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Mariners Close To Signing Washburn

I'm finally back in action - my blogging service was down all day.  Plenty of stuff to talk about.

Scott Miller of CBS Sportsline is reporting that the Mariners are close to signing lefty starter Jarrod Washburn for $36-38MM over four years.  'Bout time they got a scoop over there.  I'm surprised Scott Boras didn't hold out for more cash, milking Washburn's fluke of a 3.20 ERA.

Want to know a great way to identify someone who pitched way over his head?  Find the starter with the biggest gap between his actual ERA and his component ERA.  What the hell's a component ERA?  It's where you look at a pitcher's peripheral stats - walks, home runs, and hits allowed - and compute what his ERA should have been. Check out the component ERAs from 2005 at ESPN.  It's the most accurate way to predict ERA that I know of.

Anyway, Jarrod Washburn should've had a 4.19 ERA this year based on how he pitched.  All sorts of lucky factors converged in his contract year, which pleases Mr. Boras very much.  Washburn's not horrible - he'll throw up ERAs around 4 consistently.  It's just that the man is hardly durable enough to be locking up for four solid years.  I suppose Bill Bavasi thinks he had no other choice than to sign a Boras pitcher.


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You are an incredible Cubs fan. I am a Rangers' fan. Would you make this trade and more importantly, do you think the Cubs would make it?

Mench for Williams, Patterson & Aardsma. Patterson, with his $3m salary next year would be considered negitive value.

Another good one is to calculate DIPS - ERA. This irons over lucky fluctuations in BABIP, which CERA ignores.

A big winner of 2005's sweepstakes was Joe Blanton, who had a 3.53 ERA despite a DIPS of 4.58.

Compare his numbers to Kyle Lohse's numbers, then imagine what could happen to Blanton's ERA if he gets a BABIP like Lohse's unlucky .296 last year.

Mark - that's a fairly reasonable trade. Not sure if C-Patt has negative value, in that some team would probably take on all $3MM and even give an OK player back. If it was just Williams and Aardsma, it sounds even. Mench does have 30 HR pop.

Good point Andrew. How much control does a pitcher have over his hit rate, do you think? That's the big difference between those two guys.

Mark Hartman,

I'm with the Monger on this one. Korey only has negative value to the Rangers because they have like six outfielders right now. We'll keep him if thats the case. My question is, what more would we have to add to the package to walk away with Wilerson rather than Mench?


I say that Patterson has negative trade value because the Cubs have tried but failed in getting anyone interested in him. Apparently, the Cubs don't want him, either. 1060 West agrees.

Texas will probably be trading 1-2 of their OF'ers not named Wilkerson. If Nix isn't traded he will return to AAA. So I see a place for Patterson as a reclamation project.

Jon Daniels likes what Wilkerson brings to Texas...OBP & versatility. I think he stays in Texas. Of course, if Rich Hill were to be included I think JD would pack Wilkerson's bags for him.

Mench is the guy who goes because Sledge or Matthews can easily take his place.

I see Texas trading Mench to St. Louis for Marquis straight up or to the Cubs for Williams, Aardsma, Patterson.

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