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edwin jackson cubsSo, ‘Game of Thrones’ is over once again. In total, I thought this season was good, but not quite as good as the first two seasons. The penultimate episode of Season Three notwithstanding, it didn’t feel like a whole lot happened. Just a lot of marching in the direction of things happening. That is not to say that I didn’t love it, or that I won’t be impatiently awaiting its return for the next 10 months.

  • The secret to Edwin Jackson’s results matching his underlying performance? Not taking the game too seriously. “Today I just told myself come out and have fun,” Jackson said of yesterday’s game, per Sahadev Sharma. “Whatever happens, let it happen. Have fun, stay relaxed, stay loose and just play the game. Sometimes we take the game too serious and we get confined in a bubble. Today I was able to come out of that bubble and have some fun out there.” Yes, it may have been a matter of seriousness. Or …
  • Rather than belabor the argument I made earlier in the season (the one about Jackson pitching much better than his ERA suggested), I’ve made it a point to highlight his FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching – an advanced stat that focuses only on those aspects of a pitcher’s performance that are within his control) in Pre-Gamin’ posts for his starts. It’s my subtle way of reminding folks that the advanced stats say Jackson has pitched as well as he ever has, but was simply having the bad luck associated with balls finding holes and all hits coming in bunches. After yesterday’s start, Jackson’s FIP is down to 3.39 – 18th best in the National League. no, you don’t completely throw out the 5.76 ERA. But it isn’t the end-all-be-all of a guy’s performance, and I believe Jackson is an extreme example of how it can be misleading.
  • (Dale Sveum pretty much nailed the Jackson issue before the game, per Bruce Miles: “All it takes is for half of the groundballs to be caught. Unfortunately, they just seem to be finding holes. Obviously, we put a lot of effort into putting people in the right positions and the calculations. His groundballs seem to be overwhelming to the opposite of where they’re supposed to go. It’s unfortunate that’s happened quite often. He’s keeping the ball on the ground, on the earth. In big situations, the ball is just going through the hole constantly. It’s unfortunate.”)
  • I think some folks thought my Jeff Baker comment in yesterday’s EBS was sarcastic, but it wasn’t. When Jeff Baker was at his best with the Cubs, he was a quality utility infielder (and part-time outfielder), who crushed lefties. He was very good at it, and he was very valuable in that role. To date, Cody Ransom has provided very similar value for the Cubs. In other words, he’s playing like Jeff Baker when Jeff Baker was good for the Cubs. And Baker’s doing the same thing for Texas this year.
  • Kevin Gregg’s save yesterday was his first in nearly a month (May 12). Usually that’s something you say about a guy who’s been struggling, but that isn’t Gregg. The Cubs haven’t won many games during that stretch, and, when they have, the wins have tended to be blowouts.
  • Josh Vitters is headed to Arizona to finalize his rehab on the rib cage strain that put him out of commission in late May. He should be back soon, though he’s already had several injuries this year, which have limited him to just 19 games.
  • Speaking of Iowa third base prospects, Junior Lake is impressing everyone in his first few days at AAA, particularly at the plate, according to Tommy Birch. That said, he’s already made five errors, and he’s not really a “third base” prospect – he plays there some, as well as the outfield. He’s going to keep moving all over, and a key to his future success in the bigs is the ability to play passable defense at a large variety of positions.
  • JulioZuleta

    Speaking of Jeff Baker, what happened to Marcelo Carreno? Haven’t come across his name this year I don’t think.

    • macpete22

      Totally forgot about him but it doesn’t look like he’s pitched this season. MILB.com has him on the Iowa Cubs roster but with no stats

    • João Lucas

      He’s been rehabbing in Arizona, according to The Cub Reporter. No word on what kind of injury he had though.

  • Jonathn

    So Lake doesn’t have the ceiling to be a regular at any position? Did the narrative about him change at some point? I seem to remember thinking he might be a really good prospect at some point. Was that just cause our farm was so weak?

    • hansman1982

      With Lake it has always been:

      “The raw talent is amazing and he could be really good, if he can harness that raw talent.”

      He hasn’t been able to fully harness that talent and may someday, but since he hasn’t, he has fallen short of his ceiling.

