Originally Posted by Ryan the Reds Fan
So I ask this Steel, 1, what about other years? The 3 full years he pitched before that, I believe he averaged 13 or 14 wins as well. and 2, if Milton has a 5 ERA, wins 14 games, and get over 6 runs of support this year, will you be disappointed? And come on losses that should have been? Were they a W in the win column? Isn't that what matters? I doubt the team that lost was happy because they "should have won".
In 2001, Milton received 5.18 Runs per Game in support.
And yes, if Milton has a 5.00 ERA, I'll be supremely disappointed regardless of Run Support. Run Support is not a constant. It cannot be projected. It's random. If Milton posts a 5.00 ERA that means that the Reds could have plugged pretty much an schmo into the rotation for far FAR less than 8.5 million dollars while getting the same results- including recorded Wins.
Seriously, not a single sub-.500 record from a pitcher who got at least 6.00 Runs in support since 2002. Not one, no matter how badly they actually pitched. You think those Wins can be attributed to pitcher skill?
Using your logic, Randy Johnson wasn't as valuable as Derek Lowe in 2004. Not because of how they actually pitched- but because of how many Runs were scored when they were pitching. And we all know that's just not true.
Ben Sheets posted a 13-14 record. Are you telling us that Eric Milton is a preferable option to Sheets- who received 3.53 Runs per Game in support from his offense? What about Odalis Perez? Do you think that maybe his 7-6 record was a product of the Dodgers scoring an average of only 3.30 Runs per Game in his Starts despite his 3.25 ERA? Kelvim Escobar posted a record of 11-12. Why? Because he allowed 3.93 Earnies per game while his team averaged exactly 3.93 Runs Scored in games he pitched.
All of these players appear to be worse options than Milton using your "Wins are everything" reasoning. But there's not a player on that list who wasn't a geometrically better pitcher last season than Eric Milton.
The problem is that it appears you view Wins and Losses as being solely dependant on pitcher skill level. They're not. In fact, for Pitchers, Wins and Losses shouldn't even be considered performance evaluation metrics because they tell us so little about what actually happened. They're team-dependant event outcome assignments. A pitcher can't record a Win if something beyond their control doesn't perform (ie. the offense) but CAN record a win even if their performance hinders their team's chances of outscoring their opponent.
Pitcher-recorded Wins simply don't care how good or bad the Pitcher actually was. And yes, if a Pitcher posts a 5.00 ERA they're hurting their team.
All Wins are not created equal.