You win a whole lot when you get quality starts. At least you do if you’re the Phillies in recent history. Here is what they’ve done over the past three seasons:
|Not Quality Starts||7.95||97-153||.388|
In 2009, however, the Phillies have a better winning percentage in their games when they do not get a quality start than they games when they do:
|Not Quality Starts||8.74||15-11||.577|
Given that it makes about zero sense that the Phillies would have a better record in the 26 games where their starting pitchers threw to an 8.74 ERA than in the 19 games where their starters threw to a 2.86 ERA, you would probably guess that the Phillies offense scored a lot more runs in the games where their starting pitcher did not make a quality start than in the games where he did. And you would be right. In the 19 games in ’09 where the Phillies got a quality start they scored 88 runs or about 4.63 runs per game. In the 26 games where they didn’t get a quality start they’ve scored 161 runs. That’s 6.19 runs per game.
The Phils also scored more runs in games when they did not get quality starts in 2008 than they did in 2009. In 2008 they scored 400 runs in the 74 games when they did not get quality starts (5.40 runs per game) and 399 runs in the 88 games where they did get a quality start (4.53 runs per game). So in 2008 they scored more runs in the non-quality starts games like they have in ’09. In 2009 the difference between the number of runs they’ve scored in quality starts and non quality starts is more dramatic. In ’09 they scored about 1.34 times as many runs in non quality starts (6.19 over 4.63) while in 2008 they scored about 1.19 times as many runs in non quality starts (5.40 over 4.53). Also of note is that while the number of runs they’ve scored in games where they get a quality start has stayed about the same from ’08 to ’09 while the number of runs they’ve scored when they don’t has gone up dramatically.
The fact that the Phillies scored a lot more runs in the games where they didn’t get a quality start this year made me wonder how the number of runs their starting pitcher has allowed related to the number of runs they scored in the game in 2009. Generally speaking, as the number of runs their starter has allowed has gone up so has the number of runs they’ve scored:
|RA by SP||G||Runs
|Three or fewer||21||96||4.6|
|More than three||24||153||6.4|
I’m pretty sure there are some people out there who know how well the number of runs your starting pitcher allows correlates with the number of runs your offense scores in a particular game. I’m not one of them. I would bet, though, that the answer is higher than you think.
The news on Brett Myers and his hip problem is not good. It seems likely that he will miss some if not all of the regular season. Todd Zolecki talked with Amaro about what the Phillies might do. The loss of Myers is a huge blow for a team that had enormous problems with the starting pitching already.