Dodgers @ Brewers June 3, 2017: The Most Average

(Via)
Dodgers
Brewers
1:10 P.M.
Milwaukee
2B
Utley
CF
Broxton
SS
Seager
RF
Santana
C
Grandal
1B
Aguilar
1B
González
3B
Shaw
LF
Bellinger
LF
Perez
CF
Taylor
C
Bandy
3B
Hernandez 2B Villar
RF
Puig
SS
Arcia
P
Hill (L)
P
Garza (R)

The other day on Twitter, somebody asked who the “most average” pitcher is. Milwaukee’s version of that pitcher, Matt Garza, goes today. Over the last five seasons, Garza has posted ERA- values of 97, 95, 96, 140, and 105. So far this season he’s at 92 (which matches his FIP), thanks to a career-best walk rate. Garza’s strikeout rate has rebounded to almost 19% as well, which is higher than the 15-16% of the previous two seasons but still below league-average. DRA is less convinced about Garza’s resurgence than other advanced metrics, perhaps owing to a sharp decrease in ground-ball rate. Allowing a lot of fly balls when Miller is your home park seems like a poor idea, but that is exactly what Garza is doing so far this season.

Logan Forsythe is out of the lineup against Garza, because, well:

I have no idea what that actually means, but hopefully it’s minor. The Dodgers don’t seem concerned about it, but then again they almost never are.

Rich Hill will counter Garza, coming off one of his best starts of the season. Hill has been extremely inconsistent thus far, and even in that good start he walked three batters in five innings. Perhaps one positive sign is the uptick in fastball velocity. Hill’s fastball speed has increased in every start since he came back from the disabled list, and averaged 89.8mph in his last start. This is still down from his peak of 90-91mph last season, but perhaps represents him finally getting into regular season shape among the many blisters. Hill doesn’t need the same fastball velocity as other pitchers to be effective, particularly if he can throw his curve for strikes, but it still becomes more hitable if slower (obviously).

In other news, Joc Pederson is on his way back. The team has not yet set a timetable for his return, but positive progress when working back from a concussion is always welcome news. The previous few games have really exposed Chris Taylor‘s glove in center, and having a good defender back up the middle will be a positive change.

About Daniel Brim

Daniel Brim
Daniel Brim grew up in the Los Angeles area but doesn't live there anymore. He still watches the Dodgers and writes about them sometimes.