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I've been surprised at the amount of indifference I've heard from Rangers fans and media about the winner of last night's Detroit/Yankees game. Both going into and now after the game.
The Yankees were +210 runs this year. Detroit only +76. That is a difference in 101 pythag wins for New York and only 89 for Detroit. A huge difference in the 2 teams.
The Yankees are better than Detroit at literally every single position, all the way down to the bench and middle relievers. (The Tigers' 4.21 bullpen xFIP was 28th "best" in MLB this year.) Even at the one spot Detroit may have over the Yankees - #1 starter - CC Sabathia was a 3.02 xFIP this year; Verlander a 3.12.
And then there's home field advantage...
Detroit over the Yankees was a huge upset. The baseball equivalent of a 13-seed beating a 4-seed in March. That doesn't mean the Rangers will automatically beat the Cinderella team... but the odds of doing that are much better than against the team that had been heavily favored to win the first round game.
I think Detroit has better starting pitching. Overall I think Verlander > CC, Fister ~= Nova, Detroit's 3 & 4 probably same or better than NY's. And, as good as Rivera is, Valverde has been flawless all year. That said, NY obviously has more potent offense, so...yes, it was kind of an upset. It took a lot of skill, and a lot of luck, for Detroit to win last night. And, from what I saw, NY was not heavily favored to win...in fact, in several games, including last night, the consensus on polls I saw was that Detroit was slightly favored.
I'm still not sure who I would have rather faced, but I do think the Tigers will put up a hell of a fight. Especially because we'll see Verlander twice unless we get swept, and not sure about Fister...since he pitched last night I'd think they'd hold off on him until at least going back to Detroit.
It should be a good series.
I think Detroit has better starting pitching.
Starter xFIPYankees: 3.84Tigers: 3.91
Is that the average of all starters for both teams all year? If not, the more relevant stat is the average for the 4 starters for each team in the playoffs.
And xFIP is a good statistic, of course, but I don't believe that any one statistic defines who's "better". If it did, everyone who understood WAR would think Kinsler was the best Ranger as he led the team in it most or all year.
Yes; and agreed.
Breaking that out:
1: Sabathia 3.02; Verlander 3.122: Nova 4.16; Fister 3.613: Garcia 4.36; Scherzer 3.704: Burnett 3.86; Porcello 4.02
So my bad. Yankees 2-3 worse than I thought... but still, not by an amount that makes up for the large differences in offense, defense, and bullpen.
And xFIP is a good statistic, of course, but I don't believe that any one statistic defines who's "better".
Just putting it out there to show that Sabathia and Verlander were pretty comparable this year. BABIP luck explains the different common perception of their season: Sabathia .318 BABIP, Verlander .238.
Really good stuff both of you guys. The big difference at least in last nights game was Nova's injury/stiff arm and then the Detroit Bull Pen just getting it done. I think the injury is that BABIP luck thing and the result of the series that small statistical toss up thing.
I wanted to play Detroit for many reasons. Home field advantage and being able to pitch Colby in the cold Michigan confines of Comerica Park. Not only that but and R100 you can blow me up for this if I am wrong, but the Eyeball test said to me that we are a much better team. Even in the games the Rangers lost to Detroit, I felt like they had a chance. Also some if not all of the Detroit games were played with either a partial roster due to injuries and the new BP guys we have now were not part of the team. Lump that in with Ogando's ability to shorten the game and I just don't see how you could not have preferred Detroit over NY. Add in the ability of NY to get "HOT" at anytime and you have to be glad to get Detroit.
Now that I have jinxed us we probably get swept. Just Kidding
@Rangers100: Thanks for posting those. After seeing them I agree it's closer than I thought. A lot of people thought starting pitching would be a weakness for the Yankees; after all, they do have a seemingly unlimited cash supply. I can't remember a TORP other than Lee being available last season, and I'd think if there had been another, NY would have of course been all over him. But their pitching was better than I gave it credit for.
As Newberg pointed out this AM, the Rangers team in most of our losses to Detroit this year is not the same team Detroit will face in the ALCS. They beat us with Josh out, again with Beltre out, etc. Our BP is now better, etc. And I like HFA. Not to mention getting to see the look on the self-entitled Yankee fan's faces.
Is it really true that the difference in BABIP b/w Verlander and Sabathia is entirely due to random luck? Do pitchers have no control over BABIP? Aren't some pitchers who have good movement better at inducing ground balls or weakly hit balls?
If pitchers have ho control over BABIP, then wouldn't every pitcher with a career long enough to even out the ups and downs eventually have the exact same BABIP? I've read that a .300 BABIP is about average, but I thought some guys with long careers have beaten that or at least have beaten it over fairly long stretches when they were at their peak. Am I wrong?
If you don't think some pitchers are better than others at inducing ground balls and such, may I present exhibits Colby Lewis and Matt Harrison.
Or Kenny Rogers.
For those who don't follow Newberg, there's this:
According to various reports, the Detroit–Texas ALCS game times are as follows:
Game 1 (Sat.): 7:05pm
Game 2 (Sun.): 6:45pm
Game 3 (Tues.): 7:05pm
Game 4 (Wed.): 3:19pm
Game 5 (Thurs.): 3:19pm
Game 6 (Sat.): 7:05pm
Game 7 (Sun.): 7:05pm
There are also reports locally that Derek Holland will get the Game 2 start at home, meaning the rotation appears to line up in the same sequence as in the ALDS against Tampa Bay: C.J. Wilson, Holland, Colby Lewis, and Matt Harrison.
Still no word as to whether Texas will go with three catchers (as in the ALDS) or add an eighth reliever for this series.
However, MLB says:
Game 1 DET @ TEX Saturday, October 8 FOX 7:30 PM Game 2 DET @ TEX Sunday, October 9 FOX 7:00 PM Game 3 TEX @ DET Tuesday, October 11 FOX 7:30 PM Game 4 TEX @ DET Wednesday, October 12 FOX 4:00 PM Game 5 TEX @ DET* Thursday, October 13 FOX 4:00 PM Game 6 DET @ TEX* Saturday, October 15 FOX 7:30 PM Game 7 DET @ TEX* Sunday, October 16 FOX 7:45 PM
Im not worried at all. I personally think we could be yankees or tigers.
and about the rangers and tigers
tigers Rangers W-L 95-67 96-66
BA .277 .283
RPG 4.9 5.3
ERA 4.04 3.79
but numbers are just numbers. I got faith in the Rangers and thats all i need.
Pitchers have some control over BABIP. High strikeout, extreme groundball, and knuckleballers have shown some measurable control over deviations from the .300 average. But we're talking carer numbers around .275 at the extreme low... nowhere near Verlander's extremely lucky .238 in 2011.
Verlander has a career .285 BABIP. Sabathia has a career .291 BABIP.
Sabathia's 2011 was better than his career averages in all the major controllable statistical categories (e.g. K/9, BB/9, GB%). He just had a very unlucky BABIP, the highest total of any season in his career.
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