I just very recently got a new computer. I needed an upgrade. Not the shiniest one out there, but an upgrade over the one I had.
Like my PC, Mike Leake wasn’t the shiniest toy out there when we got him. David Price was out there, we were working on re-signing Heyward, etc. None of the other big signings happened, and we ended up with Leake.
So how has the signing worked so far? Well here’s what my fellow Twitter users think in a poll I started earlier today:
The majority favors the signing. Let’s take a look a stats and see if they back the fans up.
Leake is 5-4 with a 4.08 ERA in 81.2 innings. Those are pretty pedestrian numbers for a big free agent signing. His Fielding Independent Pitching, or FIP, is high at 4.40, and he’s currently tied for a career high of homers per nine innings at 1.3. He’s not a big K guy, at 5.8 per nine innings, so it’s not like he’s blowing them away. The only thing that impresses me is his control as walks per nine innings is 1.5, which is nice.
As long as the Cardinals keep whacking homers left and right, this performance will be fine, but what happens when they stop? We signed the guy for 5 years/80 Million dollars. That’s a pretty hefty price tag for a guy with a 4.00 ERA and a high FIP.
If I were taking the poll myself, I’d have definitely voted bad. He’s got a 4.00 ERA in year one of his contract, when he’s 28 years old and in his prime. What will he look like in year five when he’s 32? Not good I’m guessing. I could be wrong, and he could return to being the guy he was in 2013, when he went 14-7 with a 3.37 ERA. Given that 2013 was the only year he had an ERA under 3.50 though, that season seems a bit flukish.
1) Here’s One Way To Catch A Foul Ball.
As always, thanks for reading.