Jun 26, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals relief pitcher Greg Holland (56) delivers a pitch in the ninth inning of the game against the Atlanta Braves at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Wasting Time During Rain Delays


Everyone has their own way of dealing with rain delays and one of the things I like to do is run controlled simulations of baseball seasons with different scenarios and see what happens. Sounds fancy right? Basically it’s an excuse to play MLB Road to The Show ’13 and write about it, so it’s not as scientific as it sounds.

I decided to simulate a season with my lineup looking as close to the Royals current one as possible. There were a few variables I didn’t take the time to control. I didn’t grab J.C. Gutierrez or Miguel Tejada. I just replaced them with Louis Coleman and Irving Falu.*  I DFA’ed Frenchy at the end of Spring Training, sent Chris Getz to Omaha and promoted Johnny Giovatella and gave him the 2nd base job. I then simulated through July 4th and thought I’d give you the painful results.

*Sue me.

Without Moose
Date
Pitches Seen
Zone
OOZ
O-Swing
4/6165113
4/815784
4/1612575
4/17144106
4/1810641
4/199542
4/2016884
Totals92405225
43.48%56.52%48.08%

 

In a somewhat eerie foretelling, Alex Gordon was injured about a month into the season. He was out for most of the month of May and part of June. Lorenzo Cain filled in nicely for him, but after the game on Wednesday, it freaked me out so let’s hope that wasn’t the simulation trying to tell me something. I’m sure all the Billy Butler haters out there could point to these stats and say that’s the Billy Butler they’d like to see and you know what? I wouldn’t mind him having 22 home runs halfway through the season either, but that doesn’t mean I think he’s super valuable on this team. He had a slow start and was hurt by a lack of support around him. I predict that by the end of the year, the numbers that I usually point to with pride* are going to be right close to where they usually are.

*Granted, I may point to different numbers than you.

Pitchers looked like this:

Name
PA
wRC+
Lorenzo Cain33146
Omar Infante90129
Salvador Perez88114
Alcides Escobar87112
Alex Gordon87104
Justin Maxwell1294
Jarrod Dyson4193
Eric Hosmer9388
Norichika Aoki9964
Mike Moustakas9057
Billy Butler9056
Johnny Giavotella433
Danny Valencia52
Brett Hayes5-100
Jimmy Paredes1-100

 

I know having Coleman up instead of Gutierrez is kind of cheating, but I couldn’t resist. And with a K/9 of 10.13, it’s hard to argue with me. Holland’s K/9 in my fake season is 8.20. In real life, Holland has 29 more strikeouts in only 5.2 more innings of work. That ought to tell you how good he’s been.

In my simulation, the Royals are also in 3rd place. But their record is 48-36.

They trail the Indians by half a game and the division-leading Tigers by 3 games. So the Central is playing out better in simulation than it is in real life.  I’m sort of interested to see how the entire season works out. I’ll probably post about that at some point, but I think that all in all, my rain delay time was spent wisely, creating somewhat depressing “what-if” scenarios to get me over seeing the Royals waste a Gordon grand slam.

Thankfully, they ended up taking that series from the Indians, but there’s some work to be done before these real-life Royals catch up to the simulated team. I’m hoping it happens.

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