Sunday, March 1, 2009

Pitching Pressure Cooker

In an MLB fantasy preview, ESPN the Magazine's Christopher Harris doesn't bank on Armando Gallaraga replicating last year's impressive performance.  His reasons are fairly compelling.  He points out that Gallaraga's BABIP was .247 last year, well below the usual pitcher's career average of around .300.  Since Gallaraga's not a strikeout pitcher, Harris argues that this year, his strand rate for baserunners may go down considerably from a healthy 75.6%.

Unfortunately, it's hard to argue against all this logic, and for that I apologize.  I'd like to come out with an airtight rebuttal, but I just can't do it.  So this is more gut-wrenching news for our already wobbly pitching foundation.  I didn't hear the game, but Zach Miner got tagged for 7 hits and 5 earned runs over two innings today against the Pirates.  Maybe those folks out on the ledge were right.  No, they were not--the baseball season's a marathon that hasn't even begun yet, so pace your worries people.  Although things have been rocky so far this spring, it's not time to hit the panic button yet.

All I can say is it's no wonder these guys were a bundle of nerves for their first spring outings.  The scrutiny must be a bit overwhelming.  I'm not criticizing, because I'm one of the people clamoring for coverage, just empathizing.

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