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5+ Quality Start Losses In 2010

Posted by Steve Lombardi on March 22, 2011

How many pitchers last season threw 5 or more games where they had a "Quality Start" and yet got tagged with a loss?

Here's the list -

Rk Player #Matching   W L W-L% ERA GS CG SHO SV IP H ER HR BB SO WHIP
1 Hiroki Kuroda 9 Ind. Games 0 9 .000 3.26 9 0 0 0 58.0 49 21 6 18 51 1.16
2 Felix Hernandez 8 Ind. Games 0 8 .000 2.51 8 2 0 0 57.1 55 16 5 17 38 1.26
3 Roy Oswalt 7 Ind. Games 0 7 .000 2.93 7 0 0 0 46.0 40 15 5 15 46 1.20
4 Fausto Carmona 7 Ind. Games 0 7 .000 3.02 7 2 0 0 47.2 47 16 3 21 26 1.43
5 Jered Weaver 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 2.81 6 0 0 0 41.2 38 13 1 10 50 1.15
6 Wandy Rodriguez 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 3.58 6 0 0 0 37.2 40 15 1 15 27 1.46
7 Rodrigo Lopez 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 3.66 6 0 0 0 39.1 41 16 7 7 29 1.22
8 Colby Lewis 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 2.79 6 0 0 0 38.2 34 12 3 14 43 1.24
9 Clayton Kershaw 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 2.52 6 0 0 0 39.1 28 11 3 18 45 1.17
10 Ubaldo Jimenez 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 2.57 6 1 0 0 42.0 25 12 1 19 36 1.05
11 Cole Hamels 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 2.23 6 1 0 0 44.1 35 11 4 7 44 0.95
12 Ryan Dempster 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 3.40 6 1 0 0 42.1 32 16 7 15 46 1.11
13 Chad Billingsley 6 Ind. Games 0 6 .000 3.16 6 0 0 0 37.0 34 13 1 17 24 1.38
14 Randy Wells 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.25 5 0 0 0 36.0 24 13 4 11 26 0.97
15 Ben Sheets 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.66 5 0 0 0 32.0 33 13 4 8 17 1.28
16 Kevin Millwood 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 2.78 5 0 0 0 35.2 36 11 3 7 24 1.21
17 Vin Mazzaro 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.34 5 0 0 0 32.1 31 12 3 9 17 1.24
18 Brian Matusz 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.00 5 0 0 0 33.0 33 11 4 7 15 1.21
19 Ted Lilly 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.67 5 0 0 0 34.1 32 14 5 10 25 1.22
20 Livan Hernandez 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.31 5 0 0 0 32.2 28 12 5 11 21 1.19
21 Roy Halladay 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 2.77 5 1 0 0 39.0 42 12 5 3 32 1.15
22 Jaime Garcia 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 2.03 5 0 0 0 31.0 31 7 1 10 26 1.32
23 R.A. Dickey 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 2.67 5 0 0 0 33.2 35 10 4 7 20 1.25
24 Jorge de la Rosa 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.44 5 0 0 0 34.0 26 13 3 16 21 1.24
25 John Danks 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 2.94 5 0 0 0 33.2 30 11 1 14 26 1.31
26 David Bush 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.77 5 0 0 0 31.0 34 13 4 18 16 1.68
27 Dallas Braden 5 Ind. Games 0 5 .000 3.94 5 0 0 0 32.0 41 14 2 4 15 1.41
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 3/22/2011.

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Hiroki Kuroda was robbed last year. If he would have gotten wins in five of those games, his record would have been 16-8 in 2010 and not 11-13. And, the former looks a lot prettier on the back of your bubble gum card than the latter.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 at 12:27 pm and is filed under Game Finders. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

19 Responses to “5+ Quality Start Losses In 2010”

  1. I thought John Lackey would appear on this list.

  2. Three of the Phils' fab four are there.

  3. Lawrence Azrin Says:

    Does it surprise anyone that Felix Hernandez is near the top of this list?? If he had won four of these games through better run support (and pitched exactly the same), he would've been 17-8 instead of 13-12, and there would've been a whole lot less wailing and caterwauling in certain segements of the mainstream baseball press about his worthiness for the 2010 Cy Young award.

    Of course, looking at the 2010 Mariners offense (or lack of it...), that was highly unlikely.

  4. It would be interesting to include ND as well. I would guess Felix would shoot right to the top.

  5. John Autin Says:

    @1, Brian -- Lackey had only 3 QS losses, but 7 QS no-decisions, with 5 of those becoming BoSox losses.

