I have spent some time looking at what pitching statistics lead to a pitchers success on the mound. Everyone looks at command, or K/BB (or K/9-BB/9), or the pitchers groundball to flyball ratio, but how about keeping the ball in the yard, or HR/9.
Here is a list of NL starting pitchers sorted by pitchers who give up the least amount of HRs per 9 innings in 2009:
|Pineiro, Joel SP STL||170.7||13||3.11||1.1||4.43||0.95||2.3||6||0.316|
|Kershaw, Clayton SP LA||146||8||2.96||1.27||9.43||4.99||0.8||6||0.370|
|Lincecum, Tim SP SF||193.3||13||2.33||1.03||10.33||2.51||1.1||8||0.372|
|Carpenter, Chris SP STL||151.7||14||2.2||0.97||6.82||1.48||1.7||7||0.415|
|Lowe, Derek SP ATL||158.7||12||4.48||1.46||4.65||2.84||2||8||0.454|
|Lee, Cliff SP PHI||192||12||2.62||1.19||6.84||1.83||0.9||10||0.469|
|Jimenez, Ubaldo SP COL||181.3||12||3.33||1.22||7.84||3.42||1.6||10||0.496|
|Marquis, Jason SP COL||171.3||14||3.47||1.27||4.41||2.84||1.9||11||0.578|
|Pelfrey, Mike SP NYM||146.3||9||4.8||1.52||5.17||3.38||1.5||10||0.615|
|Johnson, Josh SP FLA||171.7||13||3.04||1.11||7.81||2.15||1.4||12||0.629|
|Zambrano, Carlos SP CHC||128||7||3.8||1.38||7.38||4.22||1.1||9||0.633|
|Billingsley, Chad SP LA||166.7||12||3.83||1.29||8.1||3.83||1.1||12||0.648|
|Jurrjens, Jair SP ATL||164||10||2.91||1.26||6.59||3.24||1||12||0.659|
|Maholm, Paul SP PIT||162.7||7||4.59||1.43||5.64||2.66||1.5||13||0.719|
|Wainwright, Adam SP STL||187||15||2.5||1.21||7.56||2.6||1.4||15||0.722|
|Wells, Randy RP CHC||126.7||9||3.06||1.22||5.54||2.34||1.2||11||0.781|
|Correia, Kevin SP SD||156||9||4.5||1.38||6.29||3.29||1.2||14||0.808|
|Hammel, Jason SP COL||132||8||4.43||1.5||6.2||2.25||1.3||12||0.818|
|Cain, Matt SP SF||177.3||12||2.39||1.15||6.75||3.1||0.8||17||0.863|
|Vazquez, Javier SP ATL||176||11||3.02||1.05||9.82||1.79||1.1||17||0.869|
A couple things really stand out when analyzing this chart. One, there is only one Mets pitcher and one Padres pitcher on this list. Why Mets and Padres? Because they pitch in the two best pitchers parks in the majors and only one pitcher from each team, Mike Pelfrey and Kevin Correia appear on this list.
The other thing that really stood out was that there are three Colorado Rockies pitchers on this list: Ubaldo Jimenez, Jason Marquis and Jason Hammel. Is Coors Field turning into a pitchers park? The Cardinals and Braves also have three pitchers appear on this list including the leader Joel Piniero. It is no coincidence that Piniero also induces the highest number of ground ball outs in the NL.
Taking a closer look at this list, if you take out Kevin Correia, Jason Hammel, Derek Lowe, Paul Maholm and Mike Pelfrey from this list, you are left with a list of very solid fantasy pitchers in 2009.
Does this list displace the myth that strikeout pitchers lead to fantasy success?