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Articles Tagged Matt Cain 

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06-12

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9

Model Behavior
by
Lewie Pollis

03-25

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1

The Darkhorses: ERA
by
BP Fantasy Staff

02-28

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4

TTO Scoresheet Podcast: Starting Pitchers
by
Ian Lefkowitz, Ben Murphy and Jared Weiss

02-27

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3

Tale of the Tape: Matt Cain vs. Zack Greinke
by
Alex Kantecki

02-24

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10

State of the Position: Starting Pitchers
by
Mike Gianella

01-15

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1

Fantasy Team Preview: San Francisco Giants
by
Mike Gianella

08-02

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5

Fantasy Starting Pitcher Planner: Week 19
by
Paul Sporer

08-01

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0

What You Need to Know: The Will to Walk-Off Win
by
Daniel Rathman

06-21

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9

Raising Aces: The Cain Madness and a Troubled Helix
by
Doug Thorburn

02-27

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20

Punk Hits: A Love (Hate) Letter From Arizona
by
Ian Miller

12-28

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24

Pebble Hunting: How to Pitch
by
Sam Miller

10-28

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2

Playoff Prospectus: World Series Game Four Preview: Giants at Tigers
by
Daniel Rathman

10-12

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18

Playoff Prospectus: NLDS Recap: Giants Defeat the Reds
by
Sam Miller

10-07

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3

Playoff Prospectus: NLDS Game One Recap: Reds 5, Giants 2
by
Sam Miller

08-24

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15

Weekly Planner: Week 22
by
Derek Carty

06-18

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0

What You Need to Know: Monday, June 18
by
Daniel Rathman

06-14

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2

BP Unfiltered: Matt Cain's Next Start
by
Sam Miller

06-14

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9

Pebble Hunting: Matt Cain and Nerves
by
Sam Miller

06-14

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5

BP Unfiltered: Which 14 K Perfect Gamer Faced a Better Lineup?
by
Paul Sporer

06-14

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2

What You Need to Know: Thursday, June 14
by
Daniel Rathman

04-24

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11

Western Front: Five Giant Themes
by
Geoff Young

04-19

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2

What You Need to Know: Thursday, April 19
by
Daniel Rathman

04-19

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0

The Prospectus Hit List: Thursday, April 19
by
Matthew Kory

04-19

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6

Research Mailbag: James McDonald, Professional Hitter
by
Bradley Ankrom

04-03

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27

Transaction Analysis: 12 Years For Joey Votto
by
Ben Lindbergh

02-21

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4

The BP First Take: Tuesday, February 21
by
Daniel Rathman

05-28

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23

Checking the Numbers: The Cain Mutiny
by
Eric Seidman

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June 12, 2014 6:00 am

Model Behavior

9

Lewie Pollis

Why we shouldn't be so quick to assume that statistical principles don't apply to particular players.

When Matt Cain signed his $127.5 million contract extension in April 2012, Colin Wyers memorably tweeted: “If your response to the Matt Cain extension involves xFIP I'll be by later to pour coffee on your keyboard.” As someone who was still relatively new to the field of sabermetrics, seeing that was a watershed moment in that it signaled a substantial retreat from our previous collective understanding that DIPS statistics were unambiguously superior to ERA as measurements of pitching ability.

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March 25, 2014 9:35 am

The Darkhorses: ERA

1

BP Fantasy Staff

A look at the pitchers the fantasy crew expects to outperform their PECOTA projections in ERA.

One of the fun ways we all try to outsmart our opponents in fantasy is by searching for hidden value in players who, for one reason or another, we suspect have the ability to outpace their projections (and, relatedly, their draft cost). Our Darkhorses series features staff picks for players who could very well outpace their PECOTA projections for the year and provide the top overall production in one of the standard five-by-five categories. We’ve all picked one player currently projected by PECOTA to fall outside of the top 10 and one longer-shot player currently projected outside of the top 25. We’re taking a look at pitching this week, following our run on offense a week ago. To read the earlier editions in this series, click below:

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February 28, 2014 6:00 am

TTO Scoresheet Podcast: Starting Pitchers

4

Ian Lefkowitz, Ben Murphy and Jared Weiss

Breaking down the starters for Scoresheet leagues, with a guest appearance from Bret Sayre.

As you’ve undoubtedly heard, good pitching beats good hitting, and vice versa. You may not, however, have thought about the implications of great pitching or terrible pitching on good hitting. We’ve got plenty to say on starting pitching in Scoresheet (so much so that this week is only the first half of our coverage of the position), but to summarize at the highest level, our advice is to maximize the great pitching on your team and to minimize the innings devoted to terrible pitching.