    • BluBlud

      Lake can be a regular, and he definitely has the “talent to be an-star.” If he ever harnishes all his talent, and get his head in the right place, he could be a very good player at the MLB level. His biggest problem is his consistency.

      • BluBlud

        Harness not harnish

        • hansman1982

          Is that like garnish?

          • Blublud

            It a combonation of Harness and Garnish. It like saying he needs to Garnish the Harness.

            • Blublud

              Damn, combination.

              • hansman1982

                So, breaking it down (since combonation is a conjunction of combination and abomination)…

                The flourish of green garnish on the harness was an abomination to the combination of men and women in attendance.

                • BluBlud

                  yeah, something like that.

  • dash

    Brett, what do you think of Vitters’ future in the organization?

    • BluBlud

      I don’t vitters will be a long term piece for this organization, and I expect him to be included in a package to bring back a better return. I think the Cubs are content with going with Valbuena until one of the more high upside guys are ready to move in. They still have plenty of control on Valbuena.

      • Marc

        yeah i agree good addition to a package for a proven player when the cubs become competitive (with other players of course)

  • Oswego chris

    Your GOT criticism is valid Brett, in fact after book 3(where a lot DOES) happen, books 4 and 5 have just too many characters…I just finished the fifth one..1200 pages…and there were 18 point of view characters..

    The good news for non-readers of the books, book 3 has not been fully used yet on the series yet… there will be stuff next season as shocking as the Red Wedding…

    But I must say, I have a new saying after reading the books..”Winter is Coming…It’s just going to f#%king take forever”

    • hansman1982

      Ya, this season screamed of a series that knows it is going to be around for a while. There are set-up episodes where they have 1 boring show to set-up for 2-3 exciting ones.

      This was a boring set-up season.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      Yeah, this season was slow for me, too. However, they split the 3rd story in half, and the first half (plot-wise) was largely build up and then the second half was the Red Wedding followed by, well: you will see! Suffice it to say that if there are pacing complaints next season, then it will be the opposite of this year’s.

      The show is looking to go 7 or 8 years, which creates the problem in that (as Oswego Chris notes) Martin is taking forever to get the last 2 books out: at his current pace (two in the last 13 years), I don’t see how he’ll get both of them out in 4-5 years.

      So, here’s the race: which happens first, a Cubs’ pennant or “A Dream of Spring”? (And how many of us will live to see either?

    • Spencer

      Well, part of the reason Dance has so many characters is because things start to merge with Feast at the end. But in my opinion, Storm is the best book in the series – and it is a huge book with a ton of things going on. I just feel like there are so many characters in this series that you’re going to have episodes where some of their stories are stagnant. I think next season will be more exciting for show only fans. It’s a shame, though, because the third book is so good, but I agree that this season was a little bland.

  • OCCubFan

    In response to Sveum’s comments about ground balls off Jackson finding holes. Most likely, that is just luck. However, is it possible there is something about Jackson’s pitches or location that makes Sveum’s positioning of the fielders incorrect??

    • CubFan Paul

      It has nothing to do with luck. it’s not executing, hanging breaking pitches & bad command of his fastball low in the zone.

      • TWC

        Tell me: which batters can locate their ground balls so specifically as to miss a nearby defender?

        • Spriggs

          pretty sure all the cardinals can do it now.

          • Timothy Scarbrough

            You just need a dosage of some voodoo magic.

        • CubFan Paul

          That’s not what i’m saying/referring to TDub

          • cms0101

            Even during the game yesterday Len and Jim touched on the fact that Jackson’s line drive percentage has gone up significantly this season. Even if the other peripherals suggest he’s unlucky, clearly people have to see that he has been fooling less people and they are hitting him harder than in years past. Yesterday, he actually pitched like the guy they thought they were signing. It hasn’t all been just bad luck though. He has been a different pitcher. I’m glad he went out and had more fun. Maybe that was it all along. Hopefully we don’t have to talk about his luck any longer.

            • Kyle

              Not that significantly. It’s up over 2012 by a decent chunk, but lower than 2011 and within 2 percentage points of his career number.

              These things aren’t mutually exclusive. He’s lost a little off his fastball, he’s made some bad pitches, and he’s been insanely unlucky.

