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View Full Version : Choose bet. Stellar Starting Rotation/avg. bullpen v. Lights Out Bullpen/avg rotation


asindc
08-07-2008, 10:08 AM
While I was lurking at Motownsports yesterday, a poster there raised this question while discussing Detroit's pitching woes. Which scenario do you think would give a team the better chance to win:

1) Starting rotation of Brandon Webb, Tim Lincencum, CC Sabathia, Roy Halladay, and John Lackey, with a bullpen of average arms, or;

2) Bullpen of Bobby Jenks, Joe Nathan, Jon Papelbon, Billy Wagner, K-Rod, top-notch lefty and/or long relief specialist, with an average starting rotation.

The debate went back and forth between the two choices. Myself, I prefer the stellar rotation. I think average relievers are more valuable when they are not exposed too often, while having 5 stud starters means that you are winning or have a reasonable chance to win more often in late innings. What do you guys think?

balke
08-07-2008, 10:17 AM
Depends who the starters are. If they are the guys above, that's a better scenario. If they are good starters who can't give a lot of CG's, then the bullpen might be better.

Minnesota with Nathan, Neshek, Crain, Romero I think make the Twins starters better IMO. I think it has helped out in Anaheim and Oakland as well. If you only really need to be lights out for 80 pitches and get the ball to the 5th or 6th, I think you can make some decent starters look a lot better than they are.

In real life though, if you had those starters you mentioned, you'd be far better than any team in the league pitching wise. You'd really only need 1-2 good bullpen guys, and if you were desperate, you'd just trade a starter.

Sox It To Em
08-07-2008, 10:18 AM
Starters, because they pitch twice as many innings.

oeo
08-07-2008, 10:20 AM
The most important aspect of a good bullpen is good starting pitching.

Jjav829
08-07-2008, 10:27 AM
While I was lurking at Motownsports yesterday, a poster there raised this question while discussing Detroit's pitching woes. Which scenario do you think would give a team the better chance to win:

1) Starting rotation of Brandon Webb, Tim Lincencum, CC Sabathia, Roy Halladay, and John Lackey, with a bullpen of average arms, or;

2) Bullpen of Bobby Jenks, Joe Nathan, Jon Papelbon, Billy Wagner, K-Rod, top-notch lefty and/or long relief specialist, with an average starting rotation.

The debate went back and forth between the two choices. Myself, I prefer the stellar rotation. I think average relievers are more valuable when they are not exposed too often, while having 5 stud starters means that you are winning or have a reasonable chance to win more often in late innings. What do you guys think?

Option 1. With a rotation featuring 5 aces, you might not even need the bullpen once or twice a week. And for the games you do, you're talking 2 innings or less most of the time.

Chez
08-07-2008, 10:44 AM
The most important aspect of a good bullpen is good starting pitching.

Word. At the risk of sounding like Captain Obvious, having your starters go deep into games limits the exposure of the back end of your bullpen.

areilly
08-07-2008, 10:51 AM
The most important aspect of a good bullpen is good starting pitching.

This sounds like something Hawk would say.

chaerulez
08-07-2008, 10:52 AM
You gotta take the starters, because average relief pitchers can sometimes have that one career year. As Sox fans we should know: Cotts, Hermanson, Politte.

FedEx227
08-07-2008, 01:01 PM
Give me that rotation, but bad example because Halladay, Lackey and CC all can give you complete games with ease.

asindc
08-07-2008, 01:20 PM
Give me that rotation, but bad example because Halladay, Lackey and CC all can give you complete games with ease.

That's partly why I picked them. I think a starter with an ERA of 3.25 but will give you at least 6-7 complete games a year is more valuable than a starter with an ERA of 2.75 who might pitch 1-2 complete games year. However, I digress.

I'm not surprised that no one has yet to choose the Lights Out Bullpen/Avg. Starters approach. I would like to hear some good arguments for it, though.

The Thomenator
08-07-2008, 01:54 PM
This thread reminds me of a discussion a friend and I have had in the past. We both think it's plausible to have a pitching staff of lights out relievers (or something close) and use them similarly to how relievers were used in the past (1970s; more than 1 inning per outing) or to how a pitching staff is used in recent all star games. It could potentially bode well on a payroll aspect as well as in the aspect that a batter improves each time they see a pitcher throughout a ballgame.

Chez
08-07-2008, 02:09 PM
This thread reminds me of a discussion a friend and I have had in the past. We both think it's plausible to have a pitching staff of lights out relievers (or something close) and use them similarly to how relievers were used in the past (1970s; more than 1 inning per outing) or to how a pitching staff is used in recent all star games. It could potentially bode well on a payroll aspect as well as in the aspect that a batter improves each time they see a pitcher throughout a ballgame.

This idea sponsored by Midwest Orthopedics. You would have ten pitchers with tendinitis, torn labrums or rotator cuffs by mid-May.

pmck003
08-08-2008, 11:44 AM
I'd simply vote for having good pitching for 6-8 innings and average pitching for 2-4 over average pitching for 5-6 innings and good pitching for 3-4. If you wanna carry 12 pitchers and have 7 awesome shut-down types in the pen, maybe it would be more equal.

cws05champ
08-08-2008, 01:52 PM
Starters All the way, since they take their turns every 5th day and all trying to one up each other. With all those bullpen egos arguing who would be better in the closer spot and what their roles would be. How many times have we seen a closer come into a game to get some work with a 4-5 run lead only to suck it up?

Bucky F. Dent
08-08-2008, 09:44 PM
Absolutley, the rotation.

TDog
08-09-2008, 02:44 AM
The most important aspect of a good bullpen is good starting pitching.

Exactly. Of course, no bullpen in the history of postseason baseball gave up less than the bullpen for the White Sox in the 2005 ALCS. And the Sox had a pretty good bullpen at the end of the 2005 season.

It really depends on who the starters are. If you have starters who are only going six innings, you are going to need a lot of innings out of your bullpen. Even if your starters are lights out for six innings (impressive ERAs from starters who only go six innings don't impress me), your relievers will need to be consistently effective. Unfortunately, your relievers won't be lights out all season long because they will be overworked.

PaleHoser
08-09-2008, 11:00 PM
A great bullpen can overcome mediocre starting pitching. Sox won 94 games in 1990 and they only had two starting pitchers win 14 games. Their bullpen was airtight the first half that season.

Of course another key to that season was that offensively the Sox just didn't quit. They had the ability to chip away at leads while the bullpen held down the other team.