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The following are composite statistical rankings of draft-eligible college pitchers. Only 2004 Division 1 stats were considered and only pitchers with at least 40 innings pitched were included. The composite ranking is based of 4 relatively evenly weighted categories: 1) Runs Saved Above Average, 2) FIP Run Average, 3) Component Performance Rating, 4) Component Performance Points Above Average.

The first is the familiar category used by Craig Burley in previous posts. The second is a college-adjusted version of Tangotiger's Fielding Independent Run Average, which looks only at homeruns allowed, hit batsmen, walks, strikeouts and innings pitched. The third category is a rating derived from 4 component stats: strikeouts per BF, walks per BF minus HBP, hits on balls in play average and homeruns per balls contacted. The final category is the difference between the individual and average component performance rating, multiplied by batters faced.

Strength of schedule for 2004 ratings were derived using the method outlined here. The rankings are not age-adjusted, nor do they take any subjective factors into account. It is important to keep in mind that after the first 5 relief pitchers and the first 10 starting pitchers, the composite ranking point differences are very small. These lists are intended to be a starting point for discussion.

Pitchers starting at least 40% of the games they appeared in were classified as starters; all others were classified as relievers. Age is rounded to the nearest tenth as of June 7th, 2004 (draft day). Some birthdates were unobtainable: If anyone has information concerning the four missing birthdates, it would be much appreciated.

 Starting PitcherCollegeClassAge
1Jered WeaverLong Beach Statejunior21.7
2Philip HumberRicejunior21.5
3Wade TownsendRicejunior21.3
4J.P. HowellTexasjunior21.1
5Michael RogersNorth Carolina Statesoph 21.6
6Jason WindsorCal State Fullertonsenior21.9
7Vern SterryNorth Carolina Statesenior22.3
8Matt CampbellSouth Carolinajunior21.4
9Justin OrenduffVirginia Commonwealthjunior21.0
10Mark RobertsOklahomasenior22.0
11Matt FoxCentral Floridajunior21.5
12Thomas DiamondNew Orleansjunior21.2
13Jeremy SowersVanderbiltjunior21.1
14Glen PerkinsMinnesotasoph21.3
15Jarrett GrubeMemphissenior22.6
16Justin VerlanderOld Dominionjunior 21.3
17Donnie SmithOld Dominionjunior21.4
18John WilliamsMiddle Tennessee Statesenior 22.5
19Zach JacksonTexas A+Mjunior21.1
20David PurceyOklahomajunior 22.1
21Justin PekarekNebraskasenior23.5
22Brett SmithUC Irvinejunior20.8
23Billy BucknerSouth Carolinajunior20.8
24Casey JanssenUCLAsenior22.7
25Derek TharpeTennesseesenior22.6
26Kyle BonoCentral Floridasoph 20.9
27Jeff NiemannRicejunior 21.3
28Andrew DobiesVirginiajunior21.1
29R.J. SwindleCharleston Southernjunior 20.9
30J.A. HappNorthwesternjunior21.6
31Kyle StutesLamarsenior 
32Shawn PhillipsDelaware Statejunior 
33Derek HankinsMemphisjunior 20.9
34Steve GrasleyCreightonsenior22.8
35Greg BunnEast Carolinajunior 
36Jonathan EllisThe Citadel junior21.7
37Chris MobleyMiddle TennesseeStatejunior 20.8
38Jordan ThomsonNortheasternsenior 22.5
39David SeccombeNevada-Las Vegas senior 22.4
40Micah OwingsGeorgia Techsoph 21.7
41Scott ShoemakerSan Diego Statesenior22.7
42Justin HoymanFloridajunior22.1
43Tyler LumsdenClemsonjunior21.1
44Jason UrquidezArizona Statejunior21.7
45Garrett BroshuisMissourijunior22.5
46Jimmy ShullCal Polyjunior20.8
47Andy SonnanstineKent Statesoph 21.2
48Matt SchererLeMoynejunior 21.4
49Mark WorrellFlorida International junior 21.2
50Sean RuthvenGeorgiajunior21.7

