You know the drill. Let’s run down some of the Yankee pitchers and see how they did compared to their projections.
To say this rotation was a surprise would be an understatement in the extreme. Coming into the 2011 season, it was easily the weakest part of the team. Despite that, the Yankee starters had the sixth best ERA in the AL heading into Tuesday as well as the sixth best FIP and third best xFIP. Put it all together and the starters racked up the fourth most fWAR in the AL. Sidebar: If we include the bullpen, the Yankees were third in ERA (to the Rays and Angels) as well as second in FIP/xFIP/fWAR (all to the White Sox).
ACTUAL: 237.1 IP, 3.00 ERA, 2.88 FIP
RotoChamp: 217 IP, 3.23 ERA, 3.41 FIP
Bill James: 236 IP, 3.32 ERA, 3.34 FIP
Marcel: 202 IP, 3.30 ERA, 3.49 FIP
ZiPS: 230.3 IP, 3.32 ERA, 3.22 FIP
It was another Cy Young contending type year for the Big Man. There really isn’t much to say about his season that hasn’t already been said. Even with his recent struggles, he’s had a fantastic season and will probably finish in the top 3 in AL CY voting this year. That 2.88 FIP, by the way, is second in the American League to Brandon McCarthy (!) and his 2.86 mark. Sabathia and Detroit starter Justin Verlander tied for the fWAR lead at 7.0.
ACTUAL: 190 IP, 5.16 ERA, 4.78 FIP (Silver lining but not really…3.86 xFIP)
RotoChamp: 192.0 IP, 4.76 ERA, 4.49 FIP
Bill James: 191 IP, 4.01 ERA, 4.05 FIP
Marcel: 174 IP, 4.53 ERA, 4.30 FIP
ZiPS: 182 IP, 4.50 ERA, 4.12 FIP
This year was just a train wreck for A.J. No need to pile on here, but that xFIP makes me sad. It just goes to show you what a 1.46 HR/9 will do to your stat line.
ACTUAL: 164.2 IP, 3.66 ERA, 4.01 FIP
RotoChamp: 141 IP, 4.49 ERA, 4.32 FIP
Bill James: 115 IP, 4.62 ERA, 4.33 FIP
Marcel: 71 IP, 4.06 ERA, 4.08 FIP
ZiPS: 149.7 IP, 5.29 ERA, 4.94 FIP
For Nova, the projection systems reversed what Nova’s actual results were. He slightly out ERA’d his FIP, though he was projected to do the opposite. Nova’s had a much better year than I ever could’ve anticipated. Still, I have NO clue what to expect from Nova when he goes out there. A gem wouldn’t surprise me, but neither would an average start or a clunker.
Bartolo Colon (including last night)
ACTUAL: 159 IP, 4.02 ERA, 3.77 FIP
Bill James: NONE
Marcel: 66 IP, 4.36 ERA, 4.60 FIP
ZiPS: 38.3 IP, 5.63 ERA, 5.17 FIP
Biggest surprise of the season? Biggest surprise of the season. I’ve said it before but I cannot believe that Colon lasted 159 innings. Despite a late season slide, his numbers still look great and he racked up 2.8 fWAR, second on the team only to Sabathia’s 7.0 fWAR. If he had ended up with the meager performance that Marcel and ZiPS projected him for, I wouldn’t have been surprised and I probably would’ve been okay with it. The Yankees (and we) expected absolutely nothing out of Colon and we got a lot. I’m pretty damn happy with this scrapheap pick up.
ACTUAL: 146.2 IP, 3.62 ERA, 4.12 FIP
Bill James: 148 IP, 3.89 ERA, 4.57 FIP
Marcel: 144 IP, 4.44 ERA, 4.42 FIP
ZiPS: 82 IP, 4.83 ERA, 4.58 FIP
Garcia did what we expected him to do (though he did it for longer): He soaked up a fair amount of innings and pitched pretty well. There were times when we were mystified by how Garica was doing it; there were times when we were wondering how this guy ever got outs.
ACTUAL: 73.2 IP, 5.86 ERA, 4.59 FIP
RotoChamp: 183 IP, 4.27 ERA, 4.08 FIP
Bill James: 177 IP, 3.56 ERA, 3.76 FIP
Marcel: 141 IP, 3.80 ERA, 3.95 FIP
ZiPS: 147.7 IP, 4.08 ERA, 3.82 FIP
Even more than A.J. Burnett’s, Phil Hughes’s season was an extreme disappointment. While we may have seen this coming after 2010′s second half, that doesn’t make this season’s performance by Hughes any less frustrating. There seem to be many explanations: His secondary offerings are underdeveloped. His velocity isn’t high enough. His fastball is too flat. Maybe he’s still hurt. With this many potential problems, there are two ways we can look at it: Either the simplest answer (he’s hurt) is right, or it’s some combination of all these things.
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