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Let’s Talk Starting Pitching

With all of Philadelphia in a malaise over the Phillies’ offense, the effort from four of the five starting pitchers has been overlooked. Joe Blanton, still trying to find his stuff six starts after recovering from a strained left oblique, has been the odd man out. Roy Halladay, Cole Hamels, Jamie Moyer, and even Kyle Kendrick (relatively speaking) have been rather effective so far in 2010.

Roy Halladay

Cole Hamels

Jamie Moyer

Kyle Kendrick

The Phillies’ offense may have fallen from their perch atop the National League in offense, but the pitching has come together. Even the bullpen has been reliable in the wake of injuries to Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge, although they have not had too many opportunities for¬†shutdowns and meltdowns while the offense has been slumping.¬†Before today’s series finale in Atlanta, the team ranked sixth in the league in runs allowed per game at 3.98, just behind the Braves at 3.96. Having allowed only two runs to the Braves on Wednesday, that average drops to 3.94.

It is a crying shame that the Phillies have been wasting these great pitching performances with a dreadfully impotent offense over the past two weeks. After the 5-1 victory to open up the series with the Boston Red Sox, the Phillies had a run differential of +69 for a Pythagorean winning percentage of .676. In other words, based on run differential, the Phillies played like like a 110-win team. In the last 11 games, the Phillies’ run differential is -36, or a Pythagorean winning percentage of .073, which comes out to a 12-win team in a 162-game season.

If the Phillies hit like a bottom-feeding offensive team, averaging 3 runs per game, the Pythagorean winning percentage would come out to .303, 49 wins in a full season. If the Phillies had hit like they normally do, averaging 5 runs per game, the Pythag equals .548, an 89-win team.

BEGIN END G RS RA PWL XW XL XW-162 XL-162
4/5 5/21 41 224 155 .676 28 13 110 52
5/22 6/2 11 14 50 .073 1 10 12 150
4/5 6/2 52 238 205 .574 30 22 93 69

Glossary | PWL = Pythagorean W-L record | XW = Expected wins | XL = Expected losses | XW-162 = Expected wins per 162 games | XL-162 = Expected losses per 162 games