Baseball Blogs Weigh In: Cahill, Gose, Swisher

On this date in 2008, Josh Hamilton became only the sixth major leaguer to be intentionally walked with the bases loaded. Rays manager Joe Maddon’s gutsy decision paid off as Tampa Bay went on to win, 7-4. Here’s this week’s look around the baseball blogosphere..

Please send submissions to Zach at ZachBBWI@gmail.com.


18 Responses to Baseball Blogs Weigh In: Cahill, Gose, Swisher Leave a Reply

  1. AmericanMovieFan 11 months ago

    Per the Nick Swisher link: I think the answer is that he had greater protection as a Yankee so he got better pitches to hit. Simple. But yeah, he probably also got old overnight, to an extent. I wanted to see him a Yankee and he could be doing worse, but it’s not as though Swisher having 20 HR’s and a .275 BA would’ve made the difference for the Indians at this point in the season.

  2. LazerTown 11 months ago

    The only reason that Cueto should get any votes for first is due to the advantage in innings. Kershaw’s FIP is 1.32 runs lower. Yes Cueto has been good, but has also had some luck on his side. Kershaw has been utterly dominant.

    • Matt Bennett 11 months ago

      I think we should remember that the only statistics that should matter in Cy Young voting is innings pitched and earned runs. ERA estimators like FIP and xFIP totally disregard non-home-run balls put in play. That is very valuable when predicting a player’s future success and/or deciding how how lucky a certain player was. However, those non-home-run balls put in play did happen, and can’t be thrown away when determining how productive a player was. We’re comparing actual production in a Cy Young vote, and innings pitched/earned runs show what actually happened in reality. Even when attempting to break a tie, I would turn to WHIP over FIP/xFIP. Maybe Cueto has gotten lucky, but luck is a part of the game, and he can’t be penalized because of that.

      • MB923 11 months ago

        “I think we should remember that the only statistics that should matter in Cy Young voting is innings pitched and earned runs. ”

        And strikeouts

        • LazerTown 11 months ago

          and then you are right back to looking at FIP.

        • Sean Casey 11 months ago

          and walks, hits and homeruns

        • Matt Bennett 11 months ago

          But that’s the thing, in the end, it doesn’t matter whether a pitcher got a strikeout or a ground-out. An out is an out. Are strikeouts a good statistical predictor for future success? Yes. When speaking of the past, was one particular strikeout more valuable than a ground-out/fly-out? No.

          • MB923 11 months ago

            I don’t disagree, but that is a stat that the voters certainly look at. You said the only stats that matter for Cy Young is IP and ERA. You don’t think the voters look at strikeouts?

          • Matt Bennett 11 months ago

            No, they don’t need to. If we are comparing which pitcher provided more value, why would we need to look at strikeouts? A strikeout isn’t more valuable than a ground-out. One out is one out, regardless of how a pitcher achieved it.

      • LazerTown 11 months ago

        Why should only era and innings matter in cy young?

        There are so many things that can lead to a low era. era doesn’t always show how good someone was. Someone can have a low era, or they can absolutely destroy their competition like Kershaw has done this year.

        And WHIP is all about treating everything the same, without taking into account the type of contact. Someone that has high K’s, low walks, and is giving up way less hits is so much more dominant than someone else.

        • Matt Bennett 11 months ago

          But we are comparing how valuable a player was, not how good a player was, right? Has Kershaw been better than Cueto? Oh yeah. He’s been better than anyone in the game. Has Kershaw been more valuable than Cueto? That’s debatable, as Cueto has pitched 42 more innings.

      • Sean Casey 11 months ago

        FIP also values a high K/BB rate, which I’d argue has a ton of importance in comparing pitchers. Kershaw’s 9.16 K/BB is better than Pedro in 2000 or mid 90’s Greg Maddux. He is putting up one of the top pitching season of all time, He’s Koufax, Gibson, Pedro in their primes, statistically.

        • Matt Bennett 11 months ago

          Yes, it’s a very positive sign for a pitcher to have a high K/BB rate. And yes, Kershaw is completely dominant and is the best pitcher in the world. However, if a pitcher had extraordinary success without a high K/BB, how can you penalize him? He still had extraordinary success, he just didn’t achieve that success the way you wanted him to.

          • Sean Casey 11 months ago

            I wouldn’t penalize them, I highly value ERA and RA/9 when comparing pitchers, Kershaw leads in both. I believe in looking at the whole picture. Cueto’s having a great season leading in important stats like H/9, Innings, and BAA but even when you adjust for the ballparks (ERA+, ERA-) Kershaw has an edge. Innings is important but Kershaw still has more fWAR and bWAR with lower innings total. FIP isn’t only a estimator it’s based on real life performance HR/9, BB/9, HBP/9 and K/9.

          • Matt Bennett 11 months ago

            Oh I agree, Kershaw has been the better pitcher and more valuable pitcher. We just shouldn’t penalize Cueto because his ERA is lower than his FIP. At the end of the day, the only statistics that matter when deciding how VALUABLE a pitcher was, not how GOOD a pitcher was, are innings pitched and ERA. How many innings did that pitcher pitch, and how productive were those innings? It doesn’t matter how he got the outs, how many base-runners he let up, etc. FIP disregards H/9, so it doesn’t actually show how valuable a pitcher was, because balls put in play are a part of this game, even if they involve a heavy amount of luck.

    • Sky14 11 months ago

      The innings pitched is not a small gap. Cueto has pitched roughly 40 innings more than Kershaw which is nearly 30 % greater. He also has a ridiculous .181 BAA so it is not like he lucked into his ERA (Kerhsaw’s is worse but not by much). The ERA gap is not large enough to completely ignore the huge difference in innings. As Matt Bennett mention, FIP should not be a factor for the Cy Young. If we wanted to predict who is more likely to repeat this performance in the future FIP would be useful but for the Cy Young we want a real result which is ERA.

      • LazerTown 11 months ago

        FIP is about how dominant a pitcher was. Sure it’s not actual results, but it better shows how a batter feels when they are facing that pitcher.

      • Sean Casey 11 months ago

        Kershaw’s FIP is fueled by a ridiculous 9.16 K/BB ratio. As far as luck goes Kershaw is having his worse year since his rookie season in BABIP at .282, Cueto’s having his best at .228. The innings lead isn’t large enough for Cueto to lead in WAR, Kershaw leads the NL in both Baseball Reference and Fangraphs WAR. The RA/9 gap is bigger than the ERA gap.

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