FanPost

Quality Starts

Some of us have been scratching our heads wondering why the Tribe's record is as good as it is.  How come this year, the Indians are outperforming their Pythagorean record when they've underperformed it in the past?

Is it grit?
Is it luck?

Or perhaps it is Quality Starts....

....have our quality starts have made our opposing team be what the the Indians have been the last couple of years...a team vulnerable to close losses because they've had to dip into their bullpen earlier and more frequently in order to stay in the game.

I won't speak to how much luck or grit is involved in these numbers, but I think they are interesting:

Cle   19 QS
Opp   7 QS

Breakdown in wins:

Cle QS, opponent no QS:   11 W 3 L
Cle QS, opponent QS:  3 W 2 L

Cle no QS, opponent QS: 0 W 2 L
Cle no QS, Opponent no QS:  4 W 3 L

A 1992 article over at Diamond Mind  points out that:

  1. The ERA of starting pitchers when they have a quality start is over five runs per game better than in games in which they do not have a quality start (1.91 vs 7.50 overall).
  2. The winning percentage of the starting pitchers when they have a quality start is more than twice what it is when they don't have one (.674 vs .311 overall).
  3. The innings pitched per start is also substantially different in quality start and non-quality start games (7.45 vs 4.80).

I think there is a some argument that we are "making (some of) our own luck" by:

  • having more quality starts than the opposiiton.
  • patiently driving the oppositions quality starters out of the game before they have a chance to get through 6 innings.
  • Here are a list of starts where we forced there bullpen in before the pitcher made the requisite 6 innings for a QS:

    Player        IP      R  Pit-Str  

    J Vazquez     5.1   2    112-68
    J Danks         5.1    2    96-60    
    J Contreras   5   2    101-56      
    D Rasner        4.1    1     81-47    
    C Silva              5     3    103-67    
    S Trachsel,        5.2   2   109-54    

    And though this line is a bit difference, the Indians still wore this guy out as much as you can hope for:

    J Santana       7       4    109-74

    Just some food for that. I couldn't easily dig up how many QS the Tribe had last year, so I'm curious is to what the percentage of QS's was last year versus this year....and how many QS's opposing pitchers had against us.  Perhaps it was the same...and all this is just hooey...

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