Sounds easy, but it can be quite hard in Scoresheet. So read on for our rankings and detailed thoughts on some players. And be sure to check out our podcast, linked at the bottom of this article, for even more advice on strategy and specific players.

We are also really excited to have the man/the legend Bret Sayre on the podcast for a special guest segment. Bret is trying out Scoresheet for the first time this year, and in this week’s segment, we talk through our thoughts on his keeper decisions in his soft keeper league.

Without further ado, here are our starting pitcher rankings in Scoresheet. Please note that for convenience, we are calling pitchers we rank 1-25 as no. 1 starters, those ranked 26 to 50 as no. 2 starters, etc.The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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February 27, 2014 6:00 am

Tale of the Tape: Matt Cain vs. Zack Greinke

3

Alex Kantecki

A look at the relative fantasy merits of two National League West starters.

In today’s edition of “Tale of the Tape,” we dissect a pair of major-league starters from the National League West, the Giants’ Matt Cain and the Dodgers’ Zack Greinke. Both entered 2013 with “ace”-level expectations, but, after a down year from Cain, only Greinke exited the season with it still firmly attached. You’ll find both right-handers listed among Paul Sporer’s four-star tier in BP’s Positional Rankings, but last year’s performances have the pair trending in opposite directions. Greinke is going 41 picks ahead of Cain, according to the most recent NFBC ADP. Can Cain bounce back and make this a closer-than-expected showdown? Or will Greinke stay ahead of the curve?

ERA
In nine seasons, Cain has recorded a 3.35 ERA in 265 starts, including a 3.68 FIP and 4.16 xFIP. Last year, the right-hander posted a 4.00 ERA after a slow start (6.49 ERA in April), giving Cain his first ERA over four since 2006, his first full season in Major League Baseball. From 2009-2012, he recorded a 3.00-or-better ERA in three out of four years, and not a single one worse than 3.15. In 11 seasons, Greinke has recorded a 3.65 ERA in 259 starts, including a 3.43 FIP and 3.60 xFIP. Last year, he posted his lowest ERA (2.63) since winning the American League Cy Young award in 2009. Greinke’s ERA has fluctuated more wildly, from 2.16 in 2009 to 4.17 in 2010 (the year following his Cy Young). Cain’s had the privilege of pitching his entire career in the NL, while Greinke has spent the majority of his time in the AL. While the former is the more consistent pitcher and plays in the more favorable ballpark, the latter has enjoyed as much (if not more) success in the NL, with a 3.28 ERA in three seasons, compared to a 3.81 ERA in the AL. It’s impossible to ignore a difference of 137 points in earned run average between the two hurlers in 2013. For what it’s worth, PECOTA predicts a 3.02 ERA for Greinke and a 3.10 ERA for Cain.


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February 24, 2014 6:00 am

State of the Position: Starting Pitchers

10

Mike Gianella

Breaking down the arms to help you decide on the optimal strategy for your league.

For the earlier articles in this series, click below:

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January 15, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: San Francisco Giants

1

Mike Gianella

The pitchers are the headliners on Bruce Bochy's club, but there are several valuable bats in the lineup, too.

It was an odd-numbered year, so it only stands to reason that the San Francisco Giants didn’t win the World Series (like they did in 2010 and 2012). Instead, the Giants put up an underwhelming 76-86 record, good for a third-place tie in the NL West with the San Diego Padres. Michael Morse and Tim Hudson were brought in via free agency, but for the most part San Francisco is relying on a return to form and good health by a cast of steady and reliable veterans.

Projected Lineup

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August 2, 2013 6:00 am

Fantasy Starting Pitcher Planner: Week 19

5

Paul Sporer

Paul helps you set your fantasy rotation with a look at next week's two-start pitchers.

Welcome to the Weekly Pitching Planner. Each week I will cover the pitchers are who slated to make two starts and help you decide who you should start and who you should sit. Sometimes guys will be in the “consider” where they might have one good start, but a second tough one and then your league settings might determine whether or not you should go forward with him. The pitchers will be split by league then by categories:

Auto-Starts – These are your surefire fantasy aces. You paid a handsome sum for them either with an early draft pick or high dollar auction bid so you’re starting them anywhere, anytime. Guys can emerge onto or fall off of this list as the season evolves. There won’t be many – if any – notes associated with these groupings each week. We are starting them automatically so why do I need to expound on how awesome they are and will be in the coming week?

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August 1, 2013 6:05 am

What You Need to Know: The Will to Walk-Off Win

0

Daniel Rathman

The Rangers weren't sure whether to be buyers or sellers, but things are looking up for Texas after three straight walk-off wins.

