Halladay a HUGE Factor in NLCS
I’ve read some non-sense recently on the Yahoo MLB Blog, “Big League Stew”, about Cliff Lee being the “coolest –and best” pitcher in the playoffs in an article written by Yahoo staffer David Brown. Did you not witness Roy Halladay’s complete game no-hitter? You cannot count Halladay out of this one, especially since he has only played a single playoff game. Cliff Lee has pitched 7 playoff games, so of course you have more to base an opinion from. But lets compare just this year’s playoff games so far shall we?
I’m gonna start things off by talking a bit about a stat called “Game Score” developed by Bill James. Bill James(George William James) is a baseball writer, historian and statistician whose work has been widely influential. His Baseball Abstract books in the 1980s are the modern predecessor to websites using sabermetrics such as BaseballProspectus and BaseballPrimer(now BaseballThinkFactory). Bill James obviously knows his stuff.
His “Game Score” stat is comprised as follows:
1. Start with 50 points.
2. Add 1 point for each out recorded, so 3 points for every complete inning pitched.
3. Add 2 points for each inning completed after the 4th.
4. Add 1 point for each strikeout.
5. Subtract 2 points for each hit allowed.
6. Subtract 4 points for each earned run allowed.
7. Subtract 2 points for each unearned run allowed.
8. Subtract 1 point for each walk.
According to this system, the highest game score possible is 114. This is only if he goes all 9 innings while striking out every batter he faces and not allowing a single walk. The highest score ever achieved was 105 by Kerry Wood during his one-hit, no-walk, 20-strikeout performance for the Chicago Cubs when they faced they Houston Astros on May 6th, 1998.
Cliff Lee went 9 innings, struck out 11 batters, 1 earned run, allowed 6 hits and no-walks in Game 5 of the ALDS against Tampa Bay. His game score would be 82=(50+27+11+10-4-12). It was an impressive game none-the-less and he got the job done with the run support from his team.
Roy Halladay went 9 innings struck out 8 batters, no earned runs, no hits and allowed just 1 walk in Game 1 of the NLDS against Cincinnati. His game score would be 94=(50+27+8+10-1). Not allowing a single hit definitely helps out your team a hell of a lot more than not allowing any walks, sorry Dave.
I guess we’ll really have to wait and see what happens in the Doc’s next playoff game to really debate this any further. All I’m saying though, is that you cannot count Roy Halladay out. The man’s a beast.
Philadelphia’s next game is Saturday 10/16/2010, when the Fightin’ Phil’s take on the San Fransisco Giants. The probable starters for Game 1 are: SF: Tim Lincecum(1-0) @ PHI: Roy Halladay(1-0). Philadelphia witnessed history when the Doc became the second player to throw a no-hitter in the post-season. The following night Lincecum threw 14 strikeouts against the Braves. When asked about the historical “no-no” Halladay pitched, Lincecum commented, “Great for him. Obviously, we’re concerned with ourselves.”
A lot of reporters are saying that this will be a huge test for Philadelphia’s Offense. Here’s what Victorino had to say about that,
“It’s going to be an interesting little series,” he said. “We know what we’re up against. Are we going to do anything differently? Yeah, we need to hit. But I think as long as you get a ‘W’ at the end of the day, whether it be through good pitching or good hitting, that’s what it’s about.”
When asked about how the Phillies will approach Lincecum,
“I don’t know. I’m going up there without a bat,” he joked. “You guys are making him out like he’s king to the world. He’s good. The keys to how you hit him? Geez, I don’t know. He’s definitely a different pitcher than when I first saw him. He’s definitely matured and is pitching differently. You’ve got to get him in the [strike] zone. He likes to get you out of the zone.”
What it really comes down to is getting some hits, and Victorino, along with the rest of the team, knows this.