              • cms0101

                Is there a stat that can measure hard hit ground balls versus routine grounders? That’s a stat I’d like to see factored into the discussion. It’s definitely a more reasonable view to factor in the lost velocity and bad pitches. The way you’ve presented it, I can accept the “luck” factor as part of the conversation. I just tire of folks trying to sell the idea that he’s only been unlucky. That’s simply not the case.

                • Kyle

                  That stat does not exist yet, though we shouldn’t be more than a few years away.

                  But I think you are overestimating the difference between a “hard-hit” ground ball and an “ordinary” one in terms of how often a pitcher gives up one vs. the other. If he’s consistently getting them to miss enough to hit ground balls, they aren’t consistently missing by *exactly* the right fractions of an inch to make the difference between a routine GB and a hard-hit one.

                  • cms0101

                    Risking the chance of sounding like a meat head… watching Jackson pitch early in the season felt more like he wasn’t fooling anyone rather than just being unlucky. There have been clear moments in games where he’s lost his concentration and made a mental mistake, like a wild pitch or grooving a pitch that was hit hard. Those moments would last an inning, but they were evident. There were absolutely moments of bad luck for him too, no doubt, but when he’s throwing a 92 mph fastball right down the middle versus a 96 mph fastball, hitters seemed to be able to do more with the pitches, groundball or otherwise. I love that he’s a groundball pitcher. With his velocity being more consistently around 94-96 yesterday, he had better success. I hope that, plus the better luck he had, continues. I’m not trying to completely discount what the peripherals say. I buy into them. In Jackson’s case, they don’t tell the complete story. He’s been a mixed bag of bad luck and bad execution.

                    • Noah

                      That’s the question, though. If it’s been bad execution, why is his home run rate way down? If he’s throwing hanging breaking balls at bad times, why are they just squeaking throw holes or floating over the infield instead of going out of the yard?

                      I agree, the wild pitches are way up, which is just weird.

                    • Schrodinger’s Cat

                      He is 19th in the league in K/9 at 8.77. He is fooling someone. Hopefully this is the start of a long run of good outings.

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      At the same time it could be a run of even worse luck. I guess we will have to watch to see.

                    • Schrodinger’s Cat

                      Could be, but it’s more likely that his luck starts to turn around.

            • hansman1982

              They also missed that his GB% is WAY up.

            • Spriggs

              Off topic a bit, but Len is starting to kill me with his drivel. I don’t enjoy being talked to like I’m in grade school. And what happened to his sense of humor? I guess that was all Bob… His conversations with himself annoy me and he has no chemistry in the booth with his partner. It’s getting painful to me. The way he enunciates some of his words is even starting to eat me up, so it’s probably just me…

              • TWC

                I turned that game on in the 6th (?) yesterday and for a full two minutes I thought I had the park audio feed on. Neither Len nor JD said peep. It was somewhat refreshing, if odd.

              • cms0101

                I think losing Brenly has been bad for the broadcast all the way around. Len and Jim just don’t have chemistry. Jim isn’t as funny as he was billed to be, and I don’t think he adds much as an analyst. Don’t get me wrong, he’s not Joe Carter bad, but he’s not Brenly. I don’t remember how long it took Len and Bob to get me to forget about Stone, but I’m hopeful these guys figure it out.

                • Diggs

                  People didn’t like Brenly when he first started either. Give it a year and we’ll get a better idea of the chemistry within the booth.

                • Dustin S

                  Yep I made the same comment a week or so ago. I keep thinking for Jim maybe it’s just new job nerves and he would loosen up over time, but I’ve been disappointed so far. Was even much better with Hollandsworth in there last week.

              • Cubbie Blues

                Did you catch JD say “The Marlins could take BP in the hotel Lobby.”

                I had to rewind that one a few times.

                • TWC

                  Indeed. I got a good chuckle out of that.

              • Rcleven

                It’s not just you. Len is trying too hard to set JD up for his next line. Most unnatural. There is no free flow. It seems so forced.
                I understand their jobs are to promote the Cubs but they are such homers.

                • cubs2003

                  I definitely miss Bob. JD isn’t bad by any stretch, but I feel like him and Len are the same type of guy. I prefer to have one serious/nerdy guy and one funny/meatballish guy. It helps create a natural back and forth. Maybe they’ll develop that chemistry, but I have a hard time seeing it. I don’t listen to broadcasts to learn about advanced stats, ect. That’s what blogs like Bleacher Nation are for.

