I was reading Nick & Nick's blog entry today when I decided to check out the comments section. What I found were many ideas being bounced around that just seemed to be so ludicrous I had to post about them here.
The first one was this: why Livan Hernandez's innings pitched total affect the numbers of runs he gives up.
Why would getting batters out lead to him giving up more runs?
Any pitcher will give up more runs as he gets more batters out aka pitches more innings. It's just common sense. If his ERA is 5.31, on average he'll give up 5.31 runs per nine innings (or per 27 batters he gets out). There's no conceivable reason that this will suddenly improve, which means he will most likely continue pitching many innings while allowing many more runs than most pitchers would in those innings.
This one was the worst, by far. Someone argues that Livan's agent would have a legitimate grievance if the Twins demoted Livan to the bullpen because he has escalator clauses based on the number of innings he pitches.
Now there would be a legitimate grievance by his agent, who I believe is also Liriano's agent.
If Hernandez was good, maybe. But he hasn't been good at all. Out of 46 pitchers in the AL who qualify for the ERA title, he ranks 42nd in ERA, 45th in WHIP, 44th in OppOBP, 45th in K/9, and dead last in OppAVG, OppSLG, and H/9. Now how would his agent argue that the Twins are demoting him solely to avoid paying him bonuses and not because of his performance, especially when they are trying to find room for someone currently dominating AAA who dominated the Majors two years ago? Asserting that would be completely ridiculous.
A discussion about Livan's value as a reliever versus as a starter was also taking place.
The last time I looked, mop-up pitchers don't pitch complete games.
Yes, but an eight inning complete game in which you allow 5 ER on 12 hits and 3 walks is not a good outing. His ERA for that game was 5.63 and his WHIP was 1.88. So yes, I want him in the bullpen pitching in a mop-up role because his "value" of going deep into games is not valuable if he's going deep into games and pitching poorly. If he's in a mop-up role he'll be pitching less (a good thing because he's not a good pitcher) and be pitching mostly in games that are already out of reach (also a good thing).