This morning I took a look at the Rays’ potential postseason rotation and wondered whether James Shields should be a part of it. (Even though I know he will be…sometimes academic debates can be fun.)
Well, Rob Neyer took a longer look at Shieldsy’s ERA and, based on his work, I think I am going to sleep a little easier tonight knowing that the the skipper is almost certain to call his number in October.
To his manager’s credit, Maddon realizes that Shields is actually a good pitcher.Soon, we’ll see how good Maddon realizes Shields is. That 3.68 xFIP ranks sixth in the American League … and ahead of rotation-mates Wade Davis (4.85), Matt Garza (4.51), and … yes, even 19-game winning All-Star David Price (4.00).
Basically, it looks like Shields is pitching well but running into a lot of bad luck. (Learned something else new today: luck can be statistically quantified. Some of this stuff is amazing.) Let’s hope he takes a rabbit’s foot to the mound next week.