 Relief PitcherCollegeClassAge
1Tommy HottovyWichita Statesenior22.9
2Jon Wilson Winthropjunior 
3Nate MooreTroy Statejunior 21.0
4Chad BlackwellSouth Carolinajunior 21.4
5Cla MeredithVirginia Commonwealthjunior 21.0
6Anthony ReaSanta Clarajunior 21.8
7Brandon RoznovskyHoustonsenior 22.7
8Bill BrayWilliam and Maryjunior21.0
9Michael GrossNorth Carolinasenior 22.7
10Ryan SchroyerSan Diego Statesenior 22.7
11Mark AlexanderMissourisenior 23.5
12Saunders RamseyMississippi Statejunior 22.0
13Taylor TankersleyAlabamajunior 21.3
14Brad SmithSoutheast Missouri Statejunior 22.3
15Daniel McCutchenOklahomajunior 21.7
16Huston StreetTexasjunior 20.8
17Buck CodyTexasjunior 22.0
18Scot DruckerTennesseejunior22.0
19Alex McRobbieUC Santa Barbarajunior 21.4
20Patrick Hogan Clemson senior23.2

A special thanks to Craig Burley for blazing the college stats trail and Boyd Nation for making the stats available in a convenient form and providing frequent updates.

Draft-Eligible Pitchers: A Statistical Ranking | 32 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 12:52 PM EDT (#59215) #
Awesome, Robert. Be sure to tell Matthew Namee of The Hardball Times about this; he'll love seeing Wichita State Shocker Tommy Hottovy as the #1 reliever.
Pistol - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 01:34 PM EDT (#59216) #
Good stuff.

Listing the ages is a great idea and something I typically overlook when looking at college players.
_Dean - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 01:42 PM EDT (#59217) #
Craig B, some of your work @ the Hardball Times was used as reference material in a question asked @ the draft chat @ BA.
robertdudek - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 01:49 PM EDT (#59218) #
A few notes:

#50 Sean Ruthven is the son of former major league pitcher Dick Ruthven. There is also a Canadian on the list: 20 million points to the first person other than Coach or Craig Burley to find the Canadian.
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:01 PM EDT (#59219) #
Robert, I don't care about the points. If I get it, can I get a cuttlefish instead?

Can I get a ruling on this?
_NIck - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#59220) #
I really want the Jays to take a lefty this year. I like Sowers and Purcey a lot. With that said if they can nab a college righty who's younger with comporable numbers or just had significantly better stats then I'd go with him.
robertdudek - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:22 PM EDT (#59221) #
Sure Craig - the cuttlefish is on standby.
_Max Parkinson - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:37 PM EDT (#59222) #
Great job Robert!

Incidentally, my guess as to the Canadian is Jordy Thomson at Northeastern (they always seem to have a few of us...).
_Max Parkinson - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:37 PM EDT (#59223) #
Great job Robert!

Incidentally, my guess as to the Canadian is Jordy Thomson at Northeastern (they always seem to have a few of us...).
_levski - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:42 PM EDT (#59224) #
I am curious why no one mentions whether a pitcher is left handed or right handed. I think that information can be quite useful.

Also, of all the "pure" relievers on this list, which one has the best chance of making it to the majors by the end of 2004?

Both Chad Cordero and Ryan Wagner were in the majors last year, only a few months after getting drafted. Aardsma got there in 04.

Which relievers do people think are the best bets to become the Cordero/Wagner of this year? Any thoughts on where they might go?
_Fawaz K - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 02:55 PM EDT (#59225) #
Shucks, Max beat me to the points/cuttlefish...
_levski - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 03:05 PM EDT (#59226) #
Also, why is Huston Street ranked so low? Is he really struggling?
_Dean - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 03:13 PM EDT (#59227) #
John Manuel @ Baseball America in todays draft chat has heard the Jays are interested in LHP Bill Bray with the #32 pick, I was hoping for fellow LHP Tyler Lumsden.
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 03:24 PM EDT (#59228) #
Dean, thanks for mentioning that about the BA chat. I'm horrified; it's this sort of thing that makes one never want to publish any research at all. People misinterpret things in the most bizarre way.

