Friday, May 27, 2011

Oakland A's Starting Rotation: Unstoppable

Top ERA (Starters)
2000 Braves (4.06)
2001 Braves (3.54)
2002 Braves (3.42)
2003 Dodgers (3.49)
2004 Cubs (3.72)
2005 Astros (3.46)
2006 Tigers (4.00)
2007 Padres (4.11)
2008 Blue Jays (3.72)
2009 Braves (3.52)
2010 A's (3.47)
2011 A's (2.56)

Top ERA (Starters), 2011
1. A's: 2.56
2. Mariners: 3.14
3. Giants: 3.16

The A's have the lowest team ERA despite having the 19th best bullpen ERA because their starting pitching is so much better than any other team.  They might have trouble keeping up this prodigous pace, though, because Dallas Braden and Brandon McCarthy are both on the DL.  That means that two of the current spots in the rotation go to Guillermo Moscaso (1 career start) and Josh Outman (missed 2010 with Tommy John surgery). 

The top of their rotation is extremely good, but they will probably come back to earth too (Trevor Cahill, 2.02; Gio Gonzalez, 2.20; Brett Anderson, 2.84).  The A's are 3 games under .500, but only 2.5 games out because no one is running away with the AL West.  If they keep this up all year (a big if), it could be the most impressive performance for a starting rotation since the Maddux-Glavine-Smoltz Braves in the 1990's.  

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