Originally Posted by mth123
Linebrink is scary. His K/9 really dropped and he has some fly ball tendencies that lead me to believe that the park in SD had a lot to do with his success. His away ERAs in 2005 and 2006 are reasonable and don't support the contention that the park was a huge factor, but his BABIP on the Road was .198 in 2005 and a still low .278 in 2006. His FIP for 2007 is 5.58 and I think GABP woud be a poor fit. All signs point to a guy ready to take a steep fall in performance and I'd let some one else pay for that.
I thoroughly agree. Milwaukee really paid a high price (young arms) for the likes of Linebrick.
I gleaned this from ESPN Insider on that deal....
, RP, MIL
One of baseball's elite relievers since 2004, Linebrink has been on the trade market for a couple of years now. The Padres finally shipped him out to the Brewers, who already have closer Francisco Cordero
. Can he keep up his production in new surroundings?
The scariest Linebrink stats one can bring up are his home and away splits for this season: a 2.10 ERA and 0.90 WHIP at home, but a bloated 5.75 ERA and 1.62 WHIP on the road. Linebrink is a fly ball pitcher, and as we have seen with Chris Young
this season, there might not be a more favorable place than Petco for a fly ball pitcher to pitch. The turnover rate for relievers is quite high, and Linebrink already has showed some signs of decline -- his strikeout rate is absurdly low (5.0 K/9). Quite honestly, Linebrink might be about to blow, and it looks like a great idea to sell him off to another team before that happens. Besides, the Padres have a new Linebrink anyway in Heath Bell
Adam has hit this one on the head. Petco has masked Linebrink's real 2007, the one in which his control, home run rate and especially strikeout rate have slipped considerably. Unless he has been hiding an injury, there is evidence of serious skills decline here. Linebrink's home run percentage on fly balls might be artificially high, but there's no visible excuse for the lack of strikeouts. Linebrink's peripherals paint a picture of a reliever who's no more than a shell of his former self. The road numbers Adam quotes above tell the real tale, and this is one trade the Brewers probably are going to regret.