Tag Archives: Earned run average

The Best but Cheapest team that money can buy

By: Jon

Although baseball is a great game, many players will choose to play other sports because the players are not paid the big bucks instantly. However, baseball players are able to make the most money over the longest period of time if the player is good. Unlike other major sports, baseball players are able to reel in huge pay checks until they are in their forties. The best bargain in sports is a young superstar baseball prospect. Since some players are significantly underpaid, it enables fans to create fake teams for as cheap as possible. There is such a great contract disparity in baseball that a World Series championship team could be had for under $13.5 million.

THE CHEAP TEAM

Catchers

Carlos Santana (27) and Jonathan Lucroy (27)

Cost: $1.3 million

Carlos Santana
Carlos Santana

Santana and Lucroy are two of the best bargain catchers in MLB. Both players are ranked in the top ten in WAR, HR, RBI, AVG, OBP, SLG, and OPS. Although both players are set for major pay raises, they are currently making less than $1.5 million combined for this season. Both players bat in the middle of the order and would be the starting catcher for more than 2/3 of the teams in MLB.

First Baseman

Paul Goldschmidt (25) and Freddie Freeman (23)

Cost: $1.06 million

Paul Goldschmidt
Paul Goldschmidt

Goldschmidt and Freeman were both All-Stars this season. Although they make under $750,000, they are some of the best first baseman in baseball. While Goldschmidt is an MVP candidate, Freddie Freeman is leading the NL East leading Atlanta Braves to a playoff position and a NL East division title. Goldschmidt and Freeman are ranked in the top six in R, RBI, AVG, OBP, SLG, OPS, and WAR. Although Paul Goldschmidt already signed a new contract that will start next season, Freddie Freeman should sign a long term contract like Paul Goldschmidt.

Second Base

Jason Kipnis (26)

Cost: $509,400

Jason Kipnis
Jason Kipnis

Jason Kipnis played in his first All-Star game this season. Jason Kipnis has experienced a break out season after a solid rookie season last year. Jason Kipnis is thought to be one of the best second baseman in the league because he is ranked in the top five in R, HR, RBI, SB, OBP, SLG, OPS, and WAR. Jason Kipnis is extremely under valued compared to the other second basemen in MLB. Jason Kipnis is part of the new brand of second basemen because he drives in runs and can hit the ball out of the ballpark

Shortstop

Jean Segura (23)

Cost: 492,000

Jean Segura
Jean Segura

The 23 year old shortstop has broken out for the Milwaukee Brewers after being acquired last season in the Zach Greinke deal. Like many of the players on the cheap team, Segura played in his first All-Star game this year for the NL. Jean Segura is ranked top four in almost every statistical category among shortstops. Sgura is ranked top four in R, 3B, HR, SB, AVG, OBP, SLG, OPS, and WAR. Segura has the rare ability to run and hit for power, which is especially rare for a shortstop. Segura is already a star and should improve over the next few seasons.

Third Base

Manny Machado (21)

Cost: $495,000

Manny Machado
Manny Machado

Manny Machado has burst onto the scene as one of the best defensive and offensive baseball player in the league. Although Manny Machado was on pace to break the record for most doubles in a season, he has slowed down, but has still been one of the best players in the league. Although third base is the deepest position in MLB, he has been one of the best because he has so much talent. Machado is top ten in every statistical category among third baseman and third in WAR. Machado has led the Orioles to a possible playoff position.

Outfield

Mike Trout (21), Starling Marte (24), Domonic Brown (25), Wil Myers (22), and Giancarlo Stanton (23)

Cost: $2.537 million

Mike Trout
Mike Trout

The outfield is probably the best part of the cheap team’s offensive attack. Mike Trout is the most underpaid player in MLB. He is the best all around player in the majors, but is only making $510,000. Compared to his peers, Trout should be paid 50 times his actual salary, based upon his play. The group also includes sluggers Domonic Brown and Giancarlo Stanton. When healthy, Brown and Stanton are two of the best power hitters in the game. Stanton probably has the most power of any player in the league, although he is only 23 and is paid less than $600,000. Starling Marte and Wil Myers are two of the brightest young players in the league. Over the last month, Myers has been on fire, 4 home runs and a .352 average. Although Marte could not sustain his early season success, he has been great for the MLB leading Pittsburgh Pirates. Marte has been a great defensive player and one of the fastest players in the league.

