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#1 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:20 PM

I found a bunch of this stuff the other day...

#2 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:23 PM


S.o.S.H. Top Ten Red Sox Prospects, 2001

compilation and notes by Anthony Chase


The following rankings are the result of a volunatary poll taken by contributors at the Sons of Sam Horn Red Sox forum. Next to each ranking is the average vote that player received, i.e., Blanco is ranked #1, and received an average vote of 9.3 on a scale of 1-10, 10 being highest.

1) 9.3 Tony Blanco
Comment: Undeterred by a slow start to his 2001 season, Blanco was virtually a consensus SoSH pick for the Sox top prospect.
Strong suits: 5 tool player who not only makes scouts salivate, but also produces on the field. Once healthy this season, his production has returned to levels which justify his hype.
Weak Link: The .284 OBP and 65 Ks in A ball is worrisome, even if Blanco was bothered by a sore shoulder for much of the season.
current 2001 statistics

2) 9.0 Seung Song
Comment: What’s not to like? 114/29 K/BB ratio in 105 IPs, a 1.76 ERA in High A ball, after a 2.04 ERA in Low A, and has allowed only 7 home runs in 2 professional seasons. Consistently listed by Baseball America on their tip sheet of the Ten Hottest Prospects in baseball, throws a fastball in the mid-90s and has a plus curve.
Strong suits: Has the stuff and the production to be a star. One of baseball’s top pitching prospects.
Weak link: Single A ball is a long way from Fenway.
current 2001 statistics

3) 8.3 Casey Fossum
Comment: A professional pitcher, with four pitches in his arsenal that he can throw to any location and at a variety of speeds. Dominating AA in 2001 with a 2.83 ERA and 130/28 K/BB ratio in 117 innings. Performed well in a cameo appearance at Fenway.
strong suits: A well-rounded pitcher with a 93 mph fastball – both two and four-seam – a good slurve, and a change-up.
Weak link: Doesn’t have overpowering stuff, and needs to work on his change-up.
current 2001 statistics

4) 5.3 Brad Baker
Comment: As if getting rid of Mo Vaughn wasn’t good enough, Brad Baker as compensation gives the Sox a right-handed pitcher with a 95 mph fastball and a professional curve ball.
Strong suits: Healthy, he has the pitching intelligence and raw stuff to be as much a potential star as Seung.
Weak link: Needs to develop his secondary pitches and has struggled a bit this season at Sarasota.
current 2001 statistics

5) 5.0 Steve Lomasney
Comment: A strong AFL and AA campaign has restored Lomasney to top prospect status, after a tough 2000 campaign. Recently promoted to AAA, he’s off to a hot start there, and will likely be Jason Varitek’s back-up in 2002.
Strong suits: Defensively solid, and had OPSs in the 800s in both the AFL and AA. Indeed, after a poor start to the 2001 campaign, his OPS was in the 900s at Trenton, and is currently at exactly 1.000 at Pawtucket.
Weak link: Has shown a tendency to be bothered by nagging injuries, and strikes out too often.
current 2001 statistics

6) 3.0 Mauricio Lara
Comment: Baseball America calls him the Sox left-hander with the highest ceiling. He dominated the NY-Penn league in 2000, finishing fourth in the league in both ERA and Ks, and also dominated Low A Augusta in a short stint with a 1.41 ERA. His domination at Augusta has continued in 2001, with a 2.37 ERA and a sterling 65/17 K/BB ratio.
Strong suits: 90-94 fastball, and knows how to change speeds and pitch. Has given up only 3 home runs in 2 years.
Weak link: Like most young pitchers, he still needs to master his change-up. While still young, at 22 he is a bit older than Seung and Baker.
current 2001 statistics

7) 2.0 Dernell Stenson
Comment: How the mighty have fallen. One of baseball’s elite prospects after strong seasons in AA in 1998 and AAA in 1999, Stenson has failed to further develop at AAA and Sox fans are still waiting for the production which the hype promised. There are reports that he may be troubled by a death in his family this year, and his production has lagged in previous years due to nagging injuries. It is easy to forget that Stenson is still just 23 years old, and there are many players with his talent who took just as long to blossom. If Stenson follows the development path of Trot Nixon, the organization will be pleased, but time is running out....
Strong suits: Stenson has a beautiful swing and perfect balance at the plate, and produced strong numbers at a very young age in both 1998 and 1999.
Weak link: Stenson’s offensive growth has stagnated, and even regressed this season. His defense is just adequate – unless he is productive at the plate, he won’t be a major leaguer.
current 2001 statistics

T9) 1.9 Sun Woo Kim
Comment: Another prospect whose luster has faded a bit. A Peter Gammons favorite (always the kiss of death), Sunny has an ERA over 5 at AAA this year and is a pitcher who looks great for a stretch, but whose concentration seems to wander. After a rough debut in Boston, Kim did pitch well for the big club in July (4.15 ERA) before being sent back down to Pawtucket. It’s also worth noting that his 64/22 K/BB ratio remains impressive, despite his high ERA.
Strong suits: A 95 mph fastball with excellent movement, and a sharp breaking ball; there’s no doubt Kim has major league stuff.
Weak link: Sunny seems to lack concentration and professional moxie, and needs to mature as a pitcher before making the leap to Boston. Like Stenson, however, it’s easy to forget that he is just 23 years old with plenty of time to develop.
current 2001 statistics

T9) 1.9 Manny Delcarmen
Comment: A raw kid fresh out of high school, Delcarmen’s had a strong year in Rookie Ball, with a 3.12 ERA and 40 Ks (14 BBs) in just 26 innings.
Strong suits: Delcarmen threw at 90-92 in high school, but will have to develop that further if he is to be a major league power pitcher.
Weak link: Very raw, at least four years away from Fenway Park.
current 2001 statistics

10) 1.7 Juan Diaz
Comment: Cuban 1Bman who hit his way into contention for a job with the Sox last summer, and ate his way out of that job last winter. Diaz contract with the Dodgers was ordered voided by MLB, and he made his way into the Sox system. Diaz hit his way through the Sox minor leagues -- from Sarasota to Trenton to Pawtucket -- putting up a startling .301 major league EqA at AAA. Once in baseball shape this summer, Diaz was again assigned to Pawtucket, where his .926 OPS shows his eating ability hasn't impaired his hitting ability. Expect to see him at Fenway in September, if not before.
Strong suits: Diaz can mash, plain and simple. He’s also reportedly surprisingly nimble for a big man around first base.
Weak link: Diaz OBP is just .325, an indication that major league pitchers may overmatch him. He also, strangely, has a strong reverse split (he hits right-handed pitching better than left-handed) which is unfortunate given the Sox desperate need for a first baseman who can hit left-handed pitching.
current 2001 statistics

*Honorable Mention: The famous Izzy Alcantara, at an average of 1.5 per vote.



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#3 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:23 PM


WEEI-isms

pre-season edition, brought to you by Anthony Chase


WEEI-isms

Like rubber-necking a car crash, a Boston sports fan is almost forced to listen to WEEI, our local sports talk station. Except for the odd birds who actually call the station (and who have my pity and sympathy for their mental infirmities), we all pretty much know the hosts are as likely to speak coherently about sports as ancient Greek philosophy. Nonetheless, the sports addict almost has to have a listen, if only to catch each day's disaster and turn off the radio in amazement that IQs exist in the same range as John Wasdin's ERA. As painful as it is, one can often have a good laugh at the expense of the hosts, and in that spirit we present the WEEIisms of the week, the creme de la creme of WEEI stupidity:

Pre-season edition

Steve Buckley: "I just returned from Fort Myers and can say that the Sox may be on their way to a 90-loss season." (Buckley -- the definition of a hack writer -- is so bereft of talent and originality he often tries to make up for it with vast overstatements of this type. Weak.)

Dick Radatz: "ERA is irrelevant, you judge a pitcher by ONE thing: wins." (Referring in his best faux-macho voice to the Sox staff and arguing it didn't match up to the Yankee staff. When a caller noted that by that standard Clemens and Mussina aren't good front-line pitchers because they won, respectively, only 13 and 11 games last season, Radatz sputtered "but that's because they didn't have run support! Yes, Dick, that's exactly the point, and that's why W-L records don't matter...poor guy, as Boston Sports Guy would say, it's well past the Monster's tapioca time.)

Glen Ordway: "The Sox leading the league in ERA over the last two years is irrelevant, what's important is that the Sox starters averaged the fewest innings per game in the league." (I hadn' t realized that the rules of the games had been changed to counting starter innings' pitched, not runs -- how did I miss this?)

There you have it, vote for your favorite WEEI stupidity!

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#4 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:25 PM


Boston Pitching 2001 - by the numbers
by Eric C, aka Lanternjaw How good is Boston's pitching?

Although the offense fell well short of expectations in 2000, Boston's pitching staff remained the AL's finest, leading the league in ERA, runs allowed and OppOPS for the second consecutive year. This accomplishment is generally dismissed by baseball writers as the product of Pedro Martinez' 5th day miracles. Remove him, they say, and Boston has an average staff. I've heard that tired dirge far too often and decided to see for myself. Let's play fair and remove the ace from the rotation of the top six AL teams in ERA and compare:

1999 NYY 4.24 (4.13 +.11 w/o Cone) BOS 4.33 (4.00 +.33 w/o Martinez) ANA 4.85 (4.79 +.06 w/o Finley) OAK 4.85 (4.69 +.16 w/o Hudson) BAL 4.98 (4.77 +.21 w/o Mussina) CLE 5.04 (4.89 +.15 w/o Colon) 2000 SEA 4.49 (4.49 +.00 w/o Sele) OAK 4.65 (4.58 +.07 w/o Hudson) BOS 4.67 (4.23 +.44 w/o Martinez) DET 4.77 (4.71 +.06 w/o Weaver) CWS 4.80 (4.66 +.14 w/o Sirotka) NYY 4.94 (4.76 +.18 w/o Clemens) Pedro Martinez caused the sharpest spike among the aces, but that's more indicative of his individual dominance than his effect on the relative pitching rank of the Red Sox. Clearly, it is Martinez' solid supporting cast that's responsible for keeping Boston pitching within the top 3 in the AL. Keep in mind that this same staff carried Pedro's elder brother Ramon through 127.2 frightful innings (6.13 ERA) and that those numbers will be replaced in 2001 by Hideo Nomo. USA Today's Baseball Weekly editor Paul White had this to say of Boston's pitching in a recent editorial:

The combined 2000 major league ERA of everyone on the current Boston roster is 3.72. That's a half-run better than last year's Red Sox, one-third of a run better than Atlanta. The ERA of the current staff, excluding Martinez, is 4.18. That figure is better than the 2000 staff, including Martinez.

Can we please put the "without Pedro" diatribes in the recycle bin?


Starting Pitchers
Manager Jimy Williams and pitching coach Joe Kerrigan have succeeded in utilizing an unorthodox quick-hook method when dealing with starting pitchers not named Pedro. Only once during his 4 year tenure has Williams allowed more than one pitcher (1998, Martinez and Tim Wakefield) to throw over 200 innings. Although the results of this tactic have been impressive, it remains to be seen how long the bullpen can withstand such a heavy workload. Volume pitching has been a staple of GM Dan Duquette's regime though, and this offseason has seen that tradition being upheld. Frank Castillo was signed quickly in November, and after falling short in his bidding for one of Mike Mussina (NYY) and LH'er Mike Hampton (COL), Duquette settled on Hideo Nomo and signed former Yankee David Cone to a non-guaranteed incentive-laden package.

The virtual locks for the top three spots in the rotation are Martinez, Nomo and Rolando Arrojo. At first glance, the 4th and 5th spots in the rotation are highly uncertain, with newcomers Castillo and Cone competing with impressive young prospects Tomokazu Ohka (69.1, 3.12) and Paxton Crawford (29.0, 3.41). Toss in the possibility that re-signed Tim Wakefield and rehabbing Bret Saberhagan are being considered and there could be some serious dog-fighting in Fort Myers. However, Jimy Williams has demonstrated a favoritism for veteran starting pitchers (Avery, Ontiveros, et al), and as long as Castillo and Cone prove that last season's injury-related problems have been solved there is reason to believe that one or both of Ohka and Crawford may begin the season in Pawtucket. Tim Wakefield? Since being pulled from the rotation to close games in early 1999, Wakefield and his rubber arm have become a valuable option pitcher, used in any/all situations as necessity dictates. It's hard to fathom Williams utilizing Wakefield in any other role, especially since his tireless durability helps to maintain the health of the bullpen regulars.


Bullpen
Those bullpen regulars may well be the most vital ingredient to the sustained success of Boston's pitching staff. As a collective unit they appear as tireless as Wakefield and almost as unspectacular, but their success at stopping the opposition is no illusion. In fact, the combined effort of the returning core of closer Derek Lowe, set-up men Rod Beck and Rich Garces, and middle reliever Hipolito Pichardo closely resembles the 1991 statistics of a dominating young Roger Clemens:

1991 Clemens 253.1 IP, 3.13 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 2.47 K/BB, 20 HR allowed 2000 Boston bullpen (2001 returnees) 271.2 IP, 3.05 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 2.65 K/BB, 16 HR allowed Can this foursome maintain that level of dominance? Bill James doesn't think so:

2001 267.0 IP, 3.54 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 2.11 K/BB, 22 HR allowed Still impressive. Consider that a revitalized Roger Clemens produced a 3.70 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 2.24 K/BB, and allowed 26 HR's in 63.1 fewer innings over the course of the 2000 season.

Noticeably absent from Boston's 2001 bullpen mix is LH'er Rheal Cormier, who signed a 2 year deal with Philadelphia during the offseason. Normally this would be a concern, but Garces actually faced more LHer's in 2000 and was more successful at retiring them:

Garces vs LH'ers 115 ab's, .209/.273/.322 Cormier vs LH'ers 87 ab's, .264/.304/.345 Sang-Hoon Lee is a possibility who held LH'ed batters hitless during his cup of coffee last season. He's also one of only two LH'ed pitchers currently on Boston's 40 man roster. The other, Jesus Pena, was shelled by batters from both sides of the plate last year and has to be considered a longshot. Non-roster invitations were also given to Bryan Ward and Tim Young, who'll need to keep the ball in the yard to succeed beyond AAA. In all likelihood, Cormier's spot in the bullpen will go to the best losing candidate for the 5th starter job.


Projected Staff
My early projection for the opening day pitching staff, with James' predictions:

STARTING ROTATION SP1: Pedro Martinez 216.0 IP, 1.75 ERA, 0.85 WHIP, 9.34 K/BB, 16 HR allowed SP2: Hideo Nomo 185.0 IP, 4.52 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 1.99 K/BB, 25 HR allowed SP3: Rolando Arrojo 162.0 IP, 4.78 ERA, 1.45 WHIP, 1.86 K/BB, 21 HR allowed SP4: David Cone 168.0 IP, 5.09 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, 1.61 K/BB, 22 HR allowed SP5: Frank Castillo 138.0 IP, 5.09 ERA, 1.51 WHIP, 1.86 K/BB, 19 HR allowed rotation total: 869.0 IP, 4.08 ERA, 1.32 WHIP, 2.55 K/BB, 103 HR allowed BULLPEN RP1: Derek Lowe 97.0 IP, 3.25 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 2.63 K/BB, 7 HR allowed RP2: Rich Garces 63.0 IP, 3.14 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 1.96 K/BB, 6 HR allowed RP3: Rod Beck 42.0 IP, 3.86 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 2.77 K/BB, 4 HR allowed RP4: Hipolito Pichardo 65.0 IP, 4.15 ERA, 1.45 WHIP, 1.36 K/BB, 5 HR allowed RP5: Tomokazu Ohka** (my own projection, not enough ML innings for James) 135.0 IP, 3.95 ERA, 1.35 WHIP, 1.54 K/BB, 16 HR allowed RP6: Tim Wakefield 153.0 IP, 4.65 ERA, 1.42 WHIP, 1.63 K/BB, 25 HR allowed bullpen total: 555.0 IP, 3.94 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, 1.82 K/BB, 63 HR allowed staff total: 1424.0 IP, 4.03 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 2.27 K/BB, 166 HR allowed and, for the skeptics...

staff total minus Pedro Martinez: 1208.0 IP, 4.43 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 1.82 K/BB, 150 HR allowed Still good enough to have led the AL last year. Obviously, one has to factor in the probability that one or more of these pitchers will spend some time on the disabled list, but there shouldn't be any shortage of capable ML help should the need arise. Bret Saberhagan will enter the scene at some point this season - health willing - and produce better results than what James has predicted for Castillo or Cone. LH'ers Pete Schourek (elbow) and Kent Mercker (blood clot) were re-signed and are solid options once they've worked themselves into playing shape. Paxton Crawford would open the season as the 5th starter (or better) on the majority of ML clubs. Lee, Bryce Florie, etc. - the list goes on and the depth remarkable. Suffice it to say that there's no reason why this staff shouldn't once again rank in the top three in AL pitching by season's end.

It'll certainly be interesting to see how things shake out in Fort Myers...


Bill James' predictions and the statistics quoted were taken from Stats Inc. Major League Handbook 2001, available for purchase at www.stats.com.




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#5 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:25 PM


Chat with Gordon Edes - 11/13/2001
Gordon Edes: Hey, I've got my Mo Vaughn armor on; let's roll, as W would say

SoSH: On behalf of the Sons of Sam Horn’s 648 registered members and many "lurkers," I’d like to thank Gordon Edes for appearing in this forum.

Mike Koblish, aka Philly Sox Fan asks: "As an outsider it appears that there is a poisionous realtionship between the media, players and front office, and that all three parties share part of the blame. What do you think can be done from a media perspective to help the situation? Can you put yourself in the players' and front office's shoes and offer suggestions they could employ to improve things? Do you think that the players-only lounge Kerrigan suggested would help? Why or why not?"

Gordon Edes:
Felix, This isn't something that will go away simply by putting in a players' lounge. There's very little room in Fenway for a lounge to begin with, and players have always retreated to the trainers room when they've wanted extra privacy. I just thought it was funny that of all the things Kerrigan said had to change next year, that was the one he chose to focus on. This, days after his star pitcher had thrown his practice jersey at him and waved goodbye to his teammates, and his center fielder called him a punkass p----y, Philadelphia boy in front of the whole team. The media weren't even in the ballpark at the time, so it was hard to see where we were the problem. In 20 years of covering sports, I've never seen such an adversarial relationship between a team and the media. I saw it my first week in town, when Clemens signed with the blue jays, I went to fenway, and they refused to let me in the ballpark. I stood out in the rain, disbelieving. The relationship in general with the players isn't bad. Obviously, I had issues with Everett, as did others, but in general I think the Sox have a good clubhouse. Is eavesdropping a problem? Not really. Nomar is savvy enough to know that when he says something postgame--especially when he says it loudly in full view of reporters--it's going to be reported. Cone had an issue with Shaughnessy earlier this spring when he made a comment in the middle of the clubhouse about this being worse than the Bronx zoo, and Dan-o wrote it. I wasn't there at the time. That probably was a judgment call, and it might have been a good idea iof Shaughnessy had run it by Cone before he wrote it, because Cone was new and maybe deserved the benefit of the doubt. But here's the biggest problem I have with the Sox: access to the front office. It's always on their terms,. I talk to Nomo's agent today, hear what's going on with negotiations, and can't call Duquette or Mike Port to hear their side. The Sox front office just fails to see that as part of the job, which is in effect cutting you off from answers. Honestly, if it was up to Duke, he would communicate only on his radio show and the web site. That's frustrating


SoSH:
Possumbait asks: "Mr. Edes, we at the SoSH are puzzled by continual jibes at the Red Sox organization, and Dan Duquette in particular, by yourself at times, but much more frequently by other Globe columnists and a certain ESPN personality. The problem is that when we scrutinize such jibes, they don't stand up to factual or consistency-based scrutiny -- it seems like there is a lot of axe grinding. Would you be willing to comment on this perception we have, and perhaps even make your own personal case for or against Duquette?"


Gordon Edes:
It's not your imagination, obviously, that shots are taken at duquette. The man has obviously done some good things here; that's why he has the support he has from many of you. But his management style is reponsible for an array of problems that go far beyond any personal problems a particular reporter might have with Dan. He has alienated many players in the clubhouse, other GMs, and agents with his approach, which often comes across as arrogant and indifferent to the concerns of the player/GM/agent he might be dealing with. Look, Duquette is a very smart man, but much of the turmoil around the Sox the last few years could have been eminently avoidable. You know there is a problem when not just the malcontents but the stars were as unhappy as they were with the Sox last season


SoSH:
Paul M asks: Good evening, Which young pitcher's failure in Boston--Rose, Suppan, Checo, for example--was the most surprising, in your humble opinion? And, are such failures an indictment on Jimy Williams and/or Joe Kerrigan?


Gordon Edes:
Paul, I'd have to say Rose, based on the terrific numbers he put up in Pawtucket. He did have some run-ins with Kerrigan, but I'm reluctant to pin the blame on Joe K. Brian may not have been ready when he first came up, then he had some elbow trouble. He seemed to be putting it together ;last season with Durham but now needs Tommy John. His stuff may not have been as good as we thought. When he doesn't have his command, he's very hittable. Checo was a pipedream. Great slider, not much else, terrible work ethic, then he got hurt. See ya.


SoSH:
Tony C asks: Hey Gordon... Thanks for the chat, I'm enjoying your responses so far. One non-Sox question: I’m outraged about contraction. How can Bud Selig justify contracting a team – Minnesota – which made money last year, has gone up in value enormously while under current ownership, and performed competitively last season and has a great core of young talent. It seems to me rather transparent that this is an attempt to show cities that unless they subsidize new ballparks, major league baseball will take its revenge. There is otherwise no explanation for squeezing Minnesota out. Do you agree and do you not think that baseball is making another huge PR blunder here?


Gordon Edes:
Tony, if you've read my stuff in the Globe in the last week, you'd know that I share your thoughts on contraction, especuially as it pertains to the Twins. I refuse to believe that the Minnesota market cannot support baseball. after 8 losing seasons in a row, they drew nearly 2 million this season, and drew 3 million when they won the World Series 10 years ago. Ten, 15 years ago, the teams that would be in danger of being contracted would have been the mariners and the braves and the indians, all of whom were great success stories in the last decade. And i think it would be far preferable to move the Montreal franchise than fold it. If you're going to payt $250 million to fold a franchise, why not spend that money to build a new ballpark? And the worst part of it is that after all that lip service about a new partnership with the players, the owners announced this unilaterally. It could be nuclear winter once more.


SoSH:
Tom Curran, aka TC asks: What did you think of Jimy's line ups and in-game decision making this year? And how do you feel the Sox would have done if they'd had a normal amount of injuries this year? Would they have made the playoffs?


Gordon Edes:
TC, I think Jimy blundered with his handling of the Offerman, Lansing, Bichette benchings at the start of the season. He had to know that he would totally tick off the Duke by his actions, and also had to know that the veterans would be sniping at him all year, with the blessings of upper management. He may have had sound reasons for sitting all three of them, but in Bichette's case, in particular, he should have done a better job of communicating. I do think it's true that Jimy distanced himself from his players more than his previous years; I think he simply got worn down by the Everett stuff, especially after the meeting in Oakland when Everett openly challenged him, and they cursed each other out. Not a good move on Jimy's part. But still, the record shows that the club was 12 games over .500 when he was fired on Aug. 16. Believe me, every manager wishes he could write a set lineup; Jimy's shuffling isn't much different than what goes on with other clubs. Would the team have faded in the end? Quite possibly, but they wouldn't have quit. And of course, the injuries played a HUGE role in the team's performance. Varitek was having a bustout season, and it's amazing the club did as well as it did with Lansing at shortstop and no Nomar.


SoSH:
Carl Poon asks: "Are there any good nicknames players use for each other in the clubhouse, tastless and otherwise, that the general public is unaware of? I'm looking for some good comedy here..."


Gordon Edes:
Carl, this team was a little short on the comedy this year, maybe for obvious reasons. Everett's nickname for Shaughnessy (CHB) was about as creative as it got. The nicknames you know are the ones that were generally thrown around: D-lew, D-lowe, Dauber, Nomie, Wakie, Coney, Sunshine (for Valentin), Tek, Guapo, Hattie, Shooter (Beck), pretty tame stuff. Sorry. Maybe we'll get Chris Berman to come to Fort Myers this spring.


SoSH:
JMC5400 asks: "What's the latest on Nomar/Pedro/Varitek and what are the long-term prospects for a complete return to health? Are any of those contracts (or any other Sox contracts) insured and what kind of premiums are paid for such insurance?"


Gordon Edes:
JMC, I talked to one of Varitek's agents last week, and he told me that Jason is finally coming along and making some real progress. Personally, I have some reservations about Nomar, because of how extensive the wrist surgery was, but several people I talked to, including hitting coach Rick Down (who admittedly isn't a doctor), think Nomar will be 100 percent come spring training. Pedro, I think we all have to keep our fingers crossed. His brother Ramon got hurt at the same point in his career--pitched iwth a slight tear--then blew it out the next year. But a lot of guys have had worse shoulder trouble than Pedro and been OK. The days of him blowing consistently 94-96 may be over; I just don't think we can make any sound predictions. The question on the premiums is a good one; most mukltiyear contracts are insured, especially the big ones (are there any other kind). I don't know what the premiums are; I do know they've been going through the roof the last few years, which may be one reason the sox are hoping to sign nomo for four years at the most, preferably for two years plus an option, although that may be wishful thinking on their part.


SoSH:
Tony C asks: I saw you noted in a recent column Bill James’ new book – I agree it’s a great read. You’re probably aware, however, that most so-called Bill James-style stat-heads regularly deride sports columnists. If I can fairly summarize their argument, it is that sportswriters are generally ignorant of sophisticated analyses of the game and replace it with an emphasis on qualities like clutch performance and player personality which appeal to the intellectually lazy. They would point out, for example, that a Randy Johnson is no more “clutch” now after having starred in the World Series than before the series when the media focused considerable attention on his non-clutch post-season W-L record. Or, even better from a Sox fan point of view, that Derek Jeter's career playoff OPS is now lower than his regular season OPS. I’m not saying I buy into the stat-head argument entirely – I think they considerably overstate their case, although they do have a point. And I fully understand that writing the daily beat, or even a regular column, is more difficult than it seems, and is written for a different audience than more stat-based analysis. But I do wonder how you respond to the general trend of their criticism. More importantly, do you think there is a way a contemporary sportswriter can integrate a more sophisticated use of statistics into daily columns, or are we stuck with the divide between the stats guys and guys like Bob Ryan who openly deride statistical analysis?


Gordon Edes:
You're being kind when you say the stats crowd "deride" us. As a rule, they think we're fools. Was it Mr. Gimbel who coined the expression "mediots" or did he appropriate it from somewhere else? I'll admit, there have been times I've felt pretty stupid about some of the stuff I've written, when it's been held up under a more sophisticated statistical analysis than I might have used. I absolutely feel there is a place for the stat-men, especially in an area where there are as many knowledgeable baseball fans as we have. Believe me (and I'm sure I won't have to do too much convincing), some of you know a lot more about this club statistically than I do. But after 20 years in this biz, I also feel more than ever that stats hold up a useful mirror, but show only part of the picture. If stats were the whole story, then Felipe Alou would have listened to Gimbel and batted Tim Spehr cleanup (hey, an extreme example, but the first one that popped in my head). Plus, I'm also aware that I'm writing to a general audience, too, one that is as interested in the human element and drama--the daily telling of a grand story that begins in February and ends in October. It can't all be numbers. But believe me. I pay attention to what many of you say, and it has caused me to look back at some of my own conclusions. And I've been wrong, plenty of times.


SoSH:
BigMike asks: Many baseball people have criticized Dan Duquette for firing Bob Schaeffer. Yet during Bob Schaeffer's tenure as farm director the Red Sox were universally praised as having outstanding drafts every year. Do you think that Schaeffer deserved his fate with the knowledge that so many highly rated prospects burned out under his watch? And do you think the Red Sox farm system has improved or gotten worse, since Schaeffer left.


Gordon Edes
Schaef's tenure pretty much predated me. I arrived at the end of '96. I think it would be hard to argue that the farm system has gotten better since Schaefer left. There are very few position prospects in the pipeline, as we all know, and the Sox have had some real flameouts with some of their pitchers: Andy Yount, with his tragic graveside accident, John Curtice, who basically ate his way off the team; Rose, etc. And I'm sure you're aware that Baseball America just rated the last Sox draft as the worst in the majors. They've invested a lot of money in the Far East, with very dubious results (Checo, Jin Ho Cho, Sang Lee), probably at the expense of signing some talent here. Duke has insisted since he got here that the farm system has to be the rock-solid foundation of the organization, but it just hasn't happened. where duke deserves major kudos is in the upgrade in Latin America; that will bear fruit one day.


SoSH:
Rick Burleson's Yam Bag asks: "Gordon, we have spent a lot of time discussing Trot Nixon on this board. A couple of questions for you on Trot; a) Does he have the respect in the clubhouse to be a leader or do the other players resent his comments to the media criticizing teammates? b) Do you think that he will "break out" and be one of the top RFs in the league or do you think his performance has hit a plateau?"


Gordon Edes
Yam Bag, why can't the Sox come up with nicknames like that? There is no question Trot is respected in the clubhouse; he was reluctant to say too much last year because it was only his second fuill season, but as he grew as a player, he also felt more comfortable with speaking out. That's why I think it would be a mistake to spend big bucks on brin ging Mo back. I just don't think you can turn back the clock like that; this is a different team now, and between Nixon and Varitek, I don't think this team will be lacking in leaders. I also think Nomar is prepared to step up and take a more active role as well. I think Sox fans will see a sea change in attitude next season


SoSH:
Paul M asks: With the decision to buyout Lansing's contract, the Sox have almost $30 million to spend--accounting for increase to current players and assuming the budget remains $110 million. Who are the Sox going to pursue, and could you perhaps leak a surprise name or two?


Gordon Edes
If I were covering another club, I could probably give you a little more insight. But not having talked to the Duke since the end of the season, I have to rely on my sources in and out of the organization for what the Sox intentions are. They'll talk to Giambi, but it will be a miracle; the Yanks have the inside track, and he'd go to st louis before he came here. The Sox are really anxious to get some pitching, and Duke has told his people he's tired of sitgning broken-down guys. They'd love Jason Schmidt, but I think he's going to re-sign with the Giants. They like Terry Adams of the Dodgers a lot. Moises Alou? He told me he's very interested in coming here, but I'm not sure the Sox will make it happen. Lot of dough, though as you say, Duke has some budget flexibility. They're not wild about Roger Cedeno, though he may be a better possibility than Damon. I'm not buying the Bret Boone talk; Sox still are in to Offerman for another year. I would expect the Sox are going to be talking to the Jose Mercedes, Dave Burbas, Albie Lopezes and Ismael Valdes(es) of the world. It ticks me off that I can't be of more help on this one; the agents will be feeding me more stuff soon. And don't forget the dispersal draft will probably cause teams to hold off until they see what happens


SoSH:
Tony C asks: Glad to read what you say about expecting a sea change in leadership and team attitude next season. As a Red Sox fan, this team was frankly no fun to watch over the last year. Injuries were part of it, but so was the level of immaturity. How about from a sportswriters’ perspective? Does a club with this level of bickering decrease the enjoyment of covering a squad? Or do the numbers of stories that come out of that bickering make your job easier, and in that sense make covering a Red Sox-type club preferable? Or do you blame the fans at all for the negativity? One thing I’ve noticed is that for all the passion of Boston as a baseball town, it’s a particularly joyless passion. We like to blame the media, but surely we're at fault, too, no? P.S. By the way, do you and Shaugnessey get a kick out of the CHB moniker, or do you find it offensive?


Gordon Edes
soory, folks, had a little trouble finding the next question. Good question, Tony C, I'll answer it pronto


SoSH
Tony C: No problem.


Gordon Edes
I'll be honest with you---it troubles me that people assume i'm this very negative guy. I've built my career on aspiring to be fair and even-handed, and obviously that is not the way I'm perceived by some here (including, of course, Carl, who memorably called me the "same m-f I was in Florida" where he played something like 20-odd games while I was there). I have to acknowledge that I must bear some responsibility for that. What I've seen as warranted criticism, many of you have seen as piling on. I also think it's a case where I'm lumped together with some of my outspoken colleagues. I can honestly tell you that while there may have been plenty of fodder for stories last summer, there was little joy in covering the club. The atnmosphere was truly depressing, especially in the final weeks. Whether the team wins or loses is truly of secondary importance to me...I have a tale to tell either way. But would it be fun to be the person to cover the Sox when they win the World Series? Absolutely. Do I wish good things for the good people that I come in contact with? Absolutely. Do I blame the fans for being negative? No. I blame people who think the talk-radio whiners represent the majority of fans. Most fans here, while they may be braced for failure, tend to be very supportive. Look at the attendance numbers. I love how much baseball is woven into the fabric of life here. Does Dan like being called CHB? Doubtful, though he probably doesn';t mind the notoriety. I did call his wife and set her straight, though.


SoSH:
Valmoose asks: Gordon, in an online reply to a question right after the end of this past season you said that you'd done some research on the childhood of Carl Everett and that it was quite revealing but didn't think that the timing was right to print it as it would probably seem like making an excuse for his behavior. Don't you think that this would be as good a time as any to write that article (unless you hate Carl Everett so much that you would do anything NOT to help him) and that such an article could well lead to helping Everett face his past by accepting the psychotherapy the Red Sox are offering him? Personally, I think that such an article would be fascinating in light of Carl's knee-jerk, "don't tell me what to do!,"


Gordon Edes
Valmoose, I was wondering if I might hear from one of my most eloquent (well, that might not be the right word) critics. Here's the background to what you're referring to. I had dinner with several scouts, two or three of whom had known Carl since he was in high school in Tampa. They told me a harrowing tale of making sure they met with his father before 2 in the afternoon; any later than that, and he was beyond drunk. They told me Carl's father's eyes weren't yellow with drink; they were green. It was sad stuff, and yeah, maybe it helps to explain some of the anger that drives Everett. If I thought Carl was coming back to the Sox next spring, I might be more inclined to pursue the story further. The danger in doing such a story, of course, is that while some may believe it would offer insight, others would see it as making excuses. He is, after all, a man of 30 years old now, who has had [people looking out for him for the better part of a dozen years now. Many of us have had to overcome troubled childhoods and the like. Carl has not been receptive to help along the way, and there's little reason to suggest he would be now. You're wrong, Valmoose. I don't hate Carl Everett. I am disgusted by his behavior at times, but I often feel pity for him. He could have been a great player.


SoSH:
Possumbait asks: "Mr Edes, I have no idea what kind of day to day activities you are confronted with as you cover the Red Sox. Would you be willing to provide an example of a story this past year in which you had particular difficulty in developing and presenting?"


Gordon Edes:
Possumbait, that's a good question. Off the top of my head, the aftermath of Sept. 11 is an example of some of the obstacles we face. I never made it to Tampa; my plane was diverted to Atlanta. Extraordinary circumstances, to be sure. What was typical, however, is how Sox officials offered no help in contacting players, who had nothing else to do but hang around their hotel for a couple of days. And then, when baseball resumed workouts, the Sox were the only team in the majors that barred the media from the ballpark, allegedly fpor security reasons., They apparently perceived us as a threat. Medical information? Good luck. The Sox do not allow the team trainers to talk to us, and often do not make the doctor available, even in cases of major injuries. And in spring training, Duke will sit 200 feet away from us--we can see him in his office--but will go days without talking to us, while other clubs GMs talk with their reporters on a daily basis. And don't even ask about Harrington. Those guys aren't just dodging us, they're dodging you.


SoSH:
John Marzano, Olympic Hero asks: "Growing up, what were your aspirations? What were your favorite sports and teams? Did you always want to become a sports writer?"


Gordon Edes:
Hey, I only chat as long as Greg Maddux pitches, and he'd be taking a shower by now. Thanks for letting me into your forum; I'll invite you into mine. I do chats on Boston dot com, though I'm not sure if we're doing any in the off-season. I also do a mailbag, and really enjoy the give and take. Those of you who don't like me, hey, you're welcome, too. Criticism comes with the territory. And maybe the masters of this board will invite me back. An in-person chat is an idea I'd be open to, also. Take care Gordon


Gordon Edes:
John, I'll answer your question, then I'm out


Gordon Edes:
John, I grew up here, and like many of you (or your dads), my attachment to the Sox was sealed by '67. I did some writing locally through high school, but didn't plan on making this a career until i got a job as a clerk in the newsroom of the Chicago Tribune my freshman year in college. I was hooked on the newspaper business, and made a few stops in between--L.A., Atlanta, Fort Lauderdale--before I finally made it back home. I've been pretty lucky; I've covered all 4 pro sports, and it's been a good ride. Sox in the Series would be a capper.


SoSH:
Tony C: Thanks Gordon -- much appreciated. For the in-person chat, the beers are on LJ. And apologies to DH3, I was going to ask one of your questions, next -- I swear. lol..but it was interesting. Thanks again.


Cumberland Blues: Many thanks Gordon - we really appreciate your time. And good job running this fellow dopes - glad I wasn't needed and could just read.