  6. John Autin Says:

    @4, Dr. Doom -- You're right: Hernandez had 9 QS no-decisions, giving him 17 QS that he did not win.

    Another pitcher whose bad luck emerges via the ND study is Wandy Rodriguez: 9 QS NDs + 6 QS losses = 15 QS not won.

    P.S. The leader in QS-NDs was Dan Haren, with 10; Haren had 3 QS losses.

  7. Look at Cole Hamels' line.

    44K (in 44 IP), 7 BB, 0.95 WHIP, 2.03 ERA, pitching for a playoff-caliber team.

    Sure doesn't seem like a recipe for an 0-6 mark.

  8. The Phillies offense always goes to sleep when Hamels pitches. Some kind of unexplained voodoo going on there. Also Halladay could have had 5 more wins with a little more offense. Scary.
    This year these pitchers are going to lose even more quality starts because the Phillies offense is much worse than last year.

  9. John Autin Says:

    Re: the Phillies --

    My judgment may be clouded by Mets bitterness, but I don't expect them to reach the 91 wins projected by PECOTA last month. Even before the injuries to Utley and Polanco, I thought the Phillies were not quite as good as the expectations that have grown with 4 straight division titles and the addition of Cliff Lee.

    Start with a couple of purely statistical notes about the 2010 Phils:
    -- They beat their Pythagorean record by about 2 games.
    -- They scored more runs than was projected by their component stats. They were 2nd in NL scoring -- but 5th in OBP, 5th in SLG, 5th in HRs, 4th in OPS. Their team OPS was just 5 points ahead of Atlanta and Arizona, but they outscored those teams by 0.21 R/G and 0.37 R/G, respectively.
    -- Their team ERA (3.68) was a quarter of a run lower than their FIP (3.93).

    Then, their age:
    -- The only member of the projected starting lineup under 30 years old is Ben Francisco, who turns 30 in October. And the only one whose offensive graph is trending upward is catcher Carlos Ruiz, who is 32.
    -- In the rotation, Halladay is 34, Oswalt 33, Lee 32; granted, none of them has shown any significant decline yet, and I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for them to grow old, but sometimes it does happen quickly. Blanton is 30. Only Hamels is in the expected "prime" age range. Kyle Kendrick does provide some depth (along with a career 4.0 K/9), and I admit I don't know what prospects they may have in the high minors.
    -- Most of the bullpen is over 30, too.

    Don't get me wrong; I think they're quite capable of winning 90+ games and the division, even going all the way if the big SPs stay healthy. But I think their downside is darker than it's been in years; it wouldn't take much bad luck to put them under .500.

  10. Felix had one of the all-time great hard-luck seasons.

    It's amusing to me that I've heard some people say the Phillies staff is overrated because Lee, Oswalt and Hamels were barely .500 last year. Oswalt had terrible run support in Houston and Lee had one of the great K/BB ratios ever.

    For those who still put a ton of stock into W-L records, here's a fun fact:

    Livan Hernandez had a stretch of 35 starts from April 2008 through May 2009, where he put up the following numbers:

    35 GS, 197.2 IP, 283 H, 147 R, 139 ER, 54 BB, 84 SO, 31 HR, 6.33 ERA, 1.71 WHIP, 13 QS, 12.9 H/9, 3.8 K/9, 1.6 K/BB

    Now here's what Felix Hernandez did in his magnificent season last year:

    34 GS, 249.2 IP, 194 H, 80 R, 63 ER, 70 BB, 232 SO, 17 HR, 2.27 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, 30 QS, 7.0 H/9, 8.4 K/9, 3.3 K/BB

    Of course Felix went 13-12. Well, guess what Livan's record was during that above stretch? That's right. 13-12.

    One pitcher performing about as well as anyone possibly can, and another performing about as horribly as you can while still somehow remaining in the rotation. And their records were identical.

    If that doesn't say it all about W-L in today's game, I don't know what does.

  11. Autin, I agree that the Phillies will not be as dominant as people think. I expect them to win 90, but I doubt they'll be the 100+ win juggernaut people think.

    People are already saying they're the best rotation we've ever seen, but even if you take the great years all four of those guys had in 2010 and combine them, they don't quite match up to the 1997 Braves.

