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Thread: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

  1. #1
    It's showtime! RedEye's Avatar
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    Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I think there is reason to believe that this will happen. As we all know, the rotation had unprecedented failure last year because of Wilson's injury, Milton's ineffectiveness, Ortiz's mediocrity, and the growing pains of any number of young replacements. The lone bright spots were Harang (good pretty much all year) and Claussen (good after a rough spell in the first half). With Harang and Claussen returning with more experience, Milton unlikely to under-perform his '05 season, and the addition of underrated Dave Williams (who is at the same career plateau as Harang and Claussen... right around 90 starts when things start going better for most young pitchers), I see a front four with the following stats:

    Harang 200+ IP, 13 W, 4.10 ERA
    Claussen 180+ IP, 11 W, 3.90 ERA
    Williams 150+ IP, 11 W, 4.50 ERA
    Milton 200+ IP, 10 W, 4.90 ERA

    If Wilson returns to form (a big if, I admit), then we're likely to get at least three (if not four) major league average starters out of this group. That combined with the offense on this team should produce a better outcome in the standings. I also think these pitchers are starting to learn how to pitch in GABP by keeping pitches down in the zone to coax groundouts. Ruhle seems to understand something that Gullett didn't, and it showed in the second half of '05. All of this has me feeling, well, okay about our starters.

    Except...

    The bullpen is like a brigade of human batting tees. It may actually keep my conservative starter W projections from hitting the mark. Long gone are the days of Jim Bowden bullpens with endless depth and replaceable parts.

    Here is who we seem to have back there right now:

    Mercker (our one solid option at this point)
    Standridge (I was pleased with his performance last year in places)
    Belisle (Best chance to be the closer I think)
    White (mediocre innings eater)
    Weathers (an injurty question)
    Wagner (erratic at best, may be in AAA)
    Coffey (not convinced about him either)

    Even if Mercker, Standridge, Belisle and Weathers all show up, there are stil a few places left to be filled, and I just don't see the other players providing the starters with any kind of consistent support.

    Yes, I'm not afraid to say that I think Harang and co. may be a bit better than advertised... but I don't think they'll get the bullpen back-up needed to provide them with W's.

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  3. #2
    Member harangatang's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I don't think Claussen will lead the Reds in ERA. Barring a trade I think that honor will go to Harang, I think he will improve on last year's ERA. I agree with your thoughts on the bullpen though. Hopefully Krivsky will be able to pull off a trade and get a legitimate closer for cheap like when Minnesota got Joe Nathan.

  4. #3
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I agree with Harangatang about Harang leading the team in ERA for starters. I am going out and saying he gets 14 wins with an ERA of 3.55. I look for Claussen for pitch well, lowering his ERA to 4.00. Everyone else should be higher than 4.30 unless the Reds trade for someone, or maybe someone goes down with an injury and someone steps up and in and performs well(Belisle, Ramirez, Germano etc).

  5. #4
    One and a half men Patrick Bateman's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    If Harang gets a 3.55 ERA, he should win 20 games with our offense.

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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    Harang 16w 3.68
    Claussen 13w 4.07
    Hancock 10w 4.18
    Milton 8w 4.84
    Williams 10w 4.33

    I've changed my ERA and win totals from a post in an earlier thread. I believe I had especially Harang's ERA too high at above a 4. I'm afraid Wison will not be ready. I would love for him to come back and take Milton's spot or have a trade to pick up someone who could win at least 15 wins.
    I don't think the bullpen will be terrible, but will be aged.
    Merker
    Weathers
    Coffey
    Hammonds
    White
    Belisle
    ????? Milton if Wilson is ready or any of a number of people


    I'm not a big fan of White. He is not terrible but I just he fills the same role as some of the other vets. I'd like to see some of the other youg guys get a chance and I suppose that the other recent signings will get a good look. I'm not sure how ready the guys that came from the Randa trade are ready.