Lanternjaw: Thanks a bunch for joining us tonight, Gordon. Looking forward to another chat in the future.



#6 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:26 PM


First Turn

by James Moore


Going into the first turn - an analysis of the Sox after 38 games.

The Sox are in first, a game and a half in front of dreaded Yankees and up by two in the loss column. The Blue Jays seem to have found their way back to mediocrity as they drop six in a row to fall three games off the pace. There are two other teams in the division, but right now they are far enough back in the rear view mirror that I can't seem to make out who they are. It's a good time to be a Sox fan: no worries in sight, holding onto first place while Nomar heals and then we take off in the second half of the season, dominate the playoffs and show the world just how good the new Big Three in Boston are.

That was fun to write, and if the Sox can hold on until Nomar returns it may just come to fruition. Until then there is a lot about this first quarter season to be discussed, and I'll start by answering the question that I know everyone has been asking:

What do you do if Pedro is on the mound, Manny is due to lead off the next inning and you have to go, bad?

Hold it until O'Leary grounds out to second base. At this point in time it may be well worth messing yourself rather than missing a pitch from Pedro or to Manny. You can try to sneak it in between innings if you want, but how pissed are you going to be if you're in the bathroom and Manny breaks the windshield of a car on the Mass Pike?

When Nomar gets back in the lineup the allure becomes that much stronger, because right now there isn't a better trio of players on any team in any sport anywhere. You could make an argument for any one of these guys as the best player in the game right now and they all play on our team. As long as they are under contract with the Sox the club will be a threat.

I'm going to stick on the positive side of the coin for a bit and mention the play of the kids on this team. Hillenbrand, Ohka and Crawford have all performed above expectations and would have to be considered one of the key reasons why the Sox are looking down at the Yankees right now. Hillenbrand still needs to learn how to take a walk but he has become a solid defender and is giving the Sox production out of a spot that was a black hole last year. He has shown signs of being more patient lately and hopefully he'll start working himself into more hitter's counts so he can drive the ball and get some more extra base hits.

The next few weeks are important for Hillenbrand as Valentin returns to health and the Sox head into two key series against the Yankees and Jays. If he can survive until the end of May he'll make it through the year, if he trips now it will probably be down to Pawtucket while Johnny V takes over at 3B and Lansing moves back to short. Regardless of what happens, the kid has done more than anyone could have expected in making his leap from Trenton.

Ohka and Crawford were sent down this week to make room for Pichardo and Cone, and I would expect both to be back up before the end of the season. Their statistics are remarkably similar. They have given up the same number of runs (18) though Ohka has allowed 4 unearned runs to Crawford's none. In seven starts Ohka has pitched one more inning, given up one more hit, walked one fewer batter and struck out one less batter. Both had nice runs of four starts and both have had two bad games. They look like the real deal to me as I watch them on the mound, and I would expect that if the Sox did not have options on them for this year we probably wouldn't be seeing David Cone right now.

If they don't get moved this year for a veteran starter down the stretch, I would expect these two to be fixtures in the rotation with Pedro by April of next year. Until then they'll bounce up and down between Pawtucket and Boston while the Sox find out just what Saberhagen and Cone have left.

Moving on to the bullpen...

Outside of Derek Lowe's collapse everyone has been solid and Lowe is showing signs of returning to form. This group has been solid all year and even with Lowe struggling was one of the best units in baseball. Now with Lowe making a comeback and Pichardo stepping into Wakefield's spot these guys could be the best in the majors.

Rounding out the positives is Jose Offerman, who appears to have rebounded from a putrid 2000 and is back to getting on base at a .390+ clip. Jose is a key to this team. As long as he's getting on base this offense will continue to put up runs and Manny will continue to, as the Boston Sports Guy says, "take a seat at the bar with destiny".

It's time now to move into the Twilight Zone. Here reside the seasons of Trot Nixon, Carl Everett, Jason Varitek and Dante Bichette. Nixon has only managed to hit around .250 but he has drawn 14 walks and has scored twenty runs, behind only Manny, Carl and Jose on the team. Unfortunately he also sits against most left handed pitchers so that Darren Lewis can get his at bats. Trot will remain in the Zone until he gets a chance to play full-time and shows whether he can step up to a borderline All-Star level or fall back to a platoon outfielder.

All the pitchers love Varitek, and he has been getting on base more this year, but he hasn't shown the power he flashed in 1999 in a very long time. When all is well he can be a force at the bottom of the lineup getting on base and having homerun power; when all is not well he's about as dangerous as Craig Grebeck.

Dante Bichette was benched at the end of Spring Training, watched Darren Lewis bat twice with the game on the line Opening Day while he never left the bench, currently has a 14 game hitting streak and remains in a platoon with Troy O'Leary. On a positive note he has been getting more playing time lately and - if he can keep hitting - should secure a more regular spot in the lineup.

Normally, Dante Bichette's season would qualify for defining the Zone, but as long as Carl Everett is on the team, no one else even comes close. Carl was benched twice during Spring Training, has publicly criticized the lineups, been called a cancer and a team leader, and has everyone wondering when he's going to get going offensively while he leads the team in runs scored. Add into the mix a horrible base running blunder that cost the team a game and the appearance that he's having more fun than anyone else on this team and what you have is about what everyone expected. There isn't much to say about Carl except that, like him or hate him, you have to respect the effort he gives each and every night.

Departing now from the Twilight Zone, we'll look at the first quarter disappointments.

After a strong start Brian Daubach has lost most of his playing time and has slumped terribly. But not as bad as Troy O'Leary who continues to get playing time but has not shown the ability to do anything but ground out consistently. Of course he's not as bad as Darren Lewis who would be a very good late inning defensive replacement and occasional pinch runner, but so far he's got one less at bat than Bichette and has been allowed to hit with tying and winning runs on base late in games. It may not be his fault, but based on the way he's being used and the ensuing results, he is a definite disappointment. Craig Grebeck and Mike Lansing may not be disappointments but they haven't been good either, and neither really warrants much more than a sentence.

Now, it's Jimy's turn. He has been called a great manager, and it has been said that he could be replaced by a monkey that climbs the left field wall, flings dung at Chuck Knoblauch, humps the "Curly Haired Boyfriend's" leg and ends up getting spanked. The truth - I am sure - is somewhere in the middle. How has he done so far? About as well as can be expected. His lineups appear to be pulled from a hat; he makes and doesn't make substitutions that leave you scratching your head while you try to pull your bleeding foot out of the TV screen; he refuses to answer most questions during interviews (though I can't decide if this is good or bad); his team is in first place. As a fan, I'm all over the Tommy Harper for Manager bandwagon even though I know I'm the only one on it, but as long as they stay in first place or close to it Jimy isn't going anywhere. His contract is up, however, at the end of the year.

The architect of this first place mess is none other than Dan Duquette, who may not be here any longer than Jimy. If reports out of the Providence Journal are correct then we may lose our GM and manager at the end of the year. How strange would it be if the team that won the World Series lost both its GM and manager one week later? But these are the Boston Red Sox, and if they're going to win it all, that might just be the scenario that leads them to the promised land.

Duquette has built a perennial playoff contender while totally alienating nearly everyone that does business with him. He is a PR nightmare that has signed three of the best players in the game to long term deals. He makes a ton of waiver wire transactions and signs retread arms that result in decisions to send promising young pitchers to AAA so rehabbing veteran's can have one more shot. He makes trades that bring us Dante Bichette for Chris Reitsma, Ed Sprague for Dennis Tankersly and Cesar Saba, Pedro Martinez for Tony Armas and Carl Pavano and Derek Lowe and Jason Varitek for Heathcliff Slocumb. He is either bad or good but very rarely average, and he has managed to put together a team that has enough talent to compete while it's all world shortstop recovers from surgery. So far this season he has managed to stay out of the limelight and let things be, but like most GMs his season can't be evaluated until we get near the trading deadline and see if he can make the deal to put this team over the top.

That's it, our beloved Red Sox at the first turn. Throw in some big time kudos for Hideo Nomo and his no-no, Bryce Florie and his comeback and Johnny V and his move to short and then add an incomplete for an injured Chris Stynes, an average Frank Castillo, and an under used Scott Hatteberg and we're done. Now all we need to do is turn the game on tonight and watch with childlike glee as Manny dismantles the opposing pitcher.



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#7 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:26 PM


Boston vs. New York Pitching, 2001: Final Report
by Mike Koblish, aka Philly Sox Fan This is the much delayed final report of my season long comparison of the Sox and Yankee pitching staffs. I got tied up doing other stuff, but since I collected the data and invested a significant chunk of time in the first three I want to finish the cycle. Where I can I'll try to turn the delay into a positive by trying to look ahead to 02 more than I would have in an 01 review. If you're interested in a longer intro into the why of these reports please feel free to check out the introductions to the other reports. The primary impetus for this project was to get a statistical handle on what these two sentences mean: Team X signed Mike Mussina; he always keeps his team in the game and gives them a chance to win. Team Y signed Hideo Nomo; he sometimes gives his team a chance to win. The implication of that "always" is something like 80-90% of the time. The implication of that "sometimes" is more like 50-60% of the time and that's if you're lucky and catch a good year. If Team X has three of those 80-90% Always's and Team Y has a bunch of those 50-60% Sometimes's, then clearly there is a huge talent gap to overcome. Why bother playing the games? What I've found doing this report is that the Always are actually in the 60-75% range and the Sometimes are actually in the 50-65% range. Obviously the Always are better, but not only is the gap not that big, there is actually some overlap. Now, not only do you play the games but if you get an advantage in another area then you can close that gap and beat team X. Sue me I'm plagiarizing myself. As I type this over an old report I realized that I liked these two explanatory paragraphs so I'm leaving them in. To briefly recap, I wanted to compare the effectiveness of two very different pitching dominant organizations in preventing runs on a starter by starter basis. The goal is different than simply looking at the starter's ERA or some more sophisticated measures like Baseball Prospectus' Support Neutral metrics. Those types of measures remove the starter from the relievers who follow him. That's obviously the best way to judge the individual starters, but I believe that removing those individual performances from their contexts will lead us to lose important information about how any given starter effects his teams' ability to prevent runs on the days he starts. Essentially, this is taking the old cliché about a starter setting the tone for his team and quantifying how well (or poorly) his team responds. Having now invested a significant chunk of time doing this for 75% of the season, I can (thankfully) say that this has worked as well if not better than I expected. I'd never suggest judging an individual starting pitcher with such a blunt tool, but the way baseball has evolved in this high offense, short start era I think we have to consider who the starters tend to turn over the game to. These days every team has an A pen consisting of the closer and top setup men who are expected to work tight winnable games and a B pen consisting of a motley assortment of fungible relievers. Starters who can consistently go 6/7 IP and give up 2/3 runs will generally hand the ball to the A pen. They should get some credit for the better relief pitching that they're going to get. Starters who go 5 IP and give up 4 runs turn the game over to the B pen and therefore deserve some of the blame when these replacement level pitchers occasionally let a game get out of hand. This method even addresses the positives and negatives of high quality, short stints like we've seen from a Castillo or a Saberagen - say 5 IP and 2 R. They get the credit for the high quality of their appearance and should get most of the A pen, but most managers are going to go 4 relievers to get 4 IP. That means an increased chance that one of those guys just isn't going to have it that night. Explanation of the statistics: The individual stats are pretty straight forward. One thing I wanted to make clear is that the ERA listed is only for that pitcher as a starter. SNVA and SNPct are park and support adjusted metrics developed by Michael Wolverton of Baseball Prospectus and are freely available at their website (www.baseballprospectus.com). Specific definitions are provided at the website, but basically these metrics measure every start against a common background of league average offense and bullpen performance. I'm also using Baseball Prospectus' ARP as an overall measure of team bullpen performance later in the report. Team stats are: Score - this is an average score of every game started by that pitcher. It is different than the run support numbers that are sometimes reported. Those numbers only look at the number of runs scored while the starter was in the game and are adjusted per 9 innings. The score data I'm using encompasses everything - unearned runs, runs against relievers, extra inning games. It is simply an average of the final score in every game started by that pitcher. Actual WP% - this is the team's won/loss record in games started by that pitcher. Pythag WP% - this is based on a relationship between runs scored and runs allowed that Bill James noticed for teams. Over the course of a 162 game season most teams Actual WP% is very similar to their Pythag WP%. As a result, it is sometimes considered what the teams' record ought to have been without the luck of random run distributions. Bigger deviations occur with smaller samples, which will be the case with starters who make, at most, 35 starts. Both of these percentages give equal weight to runs scored and runs allowed, so you'd expect them to have a good correlation. Philly WP% - I credit a pitcher with one Philly Win every time his team held the opposition to 4 runs or less. Like SNPct, Philly WP% completely ignores offense. If the opposition scores 4 or less runs the pitchers have done their job and the team ought to win. It differs significantly from SNPct by also counting the specific bullpen performance instead of assuming an average one. I'd expect these two percentages to correlate fairly well and the differences to provide some indirect insight into bullpen performance. Part I - The Starters Pedro Martinez Individual Stats: Starts - 18 IP/S - 6.5 ERA - 2.39 SNVA - 3.4 SNPct - .786 Team Stats: Score - 4.1 - 3.2 Actual WP% - 50 Pythag WP% - 61 Philly WP% - 72 Comment: In Pedro's first 11 starts the Sox gave up 26 runs. Same old Pedro. In his next four they gave up 22 and he was ominously shelved with shoulder problems. Those problems may or may not have included a rotator cuff tear, but he did miss most of the summer. He came back for three controversial starts and pitched reasonably well (only 10 runs allowed), but the Sox lost all three starts and continued to spiral downward. I wish I could be more optimistic about his future, but I wouldn't bet on him throwing 200 IP this year. I can, however, address just how good Pedro has been. The big baseball related project I've been working on has been a study comparing great pitchers of the 20th century. It started specifically to address some issues about Clemens career, but it has mushroomed into something else. In that study I'm using ERA+ as the measure of pitching quality. ERA+ is a park and league adjusted statistic available at baseballreference.com. It sets an average pitching performance at 100 and relates every other performance to that averge. As a result, while pitchers who are 10% better than average will have much different ERAs depending on the era they pitched in, they will all have an ERA+ of 110. For pitchers with a minimum of 1000 IP Pedro is the career leader with an ERA+ of 168. The next group of all time greats (Grove, W Johnson, Clemens, Maddux) lags well behind in the 140s. Obviously active players - especially young ones, most especially young ones with possible rotator cuff tears - will be artificially high because they haven't gone through their decline phase. I decided to spin out some hypothetical careers for Pedro to see what it would take to knock him down to an ERA+ of 150. I first took the worse case scenerio - he's seriously injured and will be out of baseball in a few years. Playing around with some different combinations of IP and ERA+ I ended up needing an additional 450 IP with an ERA+ of 50 in order to get to a career ERA+ of 150. That's just not possible. Darren Oliver managed an ERA+ of 70 the last couple of years. Even if Pedro were willing to go out there and embarrass himself no team would allow any pitcher to accumulate 450 IP that bad. I then assumed that the rest of his career he would be average and asked how many IP of a 100 ERA+ it would take to knock his career down to a 150. That came out to be 1200 IP. That's at least in the realm of possibility, but I seriously doubt Pedro could be healthy enough to throw that many IP and only be average. That's a round about, hypothetical way of justifying this statement - Pedro will retire as the career leader in ERA+ and likely by a wide margin. There are other things that go into making the best pitcher in basbeall history, ie longevity and within season durability, but the ability to prevent runs on an inning by inning basis is a big, big part of it. To paraphrase a boxing expression - inning for inning, Pedro is the best pitcher in baseball history. And that's why losing Pedro to injury was such a devastating blow. Hideo Nomo Individual Stats: Starts - 33 IP/S - 6.0 ERA - 4.50 SNVA - 1.1 SNPct - .549 Team Stats: Score - 5.2 - 4.6 Actual WP% - 58 Pythag WP% - 56 Philly WP% - 61 Comment: Nomo fell off quite a bit during the second half, but by Team RA it was more inconsistent than bad. In his last 11 starts there were 6 awful ones (53 total runs) and 5 very good ones (17 total runs). His ERA was hammered by a couple of those very bad starts. Since everything was so negative about the end of the year everybody quickly forgot the good starts. The other thing that has been quickly forgotten is his very nice stretch of starts during the 3rd quarter that preceded those final 11 starts. Over that 7 start stretch the Sox only allowed 19 runs (2.7/start). That stretch roughly coincided with Cone's best stretch and Arrojo's excellent short run. The high quality consistent pitching of those three was a huge factor keeping the team afloat during the 3rd quarter. More on that in the comment for Cone. Nomo is no longer part of the Sox future (for the record I would have liked to have seen him stay), but the Mussina vs Nomo debate of last year was neatly reprised with the Park vs Burkett/Hermensen debate this year. This isn't a big surprise but Nomo, the Sox #2 starter, was not as good as Mussina, the Yankees ace. Go figure. Yet from a team perspective there was an important similarity. The Sox won 58% of Nomo's starts. The Yankees won 59% of Mussina's starts. Mussina had a Philly Win edge of 23 to 20, but Nomo was in the ballpark. One thing I've noticed in this study is that a wide range of pitching talent will produce a team WP% in a pretty narrow range of 50-60% as long as the teams are decent. I decided to run the same panel of stats for Park, Burkett and Hermensen. None should really directly be compared to Nomo/Mussina since there is a league difference, but since all three were in the NL and on similar teams (86-93 wins with shaky closer situations) they're easily compared to one another. I'll throw in Nomo and Mussina as well, but keep in mind that those are AL numbers. Ranked by Team RA: Burkett 3.4 Park 3.5 Mussina 3.5 (AL) Nomo 4.6 (AL) Hermensen 4.7 Hermensen and Nomo fall back quite a bit because each had some really ugly starts (Nomo's late, Hermensen's early). Burkett, Park and Mussina look remarkably similar even looking game by game. Ranked by Actual Team WP%: Mussina 59% Nomo 58% Park 57% Burkett 56% Hermensen 52% It's amazing, but aside from flukes like Clemens most decent to even very good starters end up with Actual WP% in the 50-60% range. There isn't much difference here aside from Hermensen trailing behind a bit. Ranked by Philly WP%: Burkett 71% Mussina 68% Park 66% Nomo 61% Hermensen 61% Here's where Burkett really shines. There's no real difference between 71 and 68, but Burkett and Pedro were the only starters I've looked at who hit that magic 70%. He really had a phenomenal year. Overall, it looks like Hermensen will adequately replace Nomo. Burkett is a huge wild card. At the high end of his range, he's capable of nestling between Pedro and Mussina, et al at his 2001 level. Hopefully, he'll only fall back to the Hermensen/Nomo range at the low end of his range. Frank Castillo Individual Stats: Starts - 26 IP/S - 5.3 ERA - 4.21 SNVA - 0.8 SNPct - .549 Team Stats: Score - 4.5 - 4.6 Actual WP% - 46 Pythag WP% - 49 Philly WP% - 54 Comment: Pretty solid year overall, but extremely inconsistent. Had 5 (nearly 20%) starts with 8+ runs allowed - hence the high Team RA of 4.6. But also had 12 (nearly 50%) starts with 3 or less. That's essentially the same as Pettitte (14/32). The most interesting thing to note about Castillo is the difference in his workloads under Williams and Kerrigan. Castillo came to the Sox with a reputation for fragility. In his breakout year with Toronto (very impressive 3.61 ERA) he only made 24 starts due to a lenghty stay on the DL and averaged 5.6 IP/start. Williams took that babying to an extreme as Castillo only averaged 4.9 IP/start. For whatever reason Castillo didn't respond very well posting a 4.81 ERA. Castillo's five longest starts - when you'd consider him on his game - were 4 for 6 IP and 1 for 7 IP. Everthing else was below 6 IP. And, of course, he broke down anyway. Kerrigan pushed him much harder. Over 8 starts Castillo averaged 6.1 IP/start and pitched tremendously well with a 3.14 ERA. He didn't miss any time, but we don't know how well he would have held up under that kind of workload. In this much shorter stretch he also had 5 appearances of 6 or more IP. The lengths of those outings were opposite to those that occurred during Williams tenure. In this case 4 were for 7 IP and 1 was for 6 IP. I think that's a very interesting difference. IMO Williams had two reasons for pulling Castillo so early so consistently. One he publicly stated - protecting his assets. The other he correctly kept to himself. I don't think Williams was confident that Castillo had the stuff to go through a lineup 3 times. Williams seemed to be pulling him - even from those good starts - before the opposition figured him out. By letting him come out for the 7th and occasionally working out of jams earlier, Kerrigan showed a lot more confidence in Castillo. For what it's woth, Castillo seemed to respond to that increased confidence. David Cone Individual Stats: Starts - 25 IP/S - 5.4 ERA - 4.31 SNVA - 0.3 SNPct - .504 Team Stats: Score - 4.5 - 4.8 Actual WP% - 60 Pythag WP% - 47 Philly WP% - 60 Comment: A surprisingly solid back of the rotation season. A strong 3rd quarter, but he fell apart down the stretch. In his last 8 starts the Sox allowed 51 runs. Nevertheless, that stretch included the brilliant 1-0 pitcher's duel with Mussina, a game the Sox lost, but one that won over a lot of Cone's skeptics. For a night anyway, he did embody all the intangibles and warrior mentality who-ha that has been attributed to him over the years. I'm more interested in his excellent stretch in July. As I mentioned in the comment for Nomo the Sox were kept afloat in the 3rd quarter by the terrific pitching of Nomo, Arrojo and Cone. As an aside - I don't believe the Sox have ever had such good pitching behind Pedro. Unfortunately Pedro wasn't around to lead the staff. In July - the first full month that the Sox had to deal with the concurrent injuries to Nomar, Varitek and Pedro - those three veteran starters combined for 16 starts at 5.9 IP/start with an ERA of 2.97. I've never seen those three pitchers given credit for keeping the Sox in so many games. Instead, we hear ad nauseum that Williams was the glue that held the Sox together thru their injuries. For that to be true, then wouldn't he have somehow had to have had a direct hand in that tremendous run of pitching? He didn't and the proof is the combined numbers for these three in August - only 13 starts (Arrojo got hurt), an average of 5.4 IP/start and an awful ERA of 5.14 (note Arrojo was still good with an ERA of 3.00, but the other two were up near 5.5). Since the managerial change occurred in the middle of the month the collapse of this trio is on both Williams and Kerrigan's records. The Sox July record was 14-12 - about the best that could be expected given the injuries. Their August record was 11-17. Apparently, when the veteran trio pitched well Williams kept the team afloat. Except, when they fell apart the team fell apart and it happened on both manager's watch (Sox were 5-8 under Williams and 6-9 under Kerrigan). But if you believe that Kerrigan or bad chemistry caused the collapse, then don't you have to somehow explain this dramatic change in what looks to me like the real primary culprit of the Sox collapse from hanging in there in July to god awful in August and Sept? Were their performances somehow effected by the turmoil? Veterans like Nomo and Cone - Cone, the lion-hearted warrior - couldn't handle a managerial change and/or some clubhouse shenenigans? That doesn't make even the slightest bit of sense to me. The Sox were kept afloat, not by Williams, but by unsustainably great pitching by a couple guys in their late 30s - one of whom got hurt, the other of whom wore out - and the maddeningly inconsistent Nomo. Once their pendulums swung back to the low end of their performance range, the team collapsed. Manager,shmanager. Chemistry, shmemistry. Derek Lowe Individual Stats: Starts - 3 IP/S - 5.3 ERA - 1.12 SNVA - 0.7 SNPct - .945 Team Stats: Score - 5.0- 3.7 Actual WP% - 33 Pythag WP% - 65 Philly WP% - 100 Comment: Finally a short comment. Lowe was phenomenal in meaningless starts against cream puff competition. It doesn't mean much. Lowe has a reasonably long track record of excellent pitching out of the pen. That - along with his good stuff - means something in terms of his ability to make it as a starter, but certainly not everything. Lowe has a brief unsuccessful past as a rookie starter. That means little to me. It all adds up to a nice big question mark. I'm glad he's in the rotatioon and think he'll do well because I believe in his stuff and the notion that your best 5 pitchers start. We'll see. Tim Wakefield Individual Stats: Starts - 17 IP/S - 6.2 ERA - 4.30 SNVA - 0.2 SNPct - .531 Team Stats: Score - 4.4 - 5.2 Actual WP% - 35 Pythag WP% - 41 Philly WP% - 65 Comment: Wake's individual stats are very solid - good durability, decent ERA. It all falls apart in the team stats section aside from Philly WP%. Wake was born for this kind of stat. His non-Philly Wins were awful (an average of 9.3 RA/game) and the Sox lost them all. His Philly Wins were generally very good (2.91 RA/game), but lousy to mediocre run support cost him and the team wins. I know Wake's overall numbers the last few years have been better out of the pen, but I still think he could be a decent 4th starter on a team with a powerhouse offense. This kind of performance easily could have lead to a 15 win season in front of a strong offense. Rolando Arrojo Individual Stats: Starts - 9 IP/S - 5.4 ERA - 2.42 SNVA - 1.0 SNPct - .686 Team Stats: Score - 5.0 - 4.2 Actual WP% - 44 Pythag WP% - 58 Philly WP% - 67 Comment: As I mentioned in the Cone comment Arrojo's excellent pitching was a big part of the Sox staying afloat in July. I have no idea why he was never seriously considered for the rotation in the spring. I have no idea how serious his injury is or if it precludes him from ever being a starter again. I think that the Sox think so, but it's impossible to say. I know his attention wonders and that leads to some awful appearances, but one thing I learned doing this is that that happens to every pitcher. Mussina had a great season and a bunch of terrible starts. You just live with it. I'd rather have a healthy Arrojo in the rotation and Garcia in the minors than Hermensen for instance. Casey Fossum Individual Stats: Starts - 7 IP/S - 5.0 ERA - 5.97 SNVA - -0.4 SNPct - .397 Team Stats: Score - 5.7 - 4.9 Actual WP% - 71 Pythag WP% - 58 Philly WP% - 43 Comment: Stats look awful largely because his terrible final start, when he may have been distracted by his wife's imminnet delivery of his first child. Prior to that he had a nice every other start pattern. Starts 1, 3, 5 were excellent (5 runs total). Starts 2,4,6 were bad (19 runs total). Number 7 was supposed to be a great one. Fossum looks to have been squeezed out of the rotation by the Burkett, Hermensen acquisitions. Having skipped AAA and needing to continue to work on his changeup and stamina, Fossum may end up starting the year in the Pawtucket rotation. OTOH, he is likely their best LHRP and there is a school of thought that suggests he'd develop best learning to get major league hitters out fron the pen anyway. I expect a couple months in Paw and then a handful of starts and 20-40 IP out of the pen for Boston. Paxton Crawford Individual Stats: Starts - 7 IP/S - 4.9 ERA - 4.76 SNVA - 0.3 SNPct - .556 Team Stats: Score - 6.9 - 4.0 Actual WP% - 71 Pythag WP% - 75 Philly WP% - 71 Comment: Crawford won the 5th starter's job in the spring and all of these starts occurred in the first quarter. He got squeezed by a roster crunch and was sent down to Pawtucket. He didn't pitch very well in AAA and was subsequently diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his back. That injury kept him out for the rest of the year. I haven't heard anything about him this off-season. I assume he'll be ready for spring training and will ultimately start the year in AAA. Crawford's strengths are good command of a decent fastball and a quality changeup. He's struggled to come up with a consistent breaking pitch. Given the depth in the organization, I wonder if his best bet is to get moved to the pen. Maybe that move adds a couple mph to his fastball giving him 2 plus pitches and he turns into a solid fastball/changeup setup man. He's never been considered a top prospect so his trade value isn't very much. Sun Woo Kim Individual Stats: Starts - 2 IP/S - 5.2 ERA - 7.84 SNVA - -0.3 SNPct - .281 Team Stats: Score - 4.5 - 6.0 Actual WP% - 50 Pythag WP% - 36 Philly WP% - 0 Comment: I don't remember much about his two starts. His ERA is awful, but he may have gotten cuffed around in the middle innings after not having worked deep into games. I'm surprised he averaged over 5 IP with such a bad ERA. Williams probably would have hooked him sooner. The Sox seem to be projecting him as a reliever at this point. A big spring could get him into a Boston pen that's short on power, but it's more likely he starts in AAA. Will he go back into the rotation or will he go to the bullpen to be groomed as a reliever? Tomo Ohka Individual Stats: Starts - 11 IP/S - 4.7 ERA - 5.96 SNVA - -0.7 SNPct - .394 Team Stats: Score - 4.5 - 5.6 Actual WP% - 36 Pythag WP% - 38 Philly WP% - 36 Comment: Ohka started the year with four straight Philly Wins. Those were the only ones he got all year. The Sox lost his next three starts by a combined score of 20-7 and he was demoted in a roster squeeze. Most people felt he was unfairly demoted, but he did not respond well. He was mediocre in AAA and awful in four starts after being recalled. He was subsequently traded along with Rich Rundles for Uggie Urbina. Urbina is a talented closer so that looks like decent return, but most post-trade reports seemed to indicate that Rundles was the main prize for Montreal. He remained in the Expo rotation the rest of the year with mixed results. Time will tell whether Ohka will develop into the pitcher his minor league stats suggest he is or if he'll remain the back of the rotation fodder that the scouting reports have suggested. It also remains to be seen if the Sox are congenitally incapable of demonstrating the patience necessary to develop young pitching Bret Saberhagen Individual Stats: Starts - 3 IP/S - 5.0 ERA - 6.00 SNVA - -0.2 SNPct - .406 Team Stats: Score - 5.0 - 7.7 Actual WP% - 33 Pythag WP% - 30 Philly WP% - 0 Comment: His first start back from rehab was one of handful of highlights to the year. Just an amzaing performance. A big part of the pitching greats study that I'm working on is comparing pitchers over different stages of their careers, ie their 20s, early 30s, late 30s. Saberhagen had essentially the same ERA+ - an excellent 130 - throughout his career. Just about until the day he retired he was great whenever he happened to be healthy. On the downside, he seemed to want nothing to do with the team after he decided to retire. Saberhagen got a lot of credit - and well deserved - for his perserverance overcoming his injuries, but when you get right down to it he was still the same jerk who was throwing bleach around the Mets clubhouse. I don't say that to kick the guy as he's heading out the door, but rather to make the point that the character of these players is never as black and white as we might think. Sabes was courageous, tough and immature. Mike Mussina Individual Stats: Starts - 34 IP/S - 6.7 ERA - 3.15 SNVA - 3.9 SNPct - .662 Team Stats: Score - 4.1 - 3.5 Actual WP% - 59 Pythag WP% - 58 Philly WP% - 68 Comment: By individual stats and Philly WP% he was the best pitcher on either team (only counting full seasons). Nevertheless, Mussina started a lot of awful unwinnable games for the Yankees. In eight of his starts the Yankees gave up 7+ runs. That's nearly 25% of his starts and IMO rather incredible. Perhaps the biggest insight from this study - very good pitchers are bad a lot more often then you think. Of course, Mussina offset those starts with a lot of very good to excellent starts. I'll get into this more in Part III of this report, but Mussina was incredible working with very little run support. In games the Yankees scored 1 or 2 runs, the Yankees went 7-6 with Mussina on the mound. All other pitchers in that situation combined to go 8-47. Mussina nearly matched the win total in a quarter of the opportunities. Even if you separate the wheat from the chaff and only look at Pedro, Clemens and Pettitte the difference remains. Those three combined to go 3-13 vs. Mussina's 7-6. IMO, those starts - games that he essentially won by himself - more than make up for the bad ones and are another reason that I believe he was the acce of the Yankee staff. The most significant pitching advantage the Yankees had over the Sox may have been Mussina over Pedro. Anybody predicted that last winter? Roger Clemens Individual Stats: Starts - 33 IP/S - 6.7 ERA - 3.55 SNVA - 2.0 SNPct - .594 Team Stats: Score - 5.9 - 3.4 Actual WP% - 82 Pythag WP% - 75 Philly WP% - 67 Comment: A very, very good year. Certainly one of the ten best in the league. Maybe one of the 5 best. He wasn't the best ptcher on his team much less the league though. One thing to note is that he did edge Mussina in Team RA. That's largely because he had very few bad games that got out of hand. He deserves credit for that steady consistent quality. But the most impressive part of his record is the incredible Actual WP% and that's largely a function of excellent RS. Andy Pettitte Individual Stats: Starts - 31 IP/S - 6.5 ERA - 3.99 SNVA - 0.4 SNPct - .523 Team Stats: Score - 5.2 - 4.4 Actual WP% - 58 Pythag WP% - 58 Philly WP% - 65 Comment: Very solid overall numbers, but they were draggged way down by a poor second half. Pettite was the Yankees best pitcher in the first half IMO as he posted a 3.04 ERA and their best Philly WP%. His second half ERA jumped to 5.22. This isn't the first time he has had that kind of dramatic splits. In 1999 his first half ERA was 5.59, but his second half was 3.84. Those kinds of splits in two out of the last three years really keep him from being considered a legitimate front of the rotation starter. OTOH, Yankee fans have usually been quick to paper over these shortcomings in light of Pettitte's big game reputation. There's a bit more grumbling this year after his 0-2 10.00 ERA WS appearance. Nevertheless, the take home message from this report is that despite the inconsistency Pettitte's Philly WP% of 65% was virtually indistinguishable from Mussina's and Clemens' 68 and 67%, respectively. Those three combined to pitch a lot of winnable games. Orlando Hernandez Individual Stats: Starts - 16 IP/S - 5.7 ERA - 5.06 SNVA - 0.1 SNPct - .514 Team Stats: Score - 3.4 - 4.7 Actual WP% - 38 Pythag WP% - 38 Philly WP% - 63 Comments: Very inconsistent year. He started the year nursing an injury and pitching OK, but making short starts. A lot of Philly Wins thanks to very good bullpen support, but also a lot of losses thanks to awful run support. He then had a stretch of awful starts (37 runs in 5 games) sandwiched around a long stint on the DL for a foot problem. He actually pitched pretty well after that, but his best two games were against an awful Sox team that had pretty much quit. The last couple seasons there had been rumblings that the Yankees were upset with his attitude. These problems were exacerbated by the strange decision to dump Jose Cardenal, the coach who was closest to Hernandez. There were strong rumors that Hernandez would be non-tendered, but he remains property of the Yankees. His future is very much in doubt though since the Yankees signed both Hitchock and Wells to lucrative two year contracts. Hernandez could become a very expensive mopup man/insurance policy or more likely he'll be traded for prospects. It hasn't really worked out, but the Yankees did a very nice job trading Irabu in this situation. Sterling Hitchcock Individual Stats: Starts - 9 IP/S - 5.5 ERA - 6.16 SNVA - -0.7 SNPct - .368 Team Stats: Score - 5.8 - 5.0 Actual WP% - 56 Pythag WP% - 57 Philly WP% - 44 Comments: Absolutely nothing in the numbers to justify a 2yr/12M contract. Looking at his game by game results you can at least see flashes. In his four Philly Wins the Yankees only allowed 9 runs. In his other five starts they allowed 36. You can argue that as he gets stronger the mix of good starts to awful ones will dramatically improve, but on paper he's the Yankees worse 4th starter in the last few years. The Yankees are taking a bit of a gamble that one of Hitchcock or Wells will step up. There's a good chance the Yankees will be in the market for another starter in July. Ted Lilly Individual Stats: Starts - 21 IP/S - 5.0 ERA - 5.62 SNVA - -1.4 SNPct - .382 Team Stats: Score - 5.1 - 5.6 Actual WP% - 52 Pythag WP% - 54 Philly WP% - 43 Comments: I spent a good chunk of the first three reports championing Lilly and giving the Yankees credit for being good enough to win and let Lilly take his lumps. He never seemed to get better though and he was knocked out of the roation in favor of Hitchcock. His future in the organization looks pretty bleak as the Yankees have since made 2 year commitments to Hitchcock and Wells and at least for now control Hernandez. He should be first in line to replace the first of those injury risks to hit the DL, but it looks to me like the Yankees aren't trying to develop Lilly. The next guy to get a chance looks to be Brandon Claussen some time in 2003/04. I mention that because everybody says the Sox need to develop pitching to be like the Yankees. Except the Yankees do not develop starting pitching. They hit pay dirt with Pettitte in 1995, but the next opportunity to develop a starter looks to be a minimum of 8 years later. If that doesn't take or Claussen gets traded it could easily break the decade mark. The Yankees brilliant formula of success is 1) have revenues 20-25% greater than all of your rivals 2) develop good position players 3) buy good starting pitchers. Yes, it helps to do #3 if you've already got #1 in the bag. People who say the Sox (or any team) should develop pitchers at all costs in order to build a team like the Yankees don't know what they're talking about. Randy Keisler Individual Stats: Starts - 10 IP/S - 5.1 ERA - 6.22 SNVA - -1.0 SNPct - .334 Team Stats: Score - 6.8 - 5.4 Actual WP% - 70 Pythag WP% - 61 Philly WP% - 20 Comment: Taken directly from Report #3: It's extremely frustrating when a team that is by its own admission built around starting pitching can win so many games when its pitching stinks. And Keisler did stink. He had off-season surgery (I think it was his shoulder) and he's expected to miss the entire 2002 season. It will have no effect on the Yankees. Keisler would have at best been a decent 2nd prospect in a package to land a solid player or perhaps he could get them a role player by himself. Lilly will handle this role equally well. Adrian Hernandez Individual Stats: Starts - 3 IP/S - 5.0 ERA - 4.80 SNVA - -0.2 SNPct - .387 Team Stats: Score - 2.0 - 4.7 Actual WP% - 0 Pythag WP% - 16 Philly WP% - 0 Comments: Has the Yankees Cuban program been a success? If so, is it something that other teams can and should copy? The Yankees have signed three Cuban players for contracts that guaranteed them 4-6M. El Duque was a tremendous success and a big part of 3 WS winners. El Duquicito looks like a bust half way thru his deal. Right now he looks to be fighting for the 6th spot in the pen. Andy Morales was such an embarrassment that the Yankees have tried to break his contract. They may be successful, saving the franchise millions. Clearly, El Duque makes their Cuban program a success. Just as clearly, no other team could copy this program. The wasted 8M commitment to the Duquicitos and Morales would sink every other organization. For comparison, the big market Sox might have spent 8-12M on every one of their international FAs in franchise history. That means the vast majority of other organizations may have never spent the amount of money internationally that the Yankees committed to Duquicito/Morales with negligible expected return. Ramiro Mendoza Individual Stats: Starts - 2 IP/S - 4.9 ERA - 8.38 SNVA - -0.4 SNPct - .117 Team Stats: Score - 6.5 - 8.0 Actual WP% - 50 Pythag WP% - 40 Philly WP% - 0 Comment: A couple awful spot starts. I imagine the idea that Mendoza could hold up as a starter is pretty much finished. He was great out of the pen though (at least by ARP) and now that the Yankees have signed Karsay there will be much less risk of overworking him. Christian Parker Individual Stats: Starts - 1 IP/S - 3.0 ERA - 21.0 SNVA - -0.4 SNPct - .010 Team Stats: Score - 4.0 - 13.0 Actual WP% - 0 Pythag WP% - 9 Philly WP% - 0 Comment: The Yankees went into spring training with a wide open 5th spot in the rotation. El Duquicito and Keisler were the favorites and Lilly was considered a dark horse. Completely out of nowhere Parker won the job. He wasn't considered much of a prospect. He had a surprise good year in AA after being the throw in in the Irabu deal. After his awful start he was promptly diagnosed with shoulder problems and he missed the rest of the year. He'll be in Columbus this year with little chance of contributing much to NY either by playing for them or as an important trading chip. Brett Jodie Individual Stats: Starts - 1 IP/S - 3.0 ERA - 27.0 SNVA - -0.4 SNPct - .008 Team Stats: Score - 4.0 - 10.0 Actual WP% - 0 Pythag WP% - 14 Philly WP% - 0 Comment: Jodie wins the honor of being the worse starting pitcher used by either team. I caught Jodie pitch a couple innings of the AAA All-Star game and he reminded me of Justin Duchscherer without the good curveball. Not a good thing. Obviously, he had a good year to make the AAA All-Star team, but he's not much of a prospect. He was traded for Hitchcock, which says more about how little value Hitchcock had than about how much value Jodie had. This winter he was droppped from the Padres 40 man roster and picked back up by NY. Funny I don't recall any snide comments about the Yankees picking up scrubs who couldn't make the Padres 40 man roster. A second ironic, humorous touch was that the Yankees dropped ex-top prospect Ryan Bradley, who really did zoom comlpetely through their system, to make room for Jodie. I don't expect Jodie to have any impact on the Yankees future either as a pitcher for them or as trade bait. The comment for the crappiest Yankee pitcher is also where I try to get into the whole issue of pitching depth. Every half assed baseball expert knows the Yankees have it and the Sox don't. Year after year the facts make the case that the Sox have it and the Yankees don't. And both are right. It's just that depth is a broad enough term to cover two very different things. The Yankees have great playoff pitching depth. They'd be confident with any of their Big Three starting Game 1 of a playoff series. The Sox only have Pedro for Game 1s. OTOH, the Yankees have lousy major league pitching depth. They gave away a ton of starts to crappy pitchers last year. The Sox always seem to trot out pretty good starteres all the way out to #7, #8 and #9. Here are some numbers to make that distinction clear: Starts to pitchers with ERAs less than 3.00: Boston - 30 for 181 IP and a 2.29 ERA. NY - 0 That's Pedro, Arrojo and Lowe. Intersting that the Sox got about 1 full rotation slot of starts, but 30-40 fewer IP then thy would have expected out of Pedro alone. Starts to pitchers with ERAs beteen 3-4.00: Boston - 0 NY - 98 for 649.7 IP and a 3.53 ERA And here's the Yankees big advantage as all three of their top starters were in this good to very good range. Starts to pitchers with ERA's between 4-4.50: Boston - 101 for 575 IP and a 4.35 ERA NY - 0 I set a cutoff of 4.50 since that is about league average. And this is were the Sox depth advantage kicks in. They're up to 131 starts to average or better pitchers. Since the Yankees got nothing out of there #4/5 slots they're still at the 98 very good starts that Mussina, Clemens and Pettitte gave them. Starts to pitchers with ERA's between 4.5-5.00: Boston - 7 for 34 IP and a 4.76 ERA NY - 3 for 15 IP and a 4.80 ERA That's Crawford for Boston and Adrian Hernandez for NY. Neither team gave many starts to merely below average pitchers. Starts to pitchers with ERAs above 5.00: Boston - 23 for 111.3 IP and a 6.22 ERA NY - 60 for 309.7 IP and a 6.02 ERA The final nail in the Yankees have great pitching depth argument. They gave nearly 40% of their starts to pitchers who ended the year with bad to awful ERAs. They wasted nearly 3-fold as many starts as the Sox. In summary, the Sox design their rotation to be 20% exceptional starts, 60% average to good and 20% below average to awful. The Yankees rotation ended up as 60% good to very good starts and 40% below average to awful starts. I'll take the Yankee rotation for the playoffs, but given equal bullpens and offenses I'd think the Sox model would win as many or more regular season games. The fact that the Sox accumulated 95 Philly Wins to the Yankees 90 despite not having Pedro for half the year suggests that that's true. Part II - Bullpens I also tried to tack on a bullpen part of these reports since the differing rotaion models were nicely complemeted by different bullpen models. The Sox spent a lot of money on depth (Wake, Beck) to make up for fewer expected innings from their rotation. The Yankees - by not re-signing or replacing Nelson - skimped on depth figuring their veteran aces didn't require as much support. Both teams were expected to have strong bullpens anchored by All Star closers. Unfortuantely, the bullpen sections didn't really work. They didn't work for two reasons. 1) the Sox personel - Lowe in particular - didn't live up to their billing. 2) there simply isn't a good statistic to measure bullpen effectiveness. I used Baseball Prospectus' ARP because it's an improvement over ERA, but ultimately it falls victim of the same significant problem as team bullpen ERA. Both are blind to context and effective bullpen pitching is all about context. In both of these systems a one IP, zero run performance is equally valuable whether the score is 9-3 or 1-1. A one IP, 1 run performance is equally bad whether the score is 9-3 or 1-1. That's a significant failing which leads to the conclusion that the Yankee bullpen was about 30 runs or 3 wins better than the Sox bullpen. Not even close. The Yankees received exceptionally good performances from Rivera, Stanton and Mendoza. Those preformances - a large percentage of which occurred in tight games - were then partially offset by some horrendous performances by the Witasicks and Wohlers, who rarely pitched in tight games. As a result, the overall ARP value under values how good the Yankee bullpen was when it mattered most. In contrast, the Sox had no exceptional performances either good or bad. Everybody looks sorta OK or a little below average. That means that the Sox good bullpen performances tended to be much more randomly distributed - sometimes when it was 1-1, but just as often when it was 9-3. The equally random distribution of poor performances killed them in any number of close games. FWIW, here are the Sox final bullpen stats: IP: 546.7 Games: 424 ERA: 4.10 ARP: 13.5 ARP rank: 17th Here are the Yankees final bullpen stats: IP: 477 G: 362 ERA: 3.38 ARP: 40.7 ARP rank: 5th Part III: Pitching and Run Support In the third report I tacked on a little study about playoff rotations and I was looking around for something else to add to the final report. A discussion in the forum that suggested that the real advantage of the Yankees starters comes through in low scoring playoff type games led me to look into how each team's starters did with different run support. To the best of my knowledge I've never seen anybody try to tackle this question. I already had every game grouped by starter so all I had to do was sub-group every game by run support. As a result I have easy access to either team's record in games that they scored X runs and were started by pitcher Y. This is how I came to realize Mussina's tremendous job in very low scoring games that I alluded to in his player comment. I also catergorized each team's group of starters as either Ace (Pedro or Mussina), #2-4 (Nomo/Castillo/Cone or Clemens/Pettitte/Hernandez) and Other. I did that for the same reason that people suggest throwing Pedro's performance out of team ERA. Mussina's performance in low run games is so good it might skew things and anyway we're most interested in that #2-4 group. Everybody knows Pedro and Mussina are great pitchers and the Others are non-playoff fill-ins. The Yankees are really supposed to have a big advantage in the #2-4 slots. One of the reasons I think this turned out so interestingly is that there is evidence for both sides of the argument. But before I get to the data I want to stress the significant and hidden contributions of each team's bullpens. I'm grouping the data by starter, but none of these guys racked up many complete games. Even the Yankee horses averaged less than 7 IP/start. Since Rivera, et al were so much better than Lowe, et al the Yankee starters will look better than they necessarily were. For instance some of Pedro's 2-3 losses are because Lowe blew the save and some of Mussina's 2-1 wins are because Rivera did not. On to the data. 0 run support. Boston: WP% Team 0 6 0.000 PM 0 0 0.000 #2-4 0 3 0.000 Other 0 3 0.000 NY: WP% Team 0 5 0.000 MM 0 2 0.000 #2-4 0 3 0.000 Other 0 0 0.000 No real difference in frequency or W/L (obviously). 1 run support. Boston: WP% Team 0 15 0.000 PM 0 3 0.000 #2-4 0 9 0.000 Other 0 3 0.000 NY: WP% Team 3 10 0.231 MM 3 3 0.500 #2-4 0 1 0.000 Other 0 6 0.000 A big advantage for Mussina over Pedro (and every body else). Neither group of #2-4s won any games with only 1 run, but a huge 9-fold difference in frequency. 2 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 4 20 0.167 PM 1 3 0.250 #2-4 2 7 0.222 Other 1 10 0.091 NY: WP% Team 8 18 0.308 MM 4 3 0.571 #2-4 4 11 0.267 Other 0 4 0.000 An overall advantage for the Yankees, but again that is entirely due to Mussina over Pedro. By WP% a very slight, but negligible advantage for NY's #2-4. For the curious, Wakefield was the only Other to win one of these games. Note the huge difference in number of times Sox Others received just 2 runs of support (11) in comparison to the Yankees others (4). 3 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 7 18 0.280 PM 2 0 1.000 #2-4 4 9 0.308 Other 1 9 0.100 NY: WP% Team 5 12 0.294 MM 0 5 0.000 #2-4 5 4 0.556 Other 0 3 0.000 Both team's were virtually identical at 3 runs. For whatever reason (his luck ran out?) Mussina took a pretty big collar at this level. This is one of two significant advantages for the Yankees #2-4. Crawford was the only Other to win at this level. 4 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 8 6 0.571 PM 0 2 0.000 #2-4 6 2 0.750 Other 2 2 0.500 NY: WP% Team 13 9 0.591 MM 4 0 1.000 #2-4 6 4 0.600 Other 3 5 0.375 Both teams virtually identical. Mussina bounces back (note: key to beating Mussina only give NY 3 runs) and posts another significant advantage over Pedro. Boston's #2-4 and Others get a small WP% advantage here. 5 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 14 4 0.778 PM 1 0 1.000 #2-4 10 2 0.833 other 3 2 0.600 NY: WP% Team 10 5 0.667 MM 0 0 0.000 #2-4 10 4 0.714 Other 1 1 0.500 Sox have a small overall advantage at this level of run support due to small advantages at #2-4 and Others. 6 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 11 4 0.733 PM 1 1 0.500 #2-4 6 2 0.750 Other 4 1 0.800 NY: WP% Team 11 5 0.688 MM 1 1 0.500 #2-4 6 1 0.857 Other 4 3 0.571 No real difference here. Sox Others stand out a little bit. 7 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 9 5 0.643 PM 2 0 1.000 #2-4 4 4 0.500 Other 3 1 0.750 NY: WP% Team 13 1 0.929 MM 2 0 1.000 #2-4 7 0 1.000 Other 4 1 0.800 I love it when studies turn up strange bits of data. This is the other big advantage that the Yankees #2-4 had. It's not surprising that they're so good with 7 runs of support, but why are the Sox counterpoints so mediocre? All pitchers have bad days in which they don't have it. The Sox trio probably did have more, but I think this is a little bit of evidence for really good pitchers being able to sometimes pitch to the score. Even when somebody like Clemens doesn't have it he can limit damage better than a Nomo. Additionally, since the NY pen tended to be better rested they would be in a better positon to salvage one of these games. Or it could be a complete coincidence. 8 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 8 2 0.800 PM 1 0 1.000 #2-4 5 0 1.000 Other 2 2 0.500 NY: WP% Team 7 0 1.000 MM 0 0 0.000 #2-4 3 0 1.000 Other 4 0 1.000 A couple bad games from the Sox Others the only difference. 9 runs support. Boston: WP% Team 7 0 1.000 PM 1 0 1.000 #2-4 1 0 1.000 Other 5 0 1.000 NY: WP% Team 9 0 1.000 MM 3 0 1.000 #2-4 4 0 1.000 Other 2 0 1.000 Finally found the everybody wins level of run support. 10+ runs support. Boston: WP% W/L 14 0 1.000 PM 0 0 0.000 #2-4 8 0 1.000 Other 6 0 1 NY: WP% W/L 14 0 1.000 MM 2 0 1.000 #2-4 8 0 1.000 Other 4 0 1.000 Who says the Yankees had better pitching? Both 14-0 with 10+ runs. lol Let me reorganize that data by clustering the run support levels into these groups: Low run support - 1-3 runs (I excluded shutouts since they're unwinnable) Good run support - 4-5 runs High run support - 6-8 runs Excessive run support - 9+ runs Low Run Support (1-3 runs): Boston: WP% Team 11 53 0.172 PM 3 6 0.333 #2-4 6 25 0.194 other 2 22 0.083 NY: WP% Team 16 40 0.286 MM 7 11 0.389 #2-4 9 16 0.360 other 0 13 0.000 The first thing I notice is that both teams played a ton of low run support games - 56 for NY and 64 for Boston (note: include shutouts and it's 61 for NY and 70 for Boston). Both teams should be looking to lower those figures. Considering how difficult it is to win these games (cumulative WP% of 0.225) those 8 extra games for the Sox are a huge disadvantage. Interestingly by including Mussina's 0-5 record at 3 runs of support his big advantage over Pedro in terms of WP% disappears. However, the Sox got killed by scoring so few runs for their Others. Those 24 games were nearly unwinnable whereas the Yankees had only 13 of those games. Note that the hypothesis that the Yankees #2-4 advantage would really show up in low run support games is validated. Depending on how you figure it it was worth 3-5 games over their Sox #2-4 counterparts. Significant, but IMO the Sox would have been right to figure on a couple game advantage at the ace level and maybe another game advantage at the Others level. Over the course of a long 162 game schedule these could have reasonably been predicted to be a wash. It didn't happen largely because of Pedro's injury. And finally, teams do not win 90+ games on the strength of their ability to win low scoring games. They do so by limiting the number of low scoring games they play and winning most of the rest. Good Run Support (4-5): Boston: WP% Team 22 10 0.688 PM 1 2 0.333 #2-4 16 4 0.800 other 5 2 0.714 NY: WP% Team 23 14 0.622 MM 4 0 1.000 #2-4 16 8 0.667 other 3 6 0.333 This may be the key to the whole study. If you get OK veteran starters like Nomo/Castillo/Cone (and hopefully Burkett/Hermenson/Lowe) you can win games with average run support of 4 and 5 runs just as easily as you can with Clemens/Pettitte/Duque level starters. I'm not denying that having the latter isn't advantageous in the post-season, but if you want to win 90+ games and make the post-season get yourself an offense that can score 4-5 runs a night. Also note the bizarre Mussina over Pedro advantage and that the Sox Others - their pitching depth advantage - exerts itself at this level of run support. High Run Support (6-8 runs): Boston: WP% Team 28 11 0.718 PM 4 1 0.800 #2-4 15 6 0.714 Other 9 4 0.692 NY: WP% Team 31 6 0.838 MM 3 1 0.750 #2-4 16 1 0.941 Other 12 4 0.750 That blip at 7 runs of support shows up again here. It was an advantage for NY, but one that probably doesn't recquire second aces in the #2 slot to fix. Excessive Run Support (9+ runs): Boston: WP% Team 21 0 1.000 PM 1 0 1.000 #2-4 9 0 1.000 Other 11 0 1.000 NY: WP% Team 23 0 1.000 MM 5 0 1.000 #2-4 12 0 1.000 Other 6 0 1.000 That's why they call it excessive Part IV: Conclusions Yankee pitching good. Red Sox pitching bad. Me waste time. Actually, I think I've tried to stress the important points in the body of the report. You don't even want to know what page number this is in Microsoft Word. I'll just end with this: The Yankees deserve to be favorites over the Sox, but that edge cannot be summed up as neatly as identifying each team's #2 and #3 starters.

