Thursday, April 21, 2011

Rotation Rankings: Week 3

Previous Rankings: Week 1 | Week 2



Week three of our Rotation Rankings: the statistical ranking of every rotation in Major League Baseball. For a better explanation, check out our debut rankings. More a fan of offense? Check out our Leadoff Rankings, based on every teams' first and second batters. As we get further into the season, these rankings are based mostly on season performance, with a small bias towards this week's performance when two teams were very comparable.

G: Games; ERA: Earned Run Average; WHIP: (Walks + Hits)/Innings Pitched; GS: Game Score; K/BB: Strikeout-to-walk ratio; K/9: Strikeouts per nine innings

30. (LW: 26) New York Mets (5-13)
This Week: 1-6, 5.80 ERA, 1.74 WHIP, 41.9 GS, 1.32 K/BB, 5.58 K/9
Season Stats: 4-10, 5.68 ERA, 1.63 WHIP, 44.3 GS, 1.58 K/BB, 6.96 K/9
R.A. Dickey became the first Mets starter to make it into the eighth inning last night, but he still managed to let up four runs on eight hits to the lowly Astros.

29. (LW: 27) Arizona Diamondbacks (8-8)
This Week: 2-2, 5.22 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 47.8 GS, 2.36 K/BB, 7.98 K/9
Season Stats: 5-7, 5.65 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 45.8 GS, 1.87 K/BB, 6.92 K/9
Not much changed this week for the D-Backs' starting rotation. Though they are striking batters out at a higher rate (almost 8 K/9), the staff ERA is still above 5.50 and their WHIP remains in the bottom half of the league.

28. (LW: 14) Cincinnati Reds (9-9)
This Week: 1-4, 7.92 ERA, 1.76 WHIP, 38.7 GS, 2.14 K/BB, 8.80 K/9
Season Stats: 7-5, 5.35 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 48.4 GS, 2.62 K/BB, 8.64 K/9
On four occasions in the last week, a Reds starter allowed five or more runs in a game. That includes a 3.1-inning, six-run outing from from youngster Travis Wood, who has a 5.73 ERA on the season.

(For number 27 all the way to #1, hit the jump!)

27. (LW: 28) Chicago Cubs (9-9)
This Week: 1-2, 3.89 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 52.5 GS, 2.58 K/BB, 8.05 K/9
Season Stats: 5-6, 5.16 ERA, 1.52 WHIP, 47.3 GS, 2.62 K/BB, 8.48 K/9
Monday night and then during the first game of yesterday's doubleheader, the Cubs' got dominant performances from Carlos Zambrano (8 IP, 0 R, 10 K) and Matt Garza (6 IP, 0 R, 9 K). Now that rest of the rotation needs to pick up the slack and get the staff ERA below 5.00.

26. (LW: 24) New York Yankees (10-6)
This Week: 2-1, 4.91 ERA, 1.42 WHIP, 47.5 GS, 1.67 K/BB, 6.82 K/9
Season Stats: 6-3, 5.06 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 46.8 GS, 1.86 K/BB, 6.86 K/9
As we mentioned earlier in the week, the Yankees are having some rotation issues at the back end. Bartolo Colon got a win in his first start since July 24, 2009, going 6.2 IP and giving up two runs against the Blue Jays on Wednesday.

25. (LW: 25) Minnesota Twins (6-12)
This Week: 2-3, 4.30 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 51.6 GS, 2.36 K/bb, 6.46 K/9
Season Stats: 4-10, 5.00 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 47.6 GS, 1.78 K/BB, 5.92 K/9
The numbers are slowly inching down, but "inconsistency" is the word of the day/week/month/season in Minnesota thus far. Carl Pavano, after going eight scoreless innings against Tampa Bay (and not even getting a decision for it) then goes out and gives up seven runs to the Orioles without even making it out of the fourth.

24. (LW: 29) Houston Astros (7-11)
This Week: 2-1, 3.02 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 56.3 GS, 2.54 K/BB, 7.68 K/9
Season Stats: 4-7, 4.93 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 46.6 GS, 2.11 K/BB, 6.62 K/9
In two starts this past week, Bud Norris has pitched 12 innings and given up only three runs, for a 2.25 ERA. The rest of the staff continues to be plagued by an overabundance of baserunners, though, as they have among the league's highest WHIPs at 1.48.