                  • Spriggs

                    Yes! Exactly! The advanced stats are fine – to make a point here and there. I dig that. But I don’t watch games on TV to be constantly lectured about them and constantly told I’ve been wrong all my life – by some snarky nerdy kid. I come here for that!

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      I’m sure you could find a quote to back that up. You just wouldn’t be able to comment on it.

                    • cubs2003

                      Haha! I just think that at this point the people who care to know these stats already know them. The rest just want to watch a ball game. There’s no need to dedicate a good portion of the broadcast to it. More jokes less stats. This is a long season and it’s about to get worse after the trade deadline.

                • Jp3

                  I’m sure they’d be a bit more jovial if we were in the middle of a playoff push… I think the phrase “winning solves a lot of problems” is relevant

                  • Jay

                    Toss up between who is more boring as a color man—Moreland or JD. Although I think JD is starting to loosen up a bit—like it was mentioned above, Brenly was pretty vanilla his first year too. Len I just kind of tolerate, or find the radio feed and put Pat Hughes (the master) on.

                  • cubs2003

                    You could also say this is the time that they really need to earn their paychecks. Hughes/Santo were masters at this. They’re entertainers after all. I agree though, baseball is much more fun when the Cubs are in a pennant race. Hopefully the lost seasons end soon…

                    • Jay

                      For a former pitcher, JD isn’t offering a whole lot of insight—-at least not thus far. Stoney was a master of telling you what was about to happen pitch-wise because he could think along with the pitcher. And he had a way of doing it that didn’t get all stat-happy. I still miss him. How he puts up with Hawk on the other side of town is beyond me.

                  • waittilthisyear

                    stone predicting everything, while often accurately, was maddening. he could at least say “spoiler alert.” not to mention he is an ego-maniacal prick. i say all this despite my dad absolutely loving and defending him

          • TWC

            Are you referring to his LD rate? Yeah, it’s gone up a touch, but not nearly as much as his GB% has. Super quick math in my head shows that only 5 or so of those 45 line drives push him above his career average. That alone is not nearly enough to jack his BABIP way up and his LOB% down so low (though it probably contributes to the LOB% spike).

        • Andrew

          i agree with your sentiment, but it is true that a hard hit groundball will be more likely get through than a softly hit one. It is a lot of luck but pitchers can have somewhat lower BABIP by inducing softer contact, even if they have much less control on that than the FIP stats.

  • Whiteflag

    Luke,” Junior Lake is playing sound defense all over the diamond. So far he has appeared at third base and in right field, but there is talk of him getting some games in center field as well. Second base could be a possibility, and I am sure he can still handle shortstop.”

    Brett, “Junior Lake has five errors.”

    Seems you two disagree on level of Lake’s defensive skill. I’m not sure how five errors in a short stint in AAA adds up to solid defense, but I’m not an expert. Maybe, lake looks really fluid and had had some bad luck. Can anyone explain?

    • Kyle

      Lake is really, really bad at infield defense. He “can” play it, but he’s nowhere near MLB standards.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        He just makes a lot of mistakes. The talent and range are obviously there. That’s the disconnect.

      • Rich H

        I hate bringing this up time and time again but ERRORS HAVE NO MERIT IN THE MINORS! I would hate for these scouts to have seen Derek Jeter in the minors.

        Now if the errors at 3rd where recognition errors where the ball gets on him before he can be ready for it then it is a problem. If they are a throwing problem that can be fixed as can foot work and getting yourself ready for the play. So the type of errors can be a problem but strait errors is not.

        • Kyle

          I think you are underestimating age and position. Very young SS’s don’t have to worry about errors.

          Derek Jeter made 56 errors in 126 games as a 19-year-old. But the next year he had it down to 25 in 138.

          Junior Lake is three years older and playing a more easy defensive position. He’s getting to the point where the errors aren’t just part of the growth process, they are just who he is as a ballplayer. 23 isn’t 20.

          • Noah

            Also, you lose some of the excuses for errors as you move up a system. Your first baseman at A level is someone who is pretty likely to never make it past Double A. The fields also continue to get better as you move up the system. So you’re likely playing with better defenders on better fields at that point.

