Wednesday, October 2, 2013

bdj610's 2013 End of Year MLB All-Star Teams...The Starting Pitchers

Yesterday, I named the bullpens for each of my End of the Year All-Star Teams, and boy did you guys let me have it. I do not claim to be an expert, and I'll be honest, thanks to the lack of enthusiasm in part because of a lousy Chicago baseball season, I did not watch as much of the game as I would have liked.

Readers of this humble, little blog, have told me that I failed to consider Kenley Jansen of the Dodgers and Koji Uehara of the Red Sox as the middle relievers for my teams. I told you that it was difficult to choose. But I'll be honest. I was using MLB's site for statistical purposes and sorted the relievers by saves and holds. Had I thought of using WHIP and strikeouts, both Jansen and Uehara would have come up much higher on the lists. But they were so far down saves wise, (Jansen's 28 tied him for 11th in the NL and Uehara's 21 placed him in a tie for 14th in the AL) that I didn't think to look at either of them. When it was time to sort by holds, Uehara falls to 28th in the AL with 13 and Jansen's 16 places him in 19th place. So yes, both guys weren't even close to peripheral radar. When I first thought of adding middle relievers to the All-Star Teams, it was so that I could start featuring players who are unrecognized, whose contributions to the team seem to be under-appreciated, and go unnoticed unless something went horribly wrong that day. With that said, maybe I will have to re-think how to choose the position, especially since the roles of relief pitchers have changed dramatically in the last 15 years.

But now it's time to name the starters.

To recap, here is my National League relief corps:
  • Aroldis Chapman, Reds
  • Tyler Clippard, Nationals
  • Craig Kimbrel, Braves
  • Edward Mujica, Cardinals
  • Sergio Romo, Giants
And the American Leauge bullpen:
  • Greg Holland, Royals
  • Jim Johnson, Orioles
  • Joe Nathan, Rangers
  • Mariano Rivera, Yankees
  • David Robertson, Yankees
So, who would they be relieving???

Starting with the National League six-man rotation, we have (in alphabetical order):

  • Jose Fernandez, Marlins (12-6. 2.19 ERA, 187 K's)
  • Zack Greinke, Dodgers (15-4, 2.63 ERA, 148 K's)
  • Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers (16-9, 1.83 ERA, 232 K's)
  • Cliff Lee, Phillies (14-8, 2.87 ERA, 222 K's)
  • Adam Wainwright, Cardinals (19-9, 2.94 ERA, 219 K's)
  • Jordan Zimmermann, Nationals (19-9, 3.25 ERA, 161 K's)
Honorable mentions go out to (meaning, if I had more space, I'd would have added) Matt Harvey (9-5, 2.27, 187 K's), Andrew Cashner (10-9, 3.09, 128 K's), Travis Wood (yes, even with a record of 9-12, 3.11, 144 K's), Hyun-Jin Ryu (14-8, 3.00, 154 K's), Jorge de la Rosa (16-6, 3.49, 112 K's) and Francisco Liriano (16-8, 3.02, 163 K's). Tough decisions here as the W-L records are much lower (guess that goes hand in hand with the roles in the wonder many people aren't using them as measuring sticks of how well a pitcher performed anymore). But you still have two 19-game winners, a combined ERA of 2.63, 1169 strikeouts, and a combined WHIP of 1.026 between the six of them.

In the American League, my All-Star six-man rotation includes:

  • Bartolo Colon, Athletics (18-6, 2.65 ERA, 117 K's)
  • Yu Darvish, Rangers (13-9, 2.83 ERA, 277 K's)
  • Hisashi Iwakuma, Mariners (14-6, 2.66 ERA, 185 K's)
  • Matt Moore, Rays, (17-4, 3.29 ERA, 143 K's)
  • Max Scherzer, Tigers (21-3, 2.90 ERA, 240 K's)
  • C. J. Wilson, Angels (17-7, 3.39 ERA, 188 K's)
Honorable mentions go out to Felix Hernandez (12-10, 3.04, 216 K's), Anibal Sanchez (14-8, 2.57, 202 K's), Justin Masterson (14-10, 3.45, 195 K's), Chris Tillman (16-7, 3.71, 179 K's), Jon Lester (15-8, 3.75, 177 K's) and Chris Sale (11-14, 3.07 ERA, 226 K's). The AL rotation shows a lot of balance between power pitching, and while the usual suspects aren't in this year's rotation (Verlander, Sabathia, Price, , the AL starting staff consists of the majors' only 20 game winner and strikeout king. It's dominant enough.

So the pitching staffs are done. Next, we'll get to the position players. The first step is to ensure that every team has a representative, regardless of what position he plays. At this point, six AL teams and seven teams from the NL need to have a player. I have a few people in mind. Who will they be? Tune in some time tomorrow and find out.


JayBee Anama

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