#8 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:27 PM


Boston vs. New York: Pitching Comparison after 40 games

by Mike Koblish


In 1999 the Red Sox allowed fewer runs than the Yankees, but the Yankees had better pitching. In 2000 the Red Sox allowed fewer runs than the Yankees, but the Yankees had better pitching. Is it any wonder that the conventional wisdom makes some of us want to yank the hair out of our heads?

To what was considered the best pitching staff in the league the Yankees added Mike Mussina, the second best pitcher in the AL, and finally it appeared that they’d have a shot at preventing runs as well as the Pedro and stiffs Red Sox. While every aspect of these two teams is fodder for debate amongst their passionate fan bases, the respective pitching staffs became a lightening rod for smug Yankee fans hiding behind the sterling reputations of their “Four Aces” rotation and exasperated Sox fans who know the only thing that matters is giving up fewer runs than everybody else in the league. Just a little thing that the Sox had done two years in a row.

There have been two significant criticisms of the way the Sox have lead the league in team ERA and both have some merit. The main criticism has been that the team results are deceiving because they’re skewed by the otherworldly pitching performances of Pedro. Certainly if the Sox allow 2 runs when Pedro pitches and 5 runs in most of the other games, then an ERA in the low 4’s is not an accurate representation of the Sox pitching staff as a whole. Of course, if you take every other team's ace out of the equation as well, then the Sox non-ace team ERA is still amongst the league leaders. Which brings us to the second criticism – the Sox terrific bullpen lowers the team ERA, but doesn’t necessarily help the team win when they pitch fantastically after the starter gets bombed and leaves the Sox in a 4 run hole.

That’s the criticism that I wanted to investigate this year. While the fundamental objective for every pitching staff – get 27 outs while giving up the fewest runs possible – is the same for every team on a daily basis, organizations may choose to pursue that goal in different ways. The 2001 Sox and Yankees are tremendous examples of two teams designed to win with very different styles of pitching. The Sox have the greatest pitcher on the planet and then back-filled the rotation with a large number of decent candidates on very short contracts for little money. A chunk of the money they didn’t spend on starting pitching went to the bullpen when they brought back Rod Beck, as perhaps baseball’s most expensive setup man, and Tim Wakefield, as the world’s only all purpose pitcher on a multi-year deal. In contrast, the Yankees came into the season with four very good starters all on big contracts, a great closer, a top lefty setup man and that’s it. Behind that great front six they had no good candidates for the 5th starter slot and lots of question marks in the bullpen. Again, in direct contrast to the Sox - who spent big money on setup men this off-season - the Yankees choose not to resign Jeff Nelson.

In summary, the Sox attempt to prevent runs with a brilliant, but shallow front of the rotation, unmatched depth in the middle to back of the rotation and an excellent (and expensive) bullpen. The Yankees attempt to prevent runs with a very deep front of the rotation, a great closer and a very shallow end of the rotation and bullpen.

Which will work better over the course of the 162 game marathon that is the baseball season? seemed like a fascinating question to me. Sadly, the purveyors of conventional wisdom took one look at the Yankees rotation and made up their minds. Obviously, a team with Mike Mussina on the mound has a much better chance of winning than a team with Hideo Nomo on the mound. I must be stupid because while it’s obvious to me that Mussina is a better pitcher it wasn’t obvious to me that Mussina in front of the Yankees pen would be much better than Nomo in front of the Sox pen. Statistics like ERA and Michael Wolverton's (Baseball Prospectus) SNWL are great tools to measure an individual pitcher, but ultimately an individual pitcher’s ability to help his team win is directly tied to the type of team he is on. If Mussina gives up 3 runs in 7 IP and the Yankees win 4-3 and Nomo gives up 3 runs in 5 IP and the Sox win 4-3, then put back into the context of their teams each starter gave his team what it needed to win on that day. Yes, you’d rather have the longer start, but ultimately you stick the same W in your pocket and move onto tomorrow.

Luckily for me there was a very easy way to answer the question – how good are each of the Sox and Yankees starters in front of their respective bullpens and defenses at preventing runs and giving their mediocre offenses a chance to win? I’ve simply tracked each start and tallied the runs allowed in games started by each starter. By this measure everything counts. Pedro leaves with a 3-2 lead and the pen coughs up 4 runs and he gets saddled with 6 runs allowed. The defense commits 5 errors and the bullpen gets hammered behind Ohka and he’s on the hook for 8 runs allowed. OTOH, there will be days the bullpen bails out all of these pitchers and by my simple measure they get “credit” for that as well.

This report covers the first 40 games for both teams. I’ve left out pitchers who only made 1 or 2 starts (Cone, Wakefield, Keisler, Parker). The team data for each starter will be RS/RA, actual W%, pythag W% and “philly W%”. Actual W% is the team’s actual record in games started by that particular pitcher. Pythag W% is what the RS/RA data would suggest the record ought to be. There are big limitations in small sample sizes, but it’s a simple calculation using data I’m already tracking. Philly Wins takes offense out of the equation like Wolverton’s SNWL, but leaves in the specific bullpen performance. A starter gets credit for a “philly win” when the team gives up 4 runs or less since teams should win all of those games. I decided to give 0.5 “philly wins” when the team allows 5 runs on the grounds that good teams should be able to win half the time they give up the league average number of runs. The league average is actually a bit lower than that this year so I may have to change that in future reports. Just for data overload I’m also going to include three relevant individual statistics – IP/start, ERA and SNVA (support neutral value above an average starter – check out the BP website for a fuller explanation).

Pedro Martinez (7.1, 1.74, 2.0)

Pedro made 8 starts with an average score of 4.3-2.6. The Sox won 5 games or 63%. His pythag W% is 72%. His philly W% is 88%. Pedro only made 3 starts with 2 or less runs. Is that evidence of diminished performance on Pedro’s part? Not at all, many of the merely good starts that have resulted in 3 or 4 runs allowed are the result of shoddy work out of the pen. A small part of Pedro’s brilliance last year was that for the most part Lowe and the rest of the pen completed his masterpieces easily. Poor bullpen performance brings the Pedro RA of 2.6 back closer to the other pitchers in this study than any individual statistic would.

Hideo Nomo (5.6, 3.80, 0.7)

Nomo made 8 starts with an average score of 4.9-3.0. The Sox won 6 games or 75%. His pythag W% is 73%. His philly W% is 81%. From the team stats Nomo has absolutely been a #2 starter. His team wins, his team ought to have won most of his starts and his RA of 3.0 is second only to Pedro. The knock against Nomo is his low 5.6 IP/start. That is not cutting it for a frontline starter. Unlike Pedro Nomo has been picked up by his pen. The most interesting thing in the Nomo data is his distribution of RAs. He has 3 excellent games (0 or 1 runs) and his other 5 starts are in the mediocre 4-6 range (more at 4, but not great). And I guess this is the eureka moment. The Sox castoffs may be very good from time to time, but lack the overall consistency of the Yankee “aces”. As we’ll see there is some truth to that, but it’s not as big of an effect as you probably think. At this point in my study I’m wondering if the idea of consistently good starting pitching is largely a myt! h outside of Pedro.

Frank Castillo (5.1, 4.17, 0.3)

Castillo made 8 starts with an average score of 4.9-4.4. The Sox won 4 games or 50%. His pythag W% is 55%. His philly W% is 69%. In some ways Castillo is the anti-Nomo. His starts have been generally very good. Five starts with 3 or less runs. He had one mediocre start with 5 runs allowed, but when he’s been bad he’s been awful allowing 10 runs twice. Unlike Castillo, no Yankee starter contributed to 5 starts with less than 3 runs allowed in his first 8 starts.

Tomokazu Ohka (5.0, 3.57, 0.2)

Ohka made 7 starts with an average score of 5.6-4.3. The Sox won 3 games or 43%. His pythag W% is 63%. His philly W% is 64%. A definite downward trend though. In his first 4 starts the Sox allowed less than 4 runs. His next 3 starts were 8, 7, 5. Interestingly, when he needed the RS the most it evaporated – 29 runs in his first 3 starts and 10 runs in his last 4. Aside from ERA (a big thing to be sure) Ohka does look more like a solid #4 type starter than the #2 many hope he may become. Small editorial comment – get Ohka back in Boston and let’s really find out how good he might be.

Paxton Crawford (4.9, 4.76, 0.4)

Crawford made 7 starts with an average score of 6.9-4.0. The Sox won 5 games or 71%. His pythag W% is 75%. His philly W% is 71%. I’m not sure what it will mean over the long haul, but it’s interesting how well (and how good) the percentages correlate. On a game to game basis Crawford’s team RA line is similar, but better, to Castillo’s. Four great starts with 2 or less runs. One good start at 4 runs and two very bad ones of 11 and 7. Only 2 Yankee starters had more than 4 starts with 4 or less runs in their first 7 starts. However, Crawford is representative of one of the big criticisms of the Sox back to front pitching staff. All four of the non-Pedro starters are averaging less than 6 IP/start. As a result a big chunk of their quality run prevention comes from the bullpen at a risk of wearing down the pen. In contrast, the Yankees are working their top starters much harder and run the risk of having them wear down as the season drags on. I’ll address this issue at the end.

Roger Clemens (6.9, 3.77, 0.6)

Clemens made 9 starts with an average score of 5.6-3.4. The Yankees won 7 games or 78%. His pythag W% is 72%. His philly W% is 72%. First thing to note is that he made 9 starts to Pedro’s 8. As a result of the Yankees skipping their 5th starter they’ll get more starts out of their front 4 barring further injury (Duque is lagging behind a bit). Clemens contributed to 5 very good starts of 3 runs or less. When he’s on he’s still very good. However, in his other 4 starts the Yankee RA was 5 or higher. At this point in his career he’s just not “on” as often as he used to be. This ratio is better than Nomo’s, but is not, IMO, a testament to consistent high quality pitching.

Andy Pettitte (7.5, 2.93, 0.9)

Pettitte made 9 starts with an average score of 5.4-3.6. The Yankees won 4 games or 44%. His pythag W% is 70%. His philly W% is 78%. Note that by individual stats Pettitte has been the ace of the Yankee staff. He took a lot of criticism this winter from Sox fans and statheads looking at his awful WHIP from last year, but perhaps it’s past time to give Pettitte his due. Despite the peripheral numbers he is capable of pitching quite well. For such a “winner”, though, the one data point that sticks out from his excellent record is the team W/L record. That’s especially strange considering the high RS he received. Some make-up karma perhaps or just a lot of bad luck in several 1 run losses? In six Pettitte starts the Yankees allowed 4 or less runs. The other three starts are two not so bad 5s and a 7. Pettitte has been the Yankees best, most consistent pitcher and yet 1/3 of his starts ended up with the Yankees allowing 5 or more runs. Is that what people mean when they say the Yankees have consistently good pitching? I don’t think so. Depending on how high you set the bar Pedro may be the only consistently good pitcher in the AL.

Mike Mussina (6.8, 3.67, 0.7)

Mussina made 8 starts with an average score of 4.6-3.8. The Yankees won 5 games or 63%. His pythag W% is 60%. His philly W% is 63%. Mussina has been surprisingly inconsistent. Three excellent starts with 1 or 0 runs. Three mediocre starts with 4 or 5 runs. Two awful starts with 7 and 8. Additionally his 9th start after this report was for 8 runs making for a nice symmetry. And that start points out an important caveat about the sample size. Through 8 Mussina starts the Yankees had allowed a very good 3.8 runs/game. After the 9th start it was all the way up to 4.8. Just something to note.

Orlando Hernandez (5.3, 5.11, 0)

Duque made 7 starts with an average score of 2.3-4.4. The Yankees won 1 game or 14%. His pythag W% is 21%. His philly W% is 71%. The first thing to note is his low IP/start. Duque has actually pitched like a Sox retread. A lot of his early starts he gave up 2-4 runs in 4/5 IP and then his bullpen was outstanding behind him. As a result the Yankees allowed 4 runs or fewer in 5 of his starts. The other two starts were awful with 7 and 10 runs allowed. Duque and the Yankees are considered consummate winners and yet the Yankees haven’t been able to win many of these well pitched games. Easy answer why – they just haven’t scored runs in his starts. Hard to be a winner without runs. Duque’s last very good start is not included. It may be an indicator that he’ll be able to stretch out his starts.

Ted Lilly (5.4, 6.23, -0.3)

Lilly made 4 starts with an average score of 6.5-4.8. The Yankees won 4 games or 100%. His pythag W% is 65%. His philly W% is 50%. The flip side to the bad luck (and bad run support) that Duque has received is the good luck the Yankees have gotten in Lilly’s starts. Lilly has only had one good start (against Boston of course), but good run support (22 runs in the other 3 games) has bailed him out. You’d think that wouldn’t last, but in his next start the Yankees won 14-10. Go figure.

Heading into the season I think the conventional wisdom would have ranked these 10 starters like this:

1. Pedro (big gap) 2. Mussina 3. Clemens 4. Pettitte 5. Duque (big gap) 6. Nomo 7. Castillo 8. Ohka (little gap) 9/10. Crawford and Lilly Ranked by runs allowed in their starts thru the first quarter it’s:

1. Pedro (2.6) 2. Nomo (3.0) 3. Clemens (3.4) 4. Pettitte (3.6) 5. Mussina (3.8) 6. Crawford (4.0) 7. Ohka (4.3) 8. Duque/Castillo (4.4) 9. Lilly 4.8 The first thing to note is that both teams have very good pitching staffs. The Yankees are around average in Lilly’s starts, but everything else is well above average. The second thing is how close they’re grouped together. I expect Pedro will lengthen that gap and perhaps Lilly will fall off the back end, but everybody else is pretty tightly grouped. The excellent bullpen performances that both teams have gotten have really minimized some of the disparities in individual talent.

Just as an end-note I wanted to get a quick look at the bullpens since one of the concerns about the Sox staff is that the pen will wear out. All of the following stats are thru 40 games:

Boston pen: 140 IP, 92 appearances, 3.09 ERA, 29.3 ARP (3rd). (ARP is another BP stat. Check their website for further explanation.)

NY pen: 116.67 IP, 86 appearances, 2.16 ERA, 28.6 ARP (4th)

The Yankee pen has obviously been much, much better than anticipated. As expected there is a big workload difference. The Yankee pen is on pace for 473 IP. The Sox pen is on pace for 567 IP. That nearly 100 IP difference actually understates things a bit as the Yankees had a 17 IP game in the first quarter. Assuming they won’t have one of those every quarter the difference may be closer to 120 IP at these paces. I’m going to keep track of these bullpen stats just to see if the Sox pen starts to wear down at some point. The Yankee pen has been so good that some regression to the mean would be expected from them independently of fatigue, but I’ll note that both Rivera and Stanton are on high IP paces as well.



see BaseballProspectus.com for explanation of SNWL and ARP

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#9 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:27 PM


Boston vs. New York: Pitching Comparison after 81 Games

by Mike Koblish


This is part 2 of my season long comparison of the Sox and Yankee pitching staffs. This report covers the first 81 games of the season.

To briefly recap, I wanted to compare the effectiveness of two very different pitching dominant organizations in preventing runs on a starter by starter basis. The goal is different than simply looking at the starter’s ERA or some more sophisticated measures like Baseball Prospectus’ Support Neutral metrics. Those types of measures remove the starter from the relievers who follow him. That’s obviously the best way to judge the individual starters, but I believe that removing those individual performances from their contexts will lead us to lose important information about how any given starter effects his teams’ ability to prevent runs on the days he starts. Essentially, this is taking the old cliché about a starter setting the tone for his team and quantifying how well (or poorly) his team responds. A longer, more involved explanation accompanies the first report.

I have made a few changes that I wanted to address. The easiest is that I cleaned up the format a bit and clearly separated a set of individual and team stats for every pitcher. The individual stats are pretty straight forward. One thing I wanted to make clear is that the ERA listed is only for that pitcher as a starter. SNVA and SNPct are park and support adjusted metrics developed by Michael Wolverton of Baseball Prospectus and are freely available at their website (www.baseballprospectus.com). Specific definitions are provided at the website, but basically these metrics measure every start against a common background of league average offense and bullpen performance. I’m also using ARP as an overall measure of team bullpen performance later in the report.

Team stats are:

Score – this is an average score of every game started by that pitcher. It is different than the run support numbers that are sometimes printed. Those numbers only look at the number of runs scored while the starter was in the game and are adjusted per 9 innings. The score data I’m using encompasses everything – unearned runs, runs against relievers, extra inning games.

Actual WP% - this is simply the team’s win/loss record in games started by that pitcher.

Pythag WP% - this is based on a relationship between runs scored and runs allowed that Bill James noticed for teams. Over the course of a 162 game season most teams Actual WP% is very similar to their Pythag WP%. As a result, it is sometimes considered what the teams’ record “ought” to have been without the luck of random run distributions. Bigger deviations occur with smaller samples, which will be the case with starters who make at most 35 starts. Both of these percentages give equal weight to runs scored and runs allowed, so you’d expect them to have a good correlation.

Philly WP% - I’ve changed the way I compute Philly Wins. In the previous report I credited a pitcher with one Philly Win every time his team held the opposition to 4 runs or less. I credited pitchers with ½ Philly Win when the opposition scored 5 runs, which I expected to be league average. It turns out that offense is down this year by about 10% and it no longer made sense to consider 5 runs allowed in a game as a winnable, quality effort. It’s also true that these two mediocre offenses simply don’t score the 6 or more runs it would take to win such games very often. Like SNPct, Philly WP% completely ignores offense. If the opposition scores 4 or less runs the pitchers have done their job and the team ought to win. It differs from SNPct by also counting the specific bullpen performance instead of assuming an average one. I’d expect these two percentages to correlate fairly well and the differences to provide some indirect insight into bullpen performance.

Pedro Martinez

Individual Stats:
Starts – 15
IP/S – 6.9
ERA – 2.26
SNVA – 3.5
SNPct - .837

Team Stats:
Score – 4.4 - 3.2
Actual WP% - 60
Pythag WP% - 65
Philly WP% - 73

Comment: In Pedro’s first 11 starts the Sox gave up 26 runs. In his last four they gave up 22. And now he’s looking at a minimum 6 week stay on the DL. That should mean 0 starts in the 3rd quarter of the year and maybe only 23 starts for the whole year. Noting the obvious - that’s a huge blow. Looking at ERA, SNVA, SNPct and Team RA, he’s the best pitcher in the league despite pitching at least a portion of the year with an injury. The fact that SNPct is by far the highest percentage indicates the extent that he was let down by both his offense and bullpen. Post 7/12 injury update: if Pedro returns on Sept 1 we’re looking at a max of 20 starts. The positive spin is that’s “only” 9 less starts then he’s made the last 2 years.

An off-season aside – Despite the Giambi speculation, I’ve always thought that if the Sox went after another premiere FA that they would target Chan Ho Park. I think this injury to Pedro will cement that decision. They may not be able to outbid the Fox Dodgers, but they’ll give it a shot.

Hideo Nomo

Individual Stats:
Starts – 17
IP/S – 6.1
ERA – 3.97
SNVA – 1.4
SNPct - .619

Team Stats: Score – 5.4 - 3.9
Actual WP% - 65
Pythag WP% - 65
Philly WP% - 65

Comment: Nomo’s second quarter didn’t have the dominant peaks of his first quarter, but his performance has been solid across the board. Look at the tight correlation between all 4 percentages. He’s getting the offensive support to win 60+% of his starts, he’s pitching well enough to win 60+% of his starts and go figure the team is winning 65% of his starts. Some of the individual game RAs are too high – he’s got a couple 6s, a 7, and a 8 in there – but that’s not all that uncommon. It’s pretty similar to Mussina in fact. Nomo also nudged his average IP/start up over 6 IP as well. Right now in terms of durability the difference between Nomo and Mussina in IP is 13 or about 2 outs per start. That’s not a lot in terms of IP, but the way Jimy uses the pen that could be 1 less reliever used per start. In terms of fatigue over the course of the year that could be a factor. It still may be debatable if Nomo’s performance has been consistent and good enough to qualify as the mythic #2 playoff starter, but it’s at least very close and a significant improvement from some of the other rehabbers the Sox have trotted out over the last couple of years.

