Thursday, February 15, 2007

Zito and Lilly and more

One group of pitchers I always focus especially closely on is those switching from the AL to the NL. Not only do they benefit from not having to face the DH, but the past few years the overall talent level has been substantially higher in the NL. Two of those pitchers this year are Barry Zito and Ted Lilly, and they're VERY similar in a lot of way. Both have average around 2:1 K/BB with decent K/9 rates. Both are fly ball pitchers who will generally allow plenty of home runs. Both are at an age where they probably shouldn't be expected to get either much better or much worse from year to year. The only differences are that Lilly will strike out more batters, while Zito has slightly better control (except in 2006) and a slightly higher ground ball %. Also, I would expect Zito to go much higher in most drafts. Both of these guys should be quite effective with the move to the NL, and I consider Lilly an excellent sleeper based on the likelihood that he won't be picked early.

Also wanted to clarify something from the John Patterson, Part II post - I'm not saying those are good assumptions. I'm saying that even if they were true, picking Clemens over Patterson probably wouldn't be a good move. Add in the fact, that Patterson might not get hurt, Clemens might get hurt, Clemens is 44 and might not pitch as well, and I think Patterson is an easy choice over Clemens.

Someone asked what I think about John Maine. I actually think his K/9 and K/BB are almost exactly what we should expect based on his minor league stats. It looks like he got a little lucky though and I'd expect his ERA and WHIP to increase...maybe to 4.00 and 1.30. I suspect he may be onoe of the pitchers who meets my 'eligibility requirements' for my daily picks once the season starts, and I won't hesitate to use him in favorable situations.

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