Brandon Claussen Coming on
A while back, I posted an Rx the Reds, which included keeping the faith with Danny Claussen. I cross-posted on Reds Reporter to get some feedback, and got some feedback that sending Danny down was the thing to do.
Danny pitched well last night, and has slowly brought down his ERA to below 4. He is becoming a reliable rotation maintay on a staff this is slowly turning the corner.
Danny has made nine appearences. Here is how they stack up.
4/19 CHC (3 ER in 5 IP)
5/4 St. Louis (7 ER in 3.3 IP, against a high octane attack.)
6/5 @Colo (5 ER in 5.3 IP, at Coors).
Now, that's 67% appearences, and two of the three are certainly understandable and defensible.
4/24 @FLA, 0 ER in 5.3 IP
4/29 @ MIL, 1 ERA in 4 IP
5/10 SD 0 ER in 3.3 IP
5/24 WAS, 0 ER in 6 IP
5/29 PIT, 2 ER in 7.6 IP
6/11 BAL, 1 ER in 8 IP.
With the exception of the Coors start, three of his last four outings have been strong. Not that he's out of the woods, but I think he's emerging as someone we can rely on.
Now, is this some kind of short term illlusion that's hiding a weakness that can't be sustained over the long-term?
Let's look at the other metrics.
The most worrisome stat for me is the K/9. One of the benchmarks for me is that starting pitchers don't have long careers unless they get about league average in K's. Brandon is stiking out 5.81/9, while the league average is 6.4. This represents a problem...you seem to have to be able to get a K when you need it.
WHIP (1.48) above league average (1.39)
SLB (.453) above league average (.414)
OBP (.344) above league average (.330)
H/9 (9.94) above league average (9.16)
BB/9 (3.38) right on league average
HR/9 (1.31) way above league average (1.02).
Now, I don't have the energy to deduct out those crappy starts and see if that makes a difference. ERA for starters is rarely too much of an illusion, and he's above the league average in that. For the year, right now, you have a guy who is below average in Ks, but you don't get a control bonus with that. So you have a guy who doesn't have big K's with more base runners and homers than the league average. And he's a fly ball pitcher in a ground ball league.
And, there should be no doubt of this: his numbers are all moving in the right direction, and he's still young. His P/IP is down almost 2.4 pitches since last season, and the others are moving in the right direction.
Let's hope we're riding an upward arc. If Hudson can bring it around, and Harang continues, at least we've got three starters who might be consistent and effective.
Finally, a win today would be great. Winning the Oriole series would be one of the season's bigger accomplishments. At least today, sweeping the Nats was impressive, as well.
Let's hope the inconsistent Ramon decides to be consistent today.
This topic is also brewing elsewhere in the Redleg Nation. Note a fine comment from Glenn here.
Sunday, June 12, 2005
Brandon Claussen Coming on