But how can you tell how good or bad he was based solely on statistics? After all, we do know (I think) that the WAR arguments do not work very well with relief pitchers. Some look at win probability (WPA) when judging relief pitchers. If we consult that statistic, Logan scored just barely in the negative at -0.06 in that category in 2011 after posting a positive number of 0.24 in 2010. Logan had a “clutch” rating of -0.09 in 2011 after a clutch number of -0.38 in 2011. Okay, now I’m really confused. So he was a slight drag to the team in 2011 after being a slight positive in 2010? How else can we look at it then?
And so I decided to perform a study of his game log from 2011 just to get a gauge on how good or bad a relief pitcher he was last season. I decided to rate each performance and see if that would help. I gave a rating to each outing. The rating was either, “fail,” for his outings that mattered that didn’t go very well, a, “NI,” or, “not important,” rating was given for outings that didn’t matter to the outcome and a, “success,” if he pitched a meaningful outing with positive results. Consider it a less scientific sort of WPA. Here are the results:
- Not important – 12
- Fail – 20
- Success – 32
To translate that a bit. Logan pitched twelve times where the game was decided before he got there. These would include blowouts either for or against. Twenty times he pitched in important situations and failed to get the job done and 32 times succeeded in important situations. One of the comments on the last post stated that Logan was only called for to get one batter out and could never do so. Logan had 19 such outings and retired the batter 13 times. That means his on-base percentage against in such situations was .316 or less than the league’s on-base average.
Is there anything else we can look at? How about inherited runners? Logan came into games with a total of 61 runners on base. Thirteen of them scored. That’s an inherited runner percentage of 21.3 percent. The league average was 30 percent and the Yankees average was 24 percent. So Logan shows in a positive light there.
Have I proved anything here? I don’t really know. What do you think? In 52 meaningful situations, he succeeded 62 percent of the time. The Yankees won 60 percent of their games. So he was slightly more successful than his team as a whole. He blew two save situations, had ten holds and won five games while losing three. He is deemed to be getting paid to get left-handed batters out. While he did strike out thirty percent of the lefty batters he faced, he still allowed an OPS against of .789 against them which is higher than league average. But he was really good against 67 right-handed batters he faced (.673 OPS). All in all, it seems a bit of a mixed bag.
Yes, I am comfortable when Boone Logan comes into a game. He succeeds more than he fails and it seems the Yankees could do a lot worse with other left-handed pitchers out there. But perhaps the bottom line is that he isn’t as good as I thought he was and is better than what you probably think he is.