The New Meche
Man, I switched over to the veggie dogs tonight from the Ivardog, and I think I might have gone a little crazy with the onions.
Anyway. I don’t think it’s as useful to look at K ror BB rate as it is to look at percentage of outcomes. Did anything really change from the early Meche to late Meche?
Meche’s walk rate went from 14% of batters he faced to 4%. His HR rate went up by half, from 3% to 5% though two hundred at-bats in either direction isn’t enough that I’d really want to draw conclusions from it. He’s striking out about 19% of the batters he faces. And that’s in Safeco, too, which makes the HR rate even more eye-popping.
An average pitcher’s rates are (and I’m doing rough estimates here, please forgive me if I screw up) about 8% walk rate, 15% K rate, and 2.5% HR rate.
So Meche has turned into almost a super-powered Franklin. He’s striking guys out with the same curve he’s been teasing us with for years, but not dominating, and he’s walking almost no one. The price he seems to be paying is that when he can’t get the K, he’s coming back over the plate and taking his chances. Sometimes that means the pitch is crushed.
If he can keep this up, munch innings, he’s an average major league starter. A bit of an odd one, but there are many different ways to get to any particular spot. Now, what’s that worth — $2m? $3m? Is the risk of re-injury large enough that it’s too expensive for a gamble?