29 June 2007

Kuo v Young

by Joshua Worley

First, the Padre co-ace, Christopher Ryan Young. He has an ERA of 2.08, a WHIP of 1.07, and a record of 7-3. Cy Young stuff right there. But how likely is he to dominate in any one start?

I've gone through all of Young's starts and given him a grade for each one.

The scale:

A -- dominant, long start, at most one run allowed
B -- gives team really good chance to win game
C -- borderline quality start or near quality start
D -- ineffective
F -- bombed

Young's distribution:

A --- 8 --- 53%
B --- 3 --- 20%
C --- 1 --- 7%
D --- 1 --- 7%
F --- 1 --- 7%
Inc --- 1 --- 7%

Young gets an imcomplete for the game he was kicked out of against the Cubs. He was probably headed for another A or B level game though.

So yeah, he's really good. More than half the time he is dominant, and he gives his team a great chance of winning about 3 out of 4 starts. It's not surprising that even with their sometimes iffy offense the Padres have won 10 of his 15 starts, including three 1-0 decisions! ( One of these was the game Young was kicked out of. )

What about Hong-Chi Kuo? With him, the season stats of a 6.33 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and 1-3 record don't really tell the story. Any Padre fan who looks at his numbers and assumes his or her team is going to roll to an easy win tonight may be in for a nasty surprise. Or maybe not. How likely is it Kuo will pitch well?

It's harder to say, because Kuo has fewer starts to look at and he's still rounding into form. I'm going to throw in last year's starts as well just to get a better feel for the breakdown of his starts.

A --- 3 --- 27%
B --- 2 --- 18%
C --- 4 --- 36%
D --- 1 --- 9%
F --- 1 --- 9%

This includes his 5 starts this year, 1 in the postseason last year, and 5 in September of last year. Kuo is all over the place, as we'd expect. He's capable of being brilliant; he's often just average, and a few times he's bombed. It's about a 50% chance that he'll put his team into excellent position to win, though he rarely loses the game for his team either.

I was stingy and gave Kuo a B for his 6 inning, 1 run performance in Petco in the finale of the series the Padres swept. I figured you need to either allow no runs or go at least 7 innings to get an A in Petco. Nevertheless the Padres have already seen Kuo at nearly his best, the equal of Young. Young is certainly more likely to pitch a gem, but Kuo has a decent shot at matching him or even besting him.

No comments: