Dan Schwartz

Last week, I posted this on Jose Fernandez. While his 2nd half performance was absolutely dominating – both from a command perspective (K/BB) and balls in play mix (GB/FB), I felt that his overall K% didn’t totally match up with his SwStr rate – Percentage of Strikes that were swung at and missed. For example, take a look at this matrix (all stats from FanGraphs):

Name

GS

IP

K%

BB%

K/BB

Contact%

Z-Ct%

SwStr%

Francisco Liriano

26

161

24.50%

9.50%

2.59

70.80%

86.50%

13.20%

Yu Darvish

32

209.2

32.90%

9.50%

3.46

70.50%

83.20%

12.60%

Matt Harvey

26

178.1

27.70%

4.50%

6.16

74.70%

84.50%

12.50%

Anibal Sanchez

29

182

27.10%

7.20%

3.74

73.00%

82.80%

12.40%

Max Scherzer

32

214.1

28.70%

6.70%

4.29

74.10%

80.60%

12.00%

Cole Hamels

33

220

22.30%

5.50%

4.04

76.40%

83.90%

12.00%

Clayton Kershaw

33

236

25.60%

5.70%

4.46

76.30%

84.70%

11.40%

Madison Bumgarner

31

201.1

24.80%

7.70%

3.21

76.40%

85.10%

11.10%

Dan Straily

27

152.1

19.40%

8.90%

2.18

76.10%

86.40%

11.10%

Tim Lincecum

32

197.2

23.00%

9.00%

2.54

74.40%

86.70%

11.10%

Tyson Ross

16

125

23.60%

8.70%

2.7

75.30%

89.00%

11.10%

Kris Medlen

31

197

19.20%

5.70%

3.34

76.90%

84.90%

11.00%

Marco Estrada

21

128

23.10%

5.70%

4.07

76.50%

83.60%

10.90%

Josh Collmenter

0

92

22.10%

8.60%

2.58

77.90%

81.80%

10.80%

Chris Sale

30

214.1

26.10%

5.30%

4.91

75.50%

82.90%

10.80%

Homer Bailey

32

209

23.40%

6.40%

3.69

77.50%

86.50%

10.70%

Patrick Corbin

32

208.1

20.70%

6.30%

3.3

77.90%

88.80%

10.70%

Felix Hernandez

31

204.1

26.30%

5.60%

4.7

76.30%

89.20%

10.70%

Stephen Strasburg

30

183

26.10%

7.70%

3.41

76.20%

86.40%

10.60%

A.J. Burnett

30

191

26.10%

8.40%

3.12

75.60%

88.80%

10.60%

Justin Verlander

34

218.1

23.50%

8.10%

2.89

77.80%

83.10%

10.50%

Julio Teheran

30

185.2

22.00%

5.80%

3.78

78.50%

83.10%

10.50%

Jeff Samardzija

33

213.2

23.40%

8.50%

2.74

77.10%

86.30%

10.50%

Ricky Nolasco

33

199.1

19.80%

5.50%

3.59

76.60%

86.60%

10.50%

Corey Kluber

24

147.1

22.40%

5.40%

4.12

76.80%

84.70%

10.40%

Zack Greinke

28

177.2

20.60%

6.40%

3.22

77.60%

84.80%

10.40%

Mat Latos

32

210.2

21.20%

6.60%

3.22

78.20%

87.70%

10.30%

Hisashi Iwakuma

33

219.2

21.40%

4.90%

4.4

79.00%

87.80%

10.30%

Jose Fernandez

28

172.2

27.50%

8.50%

3.22

77.60%

87.20%

10.10%

Straily Rank >>>

28th

26th

29th

10th

18th

10th

Fernandez Rank >>>

4th

22nd

20th

23rd

23rd

29th

 

While I think Fernandez’s K% might regress (slightly) based on his SwStr and contact rates, on the other hand, I think Straily will trend upward. Let’s break him down.

 

Command:

While Fernandez has the 4th best K% of this list, he was 23rd, 23rd and 29th in Contact Rate, Zone Contact Rate and SwStr rates respectively. Dan Straily on the other hand, was 28th on this list from a K% perspective, but he was 10th, 18th and 10th as it relates to Contact Rate, Zone Contact and SwStr%.

Straily will only be 25 next year with success already under his belt. Incorporating his minor league rates, we should see positive trends on his SwStr%, contact rate and K/BB ratio enhancing his 2014 surface ERA.

On that note…

Now look at his balls in play mix as well as his surface (ERA) and expected ERA’s (xFIP & SIERA). While the above matrix is sorted by the highest SwStr rate, let’s sort this one by something that might surprise you, BABIP:

