Sullivan: The MLB landscape of negative WAR

From Jeff Sullivan at FanGraphs on July 3, 2018:

It’s not that hard to delight in the Astros’ performance. I do understand, of course, that they have a weakening hold on their own division. Somehow, some way, the Mariners have managed to keep up. But if you look beyond just wins and losses, the Astros are tied for baseball’s highest team wRC+. They have baseball’s lowest ERA-, and FIP-, and xFIP-. The Astros have baseball’s highest run differential, and the gap between first and second is 50 runs, which on its own would be one of the higher run differentials around. By Pythagorean record, the Astros are easily in first place. By BaseRuns as well, they’re easily in first place. The Astros are an excellent team that has still found a way to underperform. That’s not an easy thing to do.

So there’s no shortage of places to find Houston Astros fun facts. Some of them reflect the bigger picture. Some of them reflect the smaller pictures. I was reminded of something today, when the Astros placed Brian McCann on the DL, and called up Tim Federowicz. I wouldn’t go so far as to call this a Tim Federowicz fun fact; I wouldn’t do that to you. But in his tiny slice of 2018 big-league playing time, Federowicz has put up a -0.1 WAR. Keep that in mind, will you?

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Originally published: July 6, 2018. Last Updated: July 6, 2018.