SG over at RLYB used the Diamond Mind baseball simulator to project the Yankees’ 2009 season with Joba in the rotation, and then compared that to the projections that had Joba in the bullpen. His results were throughly unsurprising:
Avg W: 95
Avg L: 67
Avg RF: 843
Avg RA: 709
Avg W: 94
Avg L: 68
Avg RF: 843
Avg RA: 719
As you can see, the team is about a win better with Joba in the rotation for 2009. Given the margin of error with this type of statistical model that’s not necessarily significant. However, if you look at 2009 as part of the development plan to build Joba up to eventually be a 200 inning starter, there’s just no reasonable argument to put Joba in the pen.
Although the data is not neccessarily statistically significant, I am not surprised that it suggests the Yankees would be better served with Joba in the rotation. A solid starter is worth more than even an excellent set-up man. The Yankees are therefore maximizing their return on Chamberlain’s skills by using him in the rotation. As SG says, they need to have him pitch as a starter this season if they want him to build enough arm strength to become a top of the rotation horse.
On the other hand, Jobber needs to be in the bullpen!!!! Shorten the game!!! McLoooth!!!!
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