Before I dump the "relevant" data, I need to convey one important message: I love Ricky Romero. The more I read and learn about him, the more stock I put in stories of his otherworldly make up. From his radio hit the day Jose Bautista signed to his cinematic Nike commercial, I find so much to like about Ricky Romero. Dude rules. Also, a great pitcher!
That silky smooth segue brings me back to the long-forgotten projection summary posts I started weeks ago. With the hitter comps out of the way, the focus switches to pitchers. Projecting pitchers is hard because pitching is crazy. Guys regress, they improve, they lose the ability to locate certain pitches or it all comes together.
A recent Fangraphs community study shows mechanical projections aren't as good pitchers as they are hitters, but we won't let that stop us from having fun, now will it? There are only five pitchers selected below, not because of my inherent biases but because of available information. It isn't ME that hates Jessie Litsch, it's the computers.
|All Fans (43)||212||18||7.60||3.40||2.24||0.76||0.252||1.33||0.304||3.76||3.74|
|All Fans (46)||176||17||9.87||3.94||2.51||0.87||0.240||1.33||0.316||3.61||3.97|
|All Fans (32)||186||20||6.68||2.71||2.46||0.97||0.267||1.33||0.307||4.01||4.13|
|All Fans (24)||150||17||7.02||2.94||2.39||1.02||0.259||1.31||0.300||4.09||4.23|
|All Fans (11)||129||15||8.51||3.91||2.18||1.05||0.246||1.36||0.301||4.16||4.25|
If, by chance, these five men make the lion's share of starts for the Jays in 2011 and the worst of the lot finishes with a FIP just north of 4.00, I will throw a party. Nothing too extravagant but some nice sandwiches, some decent bottles of wine, a tasteful quartet, decent venue. You are all be invited. By the way, the place will be crawling with strippers. Oodles of them.
Because that event, however unlikely, would be cause for celebration. A depraved bacchanalia the likes of which this city will never forget. Because teams that pitch like that usually get cool t-shirts designed in their honor. Oh and they win the crap out of playoffs series.
I'm very interested to hear what other people think of these bullish projections. Do you put a lot of stock into them? They can't predict Jose Bautista-style breakouts but nobody can. In the case of Brandon Morrow, the projections suggest something we all know/believe: a great season lurks in those peripherals. Though I'm on the record saying things might get worse before they get better, I remain excited to see how this pitching staff shakes out.
Getty Images photo courtesy of Daylife, projections courtesy of Fangraphs.