux’s great seasons as well.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
1:53 pm

I believe I misspoke somewhat earlier when I was talking about Hudson being a ground ball pitcher, and relating that to his BABIP. What I should have said was that groundball pitchers tend to do a better job of having a low ERA despite a high BABIP because they don’t give up many homers and get double plays. Groundball pitchers actually tend to have higher BABIP against them because ground balls turn into hits more than fly balls do. Their true value comes in not giving up homers.

So, Hudson’s BABIP is certainly not helped by him being a ground ball pitcher…that should actually make the BABIP higher. Even more reason that it is essential that he cut down on his walks and start striking out a few more guys.

Clay

May 27th, 2010
1:54 pm

njbraves, Chipper has had a great career, but this “slump” has lasted almost a year. Bobby is embarrassing Chipper by letting him fail game after game in the 3rd spot. If it’s a mental thing, moving him way down in the order may help by easing the pressure on him. You don’t know if you don’t try it.

THB

May 27th, 2010
1:57 pm

Even though I advocated for Chipper to move into the leadoff spot, some of his hits are going to start finding holes and landing where the defenders are not, and he’s going to find some sort of power. His approach is too good for him not to heat up – at least to a respectable line.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
1:57 pm

I say we just trade him to save everyone the discussion.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
2:02 pm

THB, I don’t know if the BABIPs are listed like that anywhere, but I too would be fascinated to see them. All I can do is go year by year and look at them. Bob Gibson had a .273 career BABIP, but keep in mind he played in an era when the league BABIP was much lower. In 1968, the league BABIP in the NL was .277. These days it’s closer to .300. Gibson’s BABIP in 1968, the year he had a 1.12 ERA was .234, which is low, but not as extreme as a .234 would be today. Maddux’s lowest BABIP against came in 1995, when it dropped to .248. Clemens’ in 1986 was .238, a figure he never approached again til he got to Houston in his 40s. Both Maddux and Clemens had career BABIPs against of .286. Right about where they should be for the eras they pitched in, maybe just a little lower than league norm.

jeffrey d

May 27th, 2010
2:04 pm

Thanks Carroll…I just thought I read somewhere that there was a specific reason DOB didn’t cover the Marlins. Guess not

THB

May 27th, 2010
2:04 pm

Brian, thanks for the info, and I meant to say Gibson, Maddux, and Clemen’s would be low in their great years, not high.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

May 27th, 2010
2:05 pm

now MARTA may cut shuttle bus from 5 PTS to Turner Field- i mean seriously??? WTF?? now we have to deal with horrible traffic & parking w/o any relief of this crappy transit service??

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
2:05 pm

Yeah, Glen, I see what you mean. I totally agree that Huddy has hit his spots very well, and pitched very well. The main point is that, eventually, he will hit some spots, and hitters will still get hits on them, which hasn’t happened much to him so far. But absolutely, even if he didn’t change anything, he’s very valuable…maybe not 2.09 ERA valuable, but still a very good pitcher.

Bama Aaron

May 27th, 2010
2:08 pm

For all those people wanting to move Chipper out of the 3 hole where exactly do you propose to put him? You already have Yunel & McClouth barely scratching the Mendoza line in the 7th & 8th spots…move Chipper and you’re basically holding up the white flag for an inning after you get past McCann.

Innocent Bystander

May 27th, 2010
2:13 pm

Bama Aaron- I personally want to see him in the 2 spot. His OBP is still really high (because of all the walks he draws), which means more guys on base for the heart of the order (Heyward, Glaus, McCann, Hinske). Heyward is a born 3 hitter, just as Mac is a born 5 hitter.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
2:15 pm

wow the picture of McCann on the front..not great :-P haha.

Skeezix

May 27th, 2010
2:15 pm

It is really curious that the Phils bats have gone silent since the bullpen binocular incident. It’s too big of a coincidence to ignore. Watch out Braves!!!! When you play them–you might as well figure that these cheaters will probably try and have a telescope or binoculars hidden somewhere.

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
2:15 pm

Brian SC, I appreciate the insights you’ve shared. I just think that sometimes people make out BABIP to basically mean that a ball on a tee should result in the same BABIP as a ball coming out of a pitching machine at 125 mph. After you make contact, it all up to luck.

I know you weren’t saying anything close to that. And I agree that it would be very unlikely for Hudson to mantain his good overall numbers without improving his walk and strikeout rates, etc.

abwright

May 27th, 2010
2:17 pm

In 2003, Huddy had a 2.70 ERA in a 16-7 campaign for Oakland.