  7. #6
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Kearns
    If Harang gets a 3.55 ERA, he should win 20 games with our offense.
    His ERA was 3.83 last year and he won 11. He had horrible luck last year, but his ERA being low with this offense doesnt mean much because the team will score 15 one night and 2 the next. Just so happens Aaron had the luck to pitch most of those low run nights.

  8. #7
    Member SteelSD's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt
    His ERA was 3.83 last year and he won 11. He had horrible luck last year, but his ERA being low with this offense doesnt mean much because the team will score 15 one night and 2 the next. Just so happens Aaron had the luck to pitch most of those low run nights.
    The Reds averaged 4.63 Runs in support of Harang, who had the fourth lowest Quality Start ratio of NL pitchers who produced a 3.83 or lower ERA.


    If Harang wants to record more Wins, he needs to pitch better more often.
    "The problem with strikeouts isn't that they hurt your team, it's that they hurt your feelings..." --Rob Neyer

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  9. #8
    Reds Slacker '07 RedsMan3203's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I hope baby Wags shows up this year.....
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  10. #9
    Who Dey!! GridironGrace's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I feel after going .500 after Narron came along that we had some solid improvments in many aspects including pitching.

    I hope it continued through the offseason and as i said in previous threads, if we can get our TEAM ERA down considerably i see no reason why we cant have an outstanding season

    If nothing else CONSISTANCY, i mean if ur gonna give up 5 runs every 7 IP then do it all the time or less so we can expect it lol. "ok miltons pitches we gotta score 5+ for him" instead of one outting he looks great for 6IP then 5 runs and the next its 5 runs in the 2nd inning.

    Give us 6 or 7 solid innings... keep it to 3 runs allowed or less i mean how many times did we score 5+ runs last season and LOSE?????? anyone figured that.. i may do it soon.

    Cant have that.. cant have our SP giving up more then 5 runs in 5 innings of work.. CAN NOT..

    inconsistancy.... just be consistant... thats what we need.. so we KNOW or have a general idea of what we gotta do.

    Id perfer you be a consistant 3 ERA SP then an inconsistant 5 ERA lol
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  11. #10
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I'm looking at Williams to have a 5.00+ ERA. Same with Milton, though obviously anything under 6.00 would mark improvement for him.

    Claussen and Harang are wild cards. Chances are that both of them see their ERAs rise in 2006, but they do have some factors which could push it lower too.

    Claussen's should rise because he didn't pitch as well as his ERA last season (4.63 component ERA compared to a 4.21 actual ERA). If he pitched the same in 2006 you'd expect the ERA to bubble northward. However, he's only thrown 239 big league innings so it's perfectly reasonable to expect he'll improve a bit. Now if only improves a little, you'd get pretty much what he delivered last year for ERA. The main thing he needs to do is cut down on the homers allowed. Claussen's at the crossroads. This is his chance to step up and be a better pitcher. I'm not as confident that he'll do it as I was that Harang would last year, but ST should give us a pretty good indication of whether he's ready to make a leap (or even a hop).

    Harang's likely to see his ERA rise because he just had the best season of his career. It's common to experience a bit of a dropoff. Yet Harang's got that big frame of his, which he learned to rely on last season. He should be even stronger in the latter portion of the season in 2006 (he had a lower ERA post-All Star last season, but actually pitched better pre-All Star). He won't slip much if he does slip and a guy with his profile (big fella who throws a heavy fastball with good location) is the sort who can string good seasons together.

    Though the real spot for pitching improvement on the team is likely to be the bullpen. Todd Coffey and Ryan Wagner were flat out unlucky last season. Also, if they had advanced through the minors a level per year, they'd be rookies in 2006. They're big kids with some stuff and even if you aren't particularly enthusiastic about them, they're easily the two best bets in the Reds' pitching corps to do a lot better in 2006.
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  12. #11
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    I'm looking at Williams to have a 5.00+ ERA. Same with Milton, though obviously anything under 6.00 would mark improvement for him.

    Claussen and Harang are wild cards. Chances are that both of them see their ERAs rise in 2006, but they do have some factors which could push it lower too.

