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The End of the Pedro Era

Mike SteffanosFriday, January 9, 2009
By Mike Steffanos


With multiple sources confirming that the Mets and pitcher Tim Redding have agreed to a one-year deal, it would seem that there is no room left at the inn for Pedro Martinez -- assuming the Mets will sign Derek Lowe or Ollie Perez to be their fourth starter.

I know there are a lot of folks that wanted to see Pedro move on as a sort of a page-turner on the last couple of seasons, but I would have liked to have seen him come back on a 1-year deal to compete for the fifth starter job.

Redding is an interesting guy. He had 15 fairly solid starts for the Nats 2 years ago, and had a 3.85 ERA in 20 starts last season before the break. He was awful after that with a 6.82 ERA in 13 starts, but apparently that was at least partly due to some nagging injuries.

In his Surfing the Mets blog, Adam Rubin had some fairly amazing numbers sent to him by a reader suggesting that Brian Schneider was tipping pitches. Check out the numbers comparing various pitchers with Schneider catching vs. Castro catching:

SANCHEZ caught by CASTRO 65 ABs, allows 0 HRs and OPP SLUG%=292
SCHNEIDER 108 ABs, allows 6 HRs and OPP SLUG%=454

HEILMAN caught by CASTRO 50 ABs , allows 0 HRs and OPP SLUG%=340
SCHNEIDER 195 ABs, allows 9 HRs and OPP SLUG%=456

FELICIANO caught by CASTRO 36 ABs, allows 0 HRs and OPP SLUG%=306
SCHNEIDER 134 ABs, allows 6 HRs and OPP SLUG%=455

WAGNER caught by CASTRO 49 ABs, allows 0 HRs and OPP SLUG%=204
SCHNEIDER 99 ABs, allows 3 HRs and OPP SLUG%=313

SANTANA caught by CASTRO 333 ABs, allows 6 HRs and OPP SLUG%=297
SCHNEIDER 524 ABs, allows 15 HRs and OP SLUG%=401

PEDRO M caught by CASTRO 138 ABs, allows 2 HRs and OPP SLUG%=377
SCHNEIDER 185 ABs, allows 15 HRs and OPP SLUG%=600!!!!!

Given that many fans don't care much for Schneider as it is, this is not going to help. Frankly, those numbers are so stark they speak for themselves, and at the very least someone needs to figure out what Schneider is doing to give away pitches.

The reader who sent Rubin this info, a statistics professor, is a partner in a company that does sports statistical analysis. Perhaps the Mets might want to give them a call, as it amazes me that no one else picked up on this.

About Mike: I was the original writer on this web site, actually its only writer for the first 15 months of existence. Although I am grateful for the excellent contributions of my fellow writers here, I have no plans of stepping back into strictly an editorial role. I started this thing in the first place because I love to write and I love the Mets, and blogging here keeps me somewhat sane. If you haven't had enough already, more bio info can be found here.

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Comments (7)

The Schneider/Castro numbers are interesting, but I'm not sure how meaningful they really are. It seems like an awfully small sample, especially on the bullpen guys.

Now if it's a trend that goes back to Washington, then they might be on to something.

Those Schneider vs. Castro stats are unbelievable! Can we only attribute the discrepancy to tipping pitches? Could there be other issues involved as well? The Mets appeared to be considering moving Schneider a few months back. Is it possible that the pitchers themselves aren't aware of this?

After reading the (Post?) article about Pedro's endorsement of Lowe, I was fantasizing about the possibility of having this rotation:
1 Santana
2 Lowe
3 Pelfrey
4 Maine
5 a new and improved Pedro (compared to what we saw last season) who, with the loss of his father behind him, could really concentrate on baseball

I'm not convinced that Pedro is done, and if he isn't, what a sad thing it would be to see him pitch for another team.

mike, kudo's for the schneider/castro stats.so now we know this about schneider.he can't hit, run,drive the ball with power when he does make contact, is overrated defensively and appears to be tipping pitches to the opponents.nice pickup omar!!i'm a jet fan, a knick fan and a met fan.OH THE PAIN!!!!!

Check out Redding's stuff - when he is on it looks great - much better than most 5th starters. He will do much better with the Mets new pen and their better defense and hitting versus the Nats. Plus he somewhat dominates the Phillies.

http://mlb.mlb.com/media/video.jsp?mid=200807243190913

http://mlb.mlb.com/media/video.jsp?mid=200807123116908

http://mlb.mlb.com/media/video.jsp?mid=200805202734146

http://mlb.mlb.com/media/video.jsp?tags=text:tim%20redding

these numbers are skewed. if you look at other pitchers, the numbers are reversed i.e. they pitched better with schneider than castro such as perez, stokes, schowey, ayala, and smith. this guy used 9 pitchers when the mets used 29 over the entire year. billy wagner's opponent's obp were higher with castro than schneider. this guy is probably another delgado, i mean castillo hater. http://www.amazinavenue.com/2009/1/10/715912/brian-s-got-99-problems-bu

The fellow quoted used nine pitchers of the 29 the Mets used, and those nine pitchers pitched 55% of the team's innings in 2008.
Eight hundred innings caught is possibly not conclusive of a catcher's defensive abilities, but it isn't a small sample for SOME things. Given that a team sometimes plays games of eight innings instead of nine, 800 innings translates into about 94 full games; if a team could demonstrably improve it's defense, that is to say pitching via it's choice of catchers in 94 games or even half that total, it would be a big deal indeed. A big deal as in a trip to the postseason and no September jitters.

Anyway, you want the sample to go all the way back to Washington? The man died fifty years before baseball was invented! Talk about overcautious...

thanks for the info. greg. redding had 7 straight no decisions. wow. the guy may be one of the sleepers we are looking for. signing sheets would be nice and also maybe seeing if we can get both wolf and pedro cheaply. santana,pelfrey,sheets,maine,pedro,wolfe,redding and niese. let these guys battle it out and see who can walk the walk. we really do not have any other options. doing this really means we need more offense.

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