          • Rich H

            I agree that at AAA it should be more of an issue but with Lake learning a new position and having a high Rib problem I still think that it matters what the Errors are from. If the ball is eating him alive then it is an issue. If it is throwing problem it is fixable. Most of his errors at SS last year were throwing errors thinking his cannon can bail him out on bad routes to the ball or lazy fielding. Not errors that froze him because he couldn’t catch up to the ball that wad right on top of him.

            Yes third is an easier position but it also is an instinctual position. Your first move needs to be the right one because you do not have time to make a move twice. Again we are talking about a small sample size of guy that was not really a 3rd baseman till this spring. Give it time before you decide what he can/can not do defensively.

            All that being said I think he is not going to spend most of game time in the outfield just because there is where he is going to be needed after the trade deadline.

    • DarthHater

      Luke: “Junior Lake is playing sound defense all over the diamond.”

      Brett: “a key to his future success in the bigs is the ability to play passable defense at a large variety of positions.”

      Assuming that “sound defense” and “passable defense” are not that different, there doesn’t seem to be much inconsistency.

      Kyle’s “really, really bad” is inconsistent, but Kyle’s a contrarian.

      • Spriggs

        Lake is such a mixed bag… I don’t think anyone was saying Lake will be a great defender anywhere, but he has some nice tools for both the IF and OF which could make him passable considering his flaws. He is prone to making bad plays in the field (overthrowing, making unnecessary throws, missing easy plays) and I wouldn’t say he has the soft hands important for a real good infielder. I don’t see why he couldn’t be just as good all-around in the field as a guy like DeRosa – but he isn’t there yet in my opinion.

        Still, none of that matters a whole lot if he doesn’t continue hitting well. I go back to what Billy Williams actually told me in spring training this year when I asked him which young “hitter” he thought had the best chance to make a big impact. Billy didn’t hesitate a second. He said “Junior Lake”.

      • Whiteflag

        Just a difference of semantics, I guess. That’s what I was wondering, if Brett and Luke had varying opinions on Lake’s defense or if I was misunderstanding. For me 5 errors in the time Lake has been in Iowa doesn’t equate to sound defense.(Given the factors others have listed: age, triple A level, etc.) However I haven’t seen Lake play, so I don’t really know the type of errors he is making. It’s hard to make an accurate judgement if you’ve never seen him play. My guess would be with five errors, his defense is the weak part of his game.But it’s just a guess.I wasn’t trying to jump on Luke or Brett, the two articles just seemed inconsistent to me.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          No worries on my end – and, as an aside, there will probably always be some differences between the way Luke and I see things. I’ll also be the first to admit that, outside of Spring Training, I typically have very little “eyes-on” these prospects. I just read a lot.

  • Cubbie Blues

    GOT left me with the following this season: (I haven’t watched the finale yet.)
    1. Tyrion Lannister is the best character on the show and wasn’t used much
    2. The Red Wedding
    3. Not much advancement but a lot of background and character building
    4. Dragons aren’t as big as they used to be
    5. Theon is getting his but handed to him by someone they haven’t really introduced yet.
    5a. I have a feeling he will be important in the next season.
    6. John Snow finally got some action.
    7. The Red Wedding
    8. The king killer actually isn’t as bad as he was made out to be earlier. (Although he did
    throw a kid out of a window.)

    • Noah

      This is what I’d remember about Jamie Lannister: he has very rarely had to think for himself, as first a dutiful Lannister son and latter a member of the Kingsguard for his whole life. Either his father, his king, his sister, or Barristan Selmy have been telling him what to do his whole life. Jamie’s been a good enough soldier to effectuate the plans of others, but he’s never made his own plans. Suddenly he has been separated from the ability to just follow orders, and perhaps as he has had to think for himself more and to determine his own moral compass, that compass points in a different direction than it previously did.

      • Schrodinger’s Cat

        That is why I love the show so much, that no one is innately good or bad, with some exceptions(Joffrey). And the “good” characters don’t always come out on top. It makes for more unpredictability and you can relate to it more even though it is a fantasy fiction.

        • Noah

          I’d say everyone who is innately bad is shown to be innately bad due to insanity. The Mad King, Joffrey, and Ramsay Snow all come to mind.

