Mains: Does starting pitching matter less?

From SABR member Rob Mains at Baseball Prospectus on July 10, 2019:

The Yankees had an outstanding June, expanding their lead in a very competitive division from 1.5 to 7.0 games. They led the league in runs scored, easily, with 176, an average of 6.8 per game. The bullpen, while with a 5.16 ERA, led the league in holds (21) and was tied for the lead in saves (9). But those starters … and in the insult to injury category, the departed (and maligned) Sonny Gray is an All-Star with 2.6 WARP. The top three Yankees starters, by WARP, are Domingo Germán (1.8), Masahiro Tanaka (1.6), and James Paxton (1.2).

We’ve seen, over the last few years, the role of bullpens grow and that of starting rotations recede. But how much? How unusual was the Yankees’ June?

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Originally published: July 11, 2019. Last Updated: July 11, 2019.