So I’ve said over and over again that there’s really no way A.J. Burnett’s 2011 can be worse than his 2011. Do I have any proof for this? Frankly, I’m not really sure. There’s nothing we can predict about A.J. He’s got the classic “results don’t match the stuff” tag and that’s definitely hard to shake. Let’s look at 2010 and see if we can find ANYTHING that can help us predict a better 2011 for Mr. Burnett.
The first thing that’s at least a little positive is that Burnett did drop his BB/9 below 4.0. He was at 3.76 BB/9, which is right below his career mark of 3.78 BB/9. The bad thing is that his K/9, 6.99, fell to a nine year low. That’s something that needs to improve for Burnett to be successful (yes, you can give this the Capt. Obvious tag).
Burnett’s HR/9 in 2010 was the second highest of his career at 1.21 (highest 1.25 in ’07 for the Jays). His BABIP, .319, was also the second highest of his career (.328 in ’08). So, there’s a small chance that both of those numbers could come back down to A.J.’s career numbers (0.87 HR/9; .297 BABIP).
The high BABIP, as well as a low strand rate of 68.8%, helped contribute to Burnett’s ugly and a half 5.26 ERA. However, his FIP, 4.83 and xFIP, 4.66, were nothing to write home about either.
I’m really stretching here. There’s not much in Burnett’s 2010 that suggests he’ll have a significant improvement for next year. The FIP and xFIP numbers tell me that there’s a chance he could be A BIT better, but not much. Then again, we never know what the hell’s gonna happen when this guy uncorks one from his right arm.
Have a good weekend, TYU readers. I’ll be taking my You-Get-to-Be-a-Teacher exams on Saturday morning, so send me good vibes. Go Jets and Packers this weekend!
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