He indicated to start this year that …
a. his shoulder is much stronger than it had been in past years due to the time off
b. he is able to get his arm into a slot that he hasn’t for many years

I doubt that Huddy maintains a 2.09 ERA, but it is not unthinkable that he will have a sub-3.00 ERA.

As he throws more pitches, his control should improve, and the walks should go down.

Huddy was quoted to say that he is pitching to contact and not as interested in striking out as he was in the past.

Barring injury, I wouldn’t be shocked if he has a career year in 2010. He’s older and wiser, while at the same time having a truly healthy arm for the first time in years.

We’ll see what his stamina is as the season goes along.

Ron H

May 27th, 2010
2:18 pm

“Not only has Hudson had a great month (4-0 with a 1.26 ERA), not to mention a very solid season (5-1, 2.09 ERA), and oh by the way, a great stretch at the plate (he’s hitting .261, had a three-game hitting streak and is 6-for-his-last-17 with two RBIs), he is quite the Fisherman.”

Maybe we can replace Escobar or Chipper with Hudson… Couldn’t hurt…it actually might help!

Colin

May 27th, 2010
2:19 pm

RHR

May 27th, 2010
2:23 pm

It is really curious that the Phils bats have gone silent since the bullpen binocular incident. It’s too big of a coincidence to ignore

Huh. That hasn’t even occurred to me. Interesting thought.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
2:24 pm

There’s a stat called FIP (fielding independent pitching), which tries to remove the noise from balls in play and just evaluates pitchers on what they can directly control: walks, strikeouts, and home runs. A lot of times this can help project what a pitcher would actually be doing with average “luck”.

Tim Hudson, who as a 2.09 ERA, has an FIP of 4.34. That doesn’t necessarily mean that he’s pitching like he should have a 4.4 ERA, ERA and FIP should be a lot closer together than that. Hudson will not keep striking out hitters at as low a rate as he has this year (because he’s never had a K rate this low), so that FIP will go down, just like the ERA will go up.

Ubaldo Jimenez has an FIP of 2.70, which is really quite good, but obviously well above his actual ERA. Expect some convergence.

Tommy Hanson’s FIP is 3.60, which is below his ERA of 4.06. I would bet on Hanson finishing the year under 4 in ERA.

It’s all about projection, really. What do the numbers say a pitcher is likely to start doing?

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
2:25 pm

Talk about Hudson not giving in, which I explains the BABIP numbers more than anything else. He’s at a freakin’ Glavine level in terms of not giving in.

37 batters have gotten ahead 2-0 versus Hudson. he’s given up just 6 hits and has walked 16 of those batters.

15 batters have gotten ahead 3-0 versus Hudson. He has given up 1 hit and has walked 13 of those batters.

BABIP when the batter is ahead of Hudon: .283
even count: .229
Hudson ahead: .122

I think this does a pretty good job of explaing his elevated walks and lower BABIP. We’ll just have to see if opposing hitters adjust and can make him come in there with better pitches.

Colin

May 27th, 2010
2:28 pm

that is a interesting thought about the Binocs…touche..I have never liked cheaters..take away some win s :-P haha

Wayne in Utah

May 27th, 2010
2:29 pm

“The Philadelphia Binocular Incident”

Coming soon to a theatre near you!

unbelievable

May 27th, 2010
2:29 pm

good job explaining BABIP Brian. Kind of sorry I got the whole thing started, but its a useful stat to compare both hitters and pitchers. Basically if you can get a three year average its a good stat measurement tool. Basically Chipper and Yunel have been unlucky this far and we should expect to see an increase in their production, unless Chipper is just finished You’re right in that it is a better measurement for pitchers.

Hudson cant keep the numbers that he’s at right now. I believe the normal range for pitchers is .285-.300. Ive researched career low numbers for these 5 guys

Greg Maddux – .253
Nolan Ryan – .236
Roger Clemmens – .254
Randy Johnson – .258
John Smoltz – .257

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
2:30 pm

In his career, Hudson has walked 27.6% of batters after a count of 2-0. Compare this to this year when he has walked 43.2% of batters after a count of 2-0. I know the sample size is very different. But pitchers have to adjust and pitch differently as the age and their stuff is not what it once was (velocity, etc.) Hudson is just not giving in so far this year.