Frank Castillo

Individual Stats:
Starts – 16
IP/S – 4.9
ERA – 4.35
SNVA – 0.7
SNPct - .568

Team Stats: Score – 4.7 – 4.5
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 52
Philly WP% - 63

Comment: First thing that jumps out at you is that the Sox #3 starter is averaging less than 5 IP/start. As you can see from the rest of the stats (especially Philly WP%) the quality has mostly been very good. The Team RA of 4.5 is somewhat deceiving because of the fact that when he’s bad the team gets pounded. The Sox have given up 34 runs in his 4 worst starts, but just 38 in his other 12 starts (an excellent 3.2/start). I’m sure all of those other 12 games required multiple relief pitchers though.

Tim Wakefield

Individual Stats:
Starts – 8
IP/S – 6.7
ERA – 2.70
SNVA – 1.4
SNPct - .777

Team Stats:
Score – 3.8 – 3.6
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 52
Philly WP% - 75

Comment: Unfortunately Wake has been hurt by poor run support (only 2 out of 8 starts the Sox scored more than 4 runs), but his performance as a starter has been sensational. His 1.4 SNVA is tied with Nomo for the 3rd highest (behind Pedro and Pettitte) despite the fact that he has half the starts of Nomo, Clemens and Mussina. The other nice thing the “good Wake” always brings to the table is the ability to go deep into games. Even without Pedro, the Sox can throw out two guys in Nomo and Wake who can give them 6 IP in decent starts and 7+ IP when they’re on or Jimy needs the innings. That’s a big upgrade over someone like Castillo who might get Jimy’s hook after 4/5 IP in a decent start and with rare exceptions no more than 6 IP in a good/great start.

David Cone

Individual Stats:
Starts – 9
IP/S – 5.0
ERA – 4.60
SNVA – 0.1
SNPct - .533

Team Stats:
Score – 5.6 – 4.6
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 60
Philly WP% - 56

Comment: Everybody’s favorite ex-Met, ex-Yankee union spokesperson. Overall numbers look okay for a bottom of the rotation starter which is essentially what he is, despite the hype. However, the pattern of RAs in his starts is ominous. His first two starts the Sox gave up 5 and 7 runs and lost both of Cone’s major league rehab starts. He then strung together 5 consecutive Philly Wins (4, 4, 2, 4, 2). That nice stretch got some people to think about hopping on the Cone bandwagon. In his last two starts he was awful and the Sox gave up 8 and 5 runs. Thankfully Cone was able to will/lead his teammates to score a lot of runs and the Sox won both slugfests. That sure looks to me like a guy who has a little something left in his tank, but simply cannot maintain his arm strength and stuff as part of a normal 5 man rotation. The extra rest he’s going to get for the ASB may give him a second wind, but the smart money says he’ll wear out again.

Tomo Ohka

Individual Stats:
Starts – 7
IP/S – 5.0
ERA – 3.57
SNVA – 0.2
SNPct - .546

Team Stats:
Score – 5.6 – 4.3
Actual WP% - 43
Pythag WP% - 63
Philly WP% - 57

Comment: All seven of these starts occurred in the first quarter before his demotion. Not much to add to the 1st quarter comment that Ohka did not deserve to be demoted based on this performance. His subsequent performance in Pawtucket and in his first 2 starts after his recall may tell a different story, but we’ll get to that in the 3rd quarter report. There’s a strong possibility that Ohka won’t finish that quarter in the Sox organization.

Rolando Arrojo

Individual Stats:
Starts – 2
IP/S – 6.0
ERA – 1.50
SNVA – 0.4
SNPct - .868

Team Stats:
Score – 6.5 – 2.5
Actual WP% - 100
Pythag WP% - 87
Philly WP% - 50

Comment: Can’t really say too much beyond the obvious in such a short sample. He pitched very well. He's capable of continuing to pitch well although you probably have to expect a couple of short, lapsed concentration bombs at some point. The real nice thing about Arrojo is he gives the Sox a 3rd non-Pedro starter who can easily go 7 IP in good starts and who has enough stuff to go 6 IP in merely decent outings. Over the second half of the year that could help reduce the wear and tear on the bullpen.

Paxton Crawford

Individual Stats:
Starts – 7
IP/S – 4.9
ERA – 4.75
SNVA – 0.4
SNPct - .580

Team Stats:
Score – 6.9 – 4.0
Actual WP% - 71
Pythag WP% - 75
Philly WP% - 71

Comment: Like Ohka all of these starts occurred in the first quarter. He didn’t pitch very well in Pawtucket and was then diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his back. That injury is expected to keep him out for several months. Ironically, it will probably keep him with the organization since he’s less likely to be traded. If Crawford makes another start it probably won’t be until Sept. New update suggests he could be back pitching – at least in Paw – in early August.

One last thing to mention about the Sox group of eight starters is that through the 1st half of the year every Sox pitcher who made a start ended the half with positive SNVAs. That’s a tremendous testament to the Sox talented and deep pitching staff. In contrast, only 3 of the 9 Yankees starters recorded positive SNVAs.

Roger Clemens

Individual Stats:
Starts – 17
IP/S – 6.9
ERA – 3.59
SNVA – 1.1
SNPct - .594

Team Stats:
Score – 6.2 – 3.3
Actual WP% - 82
Pythag WP% - 78
Philly WP% - 59

Comment: These overall numbers are only solid, but perhaps don’t tell the whole story. Clearly, the percentages show how much his glossy W/L record is dependent on excellent run support. Both measures that ignore run support show him at about 60%, whereas both measures that include run support have him up around 80%. However, his overall Team RA of 3.3 is excellent. That’s both because when he’s been good, he’s been very good and because when he’s been bad (ie. not gotten a Philly Win), the team has only given up 5 runs usually (and won a bunch of those). He doesn’t have any average killing 8's or 10's on his record. Unfortunately for a Sox fan the trend is towards much better performance. And that’s not the last time I’ll write that about a Yankee starter. In Clemens’ first 7 starts he only managed 3 Philly Wins (averaging 4 runs/start). In his last 10 starts he’s had 7 Philly Wins (averaging 2.8 runs/start). He’s definitely in a dominant groove.

Andy Pettitte

Individual Stats:
Starts – 15
IP/S – 7.1
ERA – 2.95
SNVA – 1.8
SNPct - .679

Team Stats:
Score – 5.4 – 3.4
Actual WP% - 60
Pythag WP% - 72
Philly WP% - 73

Comment: Aside from the fact that he missed two starts on the DL, Pettitte has been the Yankees best, most consistent starter. Ironically, his actual WP% of 60% is the only percentage not up around an excellent 70%. That’s due to the fact that he’s taken a few tough 1 run losses despite pitching well enough to get a Philly Win. In that respect his pretty good run support of 5.4 is a bit deceiving. Pettitte only had Philly Wins in 3 of his first 5 starts. Since then he’s gone 9 out of 10 including 7 in a row. That streak includes his stint on the DL so he hasn’t missed a beat. Over those last 10 starts the Yankees are only giving up 3.2 runs/game. Not quite as dominant as Clemens, but consistently very good.

Mike Mussina

Individual Stats:
Starts – 17
IP/S – 6.9
ERA – 3.55
SNVA – 1.3
SNPct - .609

Team Stats:
Score – 4.5 – 3.9
Actual WP% - 59
Pythag WP% - 57
Philly WP% - 59

Comment: Overall, numbers that are extremely similar to Nomo’s good 1st half performance. Very tight correlation of all four percentages right around 60%. One important difference is that Mussian has had terrible distribution of his mediocre 4.5 runs/game. Of the 77 runs the Yankees have scored in his 17 starts, 38 came in 3 blowouts. In the other 14 starts Mussina has been stuck trying to win with 2.8 runs/game. That’s an extraordinarily difficult feat that he’s done reasonably well with. That plus his increased durability give him an edge over Nomo in my opinion. He also seems to be finding his groove. In his first 9 starts he had 4 Philly Wins. He’s been much more impressive of late with 6 Philly Wins in his last 8 starts.

Orlando Hernandez

Individual Stats:
Starts – 9
IP/S – 5.4
ERA – 5.14
SNVA – 0.0
SNPct - .499

Team Stats:
Score – 2.4 – 4.2
Actual WP% - 22
Pythag WP% - 25
Philly WP% - 67

Comments: Hernandez made, at most, 1 start this quarter before hitting the DL for several months due to foot surgery. I’ll basically repeat what I wrote in the first report. The Yankees “4th Ace” did a remarkable impression of one of the Sox' run of the mill rehabbers. Lots of short mediocre starts followed by excellent work out of the pen in a losing cause. The typical El Duque game was a 5 IP start in which he allowed 3 runs followed by 4 shutout innings from the pen in a 2-3 loss. He should be capable of more when he returns, but at his age (whatever that is) who knows. The last timetable I heard had him returning some time in mid August. That would probably give him a chance to finish the year with about 17 starts. Just about exactly a half season.

Ted Lilly

Individual Stats:
Starts – 12
IP/S – 5.3
ERA – 5.12
SNVA – -0.1
SNPct - .466

Team Stats:
Score – 6.2 – 5.1
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 60
Philly WP% - 42

Comments: The runs they didn’t score in El Duque’s pretty good, winnable starts they did score in many of Lilly’s bad starts. As a result they’ve won an excellent 67% of his starts despite the fact that they gave up a pretty bad 5.1 runs/game. Unfortunately, he also has been pitching better of late. He only had 1 Philly Win in his first 5 starts (averaging 5.8 runs/game). He’s had 4 Philly Wins in his last 7 starts (averaging 4.6 runs/game). That’s “only” a good solid stretch, but it’s plenty good enough coming from a rookie. It’s been easy to slam the Yankees ability to develop their young, over-hyped prospects of late, but it looks like they’re going to stick with Lilly for just about the whole year (maybe around 25 starts) and possibly be rewarded with a solid cheap middle of the rotation starter. That’s not something the Red Sox can claim to have done.

Randy Keisler

Individual Stats:
Starts – 6
IP/S – 4.8
ERA – 7.45
SNVA – -0.7
SNPct - .303

Team Stats:
Score – 6.8 – 6.2
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 55
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: In contrast to Lilly, Keisler has just been awful. Of his six starts his best one was the first when the Yankees only allowed 5 runs. His other 5 starts they allowed 6 or 7 runs. Somehow they managed to score 8 or more runs 4 times and win 4 blowouts. It’s extremely frustrating when a team that is by its own admission built around starting pitching can win so many games when its pitching stinks.

Adrian Hernandez

Individual Stats:
Starts – 2
IP/S – 4.5
ERA – 5.0
SNVA – -0.2
SNPct - .321

Team Stats:
Score – 2.5 – 5.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 20
Philly WP% - 0

Comments: El Duquicito is an amazing mimic. He’s even managed to copy El Duque’s lack of run support. This is more like it though – 2 short bad starts that end as losses. I suspect the Yankees don’t want to turn to El Duquicito as a starter again. Maybe he’ll carve out a career as Nelson-like setup man, but right now he’s about 40% of the way through his 4 yr/4M contract and he looks a lot like a bust. Not an Andy Morales sized bust, but not a whole lot of value either.

Ramiro Mendoza

Individual Stats:
Starts – 2
IP/S – 4.9
ERA – 8.38
SNVA – -0.4
SNPct - .137

Team Stats: Score – 6.5 – 8.0
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 40
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: Prior to his injury Mendoza enjoyed some extended stretches of success as a starter – and perhaps he could again if properly stretched out – but his 2 spot starts were awful. Again, barring some injury problems I don’t expect to see Mendoza in the Yankees rotation again.

Christian Parker

Individual Stats:
Starts – 1
IP/S – 3.0
ERA – 21.0
SNVA – -0.4
SNPct - .013

Team Stats:
Score – 4.0 – 13.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 9
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: I included every pitcher who made a start for both teams primarily to include young Mr. Parker so that I could pose this simple question – how many of the local Boston mediots who blathered on about the Yankees great pitching depth could correctly tell you that Christian freakin’ Parker was their #5 starter coming out of camp? Yes, the Yankees have 3 very good starters and a 4th who’s been phenomenal in the post-season, but when you need 8+ starters to make it through a season that’s not depth. As I mentioned in the Crawford comment, the Yankees have only had 3 starters with positive SNVAs. That means they gave 32 out of 81 starts (40%) to pitchers who were below average. The Red Sox gave exactly ZERO starts to pitchers with negative SNVAs. That’s despite the fact that Pedro, Castillo, Crawford and Cone (half of their 8 starters) have been hurt at one point or another. Call me crazy, but I think just maybe the mediots missed this one.

Here are all Sox and Yankee starters who’ve made at least 5 starts ranked by Team RA in their starts:

1. Martinez 3.2
2. Clemens 3.3
3. Pettitte 3.4
4. Wake 3.6
5. Mussina 3.9
5. Nomo 3.9
7. Crawford 4.0
8. El Duque 4.2
9. Ohka 4.3
10. Castilla 4.6
11. Cone 4.6
12. Lilly 5.1
13. Keisler 6.2

Still a pretty good mix of Sox and Yankee starters throughout the rankings until you get to Lilly and Keisler bringing up the rear. However, in the second quarter it did appear that the Yankees big 3 of Clemens, Pettitte and Mussina were beginning to assert themselves. With Pedro possibly out for the entire 3rd quarter it’s quite likely that the Yankees will have the three best starters going 3 out of every 5 days. There’s a good chance the Yankees will overtake the Sox in overall team ERA at some point soon.

In the first report I mentioned that I intended to look at each team’s bullpen performances as a quick check to see if the Yankees pen, behind their more durable starters was less susceptible to wearing down, than the Sox pen, behind their more fragile starters.

Here are the Sox bullpen stats through the first quarter:

IP: 140
Games: 92
ERA: 3.09
ARP: 29.3
ARP rank: 3rd

Here are the Sox bullpen stats through the second quarter:

IP: 270.3
G: 202
ERA: 3.53
ARP: 33.6
ARP rank: 8th

In ERA, ARP and ARP rank we see clear signs of deteriorating performance. The overall performance is still good relative to the league, but in terms of run prevention it’s a pretty dramatic fall off. ARP is a cumulative stat, so the Sox pen prevented 29 more runs than an average pen in the first 40 games, but only 4 more runs than an average pen in the next 41 games.

It’s also interesting to note that Jimy’s use of the pen has changed. In the first quarter he went to the pen 92 times to pitch 140 IP. That’s 1.5 IP/appearance. In the second quarter he went to the pen 110 times to pitch 130.3 IP. That’s 1.2 IP/appearance. I think most of us have noted anecdotally that it seemed like Jimy was doing a lot more churning through his pen recently. That does appear to be true and brings up a chicken or egg question – has the bullpen performance deteriorated because Jimy is overusing his pen for increasingly short stints or is Jimy’s new usage pattern a response to his warranted lack of faith in his pen? It does also seem to be true that the starters have been less effective in the 2nd quarter – remember the rotation was awesome into early May – but the fact that the pen actually had to pitch fewer innings minimizes the amount of blame you can pin on the starters IMO.

Here are the Yankee bullpen stats through the first quarter:

IP: 116.67
G: 86
ERA: 2.16
ARP: 28.6
ARP rank: 4th

Here are the Yankee bullpen stats through the second quarter:

IP: 222.3
G: 174
ERA: 2.91
ARP: 30.9
ARP rank: 9th

The two sets of numbers look remarkably similar to the Sox. The Yankee pen was 29 runs better than average through the first quarter and then only 2 runs better in the second quarter. Both teams slipped from excellent rankings to merely good ones based nearly exclusively on their excellent first quarters. However, it’s important to note that the Yankees were due to some fall off in performance simply due to regression to established levels. Both Stanton and Boehringer pitched most of the 1st quarter with sub 1.0 ERAs. That couldn’t last. Interestingly, Torre’s use of his pen didn’t change very much (looking just at games and IP) despite the falling performance. He went to the pen 86 times for 116.7 IP in the first quarter and 88 times for 105 IP in the second quarter.

There is one very significant difference between the two organizations. The Yankees reacted to this fall off by trading two fairly significant prospects for middle relievers. In contrast, the Sox have merely shuffled some internal options (Florie, Kim, Pulsipher) up to Boston to see what they can contribute. At least on this point, it appears that the way the Yankees constructed their pitching staff around a big, durable front 4 has failed. That rotation was designed to protect a shallow bullpen. Instead, the bullpen was exposed and the Yankees felt forced to pay a high price to make in-season trades. It will be interesting to see if their 3rd quarter bullpen performance bounces back in response to the reinforcements. It’s also quite possible that while the Sox have thus far only run through internal options, they’ll make their own prospect for middle reliever trades at some point.

Unless my high school alegebra has failed me, I also think I can also use the starter’s SNPct and Philly WP% data to address the bullpen support issue for each individual starter. SNPct is a winning percentage based on holding offense and bullpen support as league average constants. That allows BP to only evaluate the extent that the starter’s performance contributes to a win. Philly WP% also holds offense constant (by ignoring it), but looks at the contribution of both the starter and the actual bullpen performances that he has received.

So if we look at Philly WP% - SNPct we can get an idea about how the actual bullpen performances for each starter have deviated from what could have been expected from an average pen.

We can do that because the offense constants cancel each other out and drop out of consideration and we’re left with:

Starter performance + bullpen performance (Philly WP%) – starter performance + average bullpen (SNPct)

Again, the starter performances are equivalent, so they drop out. If the difference in Philly WP% - SNPct is positive, that means that the starter was backed by above average bullpen performances. If the difference is negative, then he was backed by below average bullpen performances.

Here are the Philly WP% - SNPcts for each starter:

Martinez: -11
Nomo: +3
Castillo: +6
Wake: -3
Cone: +3

Ohka: +2
Crawford: +13
Arrojo: -37

Clemens: 0
Pettitte: +5
Mussina: -2
El Duque: +17
Lilly: -5

Keisler: -30
Duquicito: -32
Mendoza: -14
Parker: -1

I bolded the 5 guys who’ve made the most starts for both teams since the small sample size starters can obviously have huge swings. I want to make 2 points:

1) Breaking it down starter by starter we can see how little effect these two teams’ good and expensive bullpens have had in comparison to league average performances in terms of run prevention. If you consider a +5 or –6 difference to be random statistical noise, then only two pitchers have significant differences: Pedro, who looks like he was hurt a bit, and El Duque who looks like he was helped quite a bit.

2) Despite all the great bullpen support that El Duque received the Yankees still went 2-7 in his starts. Why? Because the offense scored 2.4 runs/game and El Duque himself was pretty mediocre.

To me, the take home message is that the return on investment on above average relief pitching is generally pretty small. We can also see in El Duque’s case that good relief pitching can be wasted in games you’re likely to lose anyway since the more important parts of a team (ie. offense and starting pitching) have already failed while your relievers are sitting on their butts chewing sunflower seeds.



see BaseballProspectus.com for explanation of SNWL and ARP

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#10 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:27 PM


Boston vs. New York: 3rd Quarter Pitching Comparison

by Mike Koblish


This is part 3 of my season long comparison of the Sox and Yankee pitching staffs. This report covers the first 120 games of the season.

To briefly recap, I wanted to compare the effectiveness of two very different pitching dominant organizations in preventing runs on a starter by starter basis. The goal is different than simply looking at the starter's ERA or some more sophisticated measures like Baseball Prospectus' Support Neutral metrics. Those types of measures remove the starter from the relievers who follow him. That's obviously the best way to judge the individual starters, but I believe that removing those individual performances from their contexts will lead us to lose important information about how any given starter effects his teams' ability to prevent runs on the days he starts. Essentially, this is taking the old cliché about a starter setting the tone for his team and quantifying how well (or poorly) his team responds.

Having now invested a significant chunk of time doing this for 75% of the season, I can (thankfully) say that this has worked as well if not better than I expected. I'd never suggest judging an individual starting pitcher with such a blunt tool, but the way baseball has evolved in this high offense, short start era I think we have to consider who the starters tend to turn over the game to. These days every team has an "A" pen consisting of the closer and top setup men who are expected to work tight winnable games and a "B" pen consisting of a motley assortment of fungible relievers. Starters who can consistently go 6/7 IP and give up 2/3 runs will hand the ball to the "A" pen. They should get some credit for the better relief pitching that they're going to get. Starters who go 5 IP and give up 4 runs turn the game over to the "B" pen and therefore deserve some of the blame when these replacement level pitchers occasionally let a game get out of hand. This method even addresses the positives and negatives of high quality, short stints like we've seen from a Castillo or a Saberhagen - say 5 IP and 2 R. They get the credit for the high quality of their appearance and should get most of the "A" pen, but most managers are going to go 4 relievers to get 4 IP. That means an increased chance that one of those guys just isn't going to have it that night.

I only made one change to the report format. I added the number of Q3 starts each pitcher made. I did update all of the comments at least a little however. The ERA listed is only for that pitcher as a starter. SNVA and SNPct are park and support adjusted metrics developed by Michael Wolverton of Baseball Prospectus and are freely available at their website (www.baseballprospectus.com). Specific definitions are provided at the website, but basically these metrics measures every start against a common background of league average offense and bullpen performance. I'm also using ARP as an overall measure of team bullpen performance later in the report. I recently learned something about the Support Neutral stats. The SNVA and ARP comparisons to an average pitcher are not separated into starter and reliever subgroups. Since relievers do a significantly better job of preventing runs, this tends to make it harder for a starter to appear average than if he was just compared to other starters. That may have been obvious to you, but I was surprised by it.

Team stats are:

Score - this is an average score of every game started by that pitcher. It is different than the run support numbers that are sometimes printed. Those numbers only look at the number of runs scored while the starter was in the game and are adjusted per 9 innings. The score data I'm using encompasses everything - unearned runs, runs against relievers, extra inning games. It is an average of the final score in every game started by that pitcher.

Actual WP% - this is simply the team's won/loss record in games started by that pitcher.

Pythag WP% - this is based on a relationship between runs scored and runs allowed that Bill James noticed for teams. Over the course of a 162 game season most teams Actual WP% is very similar to their Pythag WP%. As a result, it is sometimes considered what the teams' record "ought" to have been without the luck of random run distributions. Bigger deviations occur with smaller samples, which will be the case with starters who make at most 35 starts. Both of these percentages give equal weight to runs scored and runs allowed, so you'd expect them to have a good correlation.

Philly WP% - I credit a pitcher with one Philly Win every time his team held the opposition to 4 runs or less. Like SNPct, Philly WP% completely ignores offense. If the opposition scores 4 or less runs the pitchers have done their job and the team ought to win. It differs from SNPct by also counting the specific bullpen performance instead of assuming an average one. I'd expect these two percentage to correlate fairly well and the differences to provide some indirect insight into bullpen performance.

Part 1: Team Runs Allowed by starter

Red Sox

Pedro Martinez (Q3 starts - 0)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 15
IP/S - 6.9
ERA - 2.26
SNVA - 3.5
SNPct - .837

Team Stats:

Score - 4.4 - 3.2
Actual WP% - 60
Pythag WP% - 65
Philly WP% - 73

Comment: In Pedro's first 11 starts the Sox gave up 26 runs. In his last four they gave up 22. That may be too convenient a break into "healthy" vs "not healthy" starts, but it helps make a point that ought to be made. Even if Pedro comes back and makes 7 starts down the stretch for a season total of 22, a decent chunk of those are going to have been made with questionable health and/or under strict pitch counts. This project has caused me to spend a fair amount of time thinking about Micahel Wolverton's SNWL stats and although I'm not completely there yet I'm starting to think there is a problem with scaling the stat. It seems to me that too many pitchers are lumped together due to a tendency of the stat to compress everything to neutral. I only mention that here because if that's true, then it makes Pedro's dominance of these measurements that last several years that much more amazing. I've really missed watching Pedro pitch this summer.

Hideo Nomo (Q3 starts - 8)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 25
IP/S - 6.0
ERA - 4.08
SNVA - 1.5
SNPct - .585

Team Stats:

Score - 5.4 - 4.0
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 65
Philly WP% - 63

Comment: Nomo ended the quarter on a downer as he had his worse two game stretch of RAs, but prior to that he was in perhaps his best, steadiest groove. The Sox allowed only 19 runs in that 6 start stretch with the worse game a winnable 5 run effort that the Sox did in fact win. Nomo's run support improved so his Actual and Pythag WP% have trended up towards a terrific 70%, but his SNPct and Philly WP% are holding steady at 60%. The only real disappointment is that his IP/start dropped a bit. It'll be interesting to see if Kerrigan pushes a little more out of him in the 4th quarter.

Rolando Arrojo (Q3 starts - 7)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 9
IP/S - 5.4
ERA - 2.42
SNVA - 1.0
SNPct - .686

Team Stats:

Score - 5.0 - 4.2
Actual WP% - 44
Pythag WP% - 58
Philly WP% - 67

Comment: As evidenced by the disappointing Actual WP% the Sox did not take advantage of Arrojo's terrific 3rd quarter performance. The reason is a bit obscured by the fact that his 9th and final start was a 12-10 slugfest. All of those runs distort the Team Score data pretty dramatically. In his first 8 starts the average score was only 4.1-3.5. His poor IP/start of 5.4 is also misleading since it includes 2 games he left after a couple of innings due to injury (the line drive off his knee is the one besides his shoulder). When he was stretched out and healthy he was a prototypical workhorse, front of the rotation starter. He's rumored to be making good progress on his rehab, but will be beaten back by Pedro and Sabes. That could mean that the only way Arrojo gets back into the rotation and stretched out for a potential playoff start is if Sabes flames out.

David Cone (Q3 starts - 8)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 17
IP/S - 5.3
ERA - 4.22
SNVA - 0.0
SNPct - .502

Team Stats:

Score - 5.4 - 4.1
Actual WP% - 76
Pythag WP% - 63
Philly WP% - 76

Comment: I'll start with how I ended his Q2 comment: "but the smart money says he'll wear out again." Guess, I ain't too smart. Cone has settled into a very nice groove going a perfect 8 for 8 in Philly Wins this quarter. Only one excellent start with an RA of 1, but I'll take my chances if the opposition only scores 3 or 4 runs every game. Amazingly, Cone's Philly WP% has now caught up to what was a Run Support inflated Actual WP%. SNVA fell back to average, but average pitchers who can get themselves out of jams are valuable commodities at the back of a rotation.

Frank Castillo (Q3 starts - 2)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 18
IP/S - 4.9
ERA - 4.81
SNVA - 0.0
SNPct - .493

Team Stats:

Score - 4.3 - 4.7
Actual WP% - 44
Pythag WP% - 46
Philly WP% - 56

Comment: Neither of Castillo's starts this quarter were any good (both resulted in 6 runs allowed losses). As a result this average statistical profile catches Castillo at his worse point of the season. Castillo hit an extended groove last year and had a very good start to this year. It's possible his great 1st Q4 start can set him up on a nice little stretch run. Signing the right 3rd tier pitchers for the back of your rotation can absolutely help you get into the playoffs because average bottom of the rotation production is a significant advantage over most contenders. Is there a long term cost in terms of not giving young pitchers to struggle like young pitchers do? I think there probably is, but that's a story for another day.

Tim Wakefield (Q3 starts - 8)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 16
IP/S - 6.2
ERA - 4.38
SNVA - 0.1
SNPct - .522

Team Stats:

Score - 4.5 - 5.3
Actual WP% - 37
Pythag WP% - 42
Philly WP% - 63

Comment: Normally, I'd expect the statistical variability to start getting smoothed out by 16 starts. Wake, of course, has gone the other way. His IP/S and Philly WP% are still quite good for a mid-rotation veteran starter, but his performance this quarter was all over the place. Four good games (4, 4, 3, 2) and four awful ones (11, 15, 6, 11). Those awful ones killed his Team RA dropping it to a poor 5.3 and they've knocked a chunk out of his ERA and SNPct, both of which are now only a bit above average. Nevertheless, I'm guessing this performance is exactly what the Sox were hoping for when they brought him back as Mr. Versatility. If he can continue to pitch at this level as a 10-15 start stop gap starter and contribute another good 40-60 IP out of the pen, he'll be a very good (and quite unique) contributor for the rest of his time in Boston. Note that his Philly WP% is still very good.

Paxton Crawford (Q3 starts - 0)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 7
IP/S - 4.9
ERA - 4.75
SNVA - 0.4
SNPct - .580

Team Stats:

Score - 6.9 - 4.0
Actual WP% - 71
Pythag WP% - 75
Philly WP% - 71

Comment: All of these starts occurred in the first quarter. He didn't pitch very well in Pawtucket and was then diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his back. That injury was expected to keep him out for several months. I haven't heard anything to suggest that he'll be available in Sept. Hard to figure how the Sox view him at this point. Fossum and maybe even Kim have jumped ahead of him and the Sox aren't going to be breaking camp with three young pitchers next year. In a year that may come down to a game or two one way or another Crawford started seven games and the Sox won five. I'll take that.

Bret Saberhagen (Q3 starts - 3)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 3
IP/S - 5.0
ERA - 6.00
SNVA - -0.2
SNPct - .406

Team Stats:

Score - 5.0 - 7.7
Actual WP% - 33
Pythag WP% - 30
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: The numbers look awful because the Sox gave up 13 runs in his second start and a sloppy bullpen performance kept him from even getting a Philly Win in his first terrific start. Nevertheless, that first start will no doubt be the emotional highlight of the season. In the movie version it's Game 7 of the World Series, of course, but you take what you can get. Still some surprising talk that he might reappear for one last chance, but the Sox aren't in a position to indulge anybody's whim if it might hurt their chances of winning that day's game. Hopefully, both sides will realize that if the time comes.

Tomo Ohka (Q3 starts - 4)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 11
IP/S - 4.7
ERA - 5.96
SNVA - -0.7
SNPct - .394

Team Stats:

Score - 4.5 - 5.6
Actual WP% - 36
Pythag WP% - 38
Philly WP% - 36

Comment: I saved this for last one to write because I was going to blast the Sox for bailing on a good young pitcher back in May, but the additional bit of research I did didn't paint as strong a picture as I would have liked - hate when that happens. In 97, the Sox last non-contending year, they gave Suppan an extended trial of 22 starts and in total gave 38 starts to kids. After the Pedro deal and Duke's quote that "the Sox are no back in business" those totals have trended down, but not as dramatically as I thought. In 98 it was 32 starts with Lowe as the high man with 10. In 99 it was 29 starts with Rose as the high man at 18. In 00 it was 25 starts with Ohka and Rose as high men with 12. Right now the Sox are sitting at 20 - so expect ~25 if Fossum sticks in the rotation - with Ohka as the high man at 11. I had forgotten that Rose got as many as 18 starts in 99 and since that isn't much different than Suppan's 22, the case that the Sox move towards playoff contention sapped them of the will to give an extended trial to a young pitcher doesn't hold up as well. I still think it's true though. I still expect the Sox to give young pitchers about 25 starts next year, but not an extended trial to any one pitcher. Instead, somebody - say Fossum - will break camp in the rotation and do OK for an 8-12 start burst and then he'll be demoted to the pen or AAA and when the veterans break down in the second half somebody else - say Crawford - will get another 8-12 start burst. You can argue that the Sox haven't had a young pitcher worth developing these last few years, but that pattern is not conducive to developing the ones they've had.


Yankees

Roger Clemens (Q3 starts - 8)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 25
IP/S - 6.8
ERA - 3.46
SNVA - 1.4
SNPct - .586

Team Stats:

Score - 6.4 - 3.2
Actual WP% - 88
Pythag WP% - 80
Philly WP% - 68

Comment: Clemens' 3rd quarter performance was right in keeping with his overall season. He was less dominant that his Q2 groove, but he gave the Yankees solid starts every time out and they responded by scoring at least 4 runs in every game and more than 7 runs in half of his games. His excellent Team RA has also been aided by the fact that he and the relievers who've followed him have avoided blowout games. The Yankees gave up 7 runs in his 5th start and 6 in his 10th start, but everything else has been 5 runs or less. That ability to minimize damage has helped him achieve his glossy W-L record despite not pitching much better (if at all) than his teammates Mussina and Pettitte. Shouldn't really be a Cy Young contender, but his season has been very good.

Andy Pettitte (Q3 starts - 8)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 23
IP/S - 6.9
ERA - 3.30
SNVA - 1.1
SNPct - .576

Team Stats:

Score - 5.8 - 3.8
Actual WP% - 65
Pythag WP% - 70
Philly WP% - 70

Comment: After having been the Yankees most consistent starter in the first half, Pettitte finally hit a rough patch at the beginning of this quarter. The Yankees gave up 25 runs in a three start stretch. Pettitte bounced back to close out the quarter with 4 straight Philly Wins though. Pettitte's Actual WP% had been hurt by some tough one run losses early in the year, but his luck has improved. His run support has gone up and he's gotten good bullpen support. His lowest percentage stat is SNPct, the only one that is solely based on the starting pitcher.

Mike Mussina (Q3 starts - 8)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 25
IP/S - 6.7
ERA - 3.83
SNVA - 1.6
SNPct - .593

Team Stats:

Score - 4.2 - 4.1
Actual WP% - 52
Pythag WP% - 51
Philly WP% - 64

Comment: Mussina has continued to have a strange, but very good year. In his 6 good starts this quarter the Yankees allowed an excellent 15 runs total. In his two awful starts the Yankees allowed 21 runs. His run support totals have been similarly skewed. The Yankees scored 16 runs in two of his starts, but only 13 in the other six starts. Those awful distributions have balanced out and lead to Actual and Pythag WP% right around 50%, meanwhile his Support Neutral statistics are the best on the staff. I'm still very surprised that a pitcher as good as Mussina hasn't been able to keep his team from giving up 7 or more runs in 25% of his starts. I'm sure the Yankees were expecting better consistency from him, but he was signed to be a workhorse who could challenge Clemens and Pettitte for the top spot on the staff and he's done that.

Orlando Hernandez (Q3 starts - 0)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 9
IP/S - 5.4
ERA - 5.14
SNVA - 0.0
SNPct - .499

Team Stats:

Score - 2.4 - 4.2
Actual WP% - 22
Pythag WP% - 25
Philly WP% - 67

Comments: The Yankees "4th Ace" continued his remarkable impression of one of the Sox run of the mill rehabbers by spending the entire third quarter on the DL. He recently made two strong rehab starts in the Florida State League. His expected return to NY should come within a week or two. That will give him time to make 7/8 starts down the stretch. Will they be like his early starts - 5 IP, 3 runs followed by 4 shutout innings from the pen in a 2-3 loss - or a prelude to yet another dominant October performance?

Ted Lilly (Q3 starts - 7)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 19
IP/S - 5.1
ERA - 5.21
SNVA - -0.9
SNPct - .415

Team Stats:

Score - 5.0 - 5.6
Actual WP% - 53
Pythag WP% - 44
Philly WP% - 42

Comments: Lilly is a good example of the importance of looking at run independent pitching measures like Philly WP% and SNPct. Those two measures have been consistently around 40% all year while his team Actual WP% was at 67% thru the first half. However, as he continued to rack up starts his luck ran out. After scoring 6.2 runs per game in his first 13 starts the Yankees only scored 2.5 runs per game in his next 6 starts. As a result his Pythag WP% has plummeted down into the low 40% and his Actual WP% has come down quite a bit. In all likelihood, if he keeps his rotation spot and doesn't pitch better the team Actual WP% will trend down to 40% as well. In the last report, I split his first 12 starts into two segments and suggested he had shown significant improvement. He only had 1 Philly Win in his first 5 starts (averaging 5.8 runs allowed/game). He had 4 Philly Wins in his last 7 starts (averaging 4.6 runs allowed/game). In the seven starts from Q3 he had 3 Philly Wins (averaging 6.6 runs allowed/game). It's really been a maddeningly inconsistent stretch either pretty good (3, 2, 4) or completely awful (11, 12, 6, 8). You'd like to see a young starter settling in a bit more by now, but I still think the Yankees deserve credit for giving Lilly a long stretch of starts to get experience while still being good enough to hang onto first place. This group of below average starts might cost them a playoff spot for a pitcher who won't ever develop into much, but it might also be true that they've weathered a good chunk of Lilly's growing pains and will be rewarded with a solid pitcher in a year or two.

Sterling Hitchcock (Q3 starts - 3)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 3
IP/S - 5.1
ERA - 8.22
SNVA - -0.6
SNPct - .173

Team Stats:

Score - 5.3 - 6.0
Actual WP% - 33
Pythag WP% - 43
Philly WP% - 33

Comment: If you want to be a Yankee optimist, his second start was pretty good. I'm going to go way, way out on a limb and say that his other two awful starts are more representative of what he has left in the tank. I still like the trade for the Yankees - it was worth a shot - but aside from an occasional flash of his old form it won't be much of a benefit. It will be interesting to see how the Yankee 5th starter slot shakes out once El Duque returns. I believe the plan was to have Hitchcock replace Lilly. Even though Lilly hasn't been very good lately either, Hitchcock's presence on the roster could hurt NY if Torre decides to stick with the veteran no matter what. This Lilly/Hitchcock debate will not be an issue at all in terms of the playoff roster, but as long as the Sox stay with them it could help to keep the Yankees out of the playoffs if they pick the wrong guy.