          • Cubbie Blues

            I don’t think Joffrey is mad. I think he just likes to inflict pain on others. A sociopath? Yes. But, not insane.

          • Schrodinger’s Cat

            Is Ramsay bad, though? Seems like he is torturing Theon because of the terrible things he did.

            Yeah, I am not sure if Joffrey is insane, though, he does go overboard when killing people. When push comes to shove he can somewhat be a normal human being, though it’s rare when it happens.

            • Oswego chris

              Uhhh…Ramsay is bad.

              • Oswego chris

                Joffrey, the Mountain, the Boltens, and Cersei are evil…

                I would argue Tywin is not evil, just ruthless in preserving his legacy..

                Sorry for nerding up the board

                • Oswego chris

                  And without spoiling anything, the true evil nature of one character hasn’t been revealed yet…

                  Okay…no more nerding…

                  • DocPeterWimsey

                    Yeah, that Sansa is a bad one. I still cringe when I think of what she does coming up in…. oh, wait, that will spoil things!

                    :-)

                    Seriously, though, you could see Tywin Lannister owning the Yankees, Canadians and Manchester United, couldn’t you?

  • PaducahCubFan

    I’d love to see a write-up of where last year’s trades have gotten us. We got rid of Reed Johnson, Baker, Maholm…who did we get for those guys and how are they doing? Will we start to see some return on those flips soon?

    • itzscott

      Arodys Vizcaino – Still re-habbing from TJ surgery
      Jaye Chapman – Currently sports a 17.05 ERA at AAA Iowa
      Marcelo Carreno – No clue where this guy is playing, if at all.

    • Cyranojoe

      This would be nice to read, I agree.

    • Dynastyin2017

      To be fair:
      Villanueva 3B playing decent at AA.
      Kyle Hendricks P playing great at AA. Should get some AAA time this year.

      • Andrew

        Compare that to Randall Delgado in AAA:
        12 starts, 5.42 FIP, 6.44 ERA, 7.69 K/9, 5.04 BB/9.

        Could Dempster have saved the Cubs from a regrettable decision after all? Then again Delgado was a big reason Braves got Upton. Could the Cubs have done the same kind of move? Doubtful considering they wouldnt be looking to get rid of their best pitching prospect. Fun things to think about!

        • Noah

          The Cubs didn’t have a Martin Prado to base the trade around, even if they did have Randall Delgado.

          • Andrew

            True, not to mention being on Upton’s no trade list, which may or may not have been an issue.

            • Cubbie Blues

              Many time the no trade list is more about trying to maximize their pay and leverage an extension into the deal.

              • Kyle

                It was reported that this was not the case here, and he genuinely did not want to play for the Cubs.

      • Noah

        And Villanueva has actually been quite good since the start of May, as his April involved just a viciously low BABIP. He’ll never be an All Star caliber 3B, but he could be league average or a bit better and cheap for a few years.

  • The Dude Abides

    Kinda of makes you feel better about Jackson just knowing his record, era and whip are not reflective of how well he has pitched. Lipstick on a pig maybe, but I guess as a Cub fan you learn to hang your hat on whatever you can.

  • Jay

    Seemed like he was throwing harder yesterday. Most of this year he’s just been slinging it up there like he’s pacing himself, but yesterday he was consistently at 94-95 mph. Just better overall intensity.

  • jt

    May 27 vs the Mets Jackson gave up 2 dingers; one in the first and one in the 4th..shit happens. He then gave up a double and a single in the 7th for a run.
    IP 6.667 with a pitch count of 91
    It was a well well pitched game and until yesterday the only game where he got more than 18 outs.
    Yesterday he pitched 7 innings with a pitch count again of 91.
    Simply put, he was able to attack the K zone down (according to Randy Hundley). Again, he was able to throw strikes at the knees with movement. With better command he was able to limit the number of pitches (13/IP) and make those pitches executed more effective. And he did the same on May 27.
    Not luck!

    • Noah

      You do realize that ground balls finding holes causes a pitcher to throw more pitches, right?

