Hall of Fame relief pitcher Goose Gossage was kind enough to lend his name to the BBA award for best fireman in the league. I suppose the question is whether or not you include context for a guy who’s pitching in a lot of high leverage situations but isn’t likely to finish with more than 70 IP on the year. That is, are we going with Win Probability Added^ (telling to story of the relievers’ appearances) or FIP^/xFIP/etc. (their performance independent of situation)?
3. Matt Thorton, CHW 8 saves, 2.67 ERA, 2.14 FIP, 2.62 xFIP, 2.2 fWAR, 2.2 brWAR, 3.2 WPA No, he’s not a closer. Yes, he’s awesome. Lead all AL relievers (min 10 IP) in fWAR.
2. Rafael Soriano, TBR 45 saves, 1.73 ERA, 2.81 FIP, 3.81 xFIP, 1.7 fWAR, 2.6 brWAR, 5.0 WPA MFIKY did a great job helping to improve the Rays’ pen. We’ll see what he ends up with on the free agent market now.
1. Joakim Soria, KCR 43 saves, 1.78 ERA, 2.53 FIP, 2.99 xFIP, 2.1 fWAR, 3.8 brWAR, 5.2 WPA The Mexicutioner is one of the best relief pitchers in baseball. Good thing the Royals have him to lock down wins 66 and 67 for them.
Quick NL ballot:
3. Carlos Marmol
2b. Brian Wilson’s Beard
2a. Brian Wilson
1. Heath Bell
Marmol posted a 16.0 K/9 rate on the season. 16! Only Brian Matusz struck out more batters than Marmol did (amongst O’s pitchers) – and the gap there (143 to 138) was a good deal smaller than their gap in innings (175 to 77). Just absurd.