Cubs Cardinals Matchup

Cubs start a weekend series with the Cardinals tonight.  Let’s take a look how the Cardinals have been playing these last two months.

SLN Team Status

Tm W L BAT PITCH UR
SLN 23 21 19.8 -4.5 -0.1 20190517
SLN 27 28 7.0 2.8 1.6 20190531

Over the last two weeks the Cardinals went 4-7 losing 3 games making them almost even steven in the win/loss column.   Their PITCH improved while their BAT tanked causing the -3 team WAA during this period.  Let’s look at today’s game records.

CHN SLN 05_31_8:15_PM

WAA Vegas TC Sim EV L S R
CHN 8 0.467 0.542 116 2.63 -2.11 0.77
SLN -1 0.554 0.458 82 0.72 -0.90 0.47

The game starts tonight at 7:15pm CST so  lineups are from the last game they played.  Cubs fielded one of their best lineups against HOU two days ago so CHN lineup will probably be less tonight .  TC Sim requires another iteration so no recommends can be made on close calls like this.  The Cubs look undervalued according to Vegas.   Lines tend to shift towards the home team and the Cardinals have a loyal fan base so there could be some irrational exuberance in the betting market for this game.

Starters WAA WinPct IP Tier
Yu_Darvish_CHN -1.28 0.395 55.0 -2.11
Miles_Mikolas_SLN -0.34 0.476 62.3 -0.90

Darvish having another bad year and Mikolas not putting up the numbers he did last season.  Cardinals have a Starter advantage.  Starters are compared to lineups however, not other starters.

SLN Starters

Rank WAA Name_TeamID IP
XXXXX 1.03 Jack_Flaherty_SLN 59.7
XXXXX 0.78 Dakota_Hudson_SLN 59.3
XXXXX -0.23 Genesis_Cabrera_SLN 3.7
XXXXX -0.38 Miles_Mikolas_SLN 62.3
XXXXX -0.59 Adam_Wainwright_SLN 58.3
Total 0.61 0.511

Pretty mediocre starting rotation so far which you would expect from their average PITCH number in team status above.

SLN Relief

Rank WAA Name_TeamID IP
+036+ 2.29 John_Gant_SLN 29.7
+048+ 2.04 John_Brebbia_SLN 29.3
XXXXX 0.32 Giovanny_Gallegos_SLN 23.0
XXXXX 0.21 Jordan_Hicks_SLN 18.0
XXXXX 0.15 Andrew_Miller_SLN 19.3
XXXXX -0.02 Tyler_Webb_SLN 17.7
XXXXX -0.10 Carlos_Martinez_SLN 5.0
-022- -2.33 Michael_Wacha_SLN 47.7
Total 2.56 0.561

Relief a little above average but they have two top top relievers in Gant and Brebbia, both ranked in the top 50 of this data model.  WAR rarely has relievers in their top 100 and right now they rank Gant #112 and Brebbia #170.   This is because WAR does not value middle relief very highly.  Mathematically a run given up in the 7th inning counts equally with a run given up in the 9th inning.  This model does not discriminate between middle relief and closers.  The above shows these two relievers have been key in SLN staying even steven so far.

This model counts all relievers as a group and averages them.  It looks like Michael Wacha is having a bad year and now they assigned him to relief.  His negative value drives down SLN Relief numbers which might be unfair but you can’t pick and choose what players to not count because every team has pitchers like that on their relief staff and tier numbers are based upon averages of all 30 teams.  Exceptions cannot be made here unless they’re made for every relief staff for every game since 1970.

That said, those two top relievers could shut down the Cubs later in the game more than their relief staff tier number suggests.  We can eyeball this and spitball suggestions but a data model needs hard rules.

SLN Lineup 5/30/2019

Rank WAA Name_TeamID Pos PA
XXXXX -0.34 Kolten_Wong_SLN 2B 202
XXXXX 1.01 Paul_DeJong_SLN SS 235
XXXXX 0.42 Paul_Goldschmidt_SLN 1B 238
+007+ 3.53 Marcell_Ozuna_SLN LF 223
XXXXX 0.13 Jose_Martinez_SLN RF 167
XXXXX 0.27 Matt_Wieters_SLN CR 30
XXXXX -0.40 Jedd_Gyorko_SLN BAT 50
XXXXX -0.08 Harrison_Bader_SLN CF 122
XXXXX -0.46 Dakota_Hudson_SLN PR 18
Total 4.08 0.561

The above was their lineup yesterday which is a little above average which is what their BAT in team status indicates as well.  PITCH and BAT in team status are based off of seasonal run differential numbers. As a season progresses the value of pitching and hitting can diverge, sometimes dramatically, from what PITCH and BAT indicate.  Since we’re only 1/3 into the current season and major trading hasn’t begun team status and roster value will track closely with each other.

That is all for now.  New playoff horse race coming next as well as a simulation update.  Until then ….