Credit the Cardinals management: They realized the pitching staff needed work and by adding 5 new pitchers they've overhauled almost half the staff. Here's each pitcher, their VORP from last year, and roughly who they are replacing:
Brett Tomko (2.3 VORP) gives way to Jason Marquis (-2.2)
Mike DeJean (5.0) gives way to Mike Lincoln (.6)
Esteban Yan (-4.6) gives way to Julian Tavarez (15.1)
Sterling Hitchcock (7.0) and Jeff Fassero (-1.8) give their starting duties to Jeff Suppan (32.1)
Russ Springer(-5.0) gives way to Ray King(5.2)
Lance Painter (-.6) is gone as well.
We're left with Adam Wainwright and Gene Stechshulte, neither of whom pitched in the Majors last year. Wainwright is the more talented of the pair and a net win.Continue reading "How Bad Will It be?"
How bad was the Cardinals Pitching staff last year?
It's an important question because last year the Cardinals outscored everyone in their division. They scored the second most runs in the leage (behind Atlanta). They scored 151 more runs than the cubs, and 71 more runs than the Atro's. But they allowed 113 more runs than the Cubs and 119 more runs than the Astros. The Cubs finished first in the division, 1 game ahead of the Astro's and 3 games ahead of the Cardinals.
Astute readers will note that based on runs scored you wouldn't expect this result. Looking at the Projected Standings (bottom of the page) based on runs scored vs runs allowed you see that the Cubs won two more games than you would expect, while the Cards lost 4 more than you would expect. The Atro's meanwhile lost 8 more games than you would expect.
Conventional wisdom holds that the Cardinals pitching was very bad. But in order to frame an exploration of the offseason moves and their effect on the Cards chances next year I'd like to be able to quantify exactly how bad.
I've wanted to do this ever since I started this blog, and now I've finally got my act together and done it. I've switched to Moveable Type and registered a domain.
I have a lot of things I'd like to do with this website, that the programming access I now have will allow me to do. I don't want to promise too much, but it should be good.
I have comments, enabled by default, mostly because Redbird Nation has had some interesting interactions in comments. If the comment totals never go up and it's really embarassing then I'll take them out, but for now they're in.
Trackbacks are in, and I'm really excited about them. Trackbacks are a way for websites (blogs mostly) to communicate back and forth, and set up dynamic content linkings. I can link to a story on Baseball Musings and people reading Davids story will see that I have written something about it on my blog. It's a great way to widen the discussion on topics automatically. I personally think trackback is the feature that will finally gel disparate web voices
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into a community.
I also now have an RSS feed, which means you can use your favorite newsreader to keep up to date.
The site isn't done, I need some graphics and I'm still tweaking the layout (It's broken a little in IE, I know, I'm working on it, but in the meantime Firefox is 100 times better than IE anyway...). But I've been sitting on this thing for 2 months now and I realized if I didn't launch it half finished I'd never launch it.
I've got a new email address to go along with it: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last thing www.gocardinals.org is a little league team, and hopefully the hyphen won't be too confusing.
I am looking for an RSS feed of the baseball schedule, ideally just a news feed listing todays games. I'm in the process of moving this website to a new server and I'd like to write a little code to automatically pick up who the Cards are playing and put up links to that teams blogs and newspapers, but I'm having a tough time finding a data feed.
If anybody has any suggestions please email me at email@example.com.
February lasts forever.
Maddux's name has come up in connection with the Cards again, now players are starting to defer money trying to get him. Matt Morris has a priceless quote in that article He said he would defer salary:
"But I'm not going to do it so they can build a new stadium,".
He has another quote that is even more interesting:
"I'm very comfortable being there, but this is a business and these guys are businessmen."
This of course echo's what Pujols has been saying. It's quite the departure from a few years ago when everybody who signed with the Cards almost seemed embarresed about taking their money. I wonder what changed?
I have a few theories:
1. Economics. When Cards were deferring money in full force and blabbering on about how great it was the Economy was almost nuclear hot, baseball players in particular had a sense that they could make millions of dollars forever. But with stocks bottoming out the last couple of years players may have their eyes more squarely on the future.
2. Evil Owners. Talk of collusion is in the air, and it could be that players as a group are coming together in response to this threat (real or imagined) and not feeling as accomodating as in years past.
3. Cardinals Ownership in particular. This kind of thing has been going on all over baseball, Ivan Rodriguez's willingness to play for the tigers being the prime example, but it seems especially concentrated around the Cardinals. The Cards have previously had a very good raport with their players, and have been able to induce them into below market value quite often. Could the dismissal of Vina and Eduardo Perez have caused the bad feelings? I don't know, but it's interesting to consider because the teams ability to sign players cheaply is the teams biggest advantage over it's rivals. If they have lost that advantage things could get ugly in the next few years.