The Wednesday Takeaway
If you’re going to claw back into a division race, you might as well do it in style. And after their general manager fell short in his 11th-hour bid to upgrade his lineup, the Rangers made their boss look good for the third night in a row.

Ron Washington’s club came into the week six games behind the first-place Athletics in the American League West, a shaky position that apparently left Daniels and the front office wavering on their deadline plans. With the threat of a 50-game suspension for Nelson Cruz hanging over their team, Daniels turned over many a stone in search of a power hitter who could approximate the right fielder’s production. But he was unable to pry either Jose Bautista or Edwin Encarnacion from the Blue Jays and opted to stand pat following the acquisition of Matt Garza from the Cubs earlier last month, perhaps reassured by the news that Cruz intends to appeal his ban.


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June 21, 2013 5:00 am

Raising Aces: The Cain Madness and a Troubled Helix

9

Doug Thorburn

Searching for the source of the struggles of Matt Cain and Jeremy Hellickson this season.

Matt Cain and Jeremy Hellickson are similar pitchers, with a likeness that extends to stuff, mechanics, and stats. Both pitchers have fastballs that average 91-92 mph on the gun, with plus command of great off-speed stuff to keep opposing batters off-balance. Each uses a 77-mph curveball around 12 percent of the time, but while Hellickson uses an 80-mph changeup at a 30 percent clip, Cain is a 15 percent cambio guy whose off-speed pitch comes in at a heavy 86 mph on average. He also adds a slider with the same frequency and velocity as his change. I have touted both pitchers for their excellent balance and strong posture, the underlying ingredients of top-notch pitch repetition, although the hurlers also share an affinity toward slow momentum.

Hellickson might be lower on the totem pole and several years Cain's junior, but the negative connotations associated with his profile are eerily reminiscent of those that Cain endured early in his own career. Armchair analysts who choose to focus solely on certain stats and eschew batted-ball numbers due to their inherent volatility have screamed “luck” in a reach to explain the consistently low BABIPs of both pitchers, with constant calls for regression to the league mean. Those same analysts can now be found basking under a cloud of smug, as both Hellickson and Cain are currently in the midst of the worst seasons of their respective careers.

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February 27, 2013 5:00 am

Punk Hits: A Love (Hate) Letter From Arizona

20

Ian Miller

Food and Loafing at spring training.

If you set out to design a place that I would hate, it would look a lot like Arizona.

It’s got natural beauty, sure, but it’s usually way too hot, or too cold, to enjoy. Everything is spread out, Houston- or Los Angeles-style; you have to drive everywhere to get anywhere. And once you get there, odds are “there” is a prefab thing conceived by a team of hospitality management experts.

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What can we learn about pitching from FOX Game-of-the-Week scouting reports?

The third time I got caught stealing classified documents out of the National Archives, the judge said enough was enough. He and the prosecutor hatched up a plan to send me away to prison for 20 years so I’d learn my lesson. But there were plenty of things I’d stolen that the authorities didn’t know about (money things), so I used some of that loot and hired myself the best counsel in the city. He found a loophole in the law and convinced the judge that first he had to give me another option: I could learn my lesson by teaching young toughs about important life skills, in a structured and competitive environment. The judge looked through his binder full of ragamuffin teams in need and asked, "What about baseball? Can you coach baseball?” I nodded, because of how much codeine I had had that morning, and he interpreted my head movement as assent. That’s how I became the coach of the 12U GoldenTee baseball squad, and that’s how I found myself living a storybook season that ended with … well, we’re getting ahead of ourselves now.

“Pitching and defense wins” is what I knew about baseball, and I found out quickly that the boys (and girl) on the GoldenTees didn’t know squat about pitching. Lot of throwers on that team. Big kids, some mustaches and learner’s permits, and real strong arms; my glove hand was blue by the end of practice just warming up with them. It didn’t surprise me to learn that they had won the championship the previous season, and that most of the league was afraid to hit against them. But they weren’t doing it the right way, and I could tell them a thing or two about where life takes you when you don’t do it the right way. It takes you to a battered ballfield with a bunch of kids you don't even know, when you could be home sucking whippets and watching DVDs of Monk season four.

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The Giants try to clinch their second championship in three years, while the Tigers hope to live to play another day.

Before San Francisco’s 2-0 victory in Game Three, no team had logged back-to-back shutout victories in the World Series since the 1966 Orioles. The 2012 Tigers were held scoreless only twice during the regular season. So, naturally, the Giants blanked the Tigers in Games Two and Three to take a commanding, 3-0 lead in the Fall Classic. Can Detroit bounce back and avoid a sweep, or will the 2012 season end tonight, with San Francisco celebrating for the second time in three years? To answer those questions, here is a closer look at Game Four:

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