23. (LW: 30) Boston Red Sox (6-11)
This Week: 4-1, 1.73 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, 61.3 GS, 1.56 K/BB, 6.19 K/9
Season Stats: 6-8, 4.87 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 48.9 GS, 1.71 K/BB, 6.68 K/9
What could be easily seen as the biggest rotational improvement in this week of baseball, the Red Sox appear to have fixed their pitching problems. The entire starting staff contributed for the Red Sox this week, as John Lackey was the only starter to not record a win for the team this week.

22. (LW: 13) Pittsburgh Pirates (8-10)
This Week: 2-4, 5.95 ERA, 1.49 WHIP, 44.4 GS, 2.00 K/BB, 6.80 K/9
Season Stats: 5-6, 4.56 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 47.7 GS, 1.31 K/BB, 4.98 K/9
The last two days in Florida, Paul Maholm and Charlie Morton have combined to allow 12 earned runs in only 8.2 innings pitched. Such a shame to waste Kevin Correia's and Morton's complete games on Friday and Monday on a rotation that then goes and stinks it up the rest of the time.

21. (LW: 23) Detroit Tigers (9-10)
This Week: 3-3, 3.12 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 52.0 GS, 1.58 K/BB, 6.69 K/9
Season Stats: 5-8, 4.61 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, 49.0 GS, 1.83 K/BB, 6.99 K/9 
Despite the .500 record for the starting rotation this week, the Tigers may have something to look forward to as Rick Porcello went 1-0 this week in his two starts. The beauty of Porcello's outings is that he only gave up one run in both of those starts, in a combined 13.2 IP.

20. (LW: 7) Toronto Blue Jays (8-10)
This Week: 1-4, 7.58 ERA, 1.99 WHIP, 37.5 GS, 1.00 K/BB, 6.98 K/9
Season Stats: 4-7, 4.42 ERA, 1.53 WHIP, 48.3 GS, 1.76 K/BB, 7.61 K/9
This week was flat-out ugly, with the starters averaging just under five innings per start this week while still managing to give up 25 runs in those six starts. They also walked 23 batters in addition to the 26 hits which accounts for the fantastic WHIP. A week best forgotten in Toronto...at least they managed one win.

19. (LW: 19) Seattle Mariners (6-13)
This Week: 2-4, 4.27 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 48.6 GS, 1.84 K/BB, 7.88 K/9
Season Stats: 4-11, 4.39 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 48.8 GS, 2.68 K/BB, 7.27 K/9
The struggles for the Mariners continue, and it is evident that this weeks problems have stemmed from the starting pitching. Lefty Erik Bedard certainly made his negative contributions as was only able to make it though 9.2 innings in 2 outings. Bedard gave up 7 ER's in those two appearances alone.

18. (LW: 15) Baltimore Orioles (8-9)
This Week: 2-4, 4.87 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 47.7 GS, 2.78 K/BB, 5.53 K/9
Season Stats: 6-8, 4.32 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 50.1 GS, 2.10 K/BB, 5.86 K/9 
An eight-game slide was finally halted on Tuesday by Jake Arrieta, who held the Twins scoreless over six innings (slightly easier to do when Joe Mauer is out). Arrieta was followed up by Zach Britton, who beat the Twins again while giving up three runs in six innings.

17. (LW: 10) Colorado Rockies (13-5)
This Week: 4-3, 5.32 ERA, 1.38 WHIP, 48.0 GS, 2.06 K/BB, 7.29 K/9
Season Stats: 10-3, 4.29 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 50.5 GS, 1.79 K/BB, 5.83 K/9
The Rockies have looked very sharp this season, but one big question for the team is how will their ace Ubaldo Jiminez perform coming off his stint on the 15-day disabled list? Jiminez made his first start of the season on April 19th, giving up four ER's in five innings. The teams long-term success will certainly be influenced on the way he can bounce back from his injury.

