SWIP: 2012 – Swingmen & Relievers
Yesterday in SWIP: 2012 – Starters, I gave a detailed description of exactly what SWIP is before I took a look at the starting pitcher pool from 2011. In PART II of my SWIP report, I'll take a look at all the hurlers who tossed less than 160 innings including a discussion about the men that work the 8th and 9th innings.
* For an explanation of what SWIP is and how it works, click on the above link. Here is the “key” to help you to understand how to read the SWIP marks.
.90 and Up: Excellent season. Hall of Fame level. .70 to .89: An all-star performance. Worthy of Cy Young consideration. .50 to .69: Borderline all-star to decent starting pitcher. A guy you’d like to have on your staff. .35 to .50: A guy who should be nothing more than the 3rd or 4th starter with his club. .20 to .34: His major league days are likely numbered. Below .20: Minor leaguer in training.
The league average in 2011 was 0.45.
Here are the hurlers who tossed between 90 and 160 innings in 2011.
0.87 – Brandon Beachy Now maybe all of you out there who questioned why I have Beachy so high in my 2012 rankings, which you can find in the 2012 BBGuys Draft Guide, will at least partially, understand my reasoning.
0.79 – Cory Luebke A great place to pitch, combined with an impressive K-rate, equals a lot of promise.
0.74 – Tommy Hanson Injures an a new motion are causing some worry, but if healthy he has the tools to be a top-20 starting pitcher.
0.68 – Scott Baker Keep an eye on his elbow woes, but Baker owns the skills to be a top of the rotation fantasy arm if he can make 30 starts.
0.64 – Marco Estrada The likely rotation fill in with the Brewers if Shawn Marcum (shoulder) is unable to go at the start of the year.
0.64 – Jake Peavy He had nearly a four to one K/BB ratio last year, though he has looked awful in camp thus far.
0.60 – Jonathan Niese, Erik Bedard One pitcher is always hurt, both are usually overlooked.
0.59 – Tom Gorzelanny Whatever his role (RP or SP), Tom was an effective hurler last year with a career best 2.88 K/BB ratio.
0.56 – Felipe Paulino Armed with a big arm, Paulino has quietly averaged 8.28 strikeouts per nine in 347.2 big league innings.
0.37 – Johnny Cueto Totally changed him M.O. last year morphing from a K-arm, to a ground ball machine. SWIP isn't a fan of that shift.
0.30 – Jair Jurrjens I warn about him each year. Don't buy that low ERA, it's just not sustainable.
0.28 – Francisco Liriano What an arm, but all those walks are just a killer.
Now on to the arms that worked at least 40 innings but no more than 90.
1.35 – Sergio Romo I keep saying it, but here it is again. Romo has no shot at the Hall of Fame, but his numbers to this point of the game are as impressive as pretty much any hurler who has every lived.
1.30 – Kenley Jansen The #1 target by most fantasy pundits from the middle reliever ranks.
1.20 – Jonathan Papelbon All he does is save 30 games each year while striking out more than 10 batters per nine innings.
1.17- Koji Uehara Often lost in the shuffle on draft day, this import runs smoother than a top of the line Honda Accord.
1.04 – Rafael Betancourt Some doubt whether or not he can handle the 9th inning all season. That's fine since he's never done it for an entire year. However, don't doubt the skills – they are elite.
0.99 – Sergio Santos Some are worried about what he will do for an encore in his first year in Toronto. SWIP isn't concerned.
0.98 – David Robertson He's shed the walking boot and appears to be well on his way to being ready for Opening Day after a scare with his foot. Could represent a nice buy low option on draft day.
0.97 – Vinnie Pestano Looks like Chris Perez might be healthy enough for Opening Day after all, but that doesn't mean it still wouldn't be wise to roster Pestano.
0.96 – Rex Brothers When you blow cheese like he does it doesn't matter if you are pitching at a mile above seawater.
0.92 – Greg Holland Never mentioned as an elite bullpen arm, but the guy had 74 Ks and just 19 walks in 60 innings last year.
0.43 – Javy Guerra Will open the year as the Dodgers' closer even though he is, literally, a third of the pitcher as Jansen according to SWIP.
0.42 – Jeff Samardzija He has a great arm that led to 87 Ks in 88 innings last season, but the young fireballer simply has to reign in the free passes (he issued 50 last year).
0.39 – Neftali Feliz Transitioning to the starting rotation, Feliz was dominant in the second half last year but his overall work places him as a below average SWIP arm.
0.32 – Matt Capps How long can he hold on to the Twins 9th inning job? Not long if he repeats last years effort.
0.27 – Luke Gregerson What happened to that once dominating arm out of the Padres' pen?
For those of you who want to investigate further, here is the BBGuys-SWIP-2011-PDF file that lists all men who tossed at least 40-innings last season.
To sign up for your baseball league this year make sure you check out Fleaflicker.
By Ray Flowers
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The co-host of The Drive on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87: Mon-Fri 7-10 PM EDT), Ray also hosts his own show Sunday night (7-10 PM EDT). Ray has spent years squirreled away studying the inner workings of the fantasy game to the detriment of his personal life. Specializing in baseball, football and hockey, some consider him an expert in all three.
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