If you're a regular reader of "Here's a Thought," you probably know that I don't like to use ERA very much. Instead, I prefer FIP, tRA, and xFIP when discussing pitchers. The statistics are just luck-adjusted ERAs, so they slot in nicely to ERA's "traditional" statistical role. Thus, an easy way to tell how "lucky" a pitcher is is to look at the ERA-FIP difference. Fangraphs has a handy leaderboard of this difference, so I decided, for fun, to take a look at 2009's pitchers with at least 50 innings and see who was the "luckiest:" that is, whose ERA was the lowest compared to his FIP. The winner, with a 3.32 ERA and 5.32 FIP, is Astros lefty reliever Tim Byrdak, with an even two-run difference. Byrdak is pretty much your standard situational lefty, throwing a high-80's fastball and a ton of ...
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Article written by Nathaniel Stoltz