First off, the story of Chris Capuano is just great. Three years after getting seriously hurt, he was back in the big leagues in 2010, doing his thing. But I’m not giving him the Greydar pub because he is a great story, it’s because he’s so cheap. No, not like splits the tab with you on a first date and makes you pay more fare for the taxi because you live farther away cheap. I’m talking about going behind Miguel Tejada according to Mock Draft Central and being the 97th pitcher off the board according to Fleaflicker cheap.
If you’re interested in surface stats, this post isn’t for you. Capuano had a 4.55 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP last year. Blech. Move on and go read about how great of a control pitcher Philip Humber is and forget it. Alright, now that we’ve rid ourselves of the non-believers let’s scratch and sniff the surface. Why did I mention Humber? They’re going in about the same spot in the draft according to fleaflicker, with Humber having a slight edge. He had a 3.75 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP last year. Yeah that’s a decent ERA and a useful WHIP but he had a 6.40 K/9 last year. I just drooled but not out of excitement. I fell asleep. The puddle is in the shape of Doug Fister. Same shizz, different team but more expensive than both. Now could someone please clean this up?
Alright, let’s get statistical. Don’t blink, it goes by really fast: 3.61, 3.86, 3.67. Confused? Yeah, probably cuz I didn’t tell you what those numbers were. Those were the xFIPs for Fister, Humber & Capuano, respectively, in 2011. The difference is Fister overperformed, Humber’s ERA was in line and Capuano underperformed his. All luck being equal, the only thing Humber & Fister can provide you is WHIP help while Capuano is going to provide you with a 7.5K/9 base with room for upside. Realize C-Cap (it’s my nickname for him…that I just made up…just go with it) also exhibited a K:BB rate of 3.17 last year, so he’s not a pitcher that goes all depressed teenager and hurts himself. With a little better luck, you’re finding 150K over 180 innings and a 3.75 ERA. It may come with a 1.30 WHIP, but you can take that from a $1 pitcher. It’s like you just found a limited edition Yoshi-themed Wii in the Walmart bargain bin right next to all those Green Lantern DVDs. Superlatives! If you are targeting Jonathan Sanchez late in your draft, there’s no reason not to draw a bull’s eye on Capuano as well. Sometimes it pays to be frugal.