So far this year, righty David Herndon has thrown to a 3.38 ERA out of the pen for the Phils while his fellow righty Michael Stutes has thrown to a 3.69 ERA. Herndon hasn’t really been better than Stutes, though, has he?
Here’s at look at some of the other numbers for the pair:
|IP||ERA||Ratio||BF||% H||% BB||% HR||% K|
No. He really hasn’t. He’s been better at preventing walks than Stutes, but allowed hits and home runs at a higher rate while striking out batters less regularly.
Herndon does have the better ERA, but with a big but. Herndon has allowed 26 runs in his 56 innings, but five of those 26 (19.2%) have been unearned. All 21 of the runs that have been charged to Stutes have been earned.
Another big difference is that Stutes has been good against left-handed hitters while they have hammered Herndon:
|% of BF righties||vs righties||% of BF lefties||vs lefties|
Again, just terrible numbers for Herndon against lefties as they hit a silly 364/473/701 against him. If lefties are going to hit 364/473/701 against you it means you can’t pitch against them. Stutes, on the other hand, has been very effective against lefties, holding them to a 216/328/392 line.
Not to be lost in that as well is that as horrid as Herndon has been against left-handed hitters, he’s been fantastic against righties — righties have on-based just .250 against Herndon for the season. By OPS against, Halladay and Bastardo are the only pitchers for the Phils who have faced more than 15 batters this year who have been more effective against righties than Herndon.
The other thing is that Herndon has some impressive numbers late in the season. Over his last 19 appearances, he’s thrown to a 1.48 ERA with a 1.27 ratio and struck out 18 in 24 1/3 innings. Stutes, on the other hand, has a 5.12 ERA over his last 16 appearances. Here’s what the two have done since the All-Star break:
|IP||ERA||Ratio||RA per 9 IP|
Again, Herndon gets some help with unearned runs. He has allowed nine runs in the second half and only five of them have been earned. But a 1.61 ERA is a 1.61 ERA and whether his ERA number in the second half is misleading or not, there’s still a very good case to be made that 1) he’s been better than Stutes in the second half and 2) he’s been fantastic against righties all year long.
So what are the Phillies going to do? I don’t know, but I think they should make room for Herndon. Stutes seems like a lock for the post-season roster. This suggests the Phils will carry 11 pitchers and slot 11 will go to Blanton or Herndon. My guess is that slots 1-10 go to these guys: Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Oswalt, Worley, Madson, Bastardo, Kendrick, Stutes and Lidge. If you have to pick between Herndon and Blanton, I think you have to go with Herndon given that Roy Oswalt is your #4 starter and that Worley and Kendrick should both be able to provide multiple innings in long relief.
The article linked above suggests that Joe Savery, Justin De Fratus and Domonic Brown will go to Clearwater in case the Phillies need to replace a player on their post-season roster.
The Phillies are 100-60 on the year after beating the Atlanta Braves 4-2 last night. Lee got the start for the Phils and gave up two early runs, allowing a solo shot to Chipper Jones in the first and a second run on a double by Alex Gonzalez in the second. Polanco singled with two outs and the bases loaded in the fourth, knocking in Pence to cut the lead to 2-1 and Rollins tied things up at 2-2 with a solo homer in the fifth. The Phillies pulled ahead 3-2 in the sixth when Victorino’s one-out triple was followed by an RBI-single by Ibanez. Ibanez drove Victorino in again in the eighth. Victorino doubled with one out and again Ibanez followed with a single, scoring Victorino to put the Phils up 4-2.
Lee got his 17th win, holding the Braves to two runs over six innings. Savery, Stutes, Lidge and Madson combined to throw three scoreless innings after he left.
Rollins, Howard, Victorino and Ibanez all had two hits for the Phils.
Rollins is 5-for-his-last-10 coming off of an 0-for-16 coming into the second game on Saturday.
Victorino 4-for-his-last-10 with three extra-base hits.