Randy Keisler (Q3 starts - 4)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 10
IP/S - 5.1
ERA - 6.22
SNVA - -1.0
SNPct - .334

Team Stats:

Score - 6.8 - 5.4
Actual WP% - 70
Pythag WP% - 61
Philly WP% - 20

Comment: Keisler actually started Q3 with his first two "Philly Wins". His next two starts were more typically awful and he was demoted after the Hitchcock trade. With Hitchcock on board and El Duque returning soon, it's not likely that he'll get anything more than a spot start. It really is frustrating that the Yankees were able to win 70% of his starts.

Adrian Hernandez (Q3 starts - 0)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 2
IP/S - 4.5
ERA - 5.0
SNVA - -0.2
SNPct - .321

Team Stats:

Score - 2.5 - 5.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 20
Philly WP% - 0

Comments: Somewhat surprisingly, El Duquicito did get another shot to spot start in Q3. However, he called in sick which lead to Clemens and Pettitte getting knocked around on 3 days rest. Clemens also took a shot at him publicly and that combined with his very inconsistent AAA performance probably puts him pretty deep into the organizational doghouse. Normally, I'd say this makes El Duquecito a good sized international bust, but this being the Yankees I expect he'll be traded to the Expos and Jeffrey "I love international Yankee busts!" Loria for the Yankees choice of Vazquez, Pavano, Armas or Ohka.

Ramiro Mendoza (Q3 starts - 0)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 2
IP/S - 4.9
ERA - 8.38
SNVA - -0.4
SNPct - .137

Team Stats:

Score - 6.5 - 8.0
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 40
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: Prior to his injury Mendoza enjoyed some extended stretches of success as a starter - and perhaps he could again if properly stretched out - but his 2 spot starts were awful. Again, with Hitchcock and El Duque soon on board and expanded rosters just around the corner there won't be any reason to move Mendoza back into the rotation. As awful as his spot starts were, his overall bullpen performance has been excellent. By ARP he has been the 16th best reliever in baseball this year. Although he hasn't fit the exact role that Nelson played in years past, he has made up for the overall loss in value. One potential warning sign is that he's already up over 70 relief innings. That could eventually catch up to the Yankees and Mendoza.

Christian Parker (Q3 starts - 0)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 1
IP/S - 3.0
ERA - 21.0
SNVA - -0.4
SNPct - .013

Team Stats:

Score - 4.0 - 13.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 9
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: Since Brett Jodie out awful-ed Parker I'm going to save my comments about the Yankees horrid starting pitching depth for Jodie's comment. I think I speak for all Sox fans when I say I wish we'd seen a lot more of Mr. Parker.

Brett Jodie (Q3 starts - 1)

Individual Stats:

Starts - 1
IP/S - 2.0
ERA - 27.0
SNVA - -0.4
SNPct - .008

Team Stats:

Score - 4.0 - 10.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 14
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: No need to spend much time discussing Jodie's brief Yankee career. Instead let's talk about all that great pitching depth that the Yankees brought into the 2001 season. There's the Four Aces who combined for 82 starts and a combined SNVA of 4.1. And then there are the other seven starters that combined for 38 starts and a combined SNVA of -3.9. Those 38 starts (almost a third of the total) were so bad that they nearly canceled out the good starts made by the Four Aces. Actually, El Duque didn't contribute anything to that 4.1 SNVA, his 9 starts were average by SNVA, so the Yankees only received above average performances from their big three. Last time I was able to say that the Sox received zero starts from a pitcher with a negative SNVA. That's no longer true as Sabes and Ohka finished with a combined -1.1 in 14 starts. The Sox also had Cone and Castillo slip from above average performances to average (they've both since bumped back above) for a total of 35 average starts. The 5 Sox starters with positive SNVAs made 71 starts (only 2 less than NY) for a total of 6.5 SNVA (2.4 higher than NY).

Tidying up the comparison - the Yankees had a slightly larger group of good starts (61%), a very small number of average starts (8%) and a big group of below average starts (31%). The Sox had 59% of their starts to pitchers with above average SNVAs, 29% of starts to average pitchers and only 12% of starts to below average starters. On the basis of two key factors - Pedro is that much better than everybody else even in 15 starts and bad starts will catch up to you - the Sox finished the 3rd quarter with a team SNVA of 5.4 compared to the Yankees' 0.2.

Here are all Sox and Yankee starters who've made at least 5 starts ranked by Team RA in their starts:

1. Martinez 3.2
2. Clemens 3.2
3. Pettitte 3.8
4. Crawford 4.0
5. Nomo 4.0
6. Mussina 4.1
7. Cone 4.1
8. El Duque 4.2
9. Arrojo 4.2
10. Castillo 4.7
11. Wake 5.3
12. Kisler 5.4
13. Ohka 5.6
14. Lilly 5.6

From a quality standpoint it's amazing how well the pitchers pair up. Pedro and Clemens have been ace level. A good distance back from them you see a clump of good, veteran starters in the 3.8-4.2 range: Nomo/Pettitte, Mussina/Cone and El Duque/Arrojo. Obviously, the Yankees get a big durability edge in the Pedro/Clemens and Mussina/Cone pairs. A good chunk behind them you see the back of the rotation types with the main difference being that the Sox pitchers are older and more often pitched pretty well whereas the Yankee pitchers are younger and were more prone to getting lit up. If healthy, I think Castillo can bridge the gap a little and get closer to the tail end of the group ahead of him.

Part 2: What do playoff rotations really look like?

Simple answer - the Yankees. Three very good veteran starters and a whole lot of junk that will never make a playoff start anyway. However, this whole project is about looking beneath the simple and the obvious so I decided to take a more systematic look at the starting rotations of all of the playoff teams since the move to a three round playoff tournament format in 1995. For convenience sake I used Baseball Prospectus' SNVA. Unfortunately, they only published full team SNVAs back to the 1997 season so I have four years (97-00) of data encompassing 32 playoff teams.

On the basis of this study, I decided to split each team's starters into two groups - the Top 3 and "others". The 2001 Yankees are obviously a great example of a team with it's starting pitching value concentrated in it's Top 3 and the 2001 Sox are an example of a team with a lot of quality in the "other" category. To deal with potential data skewing by a dominant #1 I further split the Top 3 into "Ace" and "#2+3".

One quick note about categorization - it's not so simple to look at a list of team SNVAs and decide who is the #2 or #3 starter. A lot of playoff teams don't have three good starters by SNVA. The biggest deviant was the 97 Indians who were a blown save from winning the World Series despite not having any pitchers with positive SNVAs. Charles Nagy was the "Ace" at -0.0. As a result, I may have mis-characterized some starters on teams that made the playoffs more because of their offense (not just Cleveland, but multiple Texas and SF teams as well). I don't think this is a very significant factor as the error only makes relatively poor pitching teams look a little better.

I kept the teams grouped in accordance with how far they advanced in the playoffs so the 32 teams are split into 16 LDS only, 8 LCS only, 4 pennant only and 4 WS winners. For space reasons I'm only presenting the averages for each group, but I'll talk about some individual issues at the end. All the following numbers are SNVAs and should be easily understood except "#1/#1-3". That's the percentage of the Top 3's SNVA value accumulated by the Ace.

LDS only

#1: 3.03
#2+3: 2.26
#1-3: 5.3
#1/#1-3: 57%
other: -2.93

LCS only

#1: 3.56
#2+3: 3.77
#1-3: 7.33
#1/#1-3: 49%
other: -0.91

Pennant only

#1: 2.48
#2+3: 2.08
#1-3: 4.56
#1/#1-3: 54%
other: -2.57

WS winner

#1: 2.53
#2+3: 2.76
#1-3: 5.29
#1/#1-3: 48%
other: -1.04

In general, playoff teams have very little of their SNVA value outside of their Top 3. Only 8 out of 32 teams had positive "other" SNVAs. Only 3 had SNVAs above 1.0. The highest was 1.85.

There was a tendency of teams that had a lot of their SNVA value in their Ace getting knocked out in the first round. WS winners, by a small margin, had the lowest percentage. That's an indication of the importance of a deeper Top 3.

But the answer isn't - "deep pitching staffs are best" - either. Across the board the best pitching staffs were the teams in the LCS only category. Not only the highest Ace SNVA, but also the highest #2+3 and the highest "other" totals as well. These teams had great Aces, very good #2+3s and solid pitching right into the "other" category and they still couldn't make it out of the LCS.

Sometimes averaging data - especially groups of 4 like Pennant and WS winners - can obscure important individual differences. I found the top 8 in each of the 5 categories I listed. A random distribution would find those eight teams divided up like this: 3 LDS only, 3 LCS only, 1 Pennant only and 1 WS winner. Here's what I found:

Top 8 Aces: 5 LDS only, 3 LCS only

Top 8 #2+3: 3 LDS, 3 LCS, 1 Pennant, 1 WS (98 Yankees)

Top 8 #1-3: 3 LDS, 3 LCS, 1 Pennant, 1 WS (98 Yankees)

Top 8 #1/#1-3: 5 LDS, 1 LCS, 1 Pennant, 1 WS (97 Marlins)

Top 8 "other": 3 LDS, 4 LCS, 1 WS (98 Yankees)

Generally, we see that the distribution is random. The big exception is for Aces. The best pitchers in baseball are not getting their teams out of the LCS. And this isn't because they're Steve Carltons stuck on the 72 Phillies. These pitchers are on teams that are at least good enough to get to the playoffs where anything can happen. I'm not a baseball historian by any means, but it strikes me that this is a very fundamental change in the game. In the past, we've debated in the SoSH forum whether or not Pedro could lead the Sox to a championship like Koufax or Gibson lead their teams in the 60s. I don't want to get too carried away making conclusions from a 4 year sample, but I think we are starting to see an accumulating body of evidence that suggests the additional rounds of playoffs have greatly diminished the effects of a single great pitcher.

Of course, that doesn't mean having a great pitcher hurts your chances as long as the other starters, relievers, offense, defense, manager and luck are working for you.

Do the 2001 Sox and Yankee pitching rotations look like playoff rotations. The Yankees certainly do although they look pretty average in comparison to these other teams. The Sox could have been an excellent match by SNVA for the very best playoff rotations. Even a semi-healthy Pedro will give them an excellent Ace and Nomo and a healthy Arrojo would have given them a strong pair of #2/3 starters with SNVAs around 1.5. Replacing Arrojo with Cone knocks that down by the numbers unless you think he can pull a Clemens, Pettitte or El Duque and pitch very well in the playoffs after having a merely above average regular season.

Part 3: the Bullpens

In the first report I mentioned that I intended to look at each team's bullpen performances as a quick check to see if the Yankees pen behind their more durable starters was less susceptible to wearing down than the Sox pen behind their more fragile starters.

Here are the Sox bullpen stats through the first quarter:

IP: 140
Games: 92
ERA: 3.09
ARP: 29.3
ARP rank: 3rd

Through the second quarter:

IP: 270.3
G: 202
ERA: 3.53
ARP: 33.6
ARP rank: 8th

Through the third quarter:

IP: 415.3
G: 327
ERA: 3.76
ARP: 20.5
Rank: 14th

After being a bit above average in the 2nd quarter, the pen shit the bed in Q3. Their ARP was minus 13 runs dropping their season long performance to a thoroughly mediocre 14th. Last report I noted that Jimy's use of the pen had changed. In the first quarter he went to the pen 92 times to pitch 140 IP. That's 1.5 IP/appearance. In the second quarter he went to the pen 110 times to pitch 130.3 IP. That's 1.2 IP/appearance. In the third quarter he went to the pen 125 times to pitch 145 IP. That's just under 1.2 IP/appearance. Look at the comparisons between the 1st and 3rd quarters. The starters were excellent in Q1 and poor in Q3, but the pen was required to pitch roughly the same amount. Nevertheless, Jimy went much more often to a faltering pen in Q3. I still don't have an answer to the chicken or egg question - has the bullpen performance deteriorated because Jimy is overusing his pen for increasingly short stints or is Jimy's new usage pattern a response to his warranted lack of faith in his pen?

I'll also note that the Sox brought in bullpen reinforcements this quarter. Two solid young pitchers were traded for Urbina, who has been excellent, and Fossum did a nice job after his promotion.

Here are the Yankee bullpen stats through the first quarter:

IP: 116.67
G: 86
ERA: 2.16
ARP: 28.6
ARP rank: 4th

Through the second quarter:

IP: 222.3
G: 174
ERA: 2.91
ARP: 30.9
ARP rank: 9th

Through the third quarter:

IP: 358
G: 272
ERA: 3.25
ARP: 31.4
Rank: 7th

The Yankee pen managed to continue it's Q2 pace and maintain a slightly above average performance. Interestingly, Torre had to get an extra 20 IP out of his pen this quarter, but was still able to maintain a fairly stable IP/appearance.

The ability to maintain a solid pen was not, however, due to the external reinforcements as Wohlers and Witasik were both lousy. Much like their rotation, the Yankees were able to rely on very good performances of a big 3. Mendoza, Stanton and Rivera all ranked amongst the top 30 relievers in baseball by ARP. Through Q3 they also all had managed to handle heavy workloads. The first week or so of Q4 has not been kind to Stanton so we'll have to see how they hold up down the stretch.

If we look at Philly WP% - SNPct we can get an idea about how the actual bullpen performances for each starter have deviated from what could have been expected from an average pen.

We can do that because the offense constants cancel each other out and drop out of consideration and we're left with:

Starter performance + bullpen performance (Philly WP%) - starter performance + average bullpen (SNPct)

If the difference in Philly WP% - SNPct is positive, that means that the starter was backed by above average bullpen performances. If the difference is negative, then he was backed by below average bullpen performances.

Here are the Philly WP% - SNPcts for each starter:

Martinez: -11
Nomo: -5
Castillo: +7
Wake: +11
Cone: +26
Ohka: -3
Crawford: +13
Arrojo: -2
Saberhagen: -41

Clemens: +9
Pettitte: +12
Mussina: +9
El Duque: +17
Hitchcock: +16
Lilly: 0
Keisler: -13
Duquicito: -32
Mendoza: -14
Parker: -1
Jodie: -1

I wasn't going to bother doing this for this report, but I'm glad I did because it reinforces the point I made in the introduction. Each of the Yankees big 3 starters has gotten significant help from their pen because they're pitching ~7 IP and turning the game over to Stanton and Rivera. The Yankees who've pitched poorly and turned games over to the "B" pen have generally been hurt by it. Duque and Hitchcock throw things off some, but Duque made all of his starts in Q1 when the entire Yankee pen was pitching very well and Hitchcock only has 3 starts. If he pitches poorly that number will turn around I bet. The Red Sox numbers are all over the place precisely because their pen has been all over the place. The "A" pen has struggled so much that you really can't see any expected bump from pitching deep into games. The other thing to spotlight is how well the bullpen has pitched behind Cone. For pitchers with 15+ starts that +26 is double the support any other pitcher has received good or bad.



see BaseballProspectus.com for explanation of SNWL and ARP

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#11 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:28 PM


Boston vs. New York: Pitching Comparison after 81 Games

by Mike Koblish


This is part 2 of my season long comparison of the Sox and Yankee pitching staffs. This report covers the first 81 games of the season.

To briefly recap, I wanted to compare the effectiveness of two very different pitching dominant organizations in preventing runs on a starter by starter basis. The goal is different than simply looking at the starter’s ERA or some more sophisticated measures like Baseball Prospectus’ Support Neutral metrics. Those types of measures remove the starter from the relievers who follow him. That’s obviously the best way to judge the individual starters, but I believe that removing those individual performances from their contexts will lead us to lose important information about how any given starter effects his teams’ ability to prevent runs on the days he starts. Essentially, this is taking the old cliché about a starter setting the tone for his team and quantifying how well (or poorly) his team responds. A longer, more involved explanation accompanies the first report.

I have made a few changes that I wanted to address. The easiest is that I cleaned up the format a bit and clearly separated a set of individual and team stats for every pitcher. The individual stats are pretty straight forward. One thing I wanted to make clear is that the ERA listed is only for that pitcher as a starter. SNVA and SNPct are park and support adjusted metrics developed by Michael Wolverton of Baseball Prospectus and are freely available at their website (www.baseballprospectus.com). Specific definitions are provided at the website, but basically these metrics measure every start against a common background of league average offense and bullpen performance. I’m also using ARP as an overall measure of team bullpen performance later in the report.

Team stats are:

Score – this is an average score of every game started by that pitcher. It is different than the run support numbers that are sometimes printed. Those numbers only look at the number of runs scored while the starter was in the game and are adjusted per 9 innings. The score data I’m using encompasses everything – unearned runs, runs against relievers, extra inning games.

Actual WP% - this is simply the team’s won/loss record in games started by that pitcher.

Pythag WP% - this is based on a relationship between runs scored and runs allowed that Bill James noticed for teams. Over the course of a 162 game season most teams Actual WP% is very similar to their Pythag WP%. As a result, it is sometimes considered what the teams’ record “ought” to have been without the luck of random run distributions. Bigger deviations occur with smaller samples, which will be the case with starters who make at most 35 starts. Both of these percentages give equal weight to runs scored and runs allowed, so you’d expect them to have a good correlation.

Philly WP% - I’ve changed the way I compute Philly Wins. In the previous report I credited a pitcher with one Philly Win every time his team held the opposition to 4 runs or less. I credited pitchers with ½ Philly Win when the opposition scored 5 runs, which I expected to be league average. It turns out that offense is down this year by about 10% and it no longer made sense to consider 5 runs allowed in a game as a winnable, quality effort. It’s also true that these two mediocre offense simply don’t score the 6 or more runs it would take to win such games very often. Like SNPct, Philly WP% completely ignores offense. If the opposition scores 4 or less runs the pitchers have done their job and the team ought to win. It differs from SNPct by also counting the specific bullpen performance instead of assuming an average one. I’d expect these two percentage to correlate fairly well and the differences to provide some indirect insight into bullpen performance.

Pedro Martinez

Individual Stats:
Starts – 15
IP/S – 6.9
ERA – 2.26
SNVA – 3.5
SNPct - .837

Team Stats:
Score – 4.4 - 3.2
Actual WP% - 60
Pythag WP% - 65
Philly WP% - 73

Comment: In Pedro’s first 11 starts the Sox gave up 26 runs. In his last four they gave up 22. And now he’s looking at a minimum 6 week stay on the DL. That should mean 0 starts in the 3rd quarter of the year and maybe only 23 starts for the whole year. Noting the obvious - that’s a huge blow. Looking at ERA, SNVA, SNPct and Team RA he’s the best pitcher in the league despite pitching at least a portion of the year through an injury. The fact that SNPct is by far the highest percentage indicates the extent that he was let down by both his offense and bullpen. Post 7/12 injury update: if Pedro returns on Sept 1 we’re looking at a max of 20 starts. The positive spin is that’s “only” 9 less starts then he’s made the last 2 years.

An off-season aside – Despite the Giambi speculation, I’ve always thought that if the Sox went after another premier FA that they would target Chan Ho Park. I think this injury to Pedro will cement that decision. They may not be able to outbid the Fox Dodgers, but they’ll give it a shot.

Hideo Nomo

Individual Stats:
Starts – 17
IP/S – 6.1
ERA – 3.97
SNVA – 1.4
SNPct - .619

Team Stats: Score – 5.4 - 3.9
Actual WP% - 65
Pythag WP% - 65
Philly WP% - 65

Comment: Nomo’s second quarter didn’t have the dominant peaks of his first quarter, but his performance has been solid across the board. Look at the tight correlation between all 4 percentages. He’s getting the offensive support to win 60+% of his starts, he’s pitching well enough to win 60+% of his starts and go figure the team is winning 65% of his starts. Some of the individual game Ras are too high – he’s got a couple 6s, a 7, and a 8 in there – but that’s not all that uncommon. It’s pretty similar to Mussina in fact. Nomo also nudged his average IP/start up over 6 IP as well. Right now in terms of durability the difference between Nomo and Mussina in IP is 13 or about 2 outs per start. That’s not a lot in terms of IP, but the way Jimy uses the pen that could be 1 less reliever used per start. In terms of fatigue over the course of the year that could be a factor. It still may be debatable if Nomo’s performance has been consistent and good enough to qualify as the mythic #2 playoff starter, but it’s at least very close and a significant improvement from some of the other rehabbers the Sox have trotted out over the last couple of years.

Frank Castillo

Individual Stats:
Starts – 16
IP/S – 4.9
ERA – 4.35
SNVA – 0.7
SNPct - .568

Team Stats: Score – 4.7 – 4.5
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 52
Philly WP% - 63

Comment: First thing that jumps out at you is that the Sox #3 starter is averaging less than 5 IP/start. As you can see from the rest of the stats (especially Philly WP%) the quality has mostly been very good. The Team RA of 4.5 is somewhat deceiving because of the fact that when he’s bad the team gets pounded. The Sox have given up 34 runs in his 4 worst starts, but just 38 in his other 12 starts (an excellent 3.2/start). I’m sure all of those other 12 games required multiple relief pitchers though.

Tim Wakefield

Individual Stats:
Starts – 8
IP/S – 6.7
ERA – 2.70
SNVA – 1.4
SNPct - .777

Team Stats:
Score – 3.8 – 3.6
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 52
Philly WP% - 75

Comment: Unfortunately Wake has been hurt by poor run support (only 2 out of 8 starts the Sox scored more than 4 runs), but his performance as a starter has been sensational. His 1.4 SNVA is tied with Nomo for the 3rd highest (behind Pedro and Pettitte) despite the fact that he has half the starts of Nomo, Clemens and Mussina. The other nice thing the “good Wake” always brings to the table is the ability to get deep into games. Even without Pedro, the Sox can throw out 2 guys in Nomo and Wake who can give them 6 IP in decent starts and 7+ IP when they’re on or Jimy needs the innings. That’s a big upgrade over someone like Castillo who might get Jimy’s hook after 4/5 IP in a decent start and with rare exceptions no more than 6 IP in a good/great start.

David Cone

Individual Stats:
Starts – 9
IP/S – 5.0
ERA – 4.60
SNVA – 0.1
SNPct - .533

Team Stats:
Score – 5.6 – 4.6
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 60
Philly WP% - 56

Comment: Everybody’s favorite ex-Met, ex-Yankee union spokesperson. Overall numbers look OK for a bottom of the rotation starter which is essentially what he is despite the hype. However, the pattern of Ras in his starts is ominous. His first two starts the Sox gave up 5 and 7 runs and lost both of Cone’s major league rehab starts. He then strung together 5 consecutive Philly Wins (4, 4, 2, 4, 2). That nice stretch got some people to think about hopping on the Cone bandwagon. In his last two starts he was awful and the Sox gave up 8 and 5 runs. Thankfully Cone was able to will/lead his teammates to score a lot of runs and the Sox won both slugfests. That sure looks to me like a guy who has a little something left in his tank, but simply cannot maintain his arm strength and stuff as part of a normal 5 man rotation. The extra rest he’s going to get for the ASB may give him a second wind, but the smart money says he’ll wear out again.

Tomo Ohka

Individual Stats:
Starts – 7
IP/S – 5.0
ERA – 3.57
SNVA – 0.2
SNPct - .546

Team Stats:
Score – 5.6 – 4.3
Actual WP% - 43
Pythag WP% - 63
Philly WP% - 57

Comment: All seven of these starts occurred in the first quarter before his demotion. Not much to add to the 1st quarter comment that Ohka did not deserve to be demoted based on this performance. His subsequent performance in Pawtucket and in his first 2 starts after his recall may tell a different story, but we’ll get to that in the 3rd quarter report. There’s a strong possibility that Ohka won’t finish that quarter in the Sox organization.

Rolando Arrojo

Individual Stats:
Starts – 2
IP/S – 6.0
ERA – 1.50
SNVA – 0.4
SNPct - .868

Team Stats:
Score – 6.5 – 2.5
Actual WP% - 100
Pythag WP% - 87
Philly WP% - 50

Comment: Can’t really say too much beyond the obvious in such a short sample. He pitched very well. He's capable of continuing to pitch well although you probably have to expect a couple of short, lapsed concentration bombs at some point. The real nice thing about Arrojo is he gives the Sox a 3rd non-Pedro starter who can easily go 7 IP in good starts and who has enough stuff to go 6 IP in merely decent outings. Over the second half of the year that could help reduce the wear and tear on the bullpen.

Paxton Crawford

Individual Stats:
Starts – 7
IP/S – 4.9
ERA – 4.75
SNVA – 0.4
SNPct - .580

Team Stats:
Score – 6.9 – 4.0
Actual WP% - 71
Pythag WP% - 75
Philly WP% - 71

Comment: Like Ohka all of these starts occurred in the first quarter. He didn’t pitch very well in Pawtucket and was then diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his back. That injury is expected to keep him out for several months. Ironically, it will probably keep him with the organization since he’s less likely to be traded. If Crawford makes another start it probably won’t be until Sept. New update suggests he could be back pitching – at least in Paw – in early August.

One last thing to mention about the Sox group of eight starters is that through the 1st half of the year every Sox pitcher who made a start ended the half with positive SNVAs. That’s a tremendous testament to the Sox talented and deep pitching staff. In contrast, only 3 of the Yankees 9 starters recorded positive SNVAs.

Roger Clemens

Individual Stats:
Starts – 17
IP/S – 6.9
ERA – 3.59
SNVA – 1.1
SNPct - .594

Team Stats:
Score – 6.2 – 3.3
Actual WP% - 82
Pythag WP% - 78
Philly WP% - 59

Comment: These overall numbers are only solid, but perhaps don’t tell the whole story. Clearly, the percentages show how much his glossy W/L record is dependent on excellent run support. Both measures that ignore run support show him at about 60% whereas both measures that include run support have him up around 80%. However, his overall Team RA of 3.3 is excellent. That’s both because when he’s been good, he’s been very good and because when he’s been bad (ie not gotten a Philly Win), the team has only given up 5 runs usually (and won a bunch of those). He doesn’t have any average killing 8s or 10s on his record. Unfortunately for a Sox fan the trend is towards much better performance. And that’s not the last time I’ll write that about a Yankee starter. In Clemens’ first 7 starts he only managed 3 Philly Wins (averaging 4 runs/start). In his last 10 starts he’s had 7 Philly Wins (averaging 2.8 runs/start). He’s definitely in a dominant groove.

Andy Pettitte

Individual Stats:
Starts – 15
IP/S – 7.1
ERA – 2.95
SNVA – 1.8
SNPct - .679

Team Stats:
Score – 5.4 – 3.4
Actual WP% - 60
Pythag WP% - 72
Philly WP% - 73

Comment: Aside from the fact that he missed two starts on the DL, Pettitte has been the Yankees best, most consistent starter. Ironically, his actual WP% of 60% is the only percentage not up around an excellent 70%. That’s due to the fact that he’s taken a few tough 1 run losses despite pitching well enough to get a Philly Win. In that respect his pretty good run support of 5.4 is a bit deceiving. Pettitte only had Philly Wins in 3 of his first 5 starts. Since then he’s gone 9 out of 10 including 7 in a row. That streak includes his stint on the DL so he hasn’t missed a beat. Over those last 10 starts the Yankees are only giving up 3.2 runs/game. Not quite as dominant as Clemens, but consistently very good.

Mike Mussina

Individual Stats:
Starts – 17
IP/S – 6.9
ERA – 3.55
SNVA – 1.3
SNPct - .609

Team Stats:
Score – 4.5 – 3.9
Actual WP% - 59
Pythag WP% - 57
Philly WP% - 59

Comment: Overall, numbers that are extremely similar to Nomo’s good 1st half performance. Very tight correlation of all four percentages right around 60%. One important difference is that Mussian has had terrible distribution of his mediocre 4.5 runs/game. Of the 77 runs the Yankees have scored in his 17 starts 38 came in 3 blowouts. In the other 14 starts Mussina has been stuck trying to win with 2.8 runs/game. That’s an extraordinarily difficult feat that he’s done reasonably well with. That plus his increased durability give him an edge over Nomo in my opinion. He also seems to be finding his groove. In his first 9 starts he had 4 Philly Wins. He’s been much more impressive of late with 6 Philly Wins in his last 8 starts.

Orlando Hernandez

Individual Stats:
Starts – 9
IP/S – 5.4
ERA – 5.14
SNVA – 0.0
SNPct - .499

Team Stats:
Score – 2.4 – 4.2
Actual WP% - 22
Pythag WP% - 25
Philly WP% - 67

Comments: Hernandez made, at most, 1 start this quarter before hitting the DL for several months due to foot surgery. I’ll basically repeat what I wrote in the first report. The Yankees “4th Ace” did a remarkable impression of one of the Sox run of the mill rehabbers. Lots of short mediocre starts followed by excellent work out of the pen in a losing cause. The typical El Duque game was a 5 IP start in which he allowed 3 runs followed by 4 shutout innings from the pen in a 2-3 loss. He should be capable of more when he returns, but at his age (whatever that is) who knows. The last timetable I heard had him returning some time in mid August. That would probably give him a chance to finish the year with about 17 starts. Just about exactly a half season.

Ted Lilly

Individual Stats:
Starts – 12
IP/S – 5.3
ERA – 5.12
SNVA – -0.1
SNPct - .466

Team Stats:
Score – 6.2 – 5.1
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 60
Philly WP% - 42

Comments: The runs they didn’t score in El Duque’s pretty good, winnable starts they did score in many of Lilly’s bad starts. As a result they’ve won an excellent 67% of his starts despite the fact that they gave up a pretty bad 5.1 runs/game. Unfortunately, he also has been pitching better of late. He only had 1 Philly Win in his first 5 starts (averaging 5.8 runs/game). He’s had 4 Philly Wins in his last 7 starts (averaging 4.6 runs/game). That’s “only” a good solid stretch, but it’s plenty good enough coming from a rookie. It’s been easy to slam the Yankees ability to develop their young, over-hyped prospects of late, but it looks like they’re going to stick with Lilly for just about the whole year (maybe around 25 starts) and possibly be rewarded with a solid cheap middle of the rotation starter. That’s not something the Red Sox can claim to have done.

Randy Keisler

Individual Stats:
Starts – 6
IP/S – 4.8
ERA – 7.45
SNVA – -0.7
SNPct - .303

Team Stats:
Score – 6.8 – 6.2
Actual WP% - 67
Pythag WP% - 55
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: In contrast to Lilly, Keisler has just been awful. Of his six starts his best one was the first when the Yankees only allowed 5 runs. His other 5 starts they allowed 6 or 7 runs. Somehow they managed to score 8 or more runs 4 times and win 4 blowouts. It’s extremely frustrating when a team that is by its own admission built around starting pitching can win so many games when its pitching stinks.

Adrian Hernandez

Individual Stats:
Starts – 2
IP/S – 4.5
ERA – 5.0
SNVA – -0.2
SNPct - .321

Team Stats:
Score – 2.5 – 5.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 20
Philly WP% - 0

Comments: El Duquicito is an amazing mimic. He’s even managed to copy El Duque’s lack of run support. This is more like it though – 2 short bad starts that end as losses. I suspect the Yankees don’t want to turn to El Duquicito as a starter again. Maybe he’ll carve out a career as Nelson-like setup man, but right now he’s about 40% of the way through his 4 yr/4M contract and he looks a lot like a bust. Not an Andy Morales sized bust, bit not a whole lot of value either.

Ramiro Mendoza

Individual Stats:
Starts – 2
IP/S – 4.9
ERA – 8.38
SNVA – -0.4
SNPct - .137

Team Stats: Score – 6.5 – 8.0
Actual WP% - 50
Pythag WP% - 40
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: Prior to his injury Mendoza enjoyed some extended stretches of success as a starter – and perhaps he could again if properly stretched out – but his 2 spot starts were awful. Again, barring some injury problems I don’t expect to see Mendoza in the Yankees rotation again.

Christian Parker

Individual Stats:
Starts – 1
IP/S – 3.0
ERA – 21.0
SNVA – -0.4
SNPct - .013

Team Stats:
Score – 4.0 – 13.0
Actual WP% - 0
Pythag WP% - 9
Philly WP% - 0

Comment: I included every pitcher who made a start for both teams primarily to include young Mr. Parker so that I could pose this simple question – how many of the local Boston mediots who blathered on about the Yankees great pitching depth could correctly tell you that Christian freakin’ Parker was their #5 starter coming out of camp? Yes, the Yankees have 3 very good starters and a 4th who’s been phenomenal in the post-season, but when you need 8+ starters to make it through a season that’s not depth. As I mentioned in the Crawford comment, the Yankees have only had 3 starters with positive SNVAs. That means they gave 32 out of 81 starts (40%) to pitchers who were below average. The Red Sox gave exactly ZERO starts to pitchers with negative SNVAs. That’s despite the fact that Pedro, Castillo, Crawford and Cone (half of their 8 starters) have been hurt at one pint or another. Call me crazy, but I think just maybe the mediots missed this one.

Here are all Sox and Yankee starters who’ve made at least 5 starts ranked by Team RA in their starts:

1. Martinez 3.2
2. Clemens 3.3
3. Pettitte 3.4
4. Wake 3.6
5. Mussina 3.9
5. Nomo 3.9
7. Crawford 4.0
8. El Duque 4.2
9. Ohka 4.3
10. Castilla 4.6
11. Cone 4.6
12. Lilly 5.1
13. Keisler 6.2

Still a pretty good mix of Sox and Yankee starters throughout the rankings until you get to Lilly and Keisler bringing up the rear. However, in the second quarter it did appear that the Yankees big 3 of Clemens, Pettitte and Mussina were beginning to assert themselves. With Pedro possibly out for the entire 3rd quarter it’s quite likely that the Yankees will have the three best starters going 3 out of every 5 days. There’s a good chance the Yankees will overtake the Sox in overall team ERA at some point soon.

In the first report I mentioned that I intended to look at each team’s bullpen performances as a quick check to see if the Yankees pen behind their more durable starters was less susceptible to wearing down than the Sox pen behind their more fragile starters.

Here are the Sox bullpen stats through the first quarter:

IP: 140
Games: 92
ERA: 3.09
ARP: 29.3
ARP rank: 3rd

Here are the Sox bullpen stats through the second quarter:

IP: 270.3
G: 202
ERA: 3.53
ARP: 33.6
ARP rank: 8th

In ERA, ARP and ARP rank we see clear signs of deteriorating performance. The overall performance is still good relative to the league, but in terms of run prevention it’s a pretty dramatic falloff. ARP is a cumulative stat, so the Sox pen prevented 29 more runs than an average pen in the first 40 games, but only 4 more runs than an average pen in the next 41 games.

It’s also interesting to note that Jimy’s use of the pen has changed. In the first quarter he went to the pen 92 times to pitch 140 IP. That’s 1.5 IP/appearance. In the second quarter he went to the pen 110 times to pitch 130.3 IP. That’s 1.2 IP/appearance. I think most of us have noted anecdotally that it seemed like Jimy was doing a lot more churning through his pen recently. That does appear to be true and brings up a chicken or egg question – has the bullpen performance deteriorated because Jimy is overusing his pen for increasingly short stints or is Jimy’s new usage pattern a response to his warranted lack of faith in his pen? It does also seem to be true that the starters have been less effective in the 2nd quarter – remember the rotation was awesome into early May – but the fact that the pen actually had to pitch fewer innings minimizes the amount of blame you can pin on the starters IMO.

Here are the Yankee bullpen stats through the first quarter:

IP: 116.67
G: 86
ERA: 2.16
ARP: 28.6
ARP rank: 4th

Here are the Yankee bullpen stats through the second quarter:

IP: 222.3
G: 174
ERA: 2.91
ARP: 30.9
ARP rank: 9th

The two sets of numbers look remarkably similar to the Sox. The Yankee pen was 29 runs better than average through the first quarter and then only 2 runs better in the second quarter. Both teams slipped from excellent rankings to merely good ones based nearly exclusively on their excellent first quarters. However, it’s important to note that the Yankees were due to some falloff in performance simply due to regression to established levels. Both Stanton and Boehringer pitched most of the 1st quarter with sub 1.0 ERAs. That couldn’t last. Interestingly, Torre’s use of his pen didn’t change very much (looking just at games and IP) despite the falling performance. He went to the pen 86 times for 116.7 IP in the first quarter and 88 times for 105 IP in the second quarter.

There is one very significant difference between the two organizations. The Yankees reacted to this falloff by trading two fairly significant prospects for middle relievers. In contrast, the Sox have merely shuffled some internal options (Florie, Kim, Pulsipher) up to Boston to see what they can contribute. At least on this point, it appears that the way the Yankees constructed their pitching staff around a big, durable front 4 has failed. That rotation was designed to protect a shallow bullpen. Instead, the bullpen was exposed and the Yankees felt forced to pay a high price to make in season trades. It will be interesting to see if their 3rd quarter bullpen performance bounces back in response to the reinforcements. It’s also quite possible that while the Sox have thus far only run through internal options they’ll make their own prospect for middle reliever trades at some point.

