At the end of 2017, we Mariners fans are fully expecting a scene in which Guillermo Heredia performs a miracle in left field for the last out of Game Five. Edgar and his lovely wife will kiss in a pose like the sailor on the Life cover. And Rob Whalen, drenched in sparkling apple cider, will accept ESPN's award for Player of the Postseason.
It had better be so, because comparing our rotation to twelve months ago:
|WADE MILEY (SP-3 Boston)
In the three blank slots we've got AAA pitchers and one soft-tosser with a 4.7 BB rate. But to be fair, we LIKE these triple-A pitchers. THESE ones. These ain't the silver spoon type on those nerdy Top 100 lists. These ones know how to grind.
In the course of five decades, Dr. D has cobbled many different ways in which he can arrest his descent when he feels his sanity slipping. One is to trust in authority. In this case the authority reads "RUN PREVENTION MODEL." Very avant-garde. Do not confuse Run Prevention Model with the outdated and kludgy Defense Never Slumps favored by Whitey Herzog. THIS idea has computer sims behind it. You can't go wrong with computer sims.
Okay, anything is better than more Thorazine. And if you've been reading since 1995 and still not figured it out, do watch out for tongue in cheek. After you do that, let's consider for a moment the best AL defensive outfields in the last few seasons, and how they might have stacked up to ... oh, let's say ... good starting pitching.
2016 KANSAS CITY ROYALS. John Dewan has them for +15, +20, and +10 runs saved (above ML average!) from left to right. Whoo doggie. Unfortunately for them, they eeeerped it all back up in the infield, but it's still an argument that a great outfield could save you +45 runs.
Actually the Red Sox were supposed to have saved +42 runs in the outfield, but +32 runs of it was in right field and, no.
2015 KANSAS CITY ROYALS. Oh, I know what you're thinking. You got here from SportSpyder and you've quickly surmised that this is a 'fake news site.' We only wish we were.
No, KC got +10, +25 (?) and -3 across the OF.
There's a pattern here: the Rays were second in this season, only because of a grotesque number at one spot, +42 in center field alone. As Dr. Kelly and Jemanji would have predicted, this "42" number did not appear in the 2014 or 2016 columns. Nor did "12" numbers appear.
We're talking about OF's that racked up +10 per position, okay...
2014 KANSAS CITY ROYALS. +24, +23, -3. All right, at this point you can write your own punch line.
The 2014 Red Sox also had big numbers at two positions (CF, RF) and a hole at the other one.
At SSI, you don't have to guess what Dr. D is insinuating. He does believe it is possible to save 45, 50 runs if you have three center fielders in a big pasture. Maybe one team every other year actually does so.
Let's call it 45 runs. What's that in pesos? About -0.33 to your ERA ... okay, actually runs per se ..., after you figure the followup runs in a live inning. 0.33 in ERA is the difference between Kendall Graveman and Josh Tomlin. Not worth forsaking Andrew McCutchen over.
But hey. Three center fielders? That's -0.33 to EVERY body's ERA. As back-of-rotation #6SP's go, a -0.33 master turbo button ain't the worst thing in the world.
Still not drafting Gallardo though,