16. (LW: 22) Kansas City Royals (11-7)
This Week: 4-2, 2.78 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 57.9 GS, 2.36 K/BB, 5.16 K/9
Season Stats: 7-4, 4.10 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 50.7 GS, 2.59 K/BB, 5.74 K/9
The Royals rotation is holding steady so far--after a rough Week 2 (5.02 ERA, 1.40 WHIP), KC surged behind Bruce Chen (15 innings, 2 ER this week) and one strong performance by Luke Hochevar when he gave up one run in seven innings against the barely-hitting Mariners.

15. (LW: 20) Florida Marlins (10-6)
This Week: 2-0, 3.00 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 41.9 GS, 2.73 K/BB, 9.00 K/9
Season Stats: 6-3, 3.95 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 51.0 GS, 2.25 K/BB, 6.94 K/9
Josh Johnson and Ricky Nolasco ended the week with a combined 14 shutout innings for the Marlins. Unfortunately for the Fish, though, Nolasco and Javier Vazquez allowed eight runs in 10 innings (7.20 ERA) to start the week.

14. (LW: 16) Los Angeles Dodgers (9-10)
This Week: 2-4, 3.68 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 54.1 GS, 2.50 K/BB, 7.16 K/9
Season Stats: 7-9, 3.95 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 52.5 GS, 2.94 K/BB, 7.42 K/9
Despite the good ERA and decent WHIP, only one of those four losses was a "bad" loss--Hiroki Kuroda went 6.1 IP and gave up only two earned runs but still took the loss to Atlanta. The first three starts of the week were all losses to the Cardinals, but the Dodgers managed to avoid a rotation disaster.

13. (LW: 18) Philadelphia Phillies (11-6)
This Week: 1-1, 3.02 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 58.0 GS, 4.13 K/BB, 7.13 K/9
Season Stats: 7-4, 3.99 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 53.8 GS, 4.67 K/BB, 8.32 K/9
Another good week for the Phillies rotation could have been a little better if Roy Oswalt didn't strain his back running to first against the Marlins on Saturday--he had to be taken out after six innings, and the Phils bullpen blew the game in the seventh. Oswalt is expected to make his next start, however, so Phillies fans can get off the Ben Franklin bridge.

12. (LW: 4) Chicago White Sox (7-11)
This Week: 0-6, 5.30 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, 44.3 GS, 3.29 K/BB, 5.55 K/9
Season Stats: 5-7, 3.80 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 53.2 GS, 2.81 K/BB, 6.75 K/9
Wins and losses, for starting pitchers, are usually one of my least favorite stats--a pitcher can pitch well and get a loss, or pitch poorly and somehow get a win. Losing all six games in one week however, is not a good sign. Mark Buehrle (7 IP, 10 H, 4 ER) wasn't too awful, but he's only looked like a top-of-the-rotation guy in one of his four starts.

11. (LW: 11) San Francisco Giants (10-8)
This Week: 3-1, 4.37 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 50.8 GS, 1.92 K/BB, 6.82 K/9
Season Stats: 5-1, 3.81 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 52.5 GS, 2.23 K/BB, 7.90 K/9 
Matt Cain got blasted yesterday (6 ER in 4.2 IP), but the Giants have largely managed to limit the damage this season.  Despite a mediocre WHIP, they still remain in the top half of the league in ERA and K/9.

10. (LW: 17) St. Louis Cardinals (9-9)
This Week: 4-1, 3.41 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 51.5 GS, 3.00 K/BB, 5.50 K/9
Season Stats: 8-4, 3.81 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 50.9 GS, 2.56 K/BB, 6.79 K/9
The Cardinals are certainly missing their number one starter, Adam Wainwright, as they continue to struggle early this season. Replacement ace Chris Carpenter is working hard to help out the starting staff, as he went 7 strong innings in his last start. Carpenter did not allow a run or a walk while striking out six Dodger batters.

9. (LW: 8) Atlanta Braves (8-11)
This Week: 3-3, 4.46 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 52.3 GS, 2.93 K/BB, 9.62 K/9
Season Stats: 6-10, 3.76 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 52.7 GS, 2.47 K/BB, 6.87 K/9 
Still not the best rotation (statistically) in the NL East, the Braves suffered from poor outings by Brandon Beachy (5.2 IP, 7 H, 5 ER) against the Mets and the usually dependable Derek Lowe (3 IP, 9 H, 5 ER) in Los Angeles.