    Even if they all stay healthy, it's doubtful the four of them will put up the same combined numbers they managed last year. You've gotta figure Lee can't possibly repeat that insane K/BB ratio and WHIP. Oswalt had the best WHIP of his career thanks to a very low H/9 ratio, which you'd think would go up. Hamels had his best K/9 ratio since the year he was called up. And last year even the great Halladay had arguably his best season since 2003.

    Don't get me wrong, I think they'll be very good. Even if all four of them take a minor step back, it's still likely the best rotation in baseball this year. But I agree that their real 2011 performances will probably fall a bit short of the hype, at least from a historical perspective.

  12. Just to clarify, my comment on the Phillies rotation in post #10 was not in response to John Autin's post in #9, which I had not yet read when I made the post. The Phillies were in my head because I recently heard a neanderthal on sports talk radio claiming Oswalt, Lee and Hamels weren't very good because of their 13-13, 13-12, and 12-11 W-L records. Autin's points are valid and I agree they probably won't quite live up to expectations. I just think it's because of the factors I mention in post #11, not because of their misleading W-L records.

  13. dukeofflatbush Says:

    When I read the header of this post I immediately thought of the BIG UNIT in 1999, his first year in AZ.
    I never did any real research, but I always imagined his stretch of 5 consecutive starts (June 25-July 15) was the worst it could get for a pitcher. The absolute worst luck in 5 consecutive starts.
    Johnson pitched lights out, but ended up 0-4.
    His line was:
    6/25 CG, 9IP, 5H, 1ER, 2BB, 14K; L 0-1
    6/30 CG, 8IP, 7H, 2ER, 0BB, 17K; L 0-2
    7/05 CG, 8IP, 4H, 1ER, 4BB, 12K; L 0-1
    7/10 GS, 7IP, 3H, 1ER, 4BB, 11K; L 0-2
    7/15 GS, 8IP, 6H, 0ER, 2BB, 8K; ND

    That's 40 IP in 5 starts. 62Ks .9WHIP .184BA .513OPS 1.13 ERA
    His team was shutout 4 times and no-hit twice.

    In his next five starts his team was nearly as bad as he was good.
    He averaged over 8IP a start, going 7 innings only once while allowing only 8 ER, for a 1.76 ERA to go with 54 SO.

    So over those 10 starts, the UNIT averaged over 8 innings, only pitching 7 twice, while striking out 116 and not allowing more than 2 runs in any game. Yet went 2-5.

  14. I think Braden and a few others with high ERA's prove that the guidelines for what a quality start is need to be changed a bit.

    As for RJ at post 13. He had a bat, he could have helped himself! ;o)

  15. The Phillies won't be worse because the rotation is overreated, they will be worse because their offense will be comatose. This coming from a lifelong Phillies fan.

  16. Lawrence Azrin Says:

    @10/Dupp - great comparison, thanks for the work. In 2000, Pedro Martinez had one of the great pitching seasons ever (14th in WAR since 1900), but his W-L record was "only" 18-6, and he was "only" 4th in Wins in the AL.

    When talking about the greatest pitching rotations ever, the Braves in the 90s were great, but also the Orioles in the late 60s/early 70s, and the Indians in the late 40s/early 50s. This has probably been discussed in these parts before.

  17. John Autin Says:

    Duke @13 -- Your post shows how an annual run-support number can be misleading. Arizona averaged 5.12 R/G for Johnson in '99 -- not far below their season average of 5.60, and seemingly good enough for a pitcher with a 2.48 ERA in 271 IP to win at least 20. But it was feast or famine for Johnson: he got 6+ runs in 15 starts, but 0-2 runs in 10 starts, including those 4 straight shutouts you mentioned. Of Johnson's 9 losses that year, 2 were by 1-0, 2 by 2-0, and 2 by 2-1.

    By the way, the Cy Young voting that season was something of a precedent for the awards given to Greinke in 2008 and Felix Hernandez in 2010. Mike Hampton went 22-4 -- 5 more wins and 5 fewer losses than Johnson, with a healthy 2.90 ERA (3rd in the NL), and for a division winner as well -- but Johnson rightly dominated the 1st-place votes, 20 to 11.

  18. 17: Maybe some sort of standard deviation stat would be helpful for that issue?

  19. dukeofflatbush Says:

    @ # 10
    2 Kevins
    Kevin Ritz for the 1996 Rockies:
    17-11, 5.28 ERA, 213 IP, 236 H, 105 BB, 105 SO, 1.60 WHIP
    Kevin Brown for the 1996 Marlins:
    17-11, 1.89 ERA, 233 IP, 187 H, 33 BB, 159 S0, 1.066 WHIP