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Posts Tagged ‘Kansas City Royals’

MLB: Is Greinke the Unluckiest Pitcher Ever?‎

May 5, 2010 Comments off

After winning the Cy Young Award last year, Kansas City Royals ace Zack Greinke appears primed to make history of a different sort this season: unluckiest pitcher ever.

Mr. Greinke’s ERA of 2.27 is 79% better than the league average when adjusted for ballpark effects. Yet his record stands at 0-3. In baseball history, only 17 pitchers have won 15 games or fewer with an ERA at least 50% lower than average (minimum 32 starts and 200 innings pitched). None has won fewer than 12 games, and only two had losing records—Ben Sheets (12-14, 2004 Brewers) and Dave Roberts (14-17, 1971 Padres).

At the opposite end of the spectrum, fellow Cy Young winner Steve Carlton won 27 games for a 1972 Phillies team that finished 59-97. Mr. Carlton’s ERA that year was 80% better than average—almost identical to Mr. Greinke’s current pace. A big difference was Mr. Carlton’s completing 73% of his starts while Mr. Greinke has already seen his league-worst bullpen blow three would-be wins.

While Kansas City presently doesn’t rank last in a single key offensive category, the team has scored just 12 runs for Mr. Greinke in six starts. Perhaps former Yankee Mickey Rivers had it right when he famously said, “Pitching is 80% of the game. The other half is hitting and fielding.”

Uh, a Little Help Here Guys?

Here’s how Zack Greinke stacks up against the five unluckiest pitchers in baseball history based on their number of wins and how their ERA compared with the league average.*

PLAYER/TEAM/YEAR ERA COMPARED WITH LEAGUE * RECORD
Zack Greinke, Royals , 2010 2.27 79% better than average 0-3 (so far)
Ben Sheets, Brewers, 2004 2.70 60% better than average 12-14
Tom Candiotti, Blue Jays/Indians, 1991 2.65 57% better than average 13-13
Lefty Grove, Athletics, 1926 2.51 67% better than average 13-13
Kevin Brown, Dodgers, 2000 2.58 67% better than average 13-6
Roger Clemens, Astros, 2005 1.87 124% better than average 13-8

*min. 32 starts, 200 innings pitched; league ERA is adjusted for park effects Source: Baseball-Reference

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MLB: Sources: A’s, free agent Crisp near deal

December 20, 2009 Comments off

The Oakland Athletics and free agent outfielder Coco Crisp were on the verge of a contract agreement Sunday morning, sources told ESPN The Magazine’s Buster Olney.

The pending deal was for one year at $4.5 million-$5 million, the sources said.

An eight-year veteran, Crisp has played with the Indians, Red Sox and Royals.

The career .277 hitter underwent season-ending rotator-cuff surgery to both shoulders in 2009 after appearing in only 49 games.

The Royals acquired Crisp in Nov. 2008 in a trade with the Red Sox for right-hander Ramon Ramirez.

Kansas City declined a contract option with Crisp for 2010, making him a free agent.