And the Dismantling Begins

Normally I will only be using direct quotes, excerpts…etc.  But this is my first “real” post so cut me some slack.  While watching the Yankees- Red Sox game tonight, which was most tastefully commentated by Joe Buck and Tim McCarver (ha.ha.), Buck decided to bring up the fact that the sox starting SS tonight was a former Pittsburgh Pirate and while he was there he hit extremely well, and he was unaware why they let him walk away. Pedro Ciriaco was most certainly a Pirate, but that’s about where the accuracy of his statement ends.


6 AB’s, 3 H, 3K’s, 0 BB, 1 RBI (not even worth noting sabermetric stats)


33 AB’s 10 H, 6 K’s, 1 BB, 6 RsBI

for the more sabermetrically inclined- 0.2 WAR


Now I’m not saying he had a bad performance because by all means it was highly average, but the fact that Buck decided he was going to rant about how phenomenal it was, was completely absurd. 39 Career AB’s….yes 39 CAREER AB’s is far too small of a sample to even suggest anything like that.


This was only the beginning of my disgust with Buck’s ramblings.  He followed it by saying (and I paraphrase) “The Pirates Continue to win, they have McCutchen carrying that offense and AJ Burnett, the yankee castoff, carrying the pitching staff!”.

Let’s break this down.  McCutchen is an unbelievable talent in the outfield, no denying this and with his 1.017 OPS and 4.0 WAR halfway through the season there’s no denying his talent on offense and in no way do I take offense to his statement considering the only other dynamic offensive player is Pedro Alvarez with a 2.0 WAR thus far.


Now to the part that is offensive.  A. J. Burnett.  “The Carrier of the pitching”.  WOW.  Congrats he has 9 wins.  Tell me how that’s relevant to his pitching prowess.  Oh right, it’s not. Let’s break this down

AJ Burnett

86.2 IP, 74 K’s, 31 BB’s, 102 ERA+, 0.9 WAR, 0.9 WAR and oh yeah 0.9 WAR, and a very average 1.31 WHIP. (and a .300 BABIP so we know this isnt flukey)

James Mcdonald

103.0 IP, 90 K’s, 31 BB’s, 155 ERA+, 2.5 WAR, and an awesome 1.0 WHIP (.240 BABIP so could be a little flukey but he had another phenomenal start tonight so that BABIP should be a little more normalized currently)

So it’s obvious that James Mcdonald is the better SP (and I don’t feel like going through all the starters but I’m sure Burnett is highly average for the starters) but I will go ahead and take a look at another pitcher on the staff, a reliever.  I picked their reliever who has the most IP without a games started and decided picking the closer, Hanrahan would be unfair.  I chose Jared Hughes (also because I’d never even heard of the guy).

Jared Hughes

43.0 IP, 12.0 K%, 8.0 BB%, 1.14 WHIP, 0.1 RAR $481,000 earned this year

Burnett (again) 

86.2 IP, 20.0 K%, 8.4 BB%, 1.33 WHIP, 13.7 RAR, $16.5 million earned this year


Alright so I threw in salaries just to be a douche. But as you can see while Burnett trumps Hughes (a middling reliever mind you) in most categories, his WHIP is far worse and his salary is far worse.  


My main point being that besides Joe Buck being an idiot to the utmost extent, AJ Burnett is by no means leading this staff. Not only is it far and away James Mcdonald, a case could be made for several others on the staff.


My rant is over with for now kids, im sorry that went on so long, it was my first post so naturally I was giddy!


As usual,




Larry Bobcat Jeffries


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