In front of a roughly (though probably slightly below) average defense so far, you’d have to expect that those ERA numbers will improve overall if they just keep pitching like this, just due to random variation. These are the numbers of pitchers who have started a game for the Brewers in 2011. It’s fun to try to figure out who is who in this list. Greinke’s obvious I think, and everyone’s sorted by WAR:
Just look for a moment at those FIPs and xFIPs though. That’s really something, especially when you check out this little snapshot:
The second-best FIP in 2010 was 4.15, and the worst so far this year is 4.5.
I, for one, think we’re going to be having a lot of fun watching three pitchers capable of ERAs under 3 and strikeouts rates over 9 per 9 go at it this season. These is the kind of rotation with horses that can take a team a long ways. And Narveson and Wolf have put up some solid ratios so far as well: Narveson’s striking out almost 8 per 9 while walking 3.3, and Wolf’s striking out 6.6 per 9 while walking 3. When these are your two worst starters, you’re doing something right.
We have to give Doug Melvin a heck of a lot of credit for making this team’s glaring weakness into an overwhelming strength. This team is on a roll, just think how good it will be when those ERAs start to match up a little more closely with those fielding independent numbers.
Congratulations, Doug. Now go get us a shortstop!