Name

xFIP

SIERA

ERA

WHIP

LOB%

GB/FB

IFFB%

HR/FB

BABIP

Jose Fernandez

3.08

3.22

2.19

0.98

79.40%

1.36

7.10%

7.10%

0.24

Clayton Kershaw

2.88

3.06

1.83

0.92

80.60%

1.47

9.50%

5.80%

0.251

Madison Bumgarner

3.32

3.41

2.77

1.03

75.70%

1.33

12.10%

8.20%

0.251

Hisashi Iwakuma

3.28

3.4

2.66

1.01

81.90%

1.45

10.00%

11.80%

0.252

Max Scherzer

3.16

2.98

2.9

0.97

74.40%

0.81

9.70%

7.60%

0.259

Marco Estrada

3.63

3.51

3.87

1.08

74.10%

0.85

11.30%

11.90%

0.262

Stephen Strasburg

3.15

3.17

3

1.05

73.20%

1.66

8.30%

11.10%

0.263

Yu Darvish

2.84

2.83

2.83

1.07

83.90%

1.08

9.40%

14.40%

0.264

Dan Straily

4.42

4.32

3.96

1.24

70.30%

0.84

12.90%

8.20%

0.266

Zack Greinke

3.45

3.67

2.63

1.11

80.80%

1.49

11.20%

8.60%

0.276

Josh Collmenter

4.06

3.64

3.13

1.22

77.80%

0.7

19.00%

6.90%

0.277

Matt Harvey

2.63

2.71

2.27

0.93

77.40%

1.47

11.50%

4.70%

0.28

Tyson Ross

3.43

3.41

3.17

1.15

71.50%

1.85

6.20%

8.20%

0.282

Patrick Corbin

3.48

3.64

3.41

1.17

75.90%

1.5

10.10%

10.10%

0.283

Homer Bailey

3.34

3.39

3.49

1.12

73.70%

1.34

9.70%

10.20%

0.284

Julio Teheran

3.76

3.62

3.2

1.17

80.90%

0.92

12.40%

10.10%

0.288

Chris Sale

2.95

2.96

3.07

1.07

77.00%

1.46

8.20%

12.50%

0.289

Francisco Liriano

3.12

3.5

3.02

1.22

77.60%

1.99

4.60%

8.30%

0.29

Cole Hamels

3.44

3.48

3.6

1.16

72.50%

1.17

11.70%

9.10%

0.295

Kris Medlen

3.55

3.76

3.11

1.22

76.90%

1.48

5.50%

9.90%

0.298

Mat Latos

3.56

3.66

3.16

1.21

74.60%

1.34

11.80%

6.90%

0.299

Ricky Nolasco

3.58

3.72

3.7

1.21

70.90%

1.32

7.10%

8.70%

0.299

Tim Lincecum

3.56

3.75

4.37

1.32

69.40%

1.43

7.50%

12.10%

0.3

A.J. Burnett

2.92

3.1

3.3

1.21

71.80%

2.33

4.10%

9.10%

0.305

Anibal Sanchez

2.91

3.1

2.57

1.15

78.20%

1.39

11.60%

5.80%

0.307

Felix Hernandez

2.66

2.84

3.04

1.13

75.10%

1.89

8.70%

10.00%

0.314

Jeff Samardzija

3.45

3.6

4.34

1.35

71.70%

1.53

10.10%

13.30%

0.314

Justin Verlander

3.67

3.68

3.46

1.31

74.50%

0.99

13.60%

7.80%

0.316

Corey Kluber

3.1

3.32

3.85

1.26

72.90%

1.6

10.70%

12.40%

0.329

Straily Rank >>>

28th

27th

3rd

10th

9th

Fernandez Rank >>>

6th

17th

24th

6th

1st

 

Expected ERA’s:

From the expected ERA’s, we can see that Straily becomes less attractive, and we can understand why his expected ERA’s are what they are now if we combine the above matrix’s command rates with his ball in play mix: 36.4% Groundball rate; 43.6% Flyball rate and 20% linedrive rate.

 

BABIP:

*I sorted the 2nd matrix by BABIP, because you might want to initially argue with me that Straily will certainly regress because his BABIP was so low (9th lowest in this list), but I’d argue his surface ERA will get better based on his contact rates and BIP mix…

While there’s a good chance his BABIP regresses to league average somewhat, in Oakland, a high flyball rate won’t hurt so long as is HR/FB rate continues to be below 9%. Keep in mind Oakland has a .92 Park Factors on homeruns deflating his expected HR/FB ratio and associated surface ERA. He’s also had great initial Infield flyball rates (averaging 13.8%). I’d also assume an additional hike in ground balls and less linedrives keeping his overall BABIP between his 2013 rate of .266 and league average.

 

Recommendation/Projection:

Next year, I’ve projected a .288 BABIP, and I think there’s a good chance he winds up between this and .266 deflating his WHIP even more with a decreased walk rate.

If you check out my most updated SP projections, I currently have Straily at #38 overall with the following 5×5 line in 32 starts/184 IP: 12W-3.64ERA-1.24WHIP-158K with the possibility of a 22ish% K rate leading to a 3.53 ERA, 1.22 WHIP and 169K which would put him between Kris Medlen and Julio Teheran in my updated SP Rankings & Projections.

 

Bad Luck? 

It’s also worth noting that Straily had the 2nd worst/unluckiest Left on Base (LOB%) rate in the above list. While this is flaky year to year, LOB% is a known formula and I have his LOB% projected at a relatively lucky 86% meaning my projected 3.64 ERA could inflate to 3.9ish if we see something closer to Steamer’s LOB% projection of 72.7%.

5 comments on “Dan Straily – Top 30 SP?

  1. This is great info. Will be interesting to see if he can maybe get closer to that 11 K/9 he posted in AA and AAA. Gotta think around 8 K/9 is achievable.

    • Dan SchwartzDan Schwartz on said:

      Hi Pete, i have him projected at 20.6% K-rate which leads to a 7.75 K/9. I could see a 22%/8.28 K/9 Cap. In oakland, with some luck (similar BABIP, solid HR/FB ratio and LOB%), he could be a 3.50-1.23-170K as soon as next year. I’d happily draft offense and go with Straily as my number 2/3 guys rounds after many others.

      • Do you think he is a lock for a spot in the Rotation? I figure Parker, Gray, and Griffin all have a spot. That Leaves Anderson, Straily, and Millone. This is also assuming they won’t resign Colon.

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