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Monday, September 17, 2007

5 steps to proving John Kruk is an absolute moron

Why is John Kruk giving his opinion on the AL Cy Young Race on BBTN? Seriously, what makes him more qualified than say you or I to espouse who should win the AL Cy Young award. To borrow a Simpsons quote from Martin Prince, I believe "A blindfolded chimp with a pencil in his teeth has a better chance" of predicting the deserving AL Cy Young winner.

1) Steve Phillips explains why Wins really aren't that important when it comes to evaluating a pitcher's performance: "The 16 wins to 18 wins, to me, that's a team differential, not a pitching differential"

2) John Kruk tries to explain why Chien-Ming Wang is the best pitcher and flat out lies:

"He's giving all these stats about Escobar, you have to remember he's pitching in a division that is weaker than the AL East....Chien Ming Wang has pitched against the Red Sox, against the Orioles, pitched against Toronto, three teams that can score some runs." (emphasis added).

AL EAST: Avg runs/team for non-NY Yankees = 725 or 4.86 runs/game

AL WEST: Avg runs/team for non-Anaheim Angels= 728 or 4.87 runs/game

And TEX, SEA, OAK are all better offensively than both Toronto and Baltimore.

3) John Kruk admits he not only doesn't understand advanced pitching metrics, he doesnt' even understand WHIP. Fucking WHIP. One of the five original fantasy baseball pitching stats. You add BB's and Hits and divide by IP. Is it really that difficult to understand? Could your average 6th grader understand WHIP and how to calculate it? YES. Could a 46 year old washed up former baseball player turned analyst? NO. Sadly, no.

4) Steve Phillips tries again valiantly to explain why Run Support matters for a pitcher's won-loss record. "He's won by 4 or more runs in 15 of those 18 wins. That is the offense supporting CMW, it's not his extraordinary pitching."

5) Kruk concludes that because CMW has won most of his games with large margins of victory (a possible sign that he gets large amounts of run support and therefore large #'s of wins which he doesn't necessarily deserve), he should therefore give up even more runs in order to bolster his Cy Young chances. In other words, he should pitch even worse than he presently has in order to get more consideration for the best pitcher award--since he would then have more closer games.

BONUS: Orel Hershiser explains that pitchers sometimes give up runs in order to win a game. And that they give up home runs to stay in games longer, because naturally giving up a HR is a great sign to your manager, "Hey, I'm still going strong, I just gave up that HR on purpose, keep me in here"

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