The Curse of Jerry Hairston, Jr./Eric Hinske:
 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Two More Data Points to Consider Re: Yu Darvish

I promise this will be the last Yu Darvish related post for the next day or two.

Kyle wondered about Colby Lewis and any other American starters that went to Japan and then returned to MLB.  The only other one I could think of was Darrell May.  So here are some of their stats.

Lewis G IP H R ER HR BB SO WP BK RA ERA FIP
2008-2009 55 354 307 124 111 25 46 369 4 3 3.15 2.82 2.42
2010-2011 64 401 361 193 181 56 121 365 13 0 4.33 4.06 4.10
May G IP H R ER HR BB SO WP BK RA ERA FIP
1999-2001 69 430 386 182 177 60 124 450 0 0 3.81 3.70 3.79
2002-2005 120 593 662 362 332 111 181 365 9 0 5.49 5.04 5.32


Lewis pitched for two seasons in Japan for Hiroshima in 2008 and 2009.  He’s had two full seasons back in MLB since then.

For May I’m only showing his last three seasons in Japan and then what he did over the rest of his major league career.

Here are the ratios for the component stats pro-rated to the same innings.

Ratios H R ER HR BB SO
Lewis 1.04 1.37 1.44 1.98 2.32 0.87
May 1.24 1.44 1.36 1.34 1.06 0.59


Lewis hasn’t suffered much in the hit department, but you can see his FIP peripherals took a pretty big hit.  His HR rate has been almost double, his walk rate has been more than double.  He maintained a bit more of his K rate than the starters I looked at in the last post.  Despite all that he’s still been a solidly above average starter for Texas, in a park that boosts offense.  In May’s case we see a bigger spike in hits and a precipitous drop in Ks.

Let’s look at ratios for all the starters that I’ve covered over the last two posts.

Player H R ER HR BB SO
Igawa, Kei 1.29 1.74 1.98 1.95 1.88 0.79
Irabu, Hideki 1.43 1.67 2.00 2.00 0.89 0.70
Ishii, Kazuhisa 1.15 1.39 1.35 1.27 1.47 0.72
Kawakami, Kenshin 1.14 1.52 1.54 1.02 2.06 0.74
Kuroda, Hiroki 1.03 1.22 1.18 1.02 1.26 1.03
Matsuzaka, Daisuke 1.17 1.70 1.85 1.62 2.27 0.88
Nomo, Hideo 1.12 1.17 1.23 2.01 0.72 0.88
Yoshii, Masato 1.24 1.45 1.49 2.12 1.09 0.88
Lewis, Colby 1.04 1.37 1.44 1.98 2.32 0.87
Darrell May 1.24 1.44 1.36 1.34 1.06 0.59
Worst 1.43 1.74 2.00 2.12 2.32 0.59


The last row just shows the worst case for each component stat.  So Hideki Irabu (RIP) saw the biggest increase in hits allowed, etc.,

Let’s run Darvish’s three-year weighted average against each pitcher as well as with each of the ‘worst’ components.

Player IP H R ER HR BB SO RA ERA FIP
Darvish, Yu 214 150 43 38 6 41 240 1.81 1.59 1.88
Darvish->Average 214 178 62 57 9 51 197 2.62 2.42 2.62
Darvish->Igawa, Kei 214 194 75 75 11 78 189 3.15 3.14 3.19
Darvish->Irabu, Hideki 214 214 72 75 11 37 168 3.03 3.18 2.83
Darvish->Ishii, Kazuhisa 214 173 60 51 7 61 172 2.52 2.14 2.88
Darvish->Kawakami, Kenshin 214 172 65 58 6 85 177 2.75 2.44 3.08
Darvish->Kuroda, Hiroki 214 155 52 45 6 52 247 2.21 1.88 1.97
Darvish->Matsuzaka, Daisuke 214 176 73 70 9 93 211 3.08 2.94 3.10
Darvish->Nomo, Hideo 214 169 50 46 11 29 210 2.11 1.95 2.34
Darvish->Yoshii, Masato 214 187 62 56 12 45 211 2.62 2.37 2.59
Darvish->Lewis, Colby 214 156 59 54 11 96 209 2.49 2.28 3.26
Darvish->Darrell May 214 187 62 51 8 44 141 2.61 2.16 2.95
Darvish->Worst 214 254 108 115 19 119 116 4.56 4.84 4.93


It’s entirely possible that Darvish will be exposed against the best competition in the world.  Perhaps he’s uniquely positioned to take advantage of things in the Japanese game that he won’t be able to in MLB.  He’s a risk, particularly given the likely investment in him.

However, I’d temper that by saying that as far as I can tell, no pitcher coming to MLB from Japan has put up the lines that Darvish has put up.  The only pitcher who had a three-year-weighted average FIP within 0.22 of Darvish’s 1.88 was Irabu at 2.20.  The next closest was Matsuzaka at 2.59.  This just confirms to me that we shouldn’t just assume he’ll struggle because most of the pitchers who came over did.  He’s been better than any of them.

Since this is the last Darvish post for the next day or two, I’m going to add this video.

--Posted at 4:57 pm by SG / 20 Comments | - (0)

Comments

Page 1 of 1 pages:

Repost from the last thread:

There’s also Darrell Rasner, who went the other direction at age 28. He’s pitched ~230 innings since going to Japan.

Doesn’t really seem to be worth looking at Rasner, particularly since he’s been far from great over there.

Replacement Level Darvish Weblog

Are the Brewers on the verge of collapse?

downer

Anyone else scan the table and think “Worst” was SG snark for Igawa’s line, before going back to discover Igawa was already in the table ?

Anyone ?

How come we never manage to find a guy like Hairston to help hide our clutchless superstars during a postseason run ?

Are the Brewers on the verge of collapse?

Yes.

Go Rangers, I guess.

Why are the Yankees wearing Brewers uniforms and handing this game to St. Louis?

It’s getting very ugly in Milwaukee.

I was looking forward to the new season of The Walking Dead, but I didn’t realize they were airing it on TBS.

If I’m a Phillies fan I’m sick that my team is so much better then these two crapolas.  Go St Louis FU Nolan Ryan.

Opening scene of Homeland tonight features the most perfect pair of…...

I think I’m weird enough to watch Japanese baseball if it was on TV.

Brewers are just playing mind games with Tony, they’ll be back.

Better La Russa than the Rangers. I still remember some punkass Texas kid with an “I hate NY” shirt last year. Still don’t want him to go to bed happy.

14 √√√

[14] Sums it up for me. Plus, eh, I dunno…St. Louis is an old-timey baseball town.

He really has some late oomph on that high fastball, and that breaking ball is really nasty. Still a lot of stuff right down the center that you can see even in the highlights. Korea just looked over-matched there.

Can’t I bet on all the horses to have a bad time?

[17] Yeah, I thought I was crazy watching the video and wondering where any east-west work was, but meanwhile Gary Thorne was stroking himself while talking about the guy. The tons of late movement was tasty, though.

Also, Jon Hamm was on the WTF Podcast recently, and Marc Maron asked him about growing up in St. Louis, if there was anything to do there. Hamm just kind of sighed and said, “Well, we’ve got Cardinals baseball.”

Someone get that to the marketing department. “Cardinal baseball! Hey, this is kind of all we got.”

Hmm, does Darvish speak English?  Apparently he did for the first few years of his life (his parents met in America), so I don’t know what kind of adjustment he’d be making culturally.

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