The WAR Room is back again, bringing you the 2014 advanced stats for every Cleveland minor leaguer. With the minor league seasons coming to an end, today we start bringing you seasons in review, starting with the 2014 Carolina Mudcats. This week we will focus on the Mudcats’ pitchers before recapping the hitters next week.
Of course, it is always important to keep context in mind, just like with scouting. A pitcher who is old for his level using that experience to succeed against young, inexperienced hitters must be taken with a grain of salt; the same goes when looking at these WAR totals.
But it is a useful tool to put each player’s performance into context and look at where they sit in regard to the rest of the league.
As a reminder, a 0.0 WAR per 162 games is replacement level — otherwise known as the kind of performance an average player from the level below could offer — a 2.0 WAR per 162 games is average, and a 5.0 WAR per 162 games is All-Star level.
Also note that pitchers have FIP-based WAR — which is based on peripherals like strikeouts, walks, home runs, etc. — and RA-based WAR — which is based on runs allowed.
One more thing, all “+” stats are averaged at 100. Anything over 100, like 110, is higher and means that player is 10 percent better than the league average. Anything under 100, like 90, is lower and means that player is 10 percent worse than the league average. In the case of any “-” stats — when lower is better, like with ERA — a 90 ERA- means that player is 10 percent better than the league average.
Today we look at the 2014 Carolina Mudcats pitchers. Next week we will do the hitters. For the full stats, go ahead and click here.
The top Mudcat pitcher in 2014 was left-hander Ryan Merritt, who was also named the top pitcher in the league by the Carolina League. Merritt’s 3.0 FIP-based WAR in 160.1 innings rates him as a good starter, but where the 22-year-old really stands out is in his 5.0 RA-based WAR. Based on his 2.58 ERA (66 ERA-), Merritt put up an MVP-level season as he established himself as a priority guy going forward. Merritt may not be a big strikeout guy (20.1 percent strikeout rate, 102 K%+), but his command-control approach and 4.0 percent walk rate (47 BB%+) should play well going forward as he looks to make the jump to Double-A in 2015. Read More…
From Indians Baseball Insider, September 7, 2014