3.04.2006

Morris' ranking among pitchers

I wrote some of this in a post on McCovey Chronicles, but thought I would post it here as well.

It started with someone comparing Tomko to Morris and stating that there' only a marginal improvement. I don't agree. I have listed other reasons in other posts but here's some more data I dug up to show how Morris is differentiated from Tomko.

Ron Shandler's book, my favorite baseball stat book the past two years, breaks down pitcher's game performances into three categories, the two main important ones being DOM (for dominating) and DIS (for disaster). Here are their lines for past three years:

Morris
Year - DOM - DIS
2003 - 44% - 15%
2004 - 41% - 16%
2005 - 48% - 16%

Tomko
Year - DOM - DIS
2003 - 21% - 18%
2004 - 35% - 26%
2005 - 40% - 17%

Scanning the pitchers records (no average or distribution was provided unfortunately) for the past three seasons, the worse to average pitchers have DOM under 40%. Good pitchers have DOM between 40-50%. Better have 50-70%. Best have 70%+.

The list of pitchers in the categories I roughly created looks pretty good, in terms of breaking down the starters:

40-50: Burhrle, Eaton, Maddux, Millwood, Morris, Mussina, Sabathia, John Thompson, Wells (David and Kip)

50-70: Burnett, Carpenter, Clement, Colon, Escobar, Halladay, Harden, Lieber, Oswalt, Peavy, Penny, Pettitte, Prior, Vazquez, Webb, Willis, Carlos Zambrano

70+ : Clemens, Johnson, Martinez, Santana

Notes from looking over everything:
  • Schmidt had been in the 70+ for the three seasons before a horrible 2005 (Schilling and Woods too, all were injured in some way and would have been 70+ as well).
  • Other Giants (year by year, past two years): Lowry (43%, 58%), Cain (57%), Hennessey (14%, 29%), Wright (14%, 30%), Correia (36%). I would be inclined to almost double Wright's rate because pitching at Colorado, DOMs are probably pretty rare, though I think Cain might have gotten one there.
  • Beckett was wild: 43%, 73%, 58%, 76%. He could join the elite if he could be consistent.
  • Bonderman with a bullet: 29%, 47%, 55%
  • Kevin Brown going down: 70%, 36%, 31%
  • Hudson fell from 60-70 in two previous seasons to mid-30's the past two seasons.
  • Leiter fell from 50's to 40% in 2004 to 19% in 2005 (plus 38% DIS).
  • Mulder fell from 40-60 in three previous seasons to 19% in 2005 (plus 25% DIS).
  • Rogers was in the 30's and quickly declining: 39%, 31%, 30%.
  • Sheets need another year to join the 70+ club.
  • Weaver would actually fall in to the middle group if not for his horrendous stint with the Yanks.
  • Zito has been jumping from 60-40-60 so it was hard to categorize him as either but if not for last year, he would have been in the 40's group.
  • Free Agents competing with Morris this off-season: Byrd (37%, 39%), Loaiza (71%, 21%, 59%). I would be inclined to nearly halve Loaiza's 2005 figure because it was at Washington's extreme pitcher's park.

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