Starting Pitching

Matt Harvey (24), Jose Fernandez (20), Patrick Corbin (24), Mike Minor (25), and Shelby Miller (22)

Cost: $2.47775 million

Matt Harvey
Matt Harvey

The starting pitching for this team is easily the best part of this fantasy team. All five starters have an ERA under 3 while having salaries that combine to be less than $2.5 million. Among the five starters, Matt Harvey is the best pitcher. Matt Harvey has been great this season and has been the second best pitcher, behind Clayton Kershaw. Besides for having the most strikeouts among NL starters, Harvey has the second lowest WHIP and ERA in MLB while garnering the third highest WAR among starters. However, Harvey is not the only great young pitcher on this team. Jose Fernandez has pitched great for the Marlins during his rookie season. Fernandez and Shelby Miller have more strikeouts than innings while maintaining an ERA under 3 and a WHIP just above 1. Like Fernandez and Miller, Minor has an ERA under 3 and a WHIP just above 1, but does not have the strikeout totals like Fernandez. Another great pitcher on the team is Patrick Corbin. Although Corbin is not a strikeout pitcher like Minor, he is extremely effective, compiling an ERA below 2.3, WHIP under 1, and 12 wins. This team would lose very few games because of their pitching.

Relief Pitching

Craig Kimbrel (25), Mark Melancon (28), Rex Brothers (25), Tanner Scheppers (26), Aaron Loup (25), Luis Avilan (24), Greg Holland (27), and Drew Smyly (24)

Craig Kimbrel
Craig Kimbrel

Cost: $4.18355 million

Relief pitching is one of the most important parts of a team and this bullpen will be great. Besides for having some of the best relievers in the league, every relief pitcher will have an ERA under 2. Along with having great ERAs, most of these pitchers have great strikeout numbers. Craig Kimbrel has been the best closer over the last two years. Craig has the most saves among NL relief pitchers. Kimbrel has 22 more strikeouts than innings pitch, an ERA under 1.35, and a WHIP under 0.95. Mark Melancon has been one of the best relievers in the league, although he had to switch his relief positions. Mark has the lowest ERA, 0.88, among relievers, who has pitched over 38 games. Along with a  great ERA, Mark does not allow batters to reach base, 0.86 WHIP. Rex Brothers and Luis Avilan are great relievers and each have an ERA under 1.25. Also, they are both left handed pitchers, which is important for any bullpen. Similar to Avilan and Brothers, Scheppers, Loup and Smyly have ERAs under 1.9 and WHIPs under 1.2. Similar to Craig Kimbrel, Greg Holland is a great reliever and has the ability to strikeout any hitter. Holland’s stats are great, 1.76 ERA, 0.98 WHIP, and 24 more strikeouts than innings pitched. Batters will have a lot of problems scoring against this great pitching staff.

Total Cost: $13.0547 million

The total cost of this great team is less than half the cost of Alex Rodriguez and about the same as a player like Edwin Jackson/Dan Haren/ Josh Johnson. The pitcher with the lowest ERA is Edwin Jackson with an ERA of 4.65.

MOST EXPENSIVE TEAM

Catcher

Joe Mauer

$23 million

Joe mauer
Joe mauer

First Base

Mark Teixeira

$23.125 million

Mark Teixeira
Mark Teixeira

Second Base

Robinson Cano

$15 million

Robinson Cano
Robinson Cano

Third Base

Alex Rodriguez

$29 million

Alex Rodriguez
Alex Rodriguez

Shortstop

Derek Jeter

$17 million

Derek jeter
Derek jeter

Outfield

Vernon Wells, Carl Crawford, and Alfonso Soriano

$24 million, $21 million, $19 million

Vernon Wells
Vernon Wells

Starting Pitchers

Cliff Lee, Johan Santana, CC Sabathia, Tim Lincecum, and Zach Greinke

$25 million, $24.644 million, $24.285 million, $22.25 million, $21 million

Cliff Lee
Cliff Lee

Closer

Jonathan Papelbon

$13 million

Jonathan Papelbon
Jonathan Papelbon

Total Cost: $301.304 million

This astronomical number is only for 15. Thus, the average for eah player is 20 million, which is more than the whole team that I highlighted above. It is crazy how fast players can earn money in the MLB if they are talented. This “magnificent” has had a great year so far.

