Who's Jake Peavy?

user-pic
Vote 0 Votes

Well, I was working with some numbers dealing with Dempster, Caridad, and Fukudome. But I'll get to them later for now.

Now, here's an interesting opinion, from the Sun Times:

"Peavy will make the rotation stronger and deeper, but he isn't the answer to the Cubs' postseason woes."

Reason?

"Peavy spent nearly a month on the DL last season... sounds like Rich Harden, which isn't necessarily a bad thing -- at least during the regular season. Harden lost a playoff game, too."

And more?

"Peavy has benefited from playing in Petco Park, one of the pitcher-friendliest parks in the majors."

http://blogs.suntimes.com/fullcourtpress/2008/12/peavy_to_the_cubs_what_does_th.html

***

I can't speak much about injury, but I do know where Peavy plays. He plays in the most extreme pitcher's park in Major League since 2004, Petco Park.

The reason why authors like Sun Time's Modrowski undervalue Jake Peavy is because of his road-home split. But they often forgot that Jake also plays in the most extreme hitter-friendly division in MLB.

Coors Field (high elevation, thin air). Chase Field (desert, thin air), Dodger Stadium (not as extreme as Coors, not as "hitter-proven" as Chase, but after they resized their outfield around 2005, it has turned hitter friendly).

The only exception would be Whatever-Telecom-Firm Park the Giants played. Its extreme irregular shape and tough brick wall became a visiting outfielder's nightmare, and garnered one of the most double-productive parks in the league. But Baseball Reference also tells us that AT&T is neutral. So, let's claim it neutral.

So how does Peavy fair in his division, away from Petco?

In 6 years and 263.2 career innings played in the four fore-mentioned parks, Jake is:

ERA 4.37
walks 101, or a ratio of 3.45 walks per 9 Innings Played (BB9)
strikeouts 208, or 7.10K per 9 IP (K9)

These include Jake's rookie year, when he were figuring things out. It's noteworthy that since then, in the last 5 years, he's been controlling his ERA in his division (sin home) around 4.00, raised his K9 to 8.50. Though, we have a legitimate concern of his overall trend of giving away more free passes, for the last three seasons...

How about an honorary mention of the Cubs ace, Zambrano, who's about Jake's age? Is he great in NL West?

In 102 IP, Big Z got:

ERA 3.53
walks per nine 3.79
K9, 7.24

Granted, this is a much smaller sample size (we ask at least 3000 pitches, or 200 innings under certain conditions, like a selected ballpark or under one team, before making a REAL conclusion).

But that's not bad. Z probably got some luck (or better defense during the Baker regime), with sub-par walk and strikeout rates, compared to Peavy's. Yet again, as a sinkerballer, that's expected. Z didn't work as many K as Peavy in order to get batters out.

There's of course more to it, but I'll keep it as this is now. Peavy is not as bad on the road as some thought. He should deserve some ace status even away from Petco.