      • jt

        I always believed GB pitchers threw fewer pitches. They often pitch to contact and while giving up more hits they usually allow few BB and fewer xbhits. Plus they are more likely to induce ground ball double plays.
        ——————————————————————————-
        Jackson’s 2013 “OPS against” when bases are empty is 0.694
        Jackson’s 2013 “OPS against” with men on base is 0.843
        His K/BB with bases empty is 4.00
        His K/BB with men on base is 1.65
        This implies he does not pitch as well when men are on base.
        But, it also could be that he is allowing runners on in clusters. That is to say, when he doesn’t have command he is more likely to walk batters. It also, when he is walking batters he is getting hit hard because he is also wild in the K zone.
        When he is not walking batters he has command and is getting batters out at a good rate.
        His problem is not luck. His problem has been that too in too many games he has not had sufficient command.

    • hansman1982

      “IP 6.667 with a pitch count of 91″

      You mean: IP 6.2

      • wvcubsfan

        No he meant what he said (typed) as did you.

        You say 1 meter, I say 3.281 feet

        • hansman1982

          I say 1 meter, WTF is that? Who the F uses meters? Communists, that’s who. You want to be a communist, go for it but here, in ‘Merica, we use the god blessing yard.

          It’s 3 feet or 36 inches…Why, you ask? Just because. Why have things be the lazy way out and multiples of 10? THAT’S BORING. Want to walk a mile, thats 5,280 feet. Why that distance? God only knows, but that is how we do things in ‘Merica, the hard way!

          AND WE LIKED IT!

          • jt

            That’s ok until you have to run it.

      • jt

        We use phrases such as “batting eye” or “muscle memory” to convey a concept. But is it the eye that limits the swing or the neurons in the muscles that remember which way to twitch? These say a lot as to the result but not much as to the process.
        You are doing the math/science analysis thing. You want to be as unambiguous as possible. So yeah, the Baseball Ref. jargon is 6.2 IP. They don’t want to type 6.667 and why should they? They are publishing results to a population that reads “their” language. But you are analyzing and you are publishing to an unknown population.
        BTW, I enjoy your work.

        • hansman1982

          .1 for 1/3rd and .2 for 2/3rds of an inning are the industry standard (just like the commodities markets (just they use .1, .2, .3 for quarters)). Another question could be why did you round it off after 3 decimal places? Why not 2 or 15? By using 6.2 you speak the same language as everyone else in baseball.

          • jt

            Technically you would round off to degree of certainty. That would be determined my the instrument used. If a measure is calibrated yards then rounding off to feet would introduce error.
            This type of thing gets a bit hairy when the measures are so small the displacement of air has to be accounted for.
            Is a blog a representation of the industry or is it free form media that anyone can attend? Point in fact, if those in the industry can at least read the back of a baseball card then they can understand fractions and therefore understand the decimal representation. Using it can in no way create confusion. Can the same be said of the “industrial standard”? Is it anything like a secret handshake?
            Commodity markets used Chem and Electrical Engineers to develop their models in the late 70′s and 80′s. They didn’t use statisticians versed in industry standards. Statisticians versed in industry standards were also versed in bias. Also, stats guys didn’t really understand process nor corruption of process. And yes, the models worked well until industrial standard bias and corruption were allowed to reenter the system.
            Jackson walks guys when he is wild. He gets the ball up and over the plate when he is wild. He gets hit hard when he is wild. It ain’t voodoo!

            • jt

              One of the reasons I use decimals is that I often use IP in on the fly calculations.
              6.2IP/9.0IP is not the same as 6.667IP/9.000IP

  • wvcubsfan

    One other thing that happened yesterday was that the home plate umpire was actually calling the entire strike zone as it is defined in the rule book. He didn’t seem to interject his own interpretation of said zone into the game. Nor did he begin with one interpretation and let that morph into something entirely different every three innings. This allowed both the pitchers and the hitters to approach each at bat knowing what the rules were and it was a fair test for every at bat.
    This has got to be my biggest pet peeve with umpiring today and why the one thing I’d love to see computers/lasers/machines take over and totally remove the “human element”. screw the human element, I could care less what any one “thinks” or “believes” what I want is for things to be correct.

  • Kyle

    We think we have it bad with Len and JD.

    Just listen and watch the White Sox games

    • jt

      I’m getting to like JD.
      Len seems to be giving him more air time with at least some thoughtful questions.
      A bit mind numbing but not to bad.

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