« Razzball: 20 Risky Pitchers | Main | Roundtable: Disappointment and Goals »

The Value Of Low-Inning Starting Pitchers

Yesterday we combined Matt Wieters with Rod Barajas to create the fourth-best catcher in fantasy baseball.  One commenter argued:

You can't simply add projected stats for Wieters and Barajas and say that together it is a $17 value in the 11th round...In a lot of leagues you don't have roster room to carry three catchers. Taking up a roster spot on a catcher with an unknown entry date to the majors and a veteran in front of him can hurt you.

Good point.  With certain pitchers, though, we can assume that if they aren't pitching they're on the DL, making it less costly to carry their replacement.  That's not always true - Max Scherzer could go to the bullpen or Rich Harden could miss starts without officially hitting the DL.  But for the sake of this exercise let's assume that these guys start and pitch well when healthy and are on the DL otherwise.

The three I want to look at are Harden, Joba Chamberlain, and Max Scherzer, all of whom are projected to throw fewer than 170 innings.

For this exercise we'll add in innings of Randy Wolf as the replacement-level DL pickup you'll combine with your ace.  I have Wolf down for a 4.54 ERA, 1.42 WHIP, and 7.3 K/9.  Here's what we get:

  • 145 inning of Harden + 55 of Wolf: 3.49 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 215 Ks, 14 W, value of $29.30, 6th among SPs
  • 143 innings of Joba + 57 of Wolf: 3.58 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 206 Ks, 13 W, value of $25.37, 10th among SPs
  • 155 innings of Scherzer + 45 of Wolf: 3.97 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, 208 Ks, 12 W, value of $18.73, 18th among SPs

Harden is an 11th round pick, Joba a 9th rounder, and Scherzer a 16th rounder.  It's true that things can go wrong with this strategy and it doesn't work in every league.  But it's also true that these guys could pitch more innings than projected or you could replace them with someone better than Wolf off the waiver wire.  There is something to be said for drafting this type of low-inning, strong ERA/WHIP/K rate starting pitcher while only counting on 140-160 IP.

Full Story |  Comments (7) | Categories: Starters

Site Map     Contact     About     Advertise     Privacy Policy     MLB Trade Rumors     Rss Feed