Found May 02, 2013 on
World Series Dreaming:
Tuesday night was ugly. Edwin Jackson called it one of the worst starts of his career, and going by game score it was tied for the third worst since 2007. Either way it has been a rough last three months of pitching for Edwin Jackson. He finished last year with a 6.54 ERA in September and October, and now has followed that up with a 6.27 ERA to start his Cub career in April. Add into the mix is the fact that Matt Garza is hopefully two or three rehab starts away from rejoining the Cubs rotation, and Edwin Jackson is clearly pitching the worst of the five current Cubs starters. Is it time to panic about the most expensive Cubs arm?
There were red flags with Edwin Jackson heading into this offseason. The whimper that his season ended was the first. The declining velocity was also noted by some including Brett Taylor at Bleacher Nation. Edwin Jackson also had one of the lowest BABIP of his career in 2012, and was still an over 4 ERA pitcher.
2013 has been a very different story for Edwin Jackson. His walk rate and strikeout rate have both skyrocketed. He is well above his BB/9 and K/9 for his career and last season. This year his mark stands at over 4 walks and 9 strikeouts per 9 innings. Compare that to last season when he walked 2.75 batters and struck out 7.97. Looking at K% and BB% is a little more illustrative of the problem though. His K% of 21.7% is the highest of his career, but it is only a modest increase from last season’s mark of 21.3%. On the other hand the BB% has jumped from 7.3% to 10.8%. This is one of the many reasons why K% and BB% is a better measure of a pitcher’s performance than K/9 and BB/9.
Edwin Jackson’s biggest problem has been lack of control, and that control is manifesting itself in more hard hit balls this season. Edwin Jackson has a 22% LD% and his BABIP has swung in the opposite direction to .333 this season. You combine those numbers with the free baserunners and it is no surprise that Edwin Jackson’s strand rate is a ridiculously low 51.7%.
Edwin Jackson isn’t giving up a lot of homeruns though and combined with the high strikeout rate paints the picture of a slightly unlucky pitcher. His FIP is actually a very good 3.48 right now. His swinging strike percentage has dropped from last season’s 12.2% but at 9.6% is still above his career average of 9.5%. Swinging strike percentage is an important indicator of strikeouts. The decline means that while the strikeout rate is likely to decline some it still should allow an above average k rate. The issue appears from a statistical point not a lack of stuff but a lack of command.
Another interesting change has been Edwin Jackson’s pitch selection.
Edwin Jackson Pitch Selection…click to enlarge
Edwin Jackson has never thrown as many of his hard pitches in his career. He has always been dependent on his fastball and slider, but this year is the lowest rate of ever using the change. An interesting trend has been the increase of sinkers. I am not sure if that is better pitch identification in the pitchf/x data or a conscious change by the coaching staff. GW at Obstructed View has noted an increase in groundball rates of all the Cubs pitchers including Edwin Jackson.
I am uncertain if the change in pitch selection is causal or symptomatic of the results he has had in 2013. Either way I still think it is too early to panic about the signing of Edwin Jackson because a return of command is more likely than stuff at this age. Jackson is what he is and I think he will soon be fooling us into thinking he is more than he is with a good stretch of performances. Or the loss of command could be permanent, but it is far too soon to tell.
BEST OF MAXIM
Chicago Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts has publicly threatened to move the team out of Wrigley Field if his plans for a new video screen are blocked.
The Cubs have reinstated 3B Ian Stewart from the 15-day DL and optioned him to AAA Iowa.
Stewart suffered a strained quad in an intrasquad game in February, and missed the entire 2013 MLB Cactus League Spring Training schedule. He was placed on the Cubs MLB 15-day Disabled List on March 31st (retro to 3/22), and was left behind at Extended Spring Training when the Cubs left Arizona...
This may not be an actual flop, but we are definitely going to classify it as such. Cubs outfielder Julio Borbon, who you probably have never heard of until now, seems to be one of the first MLB players to bring flopping to the mainstream baseball audience. Check out the slightly delayed and fake reaction to a ball that bounced in the dirt, and never came close to him. Soccer...
John Leonard belted an RBI triple, singled twice, and scored a run, and Carter Bell drilled a two-run double, as one squad of Diamondbacks defeated one squad of Cubs 5-2 on Field #3, while on Field #4, 16-year old Sergio Alcantara doubled, tripled, and scored a run and Michael Brenly singled, doubled, and scored two runs for the Diamondbacks, and Neftali Rosario singled, walked...
When playing for a team as hopeless as the Cubs, sometimes embellishing a bit to your advantage isn’t the worst idea.
That’s what Chicago center fielder Julio Borbon was thinking Thursday afternoon, at least, but his acting skills could use some serious work. When a pitch from San Diego’s Luke Gregerson landed in the dirt near his feet, Borbon hopped up and down as if the ball...
Chicago Cubs third baseman Ian Stewart is now officially
active. MLB.com's Carrie Muskat reports that Stewart completed his 20-day rehab assignment on May 3, and the Cubs
officially assigned him to their Triple-A affiliate Iowa Cubs. He began his
rehab on April 13.
#Cubs activate Stewart from DL, and he's optioned to Iowa
— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) May...
ANTHONY RIZZO I SAID!
Your browser does not support iframes.
**Follow us on Twitter or Facebook. Subscribe, or Return to BobsBlitz.com.Follow us on Twitter. Subscribe or Return to Bob's Blitz.
Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
Wrigley Field is set to undergo $300 million worth of substantial renovations. Here's an early look at the designs the Cubs have in mind for the Friendly Confines.
Chicago Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts is locked in a battle with the Chicago government over renovations to Wrigley Field. Ricketts has proposed a $300 million renovation of Wrigley that would include a large increase in restrooms, an expanded concourse, upgrades to the clubhouses, changes to the outfield that would allow more advertisement space, and a video scoreboard.Chicago mayor...
Chicago Cubs pitchers will get Triple-A rehab assignments within the next few
days. Reliever Kyuji Fujikawa is scheduled to pitch for the Iowa Cubs on
Sunday, May 5, and starter Matt Garza will pitch on Monday, May 6.
Carrie Muskat tweeted the news to her follwers:
#Cubs rehab updates: Fujikawa to pitch at @iowacubs on Sunday, Garza to start there...
April is done. The Cubs played 26 games so far, with a record of 10-16. In these games (minus two rainouts to be made up later in the season), the Cubs scored 92 runs and allowed 111, so their actual record is in line with their Pythagorean predicted record of 11-15. Most of these games could have gone either way, but coulda-shoulda-woulda-didn’t and we can’t go back in time...
Reset: Cubs trying to make nice with the neighborhood and city regarding concessions on landmark status, renovations, potential obstructing views due to outfield signage, night games, concerts, blah de blah. However, the rooftops are being a bit troublesome and may even threaten to sue because heavens forbid that their voyeuristic businesses be blocked (even partially).
John Polonius blasted a two-run home run with two outs in the bottom of the 4th to break a 4-4 tie and propel the Giants to a 6-4 victory on Field #1, and Jonathan Jones belted a two-run walk-off double off the LF fence on a 3-0 pitch with two outs in the bottom of the 5th as the Giants edged the Cubs 4-3 on Field #2 (thus sweeping the doubleheader), in Cactus League Extended...