Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Braves vs. Giants: An NLDS Statistical Preview

With the Braves squeezing into the playoffs for the first time since 2005, there are plenty of websites, articles, blogs, etc. previewing the series. I'll give my quick two cents, but this post is mainly to provide a 'one stop shop' of statistical comparison (thanks to Baseball Reference!) between the 2010 NL West champion San Francisco Giants and the NL Wild Card winner Atlanta Braves.

These are two relatively similar teams. Both are built with great pitching and usually have just enough offense to win. The Atlanta offense is noticeably weaker than it could have been, with both Chipper Jones and Martin Prado done for the year. This will make the task even tougher against the three-headed monster of Lincecum, Cain and Sanchez. The Giants have a bit more offensive power and MUCH better defense, but the Braves get on base more often. Giants pitchers strike out more opponents, but the Braves hurlers give up less free passes. This will be a very tough match-up for the Braves. Runs will be hard to come by, so Atlanta pitchers will have to be at the top of their game. Defense has been suspect all year, so it would certainly be a boost to see a clean effort. In order for Atlanta to advance, the hitters will have to tag the Giants rotation for a few early runs, continue to receive near-dominant efforts from Lowe, Hanson and Hudson and then pass off the one or two run lead to our tradionally strong bullpen to finish it up.

PREDICTION:  Braves in 5 (hey, this is a Braves blog..what did you expect?!). If Atlanta falls, I think the Giants will advance in 4.

                        Atlanta Braves (91-71)                      San Francisco Giants (92-70)
AVG                            .258                                                     .257
OBP                            .339                                                     .321
SLG                             .401                                                     .408
H                                 1411                                                    1411
R                                  738                                                      697
HR                               139                                                      162
RBI                              699                                                      660
BB                               634                                                      487
SB                               63                                                        55

ERA                             3.57                                                     3.36
WHIP                          1.27                                                     1.27
K                                 1241                                                    1331
BB                               505                                                      578
CG                               2                                                          6                     
SHO                            0                                                          3
K/9                              7.8                                                       8.2
BB/9                            3.2                                                       3.6
HR/9                            0.8                                                       0.8

E                                  126                                                      73
FLD%                          .980                                                     .988
A (OF)                         21                                                        33
DP                               440                                                      295

Lowe + Hanson + Hudson = 43-32, 625 IP, 3.36 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 6.45 K/9, 2.75 BB/9
Billy Wagner = 7-2, 37 SV, 1.43 ERA, 0.87 WHIP, 13.5 K/9, 2.9 BB/9, 0.6 HR/9

Lincecum + Cain + Sanchez = 42-30, 629 IP, 3.22 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 8.77 K/9, 3.33 BB/9
Brian Wilson = 3-3, 48 SV, 1.81 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 11.2 K/9, 3.1 BB/9, 0.4 HR/9

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