I think this is Hudson’s adjustment. Just have to see if opposing hitters adjust back.

Jesse Stone

May 27th, 2010
2:30 pm

Phillies sponsored by Peak Antifreeze: When you Peak, you win.

Mitchie-san (The whole team needs yoga)

May 27th, 2010
2:31 pm

Turk 182…

I gotta say I like your old name better. Evrytime I read it I sang in my head “Dr. Love” by KISS, except it was “18 Wheels of Love”.

It work well if you change it.

Mitchell

May 27th, 2010
2:31 pm

Yeah, we had two chances in a row to catch up to the Phillies and we blew those.

Better win this one. You’d like to think we could maybe sweep the Pirates. It would set us up rather nicely to take over first place for good starting Monday.

Well, surely not “for good.” If we even find ourselves in first place in the next week we’ll probably drop a half dozen games shortly thereafter courtesy of our Hall of Fame manager and be right back in the middle.

Mitchie-san (The whole team needs yoga)

May 27th, 2010
2:32 pm

*It works well if you change it.(the song, that is.)

Colin

May 27th, 2010
2:32 pm

I hope McCann is able to play..Ross is good enough but maybe McCann was just starting to turn a corner.

bschro

May 27th, 2010
2:33 pm

18 Wheels . . . so sorry. This is a tough time.

Keep the tag. Besides what’s highlighted in gray . . . your posts are one of the few i look out for.

Biff Poke-a-rubber

May 27th, 2010
2:34 pm

I think BABIP is a stat that has to be used carefully. A major consideration has to be placed on the type of pitcher, and Huddy’s sinker is going to get more ground balls – and all hitters have a .245 BABIP on ground balls. from Brew Crew Ball

“There are two things that can affect BABIP for [pitchers]:

Ground ball tendencies
Defense

As we saw before, ground balls are more likely to turn into outs more than are balls hit in the air.

So if you have a sinker that turns into lots of grounders, you can keep your BABIP down.

Sure, we can’t expect Hudson to keep quite so low a BABIP, or so low an ERA for that matter. But I do think that his low BABIP now is more an indication of being extremely locked in with his sinker than it is an indication of luck.

Also to be considered is that he is purposefully pitching more to contact, which will lower his Ks, and therefore remove some outs which in other seasons didn’t count towards BABIP.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
2:34 pm

That’s interesting stuff, Glen. Good research. Because it doesn’t appear to me that he’s lost the ability to command his pitches, maybe there is something to the fact that he’s not “giving in” when behind in the count. I still think he would like to cut down on his walk rate, though.

Little League Larry

May 27th, 2010
2:34 pm

I see my friend Mitchell has arrived. Mitchell stuffs deer and largemouth bass during the day, but at night, he’s the 3rd best pitching machine manager in our town. He’s way better than Bobby Cox. If he entered the Braves locker room, everyone would stop what they were doing to listen to him spill out his vast knowledge of baseball.

Biff Poke-a-rubber

May 27th, 2010
2:34 pm

oops, meant only to bold one line of that last part. still figuring out the whole style thing here.

unbelievable

May 27th, 2010
2:36 pm

Colin, the way BMAC has hit Nolasco I want him in there tonight also

Colin

May 27th, 2010
2:36 pm

Mitchell, did someone pee in your cheerios this morning??

Colin

May 27th, 2010
2:37 pm

yeah hopefully he is unbel. but idk how serious his injury is and long-term its best to sit him..short-term lets go for first :-P

Nova Scotia Steve

May 27th, 2010
2:40 pm

“The Philadelphia Binocular Incident” – LOL

Followed by highly anticipated sequel “Brotherly Love Vomit”

Glen W

May 27th, 2010
2:40 pm

Also, Hudson’s BABIP this year with RISP is an amazing .135. I know I sound like I am coming down on the other side of the argument now. But that is crazy low. In his career, his BABIP with RISP is .277.

Anyway, back to my other position :)
He has been extremely stingy with RISP and has made hitters hit his pitch in those situations. Let see if he can keep it up.

Brian from SC

May 27th, 2010
2:40 pm

Biff, that part about ground balls turning into outs more than fly balls is just wrong, unless you’re counting line drives in with fly balls.

Here are the batting average on ground balls in the NL the last few years: .231, .234, .231, .245, .234

On fly balls: .223, .224, .227, .216, .227

You could go back as many years as you want, and the ground ball BA will probably always be better than the fly ball BA.

Add your comment