Here's what "Abe from Long Beach" said:

The Red Sox have signed San Diego State righthander Scott Shoemaker as a fifth-year senior. Craig Burley of The Hardball Times ranked Shoemaker 136th among college pitchers, ahead of more-heralded hurlers like Huston Street, Jason Vargas, and Jeff Niemann, an obvious top-10 pick. Shoemaker, the 2004 Mountain West Pitcher of the Year, had been drafted three times but never higher than the 21st round. How would you compare him to draft-eligible college pitchers this year?

Ack! I didn't "rate" anybody better than anybody else. Shoemaker may have had more RSAA in 2004 than Vargas, Niemann, or Street. That's it. I feel sick just thinking about that... someone would look at that and think I was an idiot.

All I did was crunch some numbers... it's not not not not not not NOT a draft rating system, nor should it be used as such.

You guys understand this, right?

Now Robert's stuff, in this article, is a rating system. Which I like. Note that Niemann showed a lot better here. (Incidentally, Niemann doesn't grade out well in these b/c he spent the first part of the year recovering from an injury. Last year his numbers were terrific, absolutely terrific.)
_JohnnyS99 - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 03:43 PM EDT (#59229) #
Anybody asking Blue Jay questions on the draft Chat for BA? I have been trying to get one in for the last while, no such luck.
Mike Green - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 04:11 PM EDT (#59230) #
Yes, Craig, I understand. You did not mean to say that Roberts was the 4th best offensive player available in the draft last year. You have provided translations of 2003 and 2004 statistics to reflect park and quality of opposition. Your translations are not intended to take into address issues such as age, subjective evaluations of stuff/defence....

It is a fair inference from your research, for instance, that the Jays did well to draft Roberts in the 18th round. It is not a fair inference that he was a better player than Aaron Hill, for instance, even though the translation of Roberts' 2003 collegiate hitting stats was better than Hill's.
robertdudek - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 04:16 PM EDT (#59231) #
Of the 20 relievers listed, only one - Taylor Tankersley - has made more than three starts. Huston Street is probably the most-hyped of these twenty. Despite his age, he could conceivably be a late-August call-up. He's hurt a little bit in the rankings by facing fewer batters than some of the other guys on the list. Blackwell's college team plays a relatively tough schedule so he might be ready to start in AA and possibly be a September call-up. But really it depends on what the drafting team wants to do with the player.

I deliberately used two pure rate measure and two measures influenced by opportunity. The reason for that is that as the smaple size increases, we can become more confident that performance reflects ability (though there's no sample size where performance refects ability perfectly).

The most important measure in my mind is the component performance rating. Like all the others, it's adjusted for strength of schedule and park. Here's how some of the 20 relievers fared in this measure.

Blackwell 14.99, Bray 14.49, Hottovy 14.45, Moore 14.41, Schroyer 14.25 ... (11th) Street 13.73.

The 10 guys ahead of Street have higher strikeout rates and most of them have a lower walk rate. It's not that Street is struggling, but rather that there are a bunch of relievers putting up good numbers.

If the Jays are interested in Bray it's a good thing for Jays fans. He's been great this season, though the schedule he faces isn't particularly tough.
_Dean - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 04:19 PM EDT (#59232) #
I got two of the three questions that I submitted answered @ todays BA draft chat, Dean, Brooks, Alta. As far as Craig's work I think most people recognize that it was not a prospect rating and read it accordingly.
_Dean - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 04:28 PM EDT (#59233) #
A plus with Bray is that his fastball gets to 94 so he is not a finesse guy like Hottovy and Powell but his delivery is herky-jerky and some scouts are therefore worried about his mechanics and a supposedly soft body.
Pistol - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 07:24 PM EDT (#59234) #
I was hoping for fellow LHP Tyler Lumsden.

