January 7, 2013
The Keeper Reaper
Starting Pitchers for 1/7/12
It was a tough year to simply have a great rookie year in both baseball and football. If you didn’t have a transcendent rookie season, then hardware wasn’t in the cards. Mike Trout and Bryce Harper dominated the baseball landscaped while Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin dominated the gridiron. The 25-year-old Miley did make the All-Star team and finished second to Bryce Harper in the Rookie of the Year voting, so it’s not like his season was entirely overlooked, but generally a 195-inning season that strong from a rookie southpaw would get more attention.
Though his 1.29 ERA in April was his best of the year, he did his best work in the summer when you look at the entire picture. From June through August, he had a 3.07 ERA and 1.03 WHIP in 106 innings along with a strong 7.0 K/9 and even better 6.8 K/BB. He sputtered a bit in September but still ended up with an excellent composite season. He’s never going to lead the league in strikeouts, but a lefty at 92 mph with Miley’s kind of command and control will result in plenty of missed bats. His bread-and-butter is that command, which limits both walks and home runs. Miley’s keeper value obviously jumps in leagues that use a salary or round system considering how far off the radar he was coming into 2012.
Moore was supposed to be an insta-star in 2012 after a superb 19 innings in 2011 convinced many he was more than capable as a major league pitcher. It turns out that 19 innings still isn’t a viable sample to judge someone, even if the player in question is an uber-prospect like Moore. I too bought in on the tiny sample despite rarely falling victim to the rookie trap. Alas, despite a rough start that featured an ERA north of 5.00 as late as May 27, Moore eventually rewarded my patience with an incredible summer, resulting in a tolerable debut even given the elevated price.
His Memorial Day battle with Chris Sale seemed to turn his season around. The young southpaws battled pitch-for-pitch, amassing 25 strikeouts between them in just 14 1/3 innings (10 in seven for Moore), and though Moore took the loss, it seemed to springboard him. That outing started a 106-inning stretch during which he posted a 2.88 ERA and 1.22 WHIP while striking out nearly a batter per inning (8.8 K/9, or 24 percent of batters faced) with a 2.5 K/BB.