Fantasy Baseball: 2009 FIP Leaders

I know what you are asking-what the heck is FIP? According to The Hardball Times site, FIP is Fielding Independent Pitching, a measure of all those things for which a pitcher is specifically responsible. The formula is (HR*13+(BB+HBP-IBB)*3-K*2)/IP, plus a league-specific factor (usually around 3.2) to round out the number to an equivalent ERA number. FIP helps you understand how well a pitcher pitched, regardless of how well his fielders fielded.

With that explained, I give you the 2009 FIP leaders among starting pitchers courtesy of www.fangraphs.com:

Name K/9 BB/9 K/BB HR/9 AVG WHIP BABIP LOB% ERA FIP
Zack Greinke 9.5 2 4.75 0.43 0.232 1.07 0.313 79.30% 2.16 2.33
Tim Lincecum 10.42 2.72 3.84 0.4 0.209 1.05 0.297 75.90% 2.48 2.34
Javier Vazquez 9.77 1.81 5.41 0.82 0.226 1.03 0.297 76.60% 2.87 2.77
Chris Carpenter 6.73 1.78 3.79 0.33 0.223 1.01 0.272 79.50% 2.24 2.78
Justin Verlander 10.09 2.36 4.27 0.75 0.244 1.18 0.328 72.70% 3.45 2.8
Josh Johnson 8.22 2.5 3.29 0.6 0.238 1.16 0.299 74.90% 3.23 3.06
Roy Halladay 7.83 1.32 5.94 0.83 0.258 1.13 0.313 79.00% 2.79 3.06
Clayton Kershaw 9.74 4.79 2.03 0.37 0.198 1.23 0.274 77.50% 2.79 3.08
Felix Hernandez 8.18 2.68 3.06 0.57 0.229 1.14 0.289 76.70% 2.49 3.09
Cliff Lee 7.03 1.67 4.21 0.66 0.273 1.24 0.326 76.20% 3.22 3.11
Adam Wainwright 8.19 2.55 3.21 0.66 0.247 1.21 0.309 80.40% 2.63 3.11
Jon Lester 9.96 2.83 3.52 0.89 0.245 1.23 0.323 76.90% 3.41 3.15
Dan Haren 8.75 1.49 5.87 1.06 0.229 1 0.28 77.00% 3.14 3.23
Joel Pineiro 4.42 1.14 3.89 0.46 0.265 1.14 0.293 66.90% 3.49 3.27
Ricky Nolasco 9.49 2.14 4.43 1.12 0.265 1.25 0.336 61.00% 5.06 3.35
Ubaldo Jimenez 8.17 3.51 2.33 0.54 0.229 1.23 0.29 73.50% 3.47 3.36
CC Sabathia 7.71 2.62 2.94 0.7 0.233 1.15 0.284 71.40% 3.37 3.39
Wandy Rodriguez 8.45 2.76 3.06 0.92 0.249 1.24 0.306 79.40% 3.02 3.54
Carlos Zambrano 8.08 4.15 1.95 0.53 0.245 1.38 0.308 71.90% 3.77 3.61



One guy that stands out for me is Ricky Nolasco and his 5.06 ERA. Based on his outstanding peripherals, his FIP-3.35 is almost 2 runs lower than his ERA of 5.06. He will be someone to target on the cheap in 2010. His LOB% of 61%, or runners stranded, is extremely low and should increase in 2010, which will lower his ERA.

Joel Pineiro is another guy that stands out only for his low LOB% of 66.9%. His FIP wasn't much lower than his ERA, so I have to explain that is due to how low WHIP of 1.14.

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