Unless my high school alegebra has failed me, I also think I can also use the starter’s SNPct and Philly WP% data to address the bullpen support issue for each individual starter. SNPct is a winning percentage based on holding offense and bullpen support as league average constants. That allows BP to only evaluate the extent that the starter’s performance contributes to a win. Philly WP% also holds offense constant (by ignoring it), but looks at the contribution of both the starter and the actual bullpen performances that he has received.

So if we look at Philly WP% - SNPct we can get an idea about how the actual bullpen performances for each starter have deviated from what could have been expected from an average pen.

We can do that because the offense constants cancel each other out and drop out of consideration and we’re left with:

Starter performance + bullpen performance (Philly WP%) – starter performance + average bullpen (SNPct)

Again, the starter performances are equivalent, so they drop out. If the difference in Philly WP% - SNPct is positive, that means that the starter was backed by above average bullpen performances. If the difference is negative, then he was backed by below average bullpen performances.

Here are the Philly WP% - SNPcts for each starter:

Martinez: -11
Nomo: +3
Castillo: +6
Wake: -3
Cone: +3

Ohka: +2
Crawford: +13
Arrojo: -37

Clemens: 0
Pettitte: +5
Mussina: -2
El Duque: +17
Lilly: -5

Keisler: -30
Duquicito: -32
Mendoza: -14
Parker: -1

I bolded the 5 guys who’ve made the most starts for both teams since the small sample size starters can obviously have huge swings. I want to make 2 points:

1) Breaking it down starter by starter we can see how little effect these two teams’ good and expensive bullpens have had in comparison to league average performances in terms of run prevention. If you consider a +5 or –6 difference to be random statistical noise, then only two pitchers have significant differences: Pedro, who looks like he was hurt a bit, and El Duque who looks like he was helped quite a bit.

2) Despite all the great bullpen support that El Duque received the Yankees still went 2-7 in his starts. Why? Because the offense scored 2.4 runs/game and El Duque himself was pretty mediocre.

To me, the take home message is that the return on investment on above average relief pitching is generally pretty small. We can also see in El Duque’s case that good relief pitching can be wasted in games you’re likely to lose anyway since the more important parts of a team (ie offense and starting pitching) have already failed while your relievers are sitting on their butts chewing sunflower seeds.



#12 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:28 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1993 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: December 16, 1999

Note: the text on this page is an amalgam of commentary from Michael Rawdon, Darcy Paquet, and Glenn Ellingson.


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000.

1) Trot Nixon, RF, Born 4/11/74, age 26

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 A/Lynchburg 264 246/357/428 12 44 53 10/3 1995 A/Sarasota 264 303/404/432 5 45 46 7/5 AA/Trenton 94 160/214/277 2 7 20 2/1 1996 AA/Trenton 438 251/329/370 11 50 65 7/9 AL/Boston 4 500/500/750 0 0 1 1/0 1997 AAA/Pawtucket 475 244/331/421 20 63 86 11/4 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 509 310/400/513 23 76 81 26/13 AL/Boston 27 259/286/296 0 1 3 0/0 1999 AL/Boston 381 270/357/472 15 53 75 3/1

After high expectations were tempered by a long wait, Nixon finally made it to Boston in 1999. He survived a horrendous slump in April and May by virtue of Jimy's patience and Nixon's status as being out of options. But he stabilized his hitting in midsummer, had a torrid second half, and finished the year with impressive rookie numbers as a platoon RF. His 116/204/233 showing against lefties (in 43ABs) suggests the platoon role is a good one for Trot (he hit 290/376/503 vs. righties). Trot also showed a good arm and *looked* like he had decent range, although his range factor was below average in 1999. He figures to get 2/3 of the RF playing time again in 2000 and has shown himself to be an important part of the Sox offense.

2) Jeff Suppan, RHP, Born 1/2/75, age 25

After a truly stellar minor league career, Jeff Suppan struggled in his first full year in the majors, and was subsequently left exposed by Boston in the 1997 expansion draft. Arizona took him with the third overall pick, and Suppan began the 1998 season for Arizona, where he posted a 6.68 ERA and allowed 82 hits in 66 innings pitched. After demoting him to the minors, Arizona released him, and he was picked up by Kansas City. Suppan improved considerably in his new setting, and established himself as a credible major-league starter in 1999 by going 10-12 with a 4.53 ERA and a 103/62 K/BB ratio in 208.2IP.

3) Ryan McGuire, 1B, Born 11/23/71, age 28

McGuire moved steadily through the Red Sox minor league system in his first few years with the organization, showing a combination of average and patience, with somewhat below-average power for a first baseman. In 1995 at AA Trenton he hit 333/414/459 with 7 homers. However, on January 10, 1996 he was traded along with LHP Rheal Cormier and RHP Shayne Bennett (a fellow 93 draftee) to Montreal for 2B Wil Cordero and P Bryan Eversgerd. McGuire broke into the major leagues in 1997, hitting 256/320/397 in 84 games with the Expos. Through the 1999 season Ryan had accumulated 549 career ABs, hitting 229/316/324 overall.

4) Shawn Senior, LHP, Born 3/17/72

After posting a 4.72 ERA in only half a season at AA in 1996, Senior apparently left the game.

5) Kevin Clark, 1B, age 27

Clark spent 1994-1996 moving from Utica to Sarasota and then back to Michigan, where he switched from 3B to 1B and hit 276/333/420. In 1997, after playing three games for Sarasota, he moved to the Arizona organization. In 1999 Clark hit 298/338/442 in 373 AB for AA El Paso at age 26.

6) Peter Munro, RHP, age 25

Munro did not play in 1993 or 94, but made steady progess throughout the system afterwards. At Trenton in 1997 he continued to show good control and give up less than a hit per inning, but all at once he began serving up a high number of home runs, despite moving from a hitter's to a pitcher's park. Nonetheless, Munro attracted quite a bit of attention from other teams' scouts, and in July 1998 he was traded, along with pitcher Jay Yennaco, to the Toronto organization for Mike Stanley. Munro split 1999 between Syracuse and Toronto, posting a 3.10 ERA in AAA but a 6.02 ERA in 55 major league innings.

7) David Gibralter, 1B, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1993 R/Fort Myers 177 271/332/401 3 11 34 1/1 1994 A/Sarasota 184 190/220/293 4 6 41 1/2 A/Utica 222 257/313/374 5 14 40 3/1 1995 A/Michigan 456 252/293/436 16 20 79 3/4 1996 A/Sarasota 452 285/339/454 12 30 101 8/7 1997 AA/Trenton 478 274/344/418 14 44 103 3/5 1998 AA/Trenton 385 260/312/418 15 25 91 2/3 1999 AA/Trenton 448 299/359/513 24 32 68 5/5

After three years in AA, Gibralter is clearly not part of the Sox' long-term plans. I believe he is a minor-league free agent this winter, but unless a change of scenery does wonders for him, Gibralter is unlikely to see the big leagues.

8) Sean DePaula, RHP, age 26

DePaula never signed with the Sox (perhaps to finish college), and did not play in 1993-95. He has been with the Cleveland organization since 1996, and in 1999 he hit the major leagues and impressed in his first 11.2 IP.

9) Dean Peterson, RHP, born 8/3/72, age 27

Peterson converted from a starter to a reliever in 1996, and put up respectable numbers in 1996 at Sarasota (62 IP, 3.05 ERA, 45 H, 58K, 21BB). 1997 was a step backwards for him, however, and he didn't pitch in 1998 or 1999, leading me to believe he has left the game.

10) Lou Merloni, 2B/SS/3B, born 4/6/71, age 29 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1993 R/Fort Myers 14 357/438/429 0 1 1 1/1 A/Ft Ldrdale 156 244/299/301 2 13 26 1/1 1994 A/Sarasota 419 286/345/341 1 36 57 5/2 1995 AA/Trenton 318 277/373/343 1 39 50 7/7 1996 AA/Trenton 95 232/330/411 3 9 18 0/2 R/Fort Myers 4 252/200/250 0 0 0 0/0 AAA/Pawtucket 115 252/328/330 1 10 20 0/1 1997 AA/Trenton 255 310/402/467 5 30 43 3/2 AAA/Pawtucket 165 297/368/448 5 15 20 0/2 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 88 386/518/716 8 16 13 2/2 R/Fort Myers 1 000/000/000 0 0 0 0/0 AL/Boston 96 281/343/375 1 7 20 1/0 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 229 279/383/441 7 30 38 1/1 AL/Boston 126 254/307/333 1 8 16 0/0

After a storybook 1998 for the Framingham Kid in which he went from non-prospect to major leaguer and even hit a key Fenway HR, 1999 was a return to earth. Merloni split the year between Boston and Pawtucket, and while he didn't play badly (and made the postseason roster), the romance came to a close (at least as Duquette saw the situation -- Merloni *still* got huge rounds of "Looooouuu!" every time he stepped to the plate, both in Boston and in spring training). Donnie Sadler's defensive abilities put him ahead of Merloni on the depth chart, and this winter Lou signed to play in Japan for 2000, although he may attempt to return to the major leagues in a year or two (as a free agent) if he does well in Japan.

11) Kurt Bogott, LHP, born 9/30/72, age 27

Bogott was drafted as a starter, but was converted by the Red Sox into a reliever in 1995, where he showed far more promise (3.03 ERA at Sarasota with a reasonable K:BB ratio). Bogott's Red Sox career came to an end when he was selected by the Blue Jays in the second round of the AAA phase of the Rule V Draft in December, 1995. In 1997 he split time between AAA and AA. In 1998 he only pitched six innings for A+ Dunedin, apparently because of injury, but he returned healthy in 1999 and pitched well at AAA for the Jays (8-6, 4.62, 76Ks in 85IP). At this point, Bogott has an outside chance to become another 1993 sox draftee to make it to the major leagues.

12) James Murphy, 2B, age 27

After putting up 248/318/307 numbers at Class A Lynchburg in 1994, Murphy appears to have left the game. He did steal 27 bases while being caught 19 times in 1994.

13) Wilfredo Rivera, RF/P

Rivera never got much playing time at any level in his pro career, and was never been much of a hitter for a shortstop, never mind a right fielder. So in 1996 the Michigan Battle Cats converted him into a pitcher, where he gave up a lot of hits, and walked more than he struck out. He appears to have left baseball at the end of 1996.

14) David Smith, 2B, age 28

Smith apparently had injury problems in 1994, when he got only 2 at-bats. He recovered in 1995 to play half a season, and showed some progress in 1996, especially in drawing more walks (250/376/363). But lacking any power and speed, his future did not hold much promise, and he apparently retired at the end of 1996.

15) Jake Cook, RHP, age 25

Cook reached high-A in his third year in baseball, but never displayed any particular dominance or control. After 85.1 IP in 1996 (100H, 44 BB, 49K, 5.38 ERA), he apparently left the game.

16) Andy Abad, 1B/LF, born 8/25/72, age 27 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1993 R/Fort Myers 230 248/322/317 1 25 27 2/2 1994 A/Sarasota 354 288/367/362 2 42 58 2/12 1995 AA/Trenton 287 240/328/352 4 36 58 5/7 A/Sarasota 59 288/354/339 0 6 13 4/3 1996 A/Sarasota 202 287/402/401 2 37 28 10/3 AA/Trenton 213 277/369/446 4 33 41 5/3 1997 AA/Trenton 165 303/423/527 8 33 27 2/4 AAA/Pawtucket 227 273/376/423 9 36 47 3/2 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 365 307/415/493 16 68 70 10/6 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 377 297/381/493 15 51 50 7/2

Abad hit quite well at Pawtucket in both 1998 and 1999, putting up an OPS around 900. His strengths are a high average and a lot of walks, and although he doesn't figure to be an impact player, he could become a quite serviceable backup player in the majors. Unfortunately for Andy, the Sox did not show any interest in giving him a major-league audition.

17) Greg Patton, SS/3B

Patton never hit very much from 1993-1996, despite drawing the occasional walk. After notching only 16 AB in 1997, it appears that he has left the game.

18) William McDonald, C

Apparently never signed with the Red Sox. Someone by that name played for the Cardinals' Class A team at Johnson City in 1994, hitting 246/346/397 in 199 AB, but he apparently left baseball after that season.

19) Courtney Arrollado, SS, age 25

After a mediocre 1994 at Fort Myers, he batted 261/331/319 at Butte, an independent team, in 1995. He showed no power, but decent baserunning skills. He played in the Royals organization in 1996, and was out of baseball by 1997.

20) Edward Westfall, RHP, apparently never signed. 21) John Graham, CF



Hit 276/338/374 at Class A Lynchburg in 1994, then apparently left the game.

22) Craig Phillip, RHP

Pitched 2 innings at Fort Lauderdale of the Gulf Coast League in 1994 then apparently left the game.

23) Mark Ballard, RHP, apparently never signed. 24) Gregory Kennedy, LHP



Played an undistinguished part of a season at Class A Lynchburg in 1994, then was apparently released, played very poorly at independent High Desert, and seems to have left the game following the 1994 season.

25) Shayne Bennett, RHP, born 4/10/72, age 28

Bennett was drafted as a reliever, and after the Sox briefly tried him as a starter in 1994 (with disastrous results), he went back to relieving. In that role, he dominated the low minors. Bennett was dealt on January 10, 1996 to Montreal, along with 1B Ryan McGuire (also drafted in 1993) and LHP Rheal Cormier, in order to bring 2B Wil Cordero and P Brian Eversgerd to Boston. Bennett broke into the majors in the latter part of 1997, and pitched rather well (22.2 IP, 21H, 9 BB, 8K, 3.18 ERA). In 1998 he did not fare as well, however, sporting a 5.50 ERA and surrendering 97 hits and 45 BB in 91.2 innings. In 1999 Bennett only managed 11 IP for Montreal with a 14.29 ERA, and his AAA ERA was 5.04, so his glory days may have already passed.

26) Christian McCarter, CF, apparently never signed. 27) Scotty Hartfield, CF, apparently never signed.

28) Steve Hayward, RHP



Pitched so-so (4.51 ERA) as a starter at Class A Lynchburg in 1994, and seems to have left the game after the season.

29) Jeffery Belcher, RF, apparently never signed. 30) James Larkin, 3B



Got only 7 AB at Class A Utica in 1994, and apparently left the game thereafter.

31) Aaron Fuller, LF, born 9/7/71, age 28

Fuller started his career strong, but then faltered dangerously with Trenton in 1995. The Red Sox sent him to Class A Visalia in some sort of "co-op" league where he straightened himself out, and then became a .300 hitter at Class A Sarasota in 1996. In 1997 he drew 95 walks and stole 40 bases, but in 1998 he was picked up by the Chicago Cubs organization, where he hit 295/421/442 in a demotion to A+ Daytona and then apparently left the game.

32) Nate Tebbs, 2B/SS, age 27 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1993 R/Fort Myers 146 260/329/301 0 15 16 7/1 1994 A/Utica 219 201/241/224 0 11 34 9/4 1995 A/Sarasota 440 291/351/357 2 39 80 25/15 1996 A/Sarasota 420 250/295/293 1 24 68 17/4 1997 A/Sarasota 375 261/309/355 5 27 65 15/9 AA/Trenton 16 313/389/313 0 2 1 0/1 1998 AA/Trenton 394 256/323/335 2 36 63 14/13 AAA/Pawtucket 57 281/317/316 0 3 13 5/2 1999 AA/Trenton 365 271/328/348 4 29 67 21/10

No longer a prospect. His best year was 1995, and he barely had a 700 OPS then.

33) Ricky Rodriguez, SS, apparently never signed. 34) Jamie Fernandes, RHP



Having split time between starting and relieving, Fernandes never found a role which suited him. He spent most of 1995 playing for independent Butte, and retired following that season.

35) John Walker, 2B

Advanced through three A-ball levels in 1994, but vanished from the map after that. He didn't get that many at-bats in '94, strangely, so maybe he had injury problems.

36) Gavin Jackson, SS, born 7/19/73, age 26 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1993 R/Fort Myers 160 313/405/381 0 14 18 11/5 1994 A/Sarasota 321 240/324/265 0 33 40 9/10 1995 A/Sarasota 342 266/349/327 0 40 43 11/12 1996 AA/Trenton 20 250/318/350 0 2 3 0/1 AAA/Pawtucket 44 250/298/295 0 3 8 0/1 A/Sarasota 276 239/332/301 0 33 47 4/6 1997 AA/Trenton 301 272/381/322 1 48 36 2/6 1998 AA/Trenton 168 244/314/298 0 18 21 3/1 AAA/Pawtucket 206 238/329/311 3 27 40 3/2 1999 AA/Trenton 71 211/374/225 0 15 12 2/1 AAA/Pawtucket 140 164/299/186 0 27 32 2/0

Ouch. A .200 slugging percentage is unlikely to get Gavin much farther.

37) Mark DeWalt, RHP

Pitched 14.2 innings of relief at Fort Myers in 1994, with a whopping 12.89 ERA, giving up 43 baserunners. I would guess the Sox gave up on him quickly, since he did not pitch in 1995.

38) Wayne Slater, CF, apparently never signed. 39) Tony Brannon, 2B



Brannon played partial seasons for Fort Myers in 1994 and Utica in 1995, and never hit much. He seems to have retired after the 1995 season.

40) Patrick McClendon, C, apparently never signed. 41) Danny Ardoin, C, age 24



Apparently Ardoin never signed with the Sox organization. He did not play in 1993 or 94, and signed with the Athletics organization in 1995. In 1998 he showed a sudden burst of power and batted 248/367/438 at AA Huntsville, followed by 253/364/375 at AAA Vancouver in 1999. It's hard to know if Oakland considers him a prospect, but he's getting AAA playing time (entierely) as a catcher at age 24 so it's possible he could reach the major leagues.

42) Chad Helmer, RHP, apparently never signed. 43) Eric Ford, RF



Hit 203/244/277 in 148 AB for class A Utica in 1994, and seems to have left the game following that season.

44) Kenneth Davis, LHP, apparently never signed. 45) Joseph Hayward, LF



After brief, so-so stays at Fort Wayne and Utica in 1993, Hayward signed with independent High Desert where his career fell still farther the next year. He seems to have left the game after 1994.

46) Scott Brewer, RHP, apparently never signed. 47) Alphonso Jordan, SS, apparently never signed.

48) Ricky Redd, LF, apparently never signed.

49) Michael Davis, RHP



Davis apparently never signed with the Red Sox organization, but a pitcher by the same name played for the Mets' A- team at Pittsfield in 1997, putting up a 3.34 ERA in 35 IP. He did not pitch in 1998 or 1999.

50) Christopher Ciraulo, C, apparently never signed.


Class of 1993, status after 1999: AL/Boston 2 (Nixon, Merloni) AAA/Pawtucket 3 AA/Trenton 1 A/Sarasota 0 A/Michigan 0 Out of Baseball 21 In Other Organizations Class A 3 Class AA 2 Class AAA 1 Majors 4 (Suppan, McGuire, Bennett, Munro) Unsigned 18 Percentage of 50 draftees signed: 64%
Percentage of 32 signed players retained: 19% Players Still with the Organization:

Pitchers: 0
Hitters: 6

Thoughts about the 1993 draft

Six players from the 1993 draft have now seen some time at the major league level: Trot Nixon, Lou Merloni, Jeff Suppan, Ryan McGuire, Shayne Bennett, and Peter Munro. Two other minor league players, Andy Abad and Danny Ardoin, still have a shot to make the majors someday. Of these players, none appear to be superstars; Trot Nixon and Jeff Suppan appear to have a good chance at long-term major league careers; and the jury is still out on some of the others. 2 solid players and 4 other players who at least touched the major leagues is a solid output from one draft. From the Sox perspective, it is also important to note that players from this draft were used to acquire players such as Wil Cordero and Mike Stanley.


Back to Red Sox Draft Page

Darcy Paquet/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified December 16, 1999

#13 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:28 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1994 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: December 21, 1999

Note: the text on this page is an amalgam of commentary from Michael Rawdon, Darcy Paquet, and Glenn Ellingson.


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000.
1) Nomar Garciaparra, SS, born 7/23/73, age 26

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 A/Sarasota 105 295/356/419 1 10 6 5/2 1995 AA/Trenton 513 267/338/384 8 50 42 35/12 1996 R/Fort Myers 14 286/375/571 0 14 21 0/0 AAA/Pawtucket 172 343/387/733 16 14 21 3/1 AL/Boston 87 241/272/471 4 14 21 5/0 1997 AL/Boston 684 306/342/534 30 35 92 22/9 1998 AL/Boston 604 323/362/584 35 33 62 12/6 1999 AL/Boston 532 357/418/603 27 51 39 14/3

Quite simply, Nomar Garciaparra is the best thing to happen to the Red Sox since Carl Yastrzemski. His career is on a HOF trajectory: he had an amazing rookie season and has improved every season since then. Even the departure of Vaughn's "protection" couldn't slow down Garciaparra. The only number not trending in the right direction is at bats, as small injuries have dented his playing time. Hopefully he will remain fairly healthy and continue to delight us for many more years.

2) No second round pick in 1994, due to the signing of free agent Otis Nixon. 3) Brian Rose, RHP, born 2/13/76, age 24

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1995 A/Michigan 21 20 136 3.44 127 31 105 5 1996 AA/Trenton 27 27 163.2 4.01 157 45 115 21 1997 AAA/Pawtucket 27 26 190.2 3.02 188 46 116 21 AL/Boston 1 1 3 12.00 5 2 3 0 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 6 6 17.2 7.64 24 4 17 5 AL/Boston 8 8 37.2 6.93 43 14 18 9 1999 AL/Boston 22 18 98 4.87 112 29 51 19

After winning the International League Pitcher of the Year award in 1997, an arm injury cost him almost all of 1998. He returned very strong early in 1999, but faded rapidly and was eventually demoted to Pawtucket, where he pitched sparingly (28 IP). 2000 will be Rose's chance to prove that his 1999 fade was only fatigue after missing 1998, rather than the league "figuring him out" the second time around. If he can stay healthy, Rose still has a lot of potential.

4) Robb Welch, RHP, age 24 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1995 A/Utica 12 12 65 5.68 76 39 35 1 1996 A/Lowell 14 14 81.1 5.09 85 37 63 7 1997 A/Michigan 26 26 153.2 4.22 142 80 158 8 1998 A/Sarasota 20 13 76 6.75 70 72 64 6

After a decent 1997, Welch developed some serious control problems in 1998, walking almost a batter per inning! He appears to have left the game after 1998.

5) Brian Barkley, LHP, born 12/8/75, age 24 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1994 R/Fort Myers 4 3 18.2 0.96 11 4 14 1 1995 A/Sarasota 24 24 146.2 3.25 147 37 70 5 1996 AA/Trenton 22 21 119.2 5.72 126 56 89 17 1997 AA/Trenton 29 29 178.2 4.94 208 79 121 18 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 23 23 139.1 4.91 161 50 88 22 AL/Boston 6 0 11 9.82 16 9 2 2 1999 A/Sarasota 1 0 3 0.00 2 1 2 0 AA/Trenton 7 7 35.1 2.55 32 6 18 2 AAA/Pawtucket 3 3 14 5.14 11 7 5 2

Although his stats at Pawtucket were overall not that impressive, Barkley pitched well in stretches and thus was called up for a short stint on the major league club in 1998. Barkley had only 10 starts in 1999 due to injury. He hasn't allowed fewer hits than IP since Rookie ball, he's never been particularly dominating, and he seems to have a problem with the home run. But he is a lefty, so if he returns healthy, anything can happen!

6) Joe Mamott, RHP

Mamott was a bit older than many of his peers in the Sox class of 1994, and struggled from the outset at Michigan and Utica in 1996, posting ERAs of 6.00 and above and struggling mightily with his control. He appears to have retired following that one year in pro ball.

7) Denis McLaughlin, RHP, age 27

After a somewhat respectable 1995 campaign pitching relief for Sarasota (66.1 IP, 57H, 46BB, 79SO, 3.26 ERA), McLaughlin was demoted to Michigan, where his ERA nearly doubled. In 1997 he pitched 9 innings for the Atlanta A+ Durham organization, and appears to have retired after that.

8) Steve Barnhardt, C

Had a decent OBP but only got 47 AB in 1994 at Fort Wayne. He seems to have retired after that.

9) Chris Allison, 2B, born 10/22/71, age 28

In 1995 Allison showed some promise as a slap-hitting second baseman with speed and patience. All of those traits seem to have vanished in 1996 at Trenton as he didn't hit, didn't walk much, and barely broke even in stolen base attempts. A demotion to Sarasota didn't produce any major improvement, and he apparently retired after the 1997 season.

10) Damian (Shon) Sapp, 1B, age 24 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 R/Fort Myers 50 180/339/380 1 9 16 1/0 1995 A/Utica 111 198/313/288 1 14 34 0/2 1996 A/Michigan 335 322/395/570 18 38 88 3/2 1997 DNP 1998 A/Sarasota 127 244/327/480 7 15 38 1/0 AA/Trenton 91 242/330/462 5 9 35 0/0 1999 A/Sarasota 289 197/326/377 13 44 102 0/0

Sapp had a tremendous season in Michigan in 1996, but injuries have been the story since then. He still draws walks and has some power, but he is making less and less contact, he's not moving up the minor league ladder, and he has moved from catcher to first base. He's probably on the verge of no longer being a prospect.

11) Donnie Sadler, SS/2B/CF, born 6/17/75, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 R/Fort Myers 206 272/349/383 1 23 27 32/8 1995 A/Michigan 438 283/397/438 9 79 85 41/13 1996 AA/Trenton 454 267/329/385 6 38 75 34/8 1997 AAA/Pawtucket 481 212/295/326 11 57 121 20/14 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 131 221/348/321 2 26 23 11/1 AL/Boston 124 226/276/395 3 6 28 4/0 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 172 291/361/424 1 16 36 4/2 AL/Boston 107 280/313/346 0 5 20 2/1

Sadler has proven himself to be a flexible and capable vaccuum cleaner in the middle infield and even in CF. He's also lightning-fast, although he never learned to steal bases (the Sox don't appear able to teach basestealing). These skills are enough to make Sadler a valuable utility player; he still needs to get on base more reliably before he'll be a valuable everyday player. At this point, though, it looks like Sadler is in the major leagues to stay for a while.

12) Antonio Santiago, LHP

Sanitago mastered the Gulf Coast League in 1994 and 95 at the tender age of 19, but had trouble in short season Utica in 1995. Still, he showed a certain raw talent (say, 24 Ks and only 3 BB in 25 innings at Fort Myers in 1995). Alas, he seems to have left pro baseball after the 1995 season.

13) Carl Pavano, RHP, born 1/8/76, age 24

Pavano battled through several shoulder and arm injuries to post some amazing numbers in the minor leagues, striking out 147 batters while walking only 34 in 161 innings in Pawtcket in 1997. He was voted the International League's best pitching prospect in that year. Pavano's Red Sox career came to an end in the days before the 1997 expansion draft, when he was traded along with Tony Armas, Jr. to the Expos for 1997 NL Cy Young Award Winner Pedro Martinez. To be traded for a player of Martinez' caliber is surely a tremendous compliment, and although Pavano was disappointed at being traded (being a New England native himself), his future in Montreal looks to be very bright. In 1998 Pavano posted a 4.21 ERA, giving up 130 hits in 134.2 innings while striking out 83 and walking 43. 1999 was not a good year for Pavano, as his ERA soarded to 5.63, but he is still a talented pitcher with a bright future.

14) Mike Jacobs, RHP, age 27

Jacobs showed some flair at Class A Utica in 1995, posting a 2.71 ERA in 86.1 IP and good control. He was then one of the players-to-be-named-later (along with OF Marc Lewis) in the Mike Stanton deal and went to Atlanta on August 31, 1995 in exchange for RHP Matt Murray. But the Sox laughed last as Jacobs struggled through a rough 1996 campaign in A-ball, being converted to a reliever, posting a 5.26 ERA and walking a lot of people. He apparently retired at the end of the 1996 season.

15) Matt Bazzani, C, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 R/Fort Myers 83 193/250/337 1 4 19 1/1 1995 A/Michigan 69 116/256/188 0 11 28 1/0 A/Utica 74 243/333/500 3 4 17 1/0 1996 R/Fort Myers 25 400/500/720 1 3 4 0/0 A/Sarasota 37 270/341/432 1 1 6 0/0 A/Bakersfield 69 203/282/333 2 7 21 0/0 1997 A/Sarasota 169 195/274/331 6 11 51 4/2 1998 A/Sarasota 5 200/200/600 0 0 3 0/0

I'm guessing that Bazzani has retired after a sub-.200 1997 and only 5 at-bats in 1998.

16) Chuck Malloy, RHP, born 3/1/72

Pitched well at Utica in 1994 (3.29 ERA), and again at Sarasota in 1995 (3.54 ERA). Didn't strike out an awful lot of people, but it was hard to argue with the results. Apparently Malloy disagreed, though, as he departed pro ball after the 1995 season.

17) Robert Moore, RHP, age 25

Apparently did not sign with the Sox. A "Bobby Moore" started pitching with the Rangers organization in 1995, posting so-so ERAs but impressive K:BB ratios in Class A-ball in 95 and 96. 1998 yielded a 5.23 ERA in 74 innings at A+ Charlotte, after which he apparently quit.

18) Michael Coleman, CF, age 24 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 R/Fort Myers 95 274/358/453 3 10 20 5/3 A/Utica 65 169/316/246 1 14 21 11/1 1995 A/Michigan 422 268/338/393 11 40 93 29/5 1996 A/Sarasota 407 246/320/327 1 38 86 24/5 1997 AA/Trenton 385 301/372/496 14 41 89 20/7 AAA/Pawtucket 113 319/391/619 7 12 27 4/2 AL/Boston 24 167/167/208 0 0 11 1/0 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 340 253/322/415 14 27 92 12/9 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 467 268/341/531 30 51 128 14/6

Coleman generated a great deal of excitement in 1997, rocketing through Trenton and Pawtucket to reach the majors in September. 1998 was a different story, however, as he started the season extremely weak and then battled a mid-season injury. He eventually began to hit again, and his overall numbers are respectable for a center fielder with excellent defense, but concerns were raised about his attitude and his commitment to hard work. Coleman appears to have gotten back on track in 1999, and will probably spend much of 2000 in Boston (I believe he's out of options). After the aquisition of Carl Everett, though, Coleman will have to fight for playing time. How he responds to playing sparingly may determine his future in Boston.

19) Tony DeRosso, OF-DH, age 24 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 R/Fort Myers 168 250/314/357 4 12 33 1/0 1995 A/Michigan 382 233/319/393 13 38 93 9/1 1996 A/Sarasota 416 257/317/428 14 31 84 15/2 1997 AA/Trenton 357 216/271/389 14 26 94 13/1 1998 R/Fort Myers 15 467/500/600 0 1 3 0/0 A/Sarasota 13 308/438/538 0 3 1 0/0 AA/Trenton 28 107/161/214 1 2 12 0/0 1999 A/Augusta 128 297/374/508 6 16 21 0/0

DeRosso has gone from 3B to OF to DH/1B, and he has not moved up in the system. No longer a prospect.

20) Bartt Carney, C

Apparently never signed with the Sox, and ended up in the Orioles organization by 1996, hitting moderately well (with a lot of walks) with their low A-ball teams. He hit 269/398/301 in 156 AB in AA ball in 1997, and did not play in 1998.

21) Christian Westcott, RHP

Pitched one inning for A/Utica in 1994, gave up one earned run, and then vanished.

22) Shawn Rogers, RF, apparently never signed. 23) Casey Child, CF, apparently never signed.

24) Bobby Butler, LHP



Pitched 46 innings at Fort Myers in 1995, putting up a 5.01 ERA as a swingman, and then apparently retired.

25) Marc Lewis, OF

Lewis began his career hitting well (325/354/457) at Fort Myers in 1994, but struggled in promotions to Lynchburg in 94, and Michigan in 95. He went back to short season Class A Utica in 1995 and got back on track hitting with decent power and stealing some bases. However, he ended up being a player to be named later in the Mike Stanton deal, and along with RHP Mike Jacobs went to the Atlanta Braves organization on August 31 1995 in exchange for RHP Matt Murray. He hit rather well through several levels of the Atlanta system, but in 1998 he ended up with the Twins organization and hit 293/328/462 at age 24 in AAA Salt Lake. He was demoted to AA in 1999 and hit 260/332/401, so his prospect days appear to be over.

26) Jayson Black, P

Struggled through a season and a half at Fort Myers in 1994 and 95 (ERAs over 4.00 both years), though he substantially improved his K:BB ratio. However, he seems to have left the game following the 1995 season.

27) Keith (Rawlin) Goodwin, OF, age 24

Goodwin made his way up to A- Michigan in 1996, hitting 273/343/361 in 238 AB, but slid considerably backwards in a demotion to Lowell in 1997. He appears to have retired following the 1997 season.

28) Torrance Miller, CF, apparently never signed. 29) Nathan Barns, OF, apparently never signed.

30) John McNeese, LHP



Apparently never signed with the Sox. A man with the same name played for the Cubs' class A Williamsport team in 1995, where he put up a very nice 1.86 ERA in 12 starts. However, he pitched only 14 mediocre innings in 1996, and appears to have retired thereafter.

31) David Elliott, CF

Apparently did not sign with the Sox, although a "Dave Elliott" played for the Brewers' farm teams in 1995-99. He hit 233/336/379 at age 25 for AA Huntsville in 1999.

32) Wayne Montgomery, RHP, apparently never signed. 33) John Raifstanger, 2B/OF, age 26

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1994 A/Sarasota 18 000/000/000 0 0 8 0/0 A/Utica 130 238/331/300 1 16 20 1/6 1995 A/Sarasota 326 270/342/353 2 34 63 6/1 1996 A/Michigan 345 290/398/388 5 62 48 5/4 1997 A/Sarasota 256 230/304/316 4 27 51 7/9 1998 A/Sarasota 145 255/391/421 4 33 37 4/3 AA/Trenton 44 159/260/273 1 6 13 0/0

Raifstanger spent parts of 4 years in Sarasota, and made it to AA for 44 AB in 1998, but apparently retired after that year.

34) David Maurer, LHP, age 25

Maurer did not sign with the Red Sox, electing instead to go to Oklahoma State. He played a summer (1996) at Cape Cod for the Orleans Cardinals and was subsequently drafted by San Diego. He has pitched well as a reliever for San Diego in A and AA ball (career 3.06 ERA), but given his age is a marginal prospect.

35) Derrick Lewis, RHP, apparently never signed. 36) Angel Diaz, C, apparently never signed.

37) Jack Koch, RHP, apparently never signed.

38) Joseph Robinson, SS, apparently never signed.

39) Timothy Palmer, C, apparently never signed.

40) Patrick Daneker, RHP.



Never signed with the Red Sox, but a Pat Daneker was drafted out of Virginia by the Chicago White Sox organization in 1997, and eventually made it up to pitch three games for the big league club in 1999. He is considered to be a pretty good prospect.

41) Jessie Thompson, CF, apparently never signed. 42) Kenneth Arnold, 3B, apparently never signed.

43) Dexter Battle, 1B, apparently never signed.

44) Michael Whitley, RHP, apparently never signed.

45) Rene Justiniano, RHP



Apparently did not sign with the Sox. He played for independent R/Butte in 1995, pitching 60 innings with a 7.50 ERA, and subsequently vanished.

46) Adam (Christopher) Kurek, C

Played part-time at Fort Myers, Utica and Michigan in 1994-95, and never hit much or showed any power. Seems to have left the game after 1995.

47) James Price, RHP, apparently never signed.

Class of 1994, status after 1997: AL/Boston 4 (also formerly Barkley) AAA/Pawtucket 1 AA/Trenton 0 A/Sarasota 1 Out of Baseball 13 In Other Organizations Major Leagues 1 Class AAA 1 Class A 3 Unsigned 22 Percentage of 46 draftees signed: 52%
Percentage of 24 signed players retained: 42% Players Still with the Organization:

Pitchers: 3 (30%)
Hitters: 7 (70%)

Thoughts about the 1994 draft

Nomar alone would make this a succcessful draft; but wait, there's more! Five other players from this draft have reached the major leagues: Brian Rose, Michael Coleman, Donnie Sadler, Brian Barkley, and Carl Pavano. Pavano, Rose, Coleman, and Sadler all have decent shots to be productive major league players, and odds are that one or two may yet become stars. And perhaps best of all: five of these six major-league players are still with the Sox, and the sixth was the primary player exchanged for some guy named Pedro Martinez. You simply cannot hope to have a better draft than this.


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Darcy Paquet/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified December 21, 1999

#14 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:29 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1995 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: December 23, 1999


Note: the text on this page is an amalgam of commentary from Michael Rawdon, Darcy Paquet, and Glenn Ellingson.


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000. 1) Andy Yount, RHP, age 23



Andy Yount showed a lot of promise when he was drafted, boasting a 95-97mph fastball and impressive numbers in high school. However, while attending the funeral of a close friend he had a freak accident -- he was holding a Coke bottle in his hand, and, in his grief, he didn't realize how tightly he was squeezing it. The bottle shattered, and severed the tendons in his hand. He had surgery, then reinjured his hand several times while attempting a comeback. Eventually the Red Sox decided that he was through, and they released him. However, in 1998 Yount signed with the Tigers and is currently trying to resurrect his career.