    Claussen's should rise because he didn't pitch as well as his ERA last season (4.63 component ERA compared to a 4.21 actual ERA). If he pitched the same in 2006 you'd expect the ERA to bubble northward. However, he's only thrown 239 big league innings so it's perfectly reasonable to expect he'll improve a bit. Now if only improves a little, you'd get pretty much what he delivered last year for ERA. The main thing he needs to do is cut down on the homers allowed. Claussen's at the crossroads. This is his chance to step up and be a better pitcher. I'm not as confident that he'll do it as I was that Harang would last year, but ST should give us a pretty good indication of whether he's ready to make a leap (or even a hop).

    Harang's likely to see his ERA rise because he just had the best season of his career. It's common to experience a bit of a dropoff. Yet Harang's got that big frame of his, which he learned to rely on last season. He should be even stronger in the latter portion of the season in 2006 (he had a lower ERA post-All Star last season, but actually pitched better pre-All Star). He won't slip much if he does slip and a guy with his profile (big fella who throws a heavy fastball with good location) is the sort who can string good seasons together.

    Though the real spot for pitching improvement on the team is likely to be the bullpen. Todd Coffey and Ryan Wagner were flat out unlucky last season. Also, if they had advanced through the minors a level per year, they'd be rookies in 2006. They're big kids with some stuff and even if you aren't particularly enthusiastic about them, they're easily the two best bets in the Reds' pitching corps to do a lot better in 2006.
    I agree with most of this assessment. Where I don't...

    1. I think Williams will be a nice surprise (so long as he's healthy).
    2. I have little hope that Milton can pitch well enough to stay in the rotation past midseason.
    3. I am highly skeptical of Wagner (add to that injury concerns).
    4. I am somewhat skeptical of Coffey -- that good splitfinger seems more like wishful thinking than anything at this point.

    Pretty much Ruhle's Rabbits Out of Hats, barring a nice trade or two.
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  13. #12
    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    If the rotation can give us a collective 5.00 ERA, the bullpen a collective 4.50 ERA, and we manage to score the same amount of runs as last year, we'll be an above .500 squad.

    I imagine we won't score quite as many runs, but think the 5.00/4.50 ERAs are definitely possible. Wagner had a solid k/bb and k/9 last, which are pretty good indicators of future success. Coffee is probably going to need to miss a few more bats if he's ever going to be really successful, but his control was excellent.

    This rotation is really going to need to count on Harang to be it's anchor, if not it's ace. If he gets hurt, look out.

  14. #13
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    The Reds will need to get their collective ERA down around 4.69 if they want to allow roughly as many as they scored last year.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

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  15. #14
    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    Quote Originally Posted by M2
    The Reds will need to get their collective ERA down around 4.69 if they want to allow roughly as many as they scored last year.
    I was thinking it was a bit higher than that M2. I just redid the math.

    We scored 820 runs last year.
    We allowed 820 earned runs and 69 unearned for a total of 889 runs allowed in 1433 IP.

    Given the same defensive performance, we need to cut 69 earned runs in 1433 IP. That's .43 R/G. Subtracted from the 5.15 ERA last year, you get 4.72. So you're pretty spot on.

    If we assume that starters get 2/3 of our IP (probably on the high side...) then these are the possible breakdowns to achieve a 4.72 ERA:

    starter's era relievers era
    4 6.16
    4.1 5.96
    4.2 5.76
    4.3 5.56
    4.4 5.36
    4.5 5.16
    4.6 4.96
    4.7 4.76
    4.8 4.56
    4.9 4.36
    5 4.16
    5.1 3.96
    5.2 3.76
    5.3 3.56
    5.4 3.36
    5.5 3.16

    - this formatting sucks and I don't have time to fix it... hopefully you can get the idea

  16. #15
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    Re: Fearless Prediction: Starters Will Out-Perform Relievers in '06

    if the starters are better than the relievers, then it'll be because the relievers are worse than godawful. Which, I agree, is possible


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