Sarris: The Madison Bumgarners that once were

From SABR member Eno Sarris at FanGraphs on May 7, 2015:

We have a Madison Bumgarner, right now. He just put a whole team on his shoulders and blew our minds last October, even. And with that Paul Bunyanesque workmanlike yet fiery demeanor, he seems a snowflake. Unique and alone. But maybe we have we seen pitchers like him before?

 Using a query that asks for all lefties taller than 75 inches and heavier than 225 pounds — Bumgarner clocks in at 77 inches and 235 pounds in our database, respectively — you do get two active lefties that had nice starts to their careers, just like Bumgarner did. Here are the numbers they collected until their age 26 season.


It looks like CC Sabathia is out in front because of his innings advantage, but by WAR per 200 innings, both CC and Jon Lester outpaced Bumgarner by decimal points. They were all about four-win pitchers until they turned 26, though, so it’s a fair grouping. They’re all big. And they actually all have about eight or nine inches between their height and their vertical release point, so to varying degrees, they all sling it similarly.

But CC lacks the early signature success. Lester, on the other hand, won the final game of the World Series for his team once. Since we have PITCHf/x for the two, lets’ compare their arsenals and release points from Brooks Baseball through their age 26 seasons.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: May 7, 2015. Last Updated: May 7, 2015.