Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Luckiest No-Hitter Ever.

Most of you probably already know that Francisco Liriano threw a no-hitter last night because of the way the media covers such things -- which is kind of the point of this post.

In my opinion, Liriano's start last night is a perfect example of how overblown the idea of a no-hitter is. No-hitter's are largely unfairly glorified by the media and the majority of baseball fans. Liriano's no-hitter last night was largely a product of luck. Twenty-Seven of his Twenty-Nine outs were on balls put in play -- the average Batting Average on Balls in Play would indicate how extremely good Liriano's luck was last night. I haven't looked at the numbers yet, but the two strikeouts Liriano had last night have to be among the lowest number of strikeouts for a pitcher throwing a no-hitter.

My real point here is that a no-hitter is not really a reflection of how good a pitcher is or how good a pitcher's stuff is on a given night due to the fairly large luck factor in baseball. The fact that Roy Halladay can throw a Complete Game and allow four hits and strike out double digit batters and get less fan-fare than Liriano got for his very much inferior start is kind of a flaw in the game. In general, many of the main stream pitching stats seem rather flawed to me with Saves the biggest culprit but with the "milestone" of the no-hitter being a close second.

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