1a) Corey Jenkins, OF, age 23

Despite hitting a lot of home runs, Jenkins' performance with the Red Sox was a major disappointment. He showed little patience at the plate, and struck out far too often (in 1997, 28 BB and 129 K; in 1998, 25 BB and 109 K). After 252 AB of 175/250/254 ball at Sarasota in 1998, the Red Sox traded him to the Chicago White Sox for INF Chris Snopek. Jenkins was still underperforming in A ball for Chicago in 1999 (195/300/319), and was eventually released.

2) Jose Olmeda, 2B/SS, age 22

Olmeda moved slowly through the Red Sox system from 1995-1999, battling poor plate discipline to eventually make his way up to Sarasota in 1998. Midway through 1999, in his second year in high-A ball, he was traded to the Cleveland Indians organization for left-handed pitcher Mike Matthews.

3) Jay Yennaco, RHP, age 24

Although Yennaco put up somewhat mediocre numbers in his time with the Red Sox (career ERA 5.06, 553 hits in 489 innings), he showed consistency and made steady progress through the system. He arrived in Pawtucket partway through the 1998 season, but was subsequently traded to the Blue Jays, along with Peter Munro, for 1B-DH Mike Stanley. His 1999 performance for the Jays was in line with his career numbers: more hits than IP and a poor K/BB ratio.

4) Mike Spinelli, LHP, age 23

Spinelli has already had an interesting career in professional baseball. In one stint in Fort Myers (perhaps recovering from an injury?) in 1997, he gave up fifteen hits and twelve walks in 6.1 innings, but managed to strike out 15 batters in the 19 outs he recorded. Spinelli then missed most of 1997 and all of 1998, but returned to Sarasota in 1999 with the following results: Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 A/Sarasota 38 0 80.1 3.14 73 44 58 4 The missed time makes Spinelli a bit old for A ball, so he's probably a fringe prospect at best.

5) Steve Lomasney, C, age 22 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1995 R/Fort Myers 92 163/267/228 0 8 16 2/1 1996 A/Lowell 173 139/313/266 4 42 63 2/0 1997 A/Michigan 324 275/353/488 12 32 98 3/4 1998 A/Sarasota 443 239/348/442 22 59 145 13/4 1999 A/Sarasota 189 270/381/450 8 26 57 5/2 AA/Trenton 151 245/401/523 12 31 44 7/5 AL/Boston 2 000/000/000 0 0 2 0/0

Lomasney was considered the best catching prospect in an organization even before Sapp and Hillenbrand lost ground in 1999. A combination of youth, defense, power, athletic ability, and a little bit of patience at the plate make him a well-rounded, high-ceiling prospect. Reportedly he boasts excellent defensive skills. Lomasney also is highly thought of in the organization, and was given his first brief look at Boston in 1999. Hopefully he'll have many opportunities to improve on that 0-2, 2K performance in the future :-).

6) Matt Kinney, RHP, age 23

In 1998 Kinney continued to overpower the batters he faced but also continued to exhibit problems with control. In 121.1 innings at Sarasota he struck out 96 and allowed only 109 hits, but he also walked 75 batters. These kind of numbers are typical for his career. Kinney's Red Sox career ended in July 1998 when he was traded with John Barnes and Joe Thomas to Minnesota for LHP Greg Swindell and 1B-DH Orlando Merced. If Kinney can manage to control his pitches a little better he will be an excellent prospect, but this is true of many pitchers in the minors today...

7) Cole Liniak, 3B, age 23 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1995 R/Fort Myers 79 266/310/392 1 4 8 2/0 1996 A/Michigan 437 263/358/352 3 59 59 7/6 1997 A/Sarasota 217 336/402/493 6 22 31 1/2 AA/Trenton 200 280/338/365 2 17 29 0/1 1998 R/Fort Myers 8 000/111/000 0 0 1 0/0 AAA/Pawtucket 429 261/328/457 17 39 71 4/4 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 348 264/341/440 12 40 57 0/5 NL/Chicago 29 241/267/310 0 1 4 0/1

The Red Sox brain trust made their decision in 1999, cast their lot with Wilton Veras, and made Cole Liniak expendable. Liniak was traded late in the 1999 season to Chicago for Rod Beck and spent the rest of the year on the Cubs' major league roster. While Liniak's 1999 didn't show the kind of forward progress you hope for in young players, he will get a chance to take that step forward with the Cubs in 2000.

8) Luis Cardona, 1B/C

Cardona hit poorly at Fort Myers in 1995, and simply couldn't get his bat on the ball in 1996, hitting 133/154/200 in only 75 AB (without a single walk). In 1997 he had only seven at-bats for the Mets Rookie League team, and he seems to have retired after that.

9) Paxton Crawford, RHP, age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1995 R/Fort Myers 12 7 46 2.74 38 12 44 2 1996 A/Michigan 22 22 128.1 3.58 120 42 105 5 1997 A/Sarasota 12 11 65.1 4.55 69 27 56 6 1998 AA/Trenton 22 20 108 4.17 104 39 82 8 1999 AA/Trenton 28 28 163.1 4.08 151 59 111 12

Crawford is a very young pitcher who has been moving steadily through the system with a great deal of success. He consistently gives up less than a hit per inning, and keeps his walk totals down. Paxton attracted a lot of attention in the first half of 1998 for his at times dominating performance, but reportedly he was shut down in July by Duquette due to overwork (he was on a pace to pitch an incredible number of innings). He worked a full (and solid, if unexceptional) 1999 season at Trenton and figured to be in the Pawtucket rotation in 2000. While his numbers have not been as impressive as the Sox' top-level pitching prospects (Rose, Pena, Cho, Okha), Crawford certainly remains a solid prospect.

10) Kevie Austin, RHP

Austin was rather old for his league when he started, and didn't experience much success, posting a 5.87 ERA at Lowell in 1996. He appears to have retired at the end of that season.

11) Jeff Sauve, RHP

Suave was also an old pitcher for his league, and while he didn't allow many baserunners at Trenton in 1996, he posted a roughly league-average ERA of 4.09. He apparently retired at the end of the season.

12) Jim Chamblee, 2B, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1995 A/Utica 200 255/348/340 2 23 45 9/7 1996 A/Michigan 303 218/270/290 1 16 75 2/2 1997 A/Michigan 487 300/384/515 22 53 107 18/4 1998 AA/Trenton 489 241/343/425 17 62 144 9/5 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 464 274/350/487 24 43 126 5/3

Chamblee has now shown he can supply solid offense after three years of solid performance (cutting him a little slack for 1998 after he skipped Sarasota and had a tough adjustment to AA). But something must be missing because scouts are not high on Chamblee. He was left off the Sox' 40-man roster this winter and was passed over in the rule V draft. The problem may be his defense. Having already moved from SS to 2B, Chamblee is rumored to be switching to the OF next year (where his offense is less remarkable). Still, solid power and a decent batting eye make Chamblee an interesting prospect, and he will be only 25 in 2000. If his numbers jump like they did last time Chamblee repeated a league (1997 in Michigan), he will force people to take notice. Personally, I wonder if Chamblee would still be in the infield if the Sox did not need to find places for Veras and Eckstein to play.

13) Andy Noffke, RHP, age 27

Noffke pitched for two years in the Red Sox organization, struggling with his control and striking out fewer batters than he walked. He was old for his league, and he retired at the end of the 1996 season.

14) Andrew Beinbrink, 3B, apparently never signed. 15) Kevan Cannon, LHP, age 24

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1995 R/Fort Myers 5 3 26.2 0.68 14 9 38 1 A/Utica 9 9 61 3.39 59 23 51 2 1996 A/Michigan 37 0 73 2.59 70 21 72 0 A/Sarasota 2 0 1 0.00 1 0 3 0 1997 A/Sarasota 32 0 43.1 4.15 41 26 35 1 AA/Trenton 13 0 16 2.81 7 12 11 1 1998 A/Sarasota 44 0 57.1 4.08 57 26 60 3

These are respectable numbers, but Cannon apparently retired after 1998.

16) Rontrez Johnson, OF, age 23 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1995 R/Fort Myers 189 249/353/280 0 30 29 25/4 1996 R/Fort Myers 85 294/412/365 0 17 11 6/2 A/Lowell 135 222/323/341 4 21 30 7/3 1997 A/Michigan 411 241/355/331 5 65 96 29/12 1998 A/Michigan 306 271/402/402 5 66 46 24/8 1999 A/Sarasota 494 300/395/425 8 74 63 18/15

Johnson is your prototypical leadoff hitter: he draws a lot of walks and he is apparently fast, although again the Sox' inability to teach basestealing is evident in his success rate. At 23 he's still got some time to develop, and he is reputed to be excellent defensively. His 2000, presumably in Trenton, will be critical for his prospect status.

17) Bobby Rodgers, RHP, age 25

Rogers was quite successful in his debut at Lowell, posting a 1.90 ERA and a 108:31 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 90 innings. Although a bit old for his league, he looked to possess quite a bit of talent. In a puzzling offseason move, however, Dan Duquette traded him to the Marlins organization straight-up for no-hit little-field CF Jesus Tavarez. In 1998 Rodgers put up a 3.73 ERA and impressive H/IP totals at the AA level, but he pitched poorly repeating AA in 1999 (5.43, 217 baserunners in 122IP) and is probably no longer a strong prospect.

18) Felipe Roman, 1B/3B, age 22

Originally drafted as an outfielder, Roman moved to first base in 1996. He showed little power, however, and seemed incapable of taking a walk. He apparently retired at the end of the 1996 season.

19) Ben Stallings, RHP, age 22

Posted ERAs of 7.82 and 4.89 in his first two seasons at Fort Myers, and retired after the 1996 season.

20) Dwight Ferguson, OF, age 22

Ferguson seemed to lose his one major ability -- drawing walks -- when he returned to Rookie ball for his third season in 1997. He appears to have retired after that.

21) Curtis Romboli, LHP

Romboli improved many aspects of his game in 1997 in his second season at Michigan, allowing fewer hits and walks and cutting down on his ERA. He was quite old for his league, however(25), and he appears to have retired after 1997.

22) Pete Prodanov, 3B/OF, age 24

Prodonov played three years in the Red Sox organization, slumping heavily in his second season at Michigan in 1997 (184/288/340). He appears to have retired thereafter.

23) Chuck Lopez, OF, apparently never signed. 24) Chris Toomey, OF/RHP, apparently never signed.

25) Scott Jones, RHP, age 26



A relief pitcher who showed considerable control problems in 1995-96 with Michigan, Jones apparently retired after the 1996 season.

26) Mo Rojas, OF, age 23

Rojas never very well above short-season A ball in his time with the Red Sox. He left the Sox system after 1998; apparently KC gave him a short look, but after hitting .091 for them his career is probably over.

27) Juan Pena, RHP, age 23 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1995 R/Fort Myers 13 4 55.1 1.95 41 6 47 2 A/Sarasota 2 2 7.1 4.91 8 3 5 0 1996 A/Michigan 26 26 187.2 2.97 149 34 156 16 1997 A/Sarasota 13 13 91.1 2.96 67 23 88 8 AA/Trenton 16 14 97 4.73 98 31 79 13 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 24 23 139.2 4.38 141 51 146 17 1999 R/rookie ball 1 1 2.0 0.00 0 0 4 0 A/Sarasota 2 2 6.1 7.11 12 0 5 0 AAA/Pawtucket 10 10 48.0 4.13 44 13 61 8 AL/Boston 2 2 13.0 0.69 9 3 15 0

Pena is a very solid prospect who put up impressive numbers in 1998 as the youngest pitcher in the International League. He made it to Boston in 1999 and threw two gems before developing a "sore arm" that sent him back to rehab. Unfortunately he never got back to full health the rest of the year. Hopefully he will be back to full strength in 2000, as he has put up excellent numbers at a young age at every level. He is often skipped in "top prospects" lists, perhaps because his fastball is "only" in the low 90s. But with less than a hit per IP and a great K-BB ratio for his career, he sure looks good on paper! Incidentally, note the following stats for Pena:

Year Age starts BFP BFP/start (BFP = batters faced as a pitcher) 1996 19 26 743 28.58 1997 20 27 777 28.78 1998 21 23* 606 26.35 And the same for Rose: Year Age starts BFP BFP/start (BFP = batters faced as a pitcher) 1995 19 20* 561 28.05 1996 20 27 687 25.44 1997 21 26* 787 30.27 [* means the player also had 1 relief appearance that year]

The Sox appear to be working their good young arms VERY hard -- perhaps too hard. Pena missed half of 1999 with arm trouble, and Rose missed most of 1998. Former Sox prospect Carl Pavano has also had some "tendinitis" and other arm trouble. Safe workloads for young pitchers is still a topic of sometimes heated debate, but the Sox seem to be playing with fire.

28) Kaleb Harp, C, apparently never signed. 29) Bob Rauch, RHP



Rauch pitched 7 games in relief for Fort Myers in 1995, giving up a lot of baserunners and posting a 4.76 ERA. He seems to have left the game after that.

30) Mark Varriano, C

Varriano played at three levels in 1995 - Fort Myers, Utica and Sarasota - and didn't hit much at any level. He seems to have retired after the 1995 season.

31) Cliff Brand, RHP, apparently never signed. 32) Cordele Mincey, RHP, apparently never signed.

33) Matt Burch, RHP, apparently never signed.

34) Bart Vaughn, RHP, apparently never signed.

35) Nick Gruber, C, age 22



Seems to have retired after a total of 33 AB in two seasons at Fort Myers.

36) Derrick Lewis, RHP, apparently never signed. 37) Angel Diaz, C



Diaz was also selected by the Sox in the 1994 amateur draft, but nonetheless appears not to have signed with the organization.

38) Tim Boeth, SS, apparently never signed. 39) Jason Wilson, RHP, apparently never signed.

40) Jim Farrell, RHP, age 26

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1995 R/Fort Myers 1 1 6 1.50 2 1 3 1 A/Michigan 13 13 69 3.65 62 23 70 10 1996 A/Michigan 7 7 44 2.45 39 17 32 2 A/Sarasota 21 21 133.1 3.51 116 34 92 11 1997 AA/Trenton 26 26 162.2 4.37 173 57 110 24 AAA/Pawtucket 1 1 5 0.00 4 2 6 0 1998 AAA/Pawtucket 28 25 163.1 5.51 176 52 142 31 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 14 5 43 4.19 45 16 35 7 AA/Trenton 7 5 27 3.33 26 9 26 1

Good BB:K ratios, but when they hit the ball, it really flies... 87 HRs in his 4 1/2 year career. In many organizations he would still be starting at AAA working on keeping the ball in the park, but the Sox have lots of pitching prospects in the high minors right now... and Farrell is not at the top of the list.

41) Brian Messer, RHP, apparently never signed. 42) Juan Chaidez, C, age 22



Had two unimpressive seasons at Fort Myers and then appears to have retired after 1997.

43) Pat Burrell, 3B, never signed.

Unfortunately... Burrell elected to go to the University of Miami, where he put up monster numbers and was eventually selected by Philadelphia as the #1 pick overall in the 1998 draft. He hit 333/438/632 in AA in 1999. Oh well :-).

44) Bryan Wright, SS, apparently never signed. 45) Kris Brown, OF, apparently never signed.



Class of 1995, status after 1999: AL/Boston 1 (Pena) AAA/Pawtucket 2 (Farrell, Chamblee) AA/Trenton 2 (Lomasney, Crawford) A/Sarasota 1 (Spinelli) A/Michigan In Other Organizations Class A 2 Class AA 0 Class AAA 1 Majors 1 (Liniak) Out of Baseball 14 Unsigned 16 Other Organizations 5 Percentage of 46 draftees signed: 65%
Percentage of 30 signed players retained: 20% Players Still with the Organization:

Pitchers: 4 (40%)
Hitters: 2 (20%)

Thoughts about the 1995 draft

Although the first five picks in the 1995 draft resulted in virtually nothing for the Red Sox, the remaining picks have been quite productive: Liniak is in the majors after being traded for Rod Beck; Pena reached the majors with the Sox; and Lomasney is one of the Sox' top prospects. Paxton Crawford, Jim Chamblee, and Rontrez Johnson may also make the major leagues some day. Other draftees from 1995 have also provided fodder for trades to help the major league club: Matt Kinney, Jay Yennaco, Corey Jenkins, and Bobby Rodgers. None of these players have done a lot since they were traded, but thaen that's not our problem, is it :-)?

Another draftee who deserves special mention is Pat Burrell, who went to college and was eventually selected as the #1 pick in the 1998 draft. Presumably the Sox picked him knowing he intended to go to college; they took a shot at changing his mind, but didn't succeed.

All in all, this draft has pulled in some considerable talent, and at this early stage seems to be a qualified success.


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Darcy Paquet/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified December 23, 1999

#15 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:29 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1996 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: January 5, 2000
Note: the commentary on this page is provided by Robert Weeks.


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000.

1) Josh Garrett, RHP, South Spencer HS, Richland, IN, age 22

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 R/Fort Myers 7 5 27 1.67 22 5 17 0 1997 A/Michigan 22 22 138.2 4.80 164 35 64 13 1998 A/Sarasota 26 25 155.1 5.21 182 40 68 17 1999 A/Sarasota 26 26 149 4.59 189 50 95 9

Garrett has been a somewhat of a disappointment thus far considering he was a first round pick. His second season at Sarasota was a marginal improvement over his first. His "hits per innings pitched ratio" actually grew worse in 1999, although his "strike outs per innings pitched ratio" improved and he allowed fewer home runs. He may be promoted to Trenton in 2000, but maybe partially on the basis of his reputation as a first round pick. Still he is young enough that there remains hope for improvement.

1a) Christopher Reitsma, RHP, Calgary Christian HS, Calgary, age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 R/Fort Myers 7 6 32.2 1.35 24 1 32 0 1997 A/Michigan 9 9 49.2 2.90 57 13 41 4 1998 A/Sarasota 8 8 12.2 2.84 12 5 9 0 1999 A/Sarasota 19 19 96.1 5.61 116 31 79 11

Reitsma was considered a top prospect in the Red Sox organization until he injured his pitching elbow in 1997. In 1999, Reitsma finally had a healthy season. Although he pitched somewhat erratically in 1999, he was still considered a prospect by the Red Sox organization. However, because he was not added to the 40 man roster after the 1999 season, he was exposed in the Rule V draft and taken in the second round by Tampa Bay. He must remain with Tampa Bay for the entire 1999 season or else be offered back to the Red Sox. This situation bears monitoring.

2a) Jason Sekany, RHP, University of Virginia, age 24 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 R/Fort Myers 5 2 11.2 2.31 14 3 16 1 1997 A/Michigan 16 16 106 4.08 92 41 103 5 A/Sarasota 10 9 64.2 5.57 56 41 32 8 1998 AA/Trenton 28 28 148.2 5.21 151 57 113 21 1999 AA/Trenton 27 22 161.1 3.35 143 64 116 8 AAA/Pawtucket 1 1 5.2 4.76 6 4 1 2

In 1999 in his second year at Trenton, Sekany showed significant improvement. He was arguably the ace pitcher of a Trenton team that was one of the top minor league teams last year. His performance should earn him a promotion to Pawtucket in 2000. Hopefully he will have a solid year at Pawtucket in 2000 and will retain his prospect status.

2b) Gary Locurto, 1B/3B, University HS, San Diego CA, age 22 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1996 R/Fort Myers 137 314/401/460 4 18 44 5/4 1997 A/Michigan 419 236/337/329 4 63 93 8/5 1998 A/Michigan 188 186/300/229 0 31 52 1/3 1999 DNP

After a very disappointing 1998 season, Locurto was apparently released by the Red Sox organization.

3) Dernell Stenson 1B/LF, La Grange HS, GA, age 22 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1996 R/Fort Myers 97 216/358/330 2 16 26 4/3 1997 A/Michigan 471 291/400/469 15 72 105 6/4 1998 AA/Trenton 505 257/376/446 24 84 135 5/3 1999 AAA/Pawtucket 440 270/356/466 18 55 119 2/1 R/Fort Myers 23 217/308/478 2 3 5 0/0

Dernell Stenson is commonly recognized as a top prospect in the Red Sox organization. He was one of the youngest players in the International League in 1999, and after a slow start, more than held his own offensively. In 1999, the Red Sox organization shifted his position (ill-advisedly in this author's opinion) from LF to 1B, perhaps as a reaction to the departure of Mo Vaughn. He struggled defensively in his new position, committing 34 errors in 115 games. Because of his defensive lapses, Baseball America rated Stenson as the Red Sox #2 prospect for 2000 after being rated #1 in 1999. Over the winter Stenson played both RF and 1B in winter ball in the Dominican Republic. Baseball America reports that the Red Sox are considering moving him back to the outfield, where at least he performed decently prior to 1999. Because of the eventual expected elimination of the DH, it is imperative that the Red Sox find the position for Stenson where he is the most comfortable. At this point it seems to be back in the outfield. a 1B. It is expected that he will start the year 2000 at Pawtucket where the Red Sox hope he will show improvement at 1B. This author hopes he is returned back to LF where at least he performed decently in the field prior to 1999.

4) John Barnes, OF, Grossmont CC, CA, age 24

John Barnes was a decent prospect when he was traded in July 1998 along with pitchers Matt Kinney and Joe Thomas to Minnesota for LHRP Greg Swindell and 1B-DH Orlando Merced. This past year he hit 263/339/400 for the New Britain Rock Cats with 13HR and 10/2SB in his second year at AA. He now appears to be a marginal prospect.

5) Bobby Brito, C, Cypress HS, CA

Brito hit 252/281/339 in 115 AB at Fort Myers in 1996, and then apparently left the game.

6) Michael Perini, CF, Carlsbad HS, NM, age 22

After hitting 220/303/271 in his second season at Fort Myers, Perini apparently left the game.

7) Robert Ramsay, LHP, Washington State, age 26 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 R/Fort Myers 2 0 3.2 4.91 5 3 5 0 A/Sarasota 12 7 34 6.09 42 27 32 1 1997 A/Sarasota 23 22 135.2 4.78 134 63 115 16 1998 AA/Trenton 27 27 162.2 3.49 137 50 166 10 1999 AL/Seattle 6 3 18.1 6.38 23 9 11 3 AAA/Tacoma 5 5 33.1 1.08 20 14 37 2 AAA/Pawtucket 20 20 114.1 5.35 114 36 79 21

Ramsay was not able to follow up a strong performance at Trenton in 1998 with an equally strong performance after being promoted to Pawtucket. He was traded in July 1999 to Seattle for RH DH Butch Huskey. After pitching well at Tacoma, he was promoted to Seattle in August. He has an outside chance of making the Seattle club in 2000, but his most likely destination is Tacoma.

8) Justin Duchscherer, RHP, Coronado HS, Lubbock TX, age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 R/Fort Myers 13 8 54.2 3.13 52 14 45 0 1997 R/Fort Myers 10 8 44.2 1.81 34 17 59 0 A/Michigan 4 4 24 5.63 26 10 19 1 1998 A/Michigan 30 26 142.2 4.79 166 47 106 9 1999 A/Augusta 6 6 41.0 0.22 21 8 39 0 A/Sarasota 20 18 112.1 4.49 101 30 105 14

Duchscherer was absolutely overmatching opponents in 1999 at Augusta when he was promoted to Sarasota. He pitched well at Sarasota (starting at 5-2 2.82) before apparently tiring at Sarasota towards the end of the year. He is a definite prospect who likely will be promoted to Trenton in 2000.

9) Mark Martinez, LHP, Monterey HS, Lubbock, TX, age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 14 4 47.2 2.64 35 18 78 1 1998 DNP 1999 DNP

After an outstanding season in 1997 at Fort Myers, it is unclear as to what happened to Mark Martinez. Is he injured?

10) Shea Hillenbrand, C, Mesa CC, AZ, age 24 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1996 A/Lowell 279 315/371/416 2 18 32 4/3 1997 A/Michigan 224 290/315/415 3 9 20 1/3 A/Sarasota 220 295/320/377 2 7 29 9/8 1998 A/Michigan 498 349/383/546 19 19 49 13/7 1999 AA/Trenton 282 259/298/387 7 14 27 6/5

Hillenbrand was promoted from Michigan to Trenton in 1999, bypassing Sarasota and passing over Steve Lomasney in the process. However Hillenbrand was not able to replicate his 1998 success at Michigan at Trenton. His statistics all declined, and he still seems unable to take bases on balls. He had a season ending injury in 1999 and was removed from the 40 man roster. He has since signed a minor league contract and seems destined to start the year 2000 at Trenton. Meanwhile, Steve Lomasney has leapfrogged over Hillenbrand and seems destined to start the year at Pawtucket.

11) Brian Musgrave, LHP, Appalachian State, age 26 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 A/Lowell 2 0 5 0.00 4 2 7 0 1997 A/Michigan 15 11 78.2 5.61 96 17 51 11 1998 A/Sarasota 28 4 60 6.30 73 31 34 6 1999 DNP

Musgrove apparently retired in 1999.

12) Dion Ruecker, SS, Texas Tech, age 26

Ruecker apparently retired in 1999. Ruecker had a weak year at Lowell at age 24, and only managed 4 walks in 160 AB. He seems to have retired after that.

13) Skipp Benzing, RHP, Indian Hills CC, Iowa, age 23

In spite of high ERAs Benzing pitched rather well in his first two seasons of professional ball, allowing about a hit per inning with good strikeout totals. Perhaps he didn't agree, however, as he seems to have retired after 1997.

14) Justin Lynch, RHP, Marina HS, Huntington Beach CA, apparently has not signed. 15) Mark Robbins, 3B, Derby HS, KS, apparently has not signed.

16) Jeff Keaveney, 1B, U of Southern Maine, age 24

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1996 A/Lowell 169 249/323/408 4 10 65 1/1 1997 A/Lowell 191 204/283/377 7 18 58 0/0 1998 A/Michigan 373 252/372/437 15 65 104 0/2 1999 A/Augusta 78 205/326/397 4 10 31 0/0

Jeff Keaveny was apparently released by the Red Sox in 1999. He hooked on with the Waterbury Spirit in the Northern League, where he apparently suffered a skull fracture in a freak accident when his bat snapped at the handle.

17) Justin Crisafulli, RHP, Arizona Western JC, apparently has not signed. 18) Michael McKinley, CF, Scottsdale CC, AZ, age 25



Struggled at Lowell in 1996, moved back to Fort Myers in 1997 and seems to have retired thereafter.

19) Michael Rupp, RHP, Monte Vista HS, Spring Valley CA, age 22. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 11 9 59 1.22 51 17 56 0 A/Lowell 2 2 12.2 3.55 8 3 10 1 1998 A/Michigan 11 11 48.1 5.03 51 30 48 2 1999 A/Lowell 18 8 57.1 5.81 72 33 48 2

Michael struggled at Lowell in 1999. His outlook does not look good.

20) Chuck Beale, RHP, Stetson U, age 26 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 A/Lowell 28 0 29 1.24 16 7 33 1 1997 A/Michigan 39 9 89.1 3.73 111 17 86 5 1998 AA/Trenton 43 0 69 3.26 54 31 39 9 1999 AA/Trenton 29 1 59 5.95 71 36 41 6

Beale repeated 1999 at Trenton and also seems to have regressed.

21) Javier Fuentes, 3B, Arizona State, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1996 A/Lowell 157 287/378/376 2 21 23 2/1 1997 A/Michigan 77 169/273/208 0 7 18 1/1 A/Sarasota 147 286/344/395 2 12 19 4/6 1998 A/Sarasota 251 275/385/386 4 38 38 1/2 1999 A/Augusta 130 254/376/323 1 22 13 6/1 A/Sarasota 176 290/413/313 0 33 17 6/1

He posted a modest improvement at Sarasota in 1999 over 1998. He does seem to be able to take walks well. However, given his age, his status as a prospect is doubtful.

22) Aaron Harang, RHP, Patrick Henry HS, San Diego CA, apparently has not signed. 23) Paul McCurtain, RHP, Mesa CC, AZ, apparently has not signed.

24) Robert Brandt, RHP, A&M Consolidated HS, College Station TX, apparently has not signed.

25) Dominic Barrett, CF, Trimble Tech HS, Fort Worth TX, apparently has not signed.

26) Chris Thompson, RHP, St. Leo, FL, age 27

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1996 A/Lowell 25 0 47 4.40 43 20 51 2 1997 A/Michigan 8 0 15.2 1.15 11 1 13 1 A/Sarasota 29 6 61 3.69 68 35 40 6 1998 A/Sarasota 30 0 45.1 3.18 48 17 28 1 AAA/Pawtucket 2 0 3 3.00 3 1 3 1 1999 AA/Trenton 1 0 1 9.00 2 1 1 0 A/Sarasota 28 2 43.1 5.61 48 22 41 3

Another player who regressed at the same level in 1999.

27) Ryan Murray, RHP, Tampa Bay Tech HS, FL, apparently has not signed. 28) Erik Metzger, C, Samford Univ, age 24



Hit 195/282/297 at Lowell in 1997, and seems to have retired after that.

29) Joshua Stewart, LHP, Livingston Central HS, Ledbetter KY, apparently has not signed. 30) William Whitaker, LHP, First Coast HS, Jacksonville FL, apparently has not signed.

31) Matthew Frick, C, Yavapai JC, AZ, apparently has not signed.

32) Michael Bynum, LHP, Middleburg HS, FL



Michael Bynum appears to be one who slipped away. He was drafted by the San Diego Padres as the fifth of their six first and supplemental round selections in 1999. He got off to a phenomenal start with a string of 27 consecutive scoreless innings to open his pro career. Basebal America rated Michael as the Padres #4 prospect entering 2000. 33) Adam Roller, RHP, Lakeland HS, FL, age 22. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 10 0 17 3.18 7 14 21 0 1998 R/Fort Myers 15 2 39 4.85 51 22 27 3 1999 A/Lowell 23 0 39 2.54 30 29 41 1 A/Sarasota 1 0 2.2 16.88 5 2 2 1

A modest improvement in 1999, although control is a concern. He was old for his league and needs to begin to show improvement at higher levels in order to be considered a prospect.

34) Jaime Bonilla, LHP, Lake City CC, FL, apparently has not signed. 35) Kasey Kuhlmeyer, LHP, San Pasqual HS, Escondido CA, apparently has not signed.

36) Kenneth Sarna, SS, Durango HS, Las Vegas NV, apparently has not signed.

37) Jeremy Swindell, LHP, Clear Lake HS, Houston TX, apparently has not signed.

38) Travis McRoberts, SS, El Capitan HS, El Cajon CA, apparently has not signed.

39) Jessie (Andre) Thompson, RF, Delta State.



Appears to have retired after a 168/226/280 season at Lowell in '96.

40) Curtis Anthony, SS, Bishop Gorman HS, Las Vegas NV, apparently has not signed. 41) No selection in this round.

42) Wesley Warren, OF, Arcadia HS, Scottsdale AZ, apparently has not signed.

43) Jamaon Halbig, C, Southwestern JC, CA, apparently has not signed.

44) Barton Vaughn, RHP, Manatee JC, FL, apparently has not signed.



Class of 1996, status after 1998: AAA/Pawtucket 3 AA/Trenton 3 A/Sarasota 5 A/Augusta 1 A-/Lowell 1 Traded 2 Unclear 1 Out of baseball 7 Unsigned 22 Percentage of 45 draftees signed: 51%
Percentage of 23 signed players retained: 69% Players Still with the Organization:

Pitchers: 8 (67%)
Hitters: 4 (33%)

Thoughts about the 1996 draft

The 1996 draft has produced our top prospect at this time, Dernell Stenson. Stenson should see some time in the major leagues in 2000, and should be promoted for good in 2001. Robert Ramsay was the first prospect in this draft to make the major leagues; how long he will stay in the major leagues remains questionable. Jason Sekany and Justin Dushscherer had solid seasons in 1999. Hopefully both will build on their successes at the next level in 2000. Josh Garrett and Shea Hillenbrand are both possibilities. Chris Reitsma remains a prospect who hopefully will return to the Red Sox after being taken by Tampa Bay in the Rule V draft.

This draft may be an acceptible draft if Stenson develops into a star, or if one other player from this draft develops into a solid major league player. It is disappointing that the two number one picks in this draft have not progressed as much as we might have hoped.

Please forward any corrections or observations to my email address below. I will attempt to update this page in a timely manner.


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Robert Weeks/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified January 5, 2000

#16 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:29 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1997 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: January 2, 2000


Note: the text on this page is an amalgam of commentary from Darcy Paquet and Glenn Ellingson (mostly Glenn).


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000. 1) John Curtice, LHP, Great Bridge HS, VA, age 20

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 4 3 11.1 0.79 6 5 11 0 1998 A/Michigan 25 25 133.2 3.37 96 79 146 7 1999 R/Fort Myers 8 6 14.2 7.36 16 12 19 1

After a fanstastic 1998, Curtice showed up to spring training in 1999 overweight and apparently nursing an arm injury of some sort. While he wasn't overworked as badly as some Sox prospects were (I don't have BFP #s for 1998, but he recorded 576 outs+h+bb for 23.04/start), he was only 18 and apparently not in the best physical condition. Hopefully he can rebound, keep himself healthy, and return to the dominance he showed in 1998. He still has plenty of time to get back on track.

1a) Mark Fischer, OF, Georgia Tech, age 24 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 A/Lowell 179 330/389/508 5 15 38 13/2 1998 R/Fort Myers 26 192/300/423 2 4 8 2/0 A/Michigan 379 253/317/377 8 36 93 9/6 1999 A/Sarasota 359 253/308/351 5 28 85 11/6

Oh well; you can't get a Nomar out of every Georgia Tech pick... Fischer hasn't shown much, and at age 23 in A ball, he's a bit old.

2) Aaron Capista, SS, Joliet Catholic HS, IL, age 21 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 R/Fort Myers 134 239/316/299 0 16 17 6/2 1998 A/Michigan 471 261/300/367 5 23 47 5/3 1999 A/Sarasota 518 264/325/340 5 45 50 25/10

Capista is young, and is considered a prospect despite never having reached a 700 OPS in his career. He will probably play in Trenton in 2000; hopefully he develops some batting average, patience, and/or power there...

2a) Eric Glaser, RHP, Highlands HS, KY, age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 7 6 22.2 3.97 29 5 22 0 1998 R/Fort Myers 15 1 32.1 4.18 28 12 29 3 1999 A/Lowell 14 14 78.2 3.43 65 26 82 7 A/Augusta 1 1 5 0.00 2 1 7 0

A very nice short-season at Lowell, but you have to wonder why a second-round pick was still playing in a short-season league in his third year as a pro. He is still very young, so if he can repeat this at a higher level he could be a prospect. I am hopeful, if sceptical. At least he is starting now so he can get some innings.

3) Travis Harper, RHP, James Madison Univ, VA

After signing him in 1997, the Red Sox claimed he was injured and then voided his contract. In July 1998 he was signed to a minor-league contract by the Devil Rays, and he went on to A- Hudson Valley to strike out 81 batters in 56 innings, allowing only 38 hits. He continued to pitch well for the Rays (A/AA) in 1999. Ouch.

4) Angel (Ramon) Santos, INF (2B/SS/3B), Miguel Mlndz. Sup. HS, IL, age 20 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 R/Fort Myers 60 183/261/200 0 7 11 8/3 1998 R/Fort Myers 77 351/435/442 0 13 10 7/3 1999 A/Augusta 466 270/360/440 15 62 88 25/10

Another 1997 draftee on the slow track, but an 800 OPS is a very good showing for a 19 year old. Power and patience is a good combination. He split his playing time nearly evenly between the three infield positions, which means he probably won't end up as a shortstop.

5) Gregory Miller, LHP, Aurora West HS, IL, age 20 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 4 4 9.2 3.72 8 6 6 0 1998 R/Fort Myers 11 7 43.1 2.49 33 18 47 3 1999 A/Augusta 25 25 136.2 3.10 109 56 146 8

Why is everyone from the 1997 draft spending 1.5-2 years in rookie ball? At least he wasn't overworked :-). Miller was traded (along with Adam Everett) to Houston for Carl Everett in December 1999. Frankly, Miller's numbers look fantastic but Rob Neyer dismissed him as "left-handed pitcher of no particular promise" when he mentioned the Everett/Everett deal in a recent column. Maybe Miller throws 75 MPH and only strikes people out 'cause they are laughing so hard they can't swing, or something... in any case, it's Houston's problem now.

6) Kristopher Wilken, C, Eldorado HS, NM, apparently never signed. 7) Jeff Taglienti, RHP, Tufts University, MA, age 24

Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 A/Lowell 17 4 36.2 4.91 30 13 34 2 1998 A/Michigan 57 0 76.1 1.89 54 17 111 0 1999 A/Sarasota 14 0 30.0 3.00 26 12 27 1 AA/Trenton 10 0 19.1 2.79 9 5 17 2

Well he didn't repeat that unbelieveable 1998, but he did pitch well at high A and AA in 1999. Usually the top prospects are starters in the minors so that they get more innings to learn, which Taglienti has never been. But Taglienti's 1998 was *so* good that he still lingers on the "prospect" radar screen...

