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Royals Post-Opening Day Links: Season Previews, Saber Primers, Questions About a Lonely Nation


A trip around the web in search of Royals news.

Zack Greinke is about half way through the 2009 MLB season and to date he has been worth 5.5 wins....


Zack Greinke is about half way through the 2009 MLB season and to date he has been worth 5.5 wins. He is roughly on pace to accumulate 11 wins. As a pitcher. In the last four years, no pitcher has broken past the eight win mark. Since 2002, the first year our win values start, the highest recorded mark is Randy Johnson's 9.9 wins in 2004.... Greinke's batted balls are not significantly different from past years, but his home run rate has unsustainably dipped to just 3.3%. All in all, Greinke is missing more bats this year, but he is also throwing fewer strikes overall. Somehow he has reduced both his walks and his home runs allowed to depress his FIP to 1.98, but going forward you would expect that to be a lot closer to his 3.56 from last season. Still, with half a season banked, Greinke has a serious shot at being FanGraphs' first 10 win pitcher.

Matthew Carruth, FanGraphs

(Perhaps) the 182 Most Valuable Seasons By Royals Starting Pitchers: A Second Look In a Series of Probably Around 68; or, the Return of the Son of Fun with Google Spreadsheets

I might as well revisit this now, especially in light of Zack Greinke's amazing start. A little historical perspective never hurt anyone. In my early days as a seat-filler at Driveline Mechanics,...

Royals rotation - FIP, tRA, tRA+

  1. Zack Greinke - 1.39, 1.35, 174 (#1 starter level)
  2. Gil Meche - 2.46, 2.85, 146 (#1 starter level)
  3. Kyle Davies - 5.62, 7.01, 66 (#5 starter level - below replacement level)
  4. Sidney Ponson - 4.70, 5.15, 102 (#3 starter level)
  5. Brian Bannister - 4.05, 3.49, 133 (#1 starter level)

Royals rotation - FIP, tRA, tRA+

  1. Gil Meche - 2.06, 2.04, 160
  2. Zack Greinke - 1.56, 2.48, 152
  3. Kyle Davies - 3.15, 2.28, 156
  4. Sidney Ponson - 3.42, 2.67, 148
  5. Horacio Ramirez - 8.38, 7.14, 61

Do the Royals have starting pitching depth?

An analysis of Sidney Ponson, the Royals starting pitching depth and how it compares to the rest of the AL Central.


So What is FIP Anyway?

A summary of FIP - Fielding Independent Pitching - a new baseball stat.

(Perhaps) the 20 Most Valuable Single Season Performances by Royals Starting Pitchers


I thought this was something a bit more positive that we could all enjoy. Yes, it is connected with my latest Driveline article on pitcher valuation, but I figure if I add a little extra sugar on top for my Royals Review Peeps (tm), it doesn't count as spam. Anyway, you can learn more about how I value pitchers by reading the article (there's a bit more sugar at the end for Royals fans in the section on tRA). While I haven't incorporated park factors into my database yet, since replacement level is derived from league average, and runs --> wins conversion is custom for each year in my database, it is pretty well adjusted to era. "fe2WAR" is just the dumb name I came up with for averaging FIP-RAR and ERA-WAR, which I then convert to wins. I like Zack, but as you can see, perhaps the Saberhagen comparisons are a bit premature... some pretty incredible seasons in there. Much more to discuss there, I imagine. Note that this is just starting pitchers -- I have a way to incorporate leverage, but it isn't straightforward in terms of mixing leveraged and un-leveraged value in my system, at least not yet. But if we did count it for relievers, I'm pretty sure that at least one or two of Quisenberry's awesome seasons would be in there. But I'll save that for another time. I'm also going to revisit this using BaseRuns-based pitching stats, but that will come later. Enjoy, disagree, discuss!


How good is a #1, #2, #3, #4, #5 starting pitcher?

When talking about starting pitchers, we like to throw around labels like “ace” or “#2 SP” or “#3-quality pitcher.”  And when we do this, we all have some idea in our heads as to what that means. ...

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