Evaluating Five Pittsburgh Pirates Pitchers Using Deserved Run Average

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PITTSBURGH, PA – JULY 20: Joe Musgrove #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the Philadelphia Phillies at PNC Park on July 20, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA – JULY 20: Joe Musgrove #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the Philadelphia Phillies at PNC Park on July 20, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /

Starting Pitcher Joe Musgrove

Joe Musgrove out-pitches what every bottom line number says. Last year, Musgrove pitched in 170.1 innings to the tune of a 4.44 ERA, 3.82 FIP, and 1.22 WHIP. He only gave up 21 home runs, and was very good at limiting walks. He carried a walk percentage of just 5.4%, and had a K/BB ratio of 4.03.

2018 Musgrove was very similar to 2019 Musgrove. During ‘18, the right hander had a 4.06 ERA, but 3.58 FIP and 1.18 WHIP through 115.1 innings of work. While he did have a lower strikeout rate in 2018 (20.6% to 21.9%), he also walked fewer batters, this time at a 4.7% rate. Plus he only had a 0.9 HR/9 rate.

Deserved run average loves Musgrove. In 2018, he was given a 3.43 for his efforts. Then in 2019, DRA placed him at 3.59. It is understandable why Musgrove’s ERA far under performs his DRA. Musgrove is a control/ground ball pitcher. In the past two seasons owning a 44.9% ground ball rate. That’s good for 37th among the 90 pitchers with at least 250 innings pitched the past two years. Musgrove has easily been hurt by the Pirates bad defense. In 2020, I’d expect Joe Musgrove’s ERA to go down a fair amount compared to 2019. The Pirates have made very good strides to improve their defense, and look to continue to improve it throughout the 2020 season, whenever that starts.

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