I suspected that since you had him in your projection and asked 2 questions in the BA chat on him :)

I can never get through on the BA chat (although I didn't try today).
robertdudek - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 07:36 PM EDT (#59235) #
20 million points to Max Parkinson!
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 08:17 PM EDT (#59236) #
OK, half in jest, half serious...

Here's a gem from the latest BA chat about Jered Weaver.

His bonus demands seem excessive. He's performed like Mark Prior, but his stuff should not command a Prior-like $10.5 million MLB contract in the mind of most clubs. We're hearing Weaver could slip out of the first 10 picks based on his perceived bonus demands.

Boras at work again.

Let's say, though, that he really does slip out of the Top 10. Let's say he slips so far that he's still on the board at 16. Let's say, further, that J.P. calls you frantically and says "I can't decide... you, Anonymous Bauxite, have to make the pick for me." Let's say further that Weaver really does want a $10 million signing bonus.

What do you do? You'll have to fund the $8.5 million or so that Weaver will want over the typical #16 pick from the payroll, which means trading Carlos Delgado tomorrow for a mess of pottage, or doing something equally drastic.

Do you pick Weaver? Or do you pick someone else still on the board?
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#59237) #
Just to stir the pot... I say no thanks, and pick my top guy still on the board.
robertdudek - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#59238) #
Someone else. Assuming I can get one of Howell, Orenduff, Diamond, Jackson and Purcey and sign him for less than 2 million, that's better value than Weaver at 10 million.
Pistol - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 09:44 PM EDT (#59239) #
Do you pick Weaver? Or do you pick someone else still on the board?

Someone else. I actually don't think it's hard of a decision. While statistically great, he doesn't sound like he's a sure thing, like say Prior was. That's way to much $ to take a chance on.
Mike Green - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 09:50 PM EDT (#59240) #
Someone else. Same reasons as Pistol and Robert.
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 10:29 PM EDT (#59241) #
All it takes is one of thirty... so who does pay him?

I just think the Padres are doing a very smart thing by (apparently) passing over Weaver for Stephen Drew, provided of course they don't have to break the bank for Drew. It's a credit to Kevin Towers that he's able to see the market and financial forces operating underneath the draft, and elect not to be the last sucker to pay $10 million for a pig in a poke.
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 10:46 PM EDT (#59242) #
By the way, there's a GREAT pitching matchup going on right now at the Regional in Fullerton, California. Jason Windsor of Fullerton State (#6 on Robert's board here) versus Glen Perkins of Minnesota (#14 on Robert's list). Should be a dandy.

Fullerton leads 1-0 in the 2nd inning. I can't see yet on the scoresheet, but I'm betting dollars to doughnuts that Kurt Suzuki plated that run.
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 10:48 PM EDT (#59243) #
By the way, anybody wanting to tune into that Minnesota-Fullerton game, just follow this link**

They're playing Michael Jackson "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" at the park in Fullerton. :)
Craig B - Friday, June 04 2004 @ 10:50 PM EDT (#59244) #
Whoops... try this instead...
_Chris H - Wednesday, June 09 2004 @ 01:13 PM EDT (#59245) #
Looking at the list of starters...if i am not mistaken...two of them were not selected in the draft (or signed as a fifth year senior, like Shoemaker):

34. Steve Grasley Creighton senior 22.8
50. Sean Ruthven junior 21.7

Anybody know much about these two?
_Chris H - Wednesday, June 09 2004 @ 01:15 PM EDT (#59246) #
Actually I see in an earlier post Robert mentions Ruthven being a son of a former major leaguer...

Any scouting reports on these two?
Draft-Eligible Pitchers: A Statistical Ranking | 32 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.