Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Quality Start...A Good Measure of Quality in Fantasy Baseball

In baseball, a Quality Start is a statistic for a SP defined as a game in which the pitcher completes at least 6 innings and permits no more than 3 Earned Runs. In today’s Fantasy Baseball world there are leagues that use QS as a counting stat. Last year in a Points League I was in, it was one of the more weighted counting stats. Currently I am not in any QS leagues but do follow the stat.
To me, there are pros and cons in using QS as a barometer to gage effective SPs in Fantasy Baseball. Particularly the 3ER in 6 innings, which leads to an overall 4.50 ERA…those numbers are completely useless to a manager in Fantasy. Though a SP giving up 3ER in exactly 6 innings is quite rare that is the criteria used to qualify for QS. Bill James assumed that if all SP QS stats were compiled over a decade that an ERA of around 3.20 would surface. In fact the only known study that was conducted from 1984-1991 found that the average ERA in Quality Starts was a staggering 1.91. Now that is why QS should be considered when evaluating players either on draft day or waiver wire pickups.
So why am I writing about QS today. It is because of a player I drafted and own in 5 of my 6 leagues. He is the only SP in MLB to be 8 for 8 in QS this season. He is 4-2 with a 2.03 ERA and a 0.90 WHIP. His K/9 ratio is slightly lower than I would like but the ERA and WHIP outweigh the low K total. Currently he is sporting a 41% GBR and not giving up the long ball as he did last year. This Lefty is only owned in 57% of leagues and has another easy match up Sunday against the Mets. The player is of course Travis Wood SP CHC. MLB only has one other SP to be perfect in QS this season and that is Patrick Corbin who is 7 for 7. Not a bad pick up either.  

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