8) Andy Hazlett, LHP, Univ. of Portland, OR, age 24 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 A/Lowell 19 3 50.1 1.61 44 7 66 1 A/Michigan 2 2 12 5.25 15 1 12 2 1998 A/Sarasota 30 22 160.2 3.19 154 25 135 4 1999 AA/Trenton 27 26 164.1 4.16 155 41 123 15

Another example of some outstanding pitching. Most notable is Hazlett's control. He should be pitching in Pawtucket in 2000.

9) Justin Wayne, RHP, Punahou HS, HI, apparently never signed. 10) Marty McCleary, RHP, Mt. Vernon Nazrene, OH, age 24



Pitched ~80 innings of decent ball at Augusta in 1999 before being called up to Sarasota, where he struggled. In December 1999 he was chosen in the Rule 5 Draft by Montreal.

11) Tom Miller, LHP, Ohio University, age 24 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 1 0 1.1 6.75 2 2 3 0 A/Lowell 24 0 39 2.77 38 20 42 2 1998 A/Michigan 11 0 17 6.35 28 7 10 2 A/Lowell 16 6 49.2 3.81 51 20 57 1 1999 DNP

Miller did not play in 1999, perhaps having retired.

12) William Rich, OF, Univ. of CT, apparently never signed.

Never signed with the Red Sox, but apparently signed with the Baltimore the next year. He hit 271/361/422 at A- in 1998 and 251/337/376 at A Michigan in 1999.

13) Chaz Terni, 3B, Montville HS, CT, age 21 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 R/Fort Myers 76 184/262/224 0 7 23 2/0 1998 R/Fort Myers 63 317/378/413 0 8 12 1/0 A/Lowell 165 255/317/364 3 12 38 2/1 1999 A/Augusta 123 179/246/293 1 9 36 1/1 A/Augusta 119 202/276/269 0 10 35 1/2

Not making progress.

14) Chad Alevras, C, University of New Mexico, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 A/Lowell 55 145/288/236 1 10 13 1/1 1998 A/Michigan 281 249/320/381 7 27 70 1/1 1999 A/Sarasota 7 143/143/571 1 0 0 0/0 A/Augusta 17 294/368/353 0 2 6 0/0

I'm not sure what happened to Alevras in 1999, but it probably finished his career. At age 25, he's unlikely to get many (any?) more chances.

15) Rick O'Dette, LHP, St. Joseph's, PA, age 24 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 R/Fort Myers 3 0 8 2.25 6 1 6 0 A/Lowell 13 10 59.2 3.47 64 28 61 1 1998 A/Michigan 1 1 2 9.00 0 6 2 0 A/Lowell 9 1 16.2 11.34 14 32 16 1

38 walks in 18.2 innings? Now those are what I call control problems. Sure enough, O'Dette wasn't pitching professionally in 1999.

16) Jorge DeLeon, 2B, University of South Florida, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 A/Lowell 12 333/333/333 0 0 0 0/0 A/Michigan 59 271/258/322 0 0 19 2/0 1998 A/Michigan 185 265/317/351 2 15 19 4/0 AA/Trenton 86 291/330/371 0 5 3 2/1 1999 A/Sarasota 219 274/346/356 1 24 33 3/2

Too old to be putting up a 700 ops in A ball.

17) Kenny Rayborn, RHP, Univ. of South Alabama, age 25 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 A/Lowell 11 7 46 2.74 39 15 35 0 1998 A/Michigan 17 8 49.1 4.56 62 13 34 5

Apparently retired after 1998.

18) Danny Haas, OF, University of Louisville, KY, age 24 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 A/Lowell 28 179/258/286 0 2 8 3/0 1998 A/Michigan 299 234/296/318 3 22 55 1/2 1999 A/Sarasota 241 241/317/315 0 22 54 4/3

Well, he's consistent.

19) David Eckstein, 2B, University of Florida, age 25 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1997 A/Lowell 249 301/407/426 4 33 29 21/5 1998 A/Sarasota 503 306/428/398 3 87 51 45/16 1999 AA/Trenton 483 313/440/416 6 89 48 32/13

Three straight years of a .400+ OBP has pushed Eckstein up into solid prospect status. He'll play in Pawtucket this year (displacing Jim Chamblee from 2B there), and if he plays well he may force himself onto a major-league roster -- although probably not Boston's. He's actually quite a bit like a minor league version of the player Boston already has (Jose Offerman) - a decent if not great defensive second baseman and a top-notch leadoff hitter. Still, Eckstein provides both depth and trade material. He's also said to be a really nice guy...

20) Brian Partenheimer, LHP, Indiana University, age 25p> Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1997 A/Lowell 5 0 13.1 0.68 9 1 11 0 A/Michigan 17 0 21.2 6.65 32 9 16 1 1998 A/Michigan 60 0 82 3.62 79 21 61 5 1999 A/Sarasota 17 0 30 1.80 26 3 28 3 A/Brev City 21 0 44 2.25 29 14 29 1

Partenheimer has been quite good; unfortunately, he's now in the Florida Marlins system.

21) Joe Thomas, LHP, Marietta College, age 25

Joe Thomas pitched quite well in the year and a half he played for the Red Sox organization, giving up very few hits with decent strikeout numbers. He must have caught someone's eye, for in July 1998 he was traded, along with OF John Barnes and P Matt Kinney, to Minnesota for relief pitcher Greg Swindell and 1B-DH Orlando Merced. Thomas was hurt in 1999, and did not play.

22) Derek Rix, INF, Florida Community College, age 21 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 R/Fort Myers 152 283/362/546 8 19 48 2/0 1999 DNP

Signed as a draft-and-follow in June 1998, Rix went on to put up fantastic power numbers for an infielder in his first season at Fort Myers. Unfortunately, he was hurt in 1999 and did not play.

23) Nate Bump, RHP, Penn. St. Univ., age 22

Never signed with the Red Sox, but went on to play with the San Francisco organization in 1998; they traded him to Florida during the 1999 season.

24) Jason Fingers, RHP, Central Arizona Community College

Didn't sign in 1997, was drafted again by the Sox in 1998 in the 41st round, but apparently didn't sign then either. This is the son of Rollie Fingers, the well-known relief pitcher.

25) Christopher Domurat, C, Sandwich HS, apparently never signed 26) Heath McMurray, RHP, Splendora HS, apparently never signed

27) Justin Fry, RHP, Ohio St. Univ., apparently never signed

28) David Stickel, INF, Temple Hts, FL, apparently never signed

29) Ryan Yeagher, INF, Port St. Joe HS, apparently never signed

30) Bret Prinz, RHP, Phoenix Coll., AZ, apparently never signed



Didn't sign with the Red Sox, but played for the Diamondbacks in 1998, putting up a 3.09 ERA and OK numbers for R+ Lethbridge.

31) Matthew Kamalsky, RHP, Somerset, PA, apparently never signed 32) Robert Hardy, RHP, Countryside HS, apparently never signed

33) Patrick Santoro, 2B, Fenwick HS, IL., age 21.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A/Lowell 190 247/336/379 2 26 54 4/0 1999 R/Fort Myers 23 174/240/348 1 2 6 0/1

Injury limited Santoro to only 23 at-bats this year, but he looks to return healthy in 2000.

34) Layne Meyer, RHP, Polk CC, FL, apparently never signed 35) Jason Berni, RHP, Rancho Bern. HS, apparently never signed

36) Ryan Atkinson, RHP, Bellarmine Col., apparently never signed

37) Donovan Marbury, RHP, U. of S. Miss., apparently never signed

38) Dennis Tankersley, RHP, St. Charles HS



Tankersley did not sign in 1997, however he was subsequently drafted in 1998 and signed as a draft-and-follow. See the 1998 draft page.

39) Shawn Weaver, RHP, Bald Eagle Nitt. HS, apparently never signed 40) Chad Zuacha, OF, Mt. Pleasant HS, PA, apparently never signed

41) Matthew Slagter, RHP, Jeff. HS, FL, apparently never signed

42) Scott Candelaria, INF, La Cueva HS, apparently never signed

43) Nicholas Gray, INF, Florida HS, FL, apparently never signed

44) Todd Smith, INF, Apopka HS, FL, apparently never signed

45) Joseph Thurston, INF, Vallejo HS, CA, apparently never signed



Class of 1997, status after 1999: AA/Trenton 3 (Eckstein, Taglienti, Hazlett) A/Sarasota 4 A/Augusta 3 A/Lowell (Short Season) 1 R/Fort Myers 2 Other organizations: A 3 Out of baseball 6 Unsigned 25 Percentage of 47 draftees signed: 47%
Percentage of signed players retained: 86% Players Still with the Organization:

Pitchers: 4
Hitters: 9

Thoughts about the 1997 draft

The strongest prospects at this stage are those that have demonstrated some success in the high minors, which means Eckstein, Hazlett, and Taglienti. Eckstein extended his solid track record up to AA ball and made himself a solid prospect very likely to be a capable major-league leadoff hitter. Hazlett did the same as a starting pitcher; while he may or may not become a major-league starter, as a lefty he's almost certain to get the chance to pitch in the majors in some capacity. Taglienti blasted into prospect status in 1998; he didn't continue that level of performance, but he was solid at AA and is still a prospect. Curtice is another pitcher who was spectacular in 1998; some called him the Sox' top pitching prospect after that one year. Unfortunately, injury wiped out his 1999. Capista, Glaser, and Santos are others to keep an eye on. All in all, a decent draft, although many of the prospects still have a lot of development to do.


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Darcy Paquet/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified January 2, 2000

#17 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:29 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1998 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: January 2, 2000


Note: the text on this page is an amalgam of commentary from Darcy Paquet and Glenn Ellingson (mostly Glenn).


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000.
1) Adam Everett, SS, age 23.



Everett has been compared by a lot of scouts to Nomar Garciaparra, both for his frame and his superior defense. He was considered to be the best college defensive player in the 1998 draft, and he hit quite well in 1999 (263/356/385) considering his quick jump to Trenton. Adam Everett's Red Sox career ended earlier this month (12/99) when he was traded to Houston (along with P Greg Miller) for CF Carl Everett (no relation).

2) No second round pick (compensation for the signing of Dennis Eckersley) 3) Mike Maroth, LHP, age 22.



Maroth put up decent but unspectacular numbers in his time with the Red Sox organization, sporting a 91 mph fastball and an above-average breaking ball. He is also already the second ex-Sox of this draft, having been dealt to the Detroit Tigers in summer 1999 for relief pitcher Bryce Florie.

4) Jerome Gamble, RHP, age 20. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 R/Fort Myers 11 6 42.2 4.43 33 19 49 4 1999 A-/Lowell 5 5 25.2 1.75 18 9 37 1

Gamble started 1999 in great shape, dominating at short-A Lowell. Unfortunately, he then suffered a stress fracture in his elbow which shut him down for the rest of the year, and possibly beyond. This is the same injury which sidetracked pitcher Chris Reitsma for two years.

5) Josh Hancock, RHP, age 22. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 R/Fort Myers 5 1 13.1 3.38 9 3 21 1 A-/Lowell 1 1 4 2.25 5 4 4 0 A/Augusta 25 25 139.2 3.80 154 46 106 12

Lots of hits allowed, but a decent K:BB ratio. Definitely has potential.

6) Rick Riccobono, RHP, age 20. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 A-/Lowell 15 14 77.1 5.24 93 30 54 4

Riccobono did not play in 1998, as we wasn't signed until somewhat late. Before the draft, Boston offered him a $250,000 signing bonus as a third round pick, which he refused. Concerns about signability dropped him to 6th. The Sox later shelled out a record bonus for a sixth round pick to sign him. Supposedly has a 93-mph fastball, but was far from overpowering this year at Lowell. Still young with plenty of time to harness that heat.

7) Syketo Anderson, 2B, age 21.

Elected to attend junior college rather than sign with the Red Sox. He was selected in the 13th round by the Cubs in the 1999 draft and hit 295/324/417 for them in rookie ball.

8) Fredrick William Silverthorn, LHP, age 21.

After 44.2 innings of mediocre pitching 1n 1998 at Rookie ball, Silverthorn was traded to Tampa Bay for RHP Julio Santana. He did not pitch in 1999.

9) Mark Texiera, 3B, did not sign.

The Yankees and Red Sox reportedly offered him $1.5 million before the draft, but he refused it. Concerns about signability meant he dropped to #9. Represented by Scott Boras.

10) Leonardo Dinardo, LHP, apparently did not sign. 11) Carlos Rodriguez, OF, age 23.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 R/Fort Myers 197 325/367/538 8 11 37 14/3 1999 A/Augusta 119 193/262/336 3 8 41 1/2 A-/Lowell 228 250/296/509 12 13 66 17/3

Rodriguez really smacked the ball in the rookie league, failed in a promotion to Augusta, and then hit decently again when demoted to Lowell. He was fairly old for Lowell (as he was for rookie ball the year before) and he has never showed much patience, so he does not look like a really strong prospect. Still, he has slugged .500 at a couple of levels and shown some speed, so he's worth watching.

12) David Benham, C/1B, age 24.

After a strong start Benham jumped quickly to Sarasota in 1998 and was not completely overmatched in 131 AB (275/326/412). His appearances at 1B may be an indication that he was not defensively adequate behind the plate. After a weaker performance in 1999 he was traded midseason along with LHP Mike Matthews to St. Louis for pitcher Kent Mercker.

13) Michael Rabelo, C, did not sign.

Elected to take an $80,000 scholarship with UT, after the Red Sox refused to match it.

14) Matt Phillips, RHP, age 24. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 A-/Lowell 15 14 72.2 4.21 81 27 57 3 1999 A/Augusta 39 1 73.2 4.76 85 23 69 7

Very hittable. Does register enough strikeouts to suggest a live arm; maybe he needs another pitch or something. But he probably doesn't have much time left to develop one...

15) Lance Surridge, RHP, age 22. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 A/Michigan 18 8 64.0 2.81 59 27 43 2 1999 A/Augusta 37 10 106.1 3.05 102 38 88 3

Surridge started right in at Michigan and pitched quite well. For some reason that performance did not earn him a promotion. He pitched well again in 1999; presumably he will get a shot at Sarasota in 2000?

16) Jason Norton, RHP, age 24. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 R/Fort Myers 3 0 6.0 1.50 2 1 9 1 A/Lowell 6 4 25.1 4.62 22 7 33 1 A/Michigan 7 7 42.0 1.93 34 12 36 1 1999 A/Augusta 30 17 136.0 2.32 106 28 150 11

Again, an excellent 1998 but no promotion above mid-A ball. But he was very sharp at Augusta in 1999: more strikeouts than innings, a K:BB ratio over 5:1, and 30 fewer hits than innings pitched -- can't ask for any more than that! These are fantastic numbers, and at his age he should certainly force the Sox to promote him for 2000.

17) Benito Flores, LHP, 24.

Had pretty good numbers in his first year, but Flores is yet another ex-Sox: he pitched at high A Bakersfield for San Fransico in 1999: 81IP, 3.67ERA, 81 hits and a 63:34 K:BB ratio.

18) Terrance Hill, LHP, age 24. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 A-/Lowell 19 7 63.0 2.00 60 33 61 2 1999 A/Augusta 53 0 92.1 2.73 77 25 95 6

Hill took a nice step forward in 99, improving his control and allowing fewer hits while continuing to strike out a batter an inning. He's not young, but this performance deserves another promotion.

19) Shon Norris, RHP, age 23. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 R/Fort Myers 15 0 24 2.25 22 9 14 0 1999 A-/Lowell 27 0 41 5.05 41 13 29 2

Decent numbers, but nothing that jumps out. He's also old to be in rookie and A- ball. Probably not as strong a prospect as some others from this draft.

20) Tony James, 2B, age 23. Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A-/Lowell 235 272/366/430 8 27 45 7/1 1999 A/Augusta 170 224/285/306 2 10 35 3/3

Unfortunately James took a significant step backwards in 1999, losing ground in all aspects of his offensive game. He is probably not a prospect, although with the Sox' recent de-accenting the drafting of middle infielders, he may get another chance.

21) Andrew Checketts, RHP, age 24. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 R/Fort Myers 2 0 2 0.00 2 2 0 0

Only two innings for Checkett in 1998, and DNP in 1999. At least he was unscored upon in his brief professional career.

22) Tom Linarelli, RHP, age 23. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1998 A-/Lowell 18 6 51.0 7.06 78 28 44 5 1999 R/Fort Myers 1 0 1.1 13.50 2 2 1 0

Linarelli's professional career appears to be over.

23) Andrew Larned, C, age 24. Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A-/Lowell 54 222/246/278 0 2 12 0/0 R/Fort Myers 8 125/222/125 0 1 1 1/0 A+/Sarasota 13 154/389/154 0 5 2 0/0 1999 A/Augusta 93 258/355/333 1 12 18 1/1

Has not shown much with the bat and is probabaly too old, even for a catcher.

24) Josh Adeeb, OF, age 23. Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A/Lowell 8 250/250/250 0 0 2 0/0

Apparently Adeeb's pro career lasted 8 at bats.

25) John Hattig, 3B, age 20. Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 R/Fort Myers 163 270/333/368 1 16 20 1/1

Hattig may have been a draft-and-follow, as he apparently signed very late. His pro debut was unremarkable, but he did not embarrass himself, either.

26) Ben Kozlowski, LHP, apparently has not signed.

Did not appear for Boston, but pitched (rather well) for Atlanta's rookie ball club in 1999; presumably he did not sign with the Sox in 98, but did with Atlanta when drafted again the next year.

27) James Gates, OF, apparently has not signed. 28) Jason Blanton, RHP, apparently has not signed.

29) Ryan Siebert, RHP, apparently has not signed.

30) James Garcia, OF, apparently has not signed.

31) Robert Floyd, LHP, apparently has not signed.

32) Richard Hart, 1B, apparently has not signed.

33) Heath Heiberger, LHP, apparently has not signed.

34) Chad Johnson, C, age 24.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A/Lowell 110 200/302/300 3 13 37 1/0

Somewhat weak numbers in 110 AB at Lowell in 1998; DNP in 1999, so he has apparently retired.

35) Mark Younk, C, apparently did not sign. 36) Tonayne Brown, OF, age 22.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 R/Fort Myers 225 316/338/511 8 8 32 15/6 1999 A/Augusta 541 261/326/353 4 46 89 25/22

Brown showed power, speed, and average in his first year in pro ball. In his second year, the power mysteriously vanished, his average dipped, and he appears to be just fast enough to get himself in trouble on the bases. Still, he has some tools and could yet harness them.

37) Tony Caridi, 1B/C, age 20. Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 R/Fort Myers 22 136/174/182 0 1 7 0/0 1999 R/Fort Myers 72 167/256/194 0 9 19 1/0

Only 94 AB for this young catcher; with this lack of hitting, though, that may be all he gets.

38) Dennis Tankersley, RHP, age 21. Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 R/Fort Myers 11 6 35.2 0.76 14 9 57 2

Wow! That's a pretty amazing line, even for rookie ball. 14 hits and 57 Ks? This is one draft-and-follow pick that certainly seems worth following...

39) Robert Shabansky, LHP, apparently has not signed. 40) Phil Ledesma, OF, age 25.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A-/Lowell 129 202/295/295 2 13 35 4/2 1999 A-/Lowell 74 270/427/405 1 16 15 8/2

Only 74 ABs suggests an injury; at Ledesma's age and in A- ball, injuries often end careers.

41) Jason Fingers, RHP, apparently has not signed.

Also selected in the 1997 draft, but didn't sign either time.

42) Bryan Barnowski, C., age 19. Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 R/Fort Myers 88 227/320/307 0 10 23 3/1

Signed as a draft-and-follow in May 1999; did not adapt well to wooden bats in his first pro action. Still young, though.

43) Ronald Bohinski, SS, apparently has not signed. 44) John Parrado, C, apparently has not signed.

45) Jonathon Smithers, 3B, apparently has not signed.

46) Keith Hart, 1B, age 24.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1998 A-/Lowell 165 273/287/400 3 3 34 0/1 1999 A/Augusta 336 262/293/360 5 12 72 2/0

Apparently drafted as a catcher, Hart now plays 1B. With no patience and only moderate power, Hart is not hitting like a first baseman. Before signing with the Sox, Hart was named 1998 Small College Player of the Year.

47) Richard Smith, 2B, apparently has not signed. 48) Darry Burgess, RHP, apparently has not signed.



Class of 1998, status after 1999: A/Augusta 10 A/Lowell 5 R/Fort Myers 4 Out of Baseball 5 In Other Organizations Class AA 2 (Everett, Maroth) Class A 2 Unsigned 22 Percentage of 48 draftees signed: 56%
Percentage of 28 signed players retained: 86% Players Still with the Organization:

Pitchers: 9
Hitters: 15

Thoughts about the 1998 draft

Only four players in this draft has played above mid-A ball (except for 13 ABs by Larned), and those four are ALL now with other organizations (Everett, Maroth, Benham, Flores). Among the prospects still with the Sox a few pitchers look promising: Tankersley, Norton, Surridge, and Hill. The hitters have been very weak; Carlos Rodriguez has shown some tools but he needs to show he can compete at higher levels very soon. Unfortunately, the cream of this crop appears to have been plucked by other organizations in return for help with the Sox' major-league needs.


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Darcy Paquet/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified January 2, 2000

#18 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:30 PM

Boston Red Sox June 1999 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: January 2, 2000


Note: the text on this page is an amalgam of commentary from Darcy Paquet and Glenn Ellingson.


Statistics are through the end of the 1999 regular season. Ages given are as of July 1, 2000.
1) Eric Assadorian, OF, Northbridge HS (MA)



A five-tool outfielder who reminds scouts of former Red Sox star Dwight Evans. He is an excellent hitter, with a tight, compact swing, but his best tool is a strong, accurate arm. Ranked #1 in Massachusetts and #19 overall by Baseball America. Signed too late to play professionally in 1999.

1a) Bradley Baker, RHP, Pioneer Valley Regional HS (MA), age 19 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 R/Fort Myers 4 3 11.1 0.79 10 2 10 0

Ranked #2 in Massachusetts and #48 overall by Baseball America. Throws a low 90s fastball and a curve for strikes. A compensation pick for the loss of Mo Vaughn.

1b) Casey Fossum, LHP, Texas A&M, age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 A-/Lowell 5 5 14.1 1.26 6 5 16 1

Ranked #57 overall by Baseball America. Throws 88-92 mph with an excellent slider. 6-0, 150 lbs. A compensation pick for the loss of Greg Swindell.

2) Matt Thompson, RHP, Timberline HS (ID), age 18 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 R/Fort Myers 5 2 15.0 1.20 7 4 12 0

Ranked #71 overall by Baseball America. Throws in the low 90s with an excellent curve, and reportedly never lost a game in high school. He traveled with the U.S. team to Venezuela in April.

3) Richard Rundles, LHP, Jefferson County HS (TN), age 19 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 R/Fort Myers 5 1 12.2 2.13 13 1 11 1

Stands at 6'6" and throws an 88 mph fastball, a curve, and a change.

3a) Antron Seiber, CF, Independence HS (LA), age 20 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 R/Fort Myers 46 261/314/348 0 4 11 2/2

Also played quarterback for his high school team. He runs the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds, and stole 17 bases in 17 attempts. He also plays outfield, and hit .488 with seven home runs from the number three spot in high school. Clearly a man of many talents, Seiber at least got his feet wet with a wooden bat in '99 and should be ready for a longer stint in 2000.

4) Rory Shortell, RHP, Madison HS (OR). Apparently did not sign. 5) Gregory Montalbano, LHP, Northeastern Univ. Signed as a draft-and-follow in May 2000.

6) Jon Kail, CF, Baldwin HS (PA). Apparently did not sign.

7) Richard Carroll, 1B, Venice HS (FL). Apparently did not sign.



Evidently has elected to attend junior college after not being contacted by the Sox.

8) Andrew Heimbach, RHP, Mt. Vernon Nazarene Col. Apparently did not sign. 9) Hank Thoms, RHP, Mississippi State Univ. Apparently did not sign.

10) Brian Weise, RF, Mississippi State Univ.

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A/Lowell 79 316/400/582 5 9 25 2/2 A/Augusta 68 118/265/147 0 10 18 1/0

Is somewhat fast despite being 5'11" 200 lbs, and can also play a passable CF. Walks a lot, but also strikes out a lot. Reportedly has a compact, powerful swing.

11) Kregg Jarvais, C, Univ. of Maine, age 23 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A-/Lowell 109 193/254/266 0 8 31 3/0

Is a light hitter, but reportedly has an outstanding arm and plays good defense. Was drafted #25 by Atlanta last year. Is reportedly a huge Red Sox fan. So far this hitting is as advertised, unfortunately; but it's very early.

12) Lew Ford, CF, Dallas Baptist Univ., age 23 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A-/Lowell 250 280/339/464 7 19 35 15/2

Signed early enough to get 250 ABs; his 803 OPS showed he had no trouble adapting to wood and should get him promoted for 2000. Good mix of power and speed. As a college draftee, though, he needs to move up quickly.

13) Michael Dwyer, 1B, Univ. of Richmond, age 22 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A-/Lowell 271 247/332/325 3 34 50 3/2

Named the 1999 Colonial Athletic Association player of the year, and made Baseball America's college All American second team as both a pitcher and a hitter. Decent eye, but has not shown power with wood bats yet. Given his age he will probably be promoted anyway.

14) Bryan Leach, RHP, Florida Southern Col., age 22 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 R/Fort Myers 1 0 2.0 0.00 2 1 1 0 1999 A-/Lowell 13 4 45.1 3.57 41 18 52 4

A right-handed pitcher who went 11-2 in high school, striking out 145 batters in 127+ innings, while also spending some time at second base, hitting .418/.471/.788 in 170 PA's. He hasn't played second base in the Boston organization but he did get a nice start on the mound: 53Ks, 43 hits. May become a full-time starter sometime next year.

15) Brian Wiley, RHP, The Citadel. Apparently did not sign. 16) Charles Nanning, LHP, Polk C.C. Apparently did not sign.

17) Hiram Duncan, 3B, Miss. Gulf Coast J.C. Apparently did not sign.

18) Jeffrey Waldron, C/DH, Boston College, age 23

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A-/Lowell 125 176/290/240 1 14 22 0/1

Batted .399 in 1999 while playing in all 48 games. Earned All-Northeast All Star second team accolades from the American Baseball Coaches Association. Had a tough year with the wooden bat; did at least show a willingness to take a walk.

19) Jason Bottenfield, RHP, U Texas Pan American, age 23 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 A-/Lowell 23 0 36.1 5.70 36 17 24 3

Not a great start, but probably good enough to get another try next year.

20) Daniel Generelli, RHP, Quinsigamond C.C.

6-3, 190lbs, has a 93 mph fastball and recently developed a slider. Struck out 1.5 batters per inning for Quinsigamond C.C. Signed too late to play professionally in 1999.

21) Jason Henderson, RHP, Bishop Hendricken HS (SC). Apparently did not sign. 22) Ellis S. Debrow, 1B, Woodham HS (FL). Apparently did not sign.

23) Nicolas Puckett, LHP, Timberline HS (ID). Apparently did not sign.

24) Rex Rundgren, SS, Mid Pacific Institute.



Rex is the son of musician/producer/computer-nerd Todd Rundgren. Signed too late to play professionally in 1999.

25) Timothy Mccabe, SS, North Catholic HS (PA). Apparently did not sign. 26) Marshall Mcdougall, 3B, Florida State. Apparently did not sign.



Impressed with the bat at Florida State, at one time hitting six HR in one game. Was expected to be drafted much higher, and the Red Sox did not make much of an effort to sign him.

27) Mark Kiger, 2B, Grossmont College. Apparently did not sign. 28) Jonathan Anderson, 2B, U Illinois, age 23

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 R/Fort Myers 11 182/250/273 0 1 3 0/1 A-/Lowell 124 266/331/306 0 13 10 7/4

Signed and got 135 ABs; showed a little speed.

29) Barton Hollis, RHP, Lawrence County (AL). Signed as a draft-and-follow in May 2000. 30) Charles Frasier, 3B, Santa Rosa J.C. Apparently did not sign.

31) Jaime Bubela, CF, Baylor Univ. Apparently did not sign.

32) David Flournoy, LF/RF, Deer Valley HS (CA). Apparently did not sign.

33) Perry Miley, CF, William Carey Col., age 22

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A-/Lowell 147 245/337/340 2 18 29 9/3

Signed and got 147 ABs; showed a little speed. Not a bad start.

34) Daniel Giese, RHP, U San Diego, age 23 Year Team G GS IP ERA H BB SO HR 1999 A-/Lowell 18 0 34.1 1.83 17 10 27 2 A/Augusta 9 0 17.1 2.08 15 5 11 1

This is a very good start: nearly unhittable at Lowell and then holding his own in Augusta. Hopefully he will get a chance at starting sometime in 2000.

35) Ben Marbury, LF, age 21 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 R/Fort Myers 53 170/267/283 1 4 20 1/1

Well at least he got his feet wet.

36) Jon Brandon, CF, Panola J.C. Apparently did not sign. 37) Christopher Mabeus, RHP, Eastern Ariz. J.C. Apparently did not sign.

38) Jesse Cooksey, RHP, Port Neches-Groves HS (TX). Apparently did not sign.

39) Matthew Ames, 1B, Stanhope Elmore HS (AL). Apparently did not sign.

40) Anthony Bass, LF, Booker T Washington HS (OK). Apparently did not sign.

41) Justin Smetana, LHP, Cardinal HS (OH). Apparently did not sign.

42) Brian Rinehart, 2B, Southington HS (CT). Apparently did not sign.

43) Ryan Coffin, RHP, Desert Vista HS (AZ). Apparently did not sign.

44) James Lindsey, CF, Lee Davis HS (VA). Apparently did not sign.

45) Brady Williams, 3B/DH, Pasco Hernando CC (FL), age 20

Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 R/Fort Myers 121 256/400/446 5 29 45 3/3

Brady is the son of Red Sox manager Jimy Williams. This is actually a very good showing; I wonder if he's played with wooden bats before?

46) Joseph Kerrigan, Jr., 2B, Temple Univ., age 22 Year Team AB BA/OBP/SLG HR BB SO SB/CS 1999 A-/Lowell 242 314/420/364 0 43 52 5/6 1999 A/Augusta 35 200/317/229 0 6 6 1/2

The son of Red Sox pitching coach Joe Kerrigan. Led Temple with a .387 batting average and a .495 slugging percentage. And apparently (appropriately enugh) he's willing to take a walk! :-) Actually, this is also a good start.

47) James Burgess, RF, Durango HS (NV). Apparently did not sign. 48) Joseph Kjose, RHP, Cochise County CC (AZ). Apparently did not sign.

49) Jordan Remy, 2B, Weston HS (MA). Apparently did not sign.



The son of former Red Sox second baseman and telecaster Jerry Remy.

50) Brian Buscher, SS, Terry Parker HS (FL). Apparently did not sign. Class of 1999, status after 1999:

A/Sarasota 0 A/Michigan 0 A-/Lowell 11 R/Ft. Myers 6 Signed/DNP 4 Unsigned 36 Percentage of 53 draftees signed: 40% Percentage of 21 signed players retained: 100%

Note: The Red Sox retain the rights to at least some players currently not identified as signed (the "draft and follow" situation, which means JC players); in addition, some people may have signed too late to play this year without my having noticed. So the Sox may end up signing more than 40% of their 1999 draftees.

Thoughts about the 1999 draft

While nobody from the 1999 draft has yet established enough of a professional record to allow us to project them, quite a few players did at least put in a good showing right away. The Sox' top 4 pitching selections all signed and combined for an ERA under 2.00 in just over 50 innings of work. A couple of later-round college pichers, Bryan Leach and Daniel Giese, also pitched very well. Among the position players Lew Ford, Brady Williams, and Joe Kerrigan Jr. were solid. Many other position players had rough starts, but this is very common as players switch to wooden bats. Nobody has played themselves out of a job yet, and a few people showed more promise than their draft selection might predict. But about all we can say at this point is, we'll know a lot more by this time next year...


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Darcy Paquet/mailto:[email protected] /Last modified January 2, 2000

#19 AlNipper49


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Posted 21 September 2011 - 05:30 PM

Boston Red Sox June 2000 Amateur Draft Picks

Last updated: June 17, 2000

1) Phillip A. Dumatroit, LHP, Bakersfield College (CA) ***signed***



Was projected 2nd-5th round. Added 12 mph to his fastball (up to 94mph) and two additional pitches in the past year, his first at junior college. He turns 19 on July 12. Ranked by BBA as the 40th best prospect in the draft, and considered to be very signable.

2) Manuel J Delcarmen, RHP, West Roxbury HS (MA)

Was projected 2nd-5th round. Considered best high school prospect in Massachusetts. 92-94mph fastball and excellent slider.

3) Matthew A Cooper, 1B, Ripley HS (OK) ***signed***

"3B Matt Cooper dominated mediocre high school pitching this spring. He could be a solid pick if scouts got a positive reading on his power potential."

4) Charles B Mims, LHP, Prattville HS (AL) ***signed***

Was two-way player in high school, but scouts believe his greater upside is as a pitcher. Tops out at 91 mph. Has been accepted to Alabama.

5) Brian J Esposito, C, Univ. of Connecticut ***signed***

One of the best defensive catchers in the country. His bat is reportedly weak, although he impressed in a Fenway tryout.

6) Kenney A Perez, SS, South Miami HS ***signed***

Ranked #48 in Florida (not rated).

7) Tony Fontana, RHP, Bowling Green State ***signed***

Was projected as a 2nd-5th round pick. 6-foot-2, 170-pounds, his fastball tops out at 94mph and he is reputed to have good mound presence.

8) Brian Adams, LHP, Liberty Univ. (SC) ***signed***

Ranked #9 in Virginia (not rated).

9) Johnson, Patrick, RF, William Carey College (MS) ***signed***

Ranked #11 in Mississippi (not rated).

10) Eric Doble, RHP, Arizona State Univ

Excelled in the bullpen for Arizona State his junior year. Has indicated he would like to return to ASU for his senior season, hoping to be selected in the 2nd or 3rd round in next year's draft.

11) Freddy Sanchez, SS, Oklahoma City Univ. ***signed***

12) Shane H Hall, RHP, East Arizona JC ***signed***

13) Miguel O Quintana, RF, Florida International Univ.

14) Ian Perio, LHP, San Francisco ***signed***

15) Dustin Brisson, 3B, University of Central Florida ***signed***

Was selected in the 24th round by the Mets in 1999, but returned to UCF for his senior year. Has some power and does not strike out much. 6-foot-3, 225 pounds.

16) Joshua N Thigpen, RHP, Rogers HS ***signed***

Sports a 93 mph fastball, but his breaking ball is largely undeveloped.

17) Chris Elmore, LHP, North Carolina ***signed***

18) Haas E Pratt, 3B, Rancho Bernardo HS (CA)

Was projected to go in the first 10 rounds. Has excellent power but is weak defensively at 3B. Expected to be a hard sign, as he is being courted by Miami.

19) Justin Sherrod, 3B, Rollins College ***signed***

20) Brian Bentley, RHP, Univ. of Louisville (KY) ***signed***

21) James R. Carroll, RHP, Mississippi State Univ.

22) Villegas, Felix, RHP, Muscatine CC (PR) ***signed***

23) Raul Nieves, SS, Univ. of Mobile (AL) ***signed***

24) Freddie P. Money, CF, Wallace CC (AL) ***signed***

25) Jonathan X Guitterex, LHP, Central Arizona College

26) Marcellus S Dawson, OF, Muscatine CC

27) James P Morrison, RHP, Beulah HS (AL)

28) Travis W Kaats, CF, Desert Mountain HS (AZ)

29) Kason R Gabbard, LHP, Royal Palm Beach HS (FL)

30) Jeremy Terni, SS, Montville HS (CT)

31) Tom B Major, RHP, New London HS (CT)

32) Eric C Rollins, RHP, Latta HS (OK)

33) Barton L Braun, LHP, Vallejo HS (CA)

34) John R Carreon, RHP, Arizona Western College (AZ)

35) Dustin W Brown, C, Bradshaw Mt. HS (AZ)

36) Michael F Guerrero, RF, South Mountain CC (AZ)

37) Brett M Bonvecho, 3B, Prospect HS (CA)

38) Daniel J. Coffee, RF, St. Bernard's HS (CT)

39) Gabriel J. Roberti, RHP, West Hills HS (CA)

40) Brad L. Bettcher, RHP, Palo Verde HS (AZ)

41) Ferrari Miller, CF, Castlemont HS (CA)

Overcame a difficult childhood (his mother was addicted to cocaine) to excel in both school and athletics. He writes plays in his spare time, and graduated near the top of his class.

42) Javier Herrera, C, Gulliver Prepatory (FL)

43) Christopher E Duffy, CF, South Mountain CC (AZ)

44) Kevin R. Brown, 1B, U Miami (FL)

Has vowed he will return to Miami for his senior season.

45) Nathan E Goodrich, LHP, Mercyhurst College (NY)

46) Donald O Benson, 3B, Mt San Jacinto JC (CA)



Class of 2000, status after 2000: A-/Lowell 0 R/Ft. Myers 0 Signed/DNP 0 Unsigned 0 Percentage of 46 draftees signed: % Percentage of signed players retained: %

Thoughts about the 2000 draft