The ’09 Staff
Despite the fact that the M’s 2008 pitching staff has been horrible, there are plenty of reasons to think that it will be significantly better next year, even if they don’t make any real changes to the roster. Since I’m running into some time constraints, I won’t go through all the machinations behind these numbers, but here’s a quick-and-dirty projection for the team’s pitching staff for next year. And yes, I’m assuming whoever comes aboard will have the common sense to dump Washburn on whoever will take the biggest chunk of his contract.
Pitcher Innings FIP 1 Felix 200 3.40 2 Bedard 140 3.60 3 Morrow 130 4.00 4 Silva 180 5.00 5 RRS 150 5.25 6 Feier. 100 5.25 7 Batista 100 5.00 Long Dickey 80 4.50 Long Jimenez 70 4.50 Middle Corco 70 4.00 Middle Lowe 60 5.00 ROOGY Green 70 3.50 LOOGY Thomas 40 4.50 Closer Putz 70 3.50
We’re not being outlandish with anything – no predicted ace-dom for Felix, no miraculous health for Bedard, not asking Morrow to take the ball every five days, not expecting Putz to return to ’07 form – there’s a basic regression analysis and not much else. It’s crude, but since we’re not trying to be extremely precise, it’s good enough.
That group adds up to 1,460 innings (1,458 is 162 nine inning games) and has a combined FIP of 4.34. That’s pretty much a league average pitching staff.
Yep, league average. With no big additions, no big surges, but just some regression from Silva and Batista (neither are as bad as they’ve been this year) and a bit more health from Bedard and Putz, and you’ve got a league average pitching staff without even trying. Add a real lefty setup man and you could do even better.
The idea that this team has to lose 90 games next year while going through a painful rebuilding process is bunk.