Pics and Stats from ESPN.com

Top Pitchers and Future Star

By: Jon

 

1) Clayton Kershaw – Dodgers

Clayton Kershaw
Clayton Kershaw

Kershaw is an absolute stud and a future Hall of Famer. The 25 year old pitcher already has a better resume than All-Stars, who have pitched for a decade. Besides his rookie season, Kershaw has never had a season where his ERA was above three. Kershaw has led the league in ERA the last two seasons and is on pace to win the title once again. The 2011 Cy Young Award winner is a true number one and a once in a generation type pitcher. Kershaw has a mid-ninetys fastball and a devastating curveball that leaves batters hopeless at the plate. Clayton is a pitcher that can pitch deep into a game, 10 CG and 6 SHO. Although Kershaw does not win that many games, he is the best pitcher in baseball and deserves to win many more Cy Young Awards in the future. Clayton is having the best season of his career so far, league leading (ll) 1.93 ERA/ 3 CG/ ll 2 SHO/ ll 130 IP/ 0.92 WHIP/ ll 189 ERA+. Kershaw is a good defensive player, winning the Gold Glove in 2011. This year, Clayton hit his first career home run.

 

2) Matt Harvey – Mets

Matt Harvey
Matt Harvey

Although the 24 year old right hander has only made 27 career starts, Harvey has been one of the most dominant pitchers in the league, since he has been called up. Harvey is second in the league in ERA, 2.00, first in WHIP, 0.85, and first in strikeouts, 132. Although Matt has seven wins, he should have at least 12 wins because 6 times he allowed one run or fewer and did not win the game. Harvey has a dynamic fastball, change up, and slider combination that leaves hitters hopeless in the batting box. Although Matt may have the chance to win the Cy Young Award this season, Kershaw and he will compete for many years to win the Cy Young Award in the future. Harvey is a winner that will help the Mets rebound and exit their rebuilding phase.

 

3) Stephen Strasburg – Nationals

Stephen Strasburg
Stephen Strasburg

Strasburg is another pitcher that does not get adequate run support, so his wins do not match his true stats. Stephen is one of the most talented pitchers in the game because of his above average fastball and devastating secondary pitches. The former number one pick overall came into the league with a ridiculous amount of hype and expectations. Straburg career ERA stands at 2.74, which is incredible for a 24 year old phenom. Strasburg is one the of the best strikeout pitchers in the league, averaging 10.5 strikeouts per nine innings. After being capped by an innings limit last year, which may have cost him the Cy Young, Stephen should not be limited any more and should be able to pitch care free for the rest of his career.

 

4) Felix Hernandez – Mariners

Felix Hernandez
Felix Hernandez

The 27 year old pitcher is on his way to being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Although Hernandez does not have the amount of wins as Andy Pettitte or CC Sabathia, King Felix has been one of the most dominant pitchers in the game over the last few seasons. Over the last four seasons, Felix has stuck out over 200 batter while pitching more than 200 innings. Through his durability and success, Felix has shown baseball fans around country why he is one of the best this game has to offer. After two seasons where his ERA was above 3.00, Hernandez has rebounded this season, posting an ERA of 2.70 while strikeout 132 batters. This past offseason, Hernandez signed a long term deal that will keep him with the Mariners for the rest of his Hall of Fame career.

 

5) Justin Verlander  – Tigers

Justin Verlander
Justin Verlander

Before this season, Verlander would have competed for the first spot on this list. After leading the league in losses in 2008, Verlander has turned his career around and may become a Hall of Fame pitcher. Verlander has a list of great achievements, including two time leader in wins, three time winner in strikeouts, one time leader in ERA, one time leader in WHIP, and MVP winner. Although Verlander is 8-5 this season, his ERA has been a major disappointment, 3.77. However, many people believe Verlander will turn it around this season because of his great fastball and devastating curveball. One of the main reasons for Verlander’s disappointing season so far has been his fastball, which has not been as hard as previous years. As noted by Curt Schilling last night, last year 75% of Verlander’s fastballs were over 95 mph. This year that number has plummeted to 25%, which has enabled hitters to catch up to his fastball. Also, his other pitches do not seem as different because the velocity of the pitches are similar

 

Future Star: Shelby Miller – Cardinals

Shelby Miller
Shelby Miller

The 22 year old rookie starter is having a great rookie campaign. The 6’3″ right handed pitcher has a 100 mph fastball and a great array of secondary pitches. Miller is currently 8-6 with a sparkling 2.79 ERA in 93 innings. Like many other young studs, Harvey Wheeler, Strasburg, Miller is a strikeout pitcher, averaging 10 strikeouts per 9 innings. Miller’s WHIP is a minuscule 1.06. Shelby Miller should be an All Star this year because the Cardinals would not be where they are without his dominant outings. Along with Wainwright, the Cardinal duo boasts one of the most feared 1-2 punches in baseball.

 

Stats from Baseball reference and pics from ESPN.com