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Are starting pitchers really better in Week 1?

Posted By Sam Diament On Apr 7 2010 @ 3:05 pm In MLB | No Comments

If you don’t read the Bloomberg Sports blog at MLBlogs.com, you should. It’s extremely helpful if you play fantasy baseball and informative even if you don’t.

There was a post [1] written on Sunday about whether or not pitchers are worse in the first week of April (specifically April 5 through April 12 over the past five years) compared to the rest of the regular season. The results were surprising. They found that pitchers actually average the same amount of innings, lower ERAs, and, lower WHIPs. They then went on to explain this by saying that home run rates are lower in the first week of the season.

They addressed my first question, which is, aren’t there more higher quality pitchers earlier in the year before injuries set in? My next question is, in this 7-day time period, in which most teams play their first 6 games of the season, with such a small sample size, would the fact that a team is most likely to send out its ace twice skew the results? Sending out Roy Halladay twice in 6 games will have a bigger impact than sending him out 35 times in 162.

What are your thoughts?

(I’m not posting this under the Nationals because it is more of a general MLB category post. I hope they don’t yell at me!)

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[1] post: http://bloombergsports.mlblogs.com/archives/2010/04/does-it-make-sense-to-sit-your-fantasy-starters-in-week-1.html

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