8. (LW: 9) Cleveland Indians (13-5)
This Week: 4-1, 3.44 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 52.0 GS, 2.20 K/BB, 5.40 K/9
Season Stats: 10-4, 3.57 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 53.8 GS, 2.08 K/BB, 6.11 K/9
Take out Justin Masterson's outing Wednesday against the Royals, where he walked five and struck out three--but still got the win--and the staff had a nice 3.80 K/BB ratio for the rest of the week. Still, the overall ratio was better than they'd be doing this season.

7. (LW: 12) Washington Nationals (9-7)
This Week: 4-1, 3.08 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 52.7 GS, 2.50 K/BB, 4.74 K/9
Season Stats: 7-6, 3.56 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 51.3 GS, 2.50 K/BB, 5.79 K/9
There were no spectacular starts for the Nationals this week--every starter gave up at least one run per start--but there was also only one sub-par outing. Besides Jordan Zimmerman's five-run outing yesterday, every other start by a Nats pitcher resulted in two or fewer earned runs.

6. (LW: 21) Tampa Bay Rays (9-9)
This Week: 4-1, 2.08 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, 63.71 GS, 2.83 K/BB, 5.88 K/9
Season Stats: 6-9, 3.59 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 54.2 GS, 2.30 K/BB, 5.80 K/9  
A really strong all-around performance from the Rays take them from the bottom third of the rankings straight to the top third. Every pitcher went seven innings or more in seven games this week, and the rotation gave up only a pair of runs in 24 innings in a three-game sweep of the White Sox.

5. (LW: 1) Texas Rangers (11-7)
This Week: 2-3, 4.21 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 51.5 GS, 2.00 K/BB, 5.75 K/9
Season Stats: 10-4, 3.08 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 55.6 GS, 2.17 K/BB, 6.00 K/9
The Rangers' fall from the top slot breaks up that AL West trifecta at the top, though the club from Texas is still having a strong year overall. The staff threw quite a few innings (40.2) this week, but the average pitch count is still just over 100 pitches/start.

4. (LW: 5) San Diego Padres (8-10)
This Week: 1-2, 3.11 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 56.1 GS, 4.13 K/BB, 6.85 K/9
Season Stats: 4-5, 3.03 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 53.9 GS, 2.41 K/BB, 5.63 K/9 
Aaron Harang, of all people, has been huge for the Padres' starting staff of late.  This past week he collected two wins while giving up only three earned runs in 12 innings.  On the season, he's 4-0 with a 1.88 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP.

3. (LW: 6) Milwaukee Brewers (9-9)
This Week: 2-1, 3.02 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 57.3 GS, 3.15 K/BB, 8.86 K/9 
Season Stats: 7-4, 3.06 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 54.4 GS, 2.49 K/BB, 7.18 K/9 
Yovanni Gallardo's seven-run implosion in Washington aside, the Brew Crew's starters allowed only seven earned runs in 36.1 innings pitched--that's a 1.74 ERA in those six starts.

2. (LW: 3) Los Angeles Angels (12-6)
This Week: 5-1, 2.98 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, 57.7 GS, 5.40 K/BB, 6.18 K/9
Season Stats: 10-3, 3.02 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 58.7 GS, 3.39 K/BB, 7.35 K/9 
Only five walks all week account for the nice K/BB ratio as well as a low WHIP, as the Angels staff doubled their win total this week. Jered Weaver had the best start of the week this time, going the distance Wednesday while limiting the Rangers to just a run on six hits.

1. (LW: 2) Oakland Athletics (9-9, 3rd AL West)
This Week: 3-1, 1.13 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 67.7 GS, 4.00 K/BB, 9.98 K/9
Season Stats: 7-3, 2.06 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 60.3 GS, 3.33 K/BB, 7.63 K/9
Another unbelievable week continues a very strong season for the A's rotation. If not for a 48-game score in Gio Gonzalez's loss to the Red Sox yesterday, the Athletics would have had every starter this week get a gamescore above 60, including four of 68 and higher.

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