Originally written on Fangraphs  |  Last updated 7/26/14
Table of Contents Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes. 1. The Quite Very Effective Ubaldo Jimenez 2. Today’s MLB.TV Free Game 3. Today’s Complete Schedule The Quite Very Effective Ubaldo Jimenez A Note Regarding Ubaldo Jimenez Yesterday, by way of previewing briefly yesterday’s MLB.TV Free Game, which game featured Cleveland right-hander Danny Salazar, the author had occasion to produce the table below, which includes — or included as of yesterday, at least — the top-five starters by strikeout rate over the last month (minimum three starts). To wit: Rank Name Team IP TBF K% 1 Ubaldo Jimenez Indians 31.2 128 32.8% 2 Stephen Strasburg Nationals 23.2 93 30.1% 3 Danny Salazar Indians 19.1 77 29.9% 4 Jose Fernandez Marlins 33.0 127 29.9% 5 Yu Darvish Rangers 33.0 134 29.1% One notes that Salazar’s name appears third on this particular sort of table. One notes, moreover, that teammate Ubaldo Jimenez‘s appears atop the whole thing. “Ubaldo Jimenez,” announces the reader. “I was under the impression that he’d become quite less effective than previously in his career.” To that point, the reader is entirely correct. After four consecutive seasons of better-than-average fielding-independent marks, Jimenez recorded a 121 xFIP- last year and career-low 17.8% strikeout rate. Of late, however, Jimenez has pitched quite well, having now produced the fourth-best park-adjusted xFIP of all starters over the past month (min. three starts). Graph: Ubaldo Jimenez’s Walk Rate by Month In addition to his excellent strikeout rate, Jimenez has also demonstrated some improvement — through two September starts, at least — in command. Below is a chart demonstrating the development in his walk rate, by month, this season: Action Graph: Ubaldo Jimenez’s Walk Rate by Month For purposes mostly of amusement, here’s that same graph — except, in this case, slowly emerging from an image of the Cleveland skyline: This Investigation of Ubaldo Jimenez, Its Relevance The relevance of this discussion of Jimenez is how he’s starting tonight, at 7:10pm ET, at Chicago for a Cleveland team that retains about a 25% probability of qualifying for a wild-card spot. Today’s MLB.TV Free Game Kansas City at Detroit | 19:08 ET Ervin Santana (191.0 IP, 91 xFIP-, 2.7 WAR) faces Doug Fister (186.0 IP, 89 xFIP-, 4.0 WAR). Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Detroit Radio. Today’s Complete Schedule Here’s the complete schedule for all of today’s games, with our very proprietary watchability (NERD) scores for each one. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and RotoWire. Note that these NERD scores are calculated using the methodology introduced recently and designed to account for the influence of playoff odds on the watchability of games. ***Unlike in recent iterations of this table, the author has adjusted the day’s NERD Game Scores such that, combined, they average 5.0.*** This allows said table to resemble more closely the Game Scores that have appeared here over the preceding four months. Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time Homer Bailey CIN 10 1 4 0 2 MIL John Hellweg* 13:05 CC Sabathia NYA 6 1 4 0 5 BOS Jon Lester 13:05 Bartolo Colon OAK 4 5 10 5 10 TEX Yu Darvish 13:05 Chris Tillman BAL 5 1 3 0 5 TOR Esmil Rogers 16:07 H. Alvarez MIA 6 0 3 0 4 NYN D. Matsuzaka* 16:10 Jacob Turner MIA 3 0 3 0 7 NYN Carlos Torres TBD Scott Baker* CHN 5 0 9 7 10 PIT Gerrit Cole 19:05 Cole Hamels PHI 8 0 4 1 7 WAS Gio Gonzalez 19:05 Ervin Santana KC 7 1 4 0 6 DET Doug Fister 19:08 Jered Weaver LAA 4 0 2 0 4 HOU B. Oberholtzer 19:10 Ubaldo Jimenez CLE 5 5 6 0 2 CHA Andre Rienzo 19:10 Robbie Erlin SD 4 0 3 0 7 ATL Kris Medlen 19:10 Matt Moore TB 4 6 7 0 4 MIN Andrew Albers 19:10 James Paxton* SEA 7 0 10 8 9 STL Michael Wacha 19:15 Roy Oswalt* COL 6 0 3 0 6 AZ Wade Miley 20:10 Tim Lincecum SF 7 0 3 0 6 LAN Ricky Nolasco 21:10 To learn how Pitcher and Team NERD Scores are calculated, click here. To learn how Game NERD Scores are calculated, click here. * = Fewer than 20 IP, NERD at discretion of very handsome author.
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