San Diego Padres All-Decade Team: Pitchers

Padres All-Decade
MILWAUKEE, WI - MAY 13: A San Diego Padres hat sits in the dugout during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on May 13, 2016 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

Padres All-Decade Team – Pitching Staff

The pitching staff of the San Diego Padres All-Decade Team from the 2010s was strong, despite low win-loss records. A lack of run support overshadowed some nice seasons. To decide which players to include, the author used the following criteria.

Selection Criteria – Starters

  • Minimum of 15 starts
  • If a pitcher split time in the rotation and the bullpen, only his numbers from games he started will enter the calculation.
  • Four statistical categories
    • ERA- (from FanGraphs)
    • Strikeouts
    • Walks
    • WHIP – Walks and Hits per Inning Pitched
  • Pitchers are ranked in each of the four categories. His total rank is the average of the four rankings.

Why those four stat categories? ERA- compares his ERA to the rest of the league, with the league average being 100. The lower the ERA-, the better, and each number is equal to one percentage point. For example, if a player has an ERA- of 90, that means that his park-adjusted ERA is 10 percentage points better than the league average. Strikeouts and walks do well at determining a pitcher’s control. Finally, WHIP shows how many baserunners he allows per inning. Pitchers who rank high in those four categories, with rare exception, end up having a good win-loss record. (Note: The highest single-season win total by a Padres pitcher in the 2010s is 14.)

Selection Criteria – Relievers

Relievers must have a minimum of 40 innings pitched in relief. The reason for 40 is that most relievers pitch in one inning per appearance. If he pitches in 40 innings, then he pitched in roughly one fourth of his team’s games. For rankings, the four starting pitcher categories will be used. However, a fifth one is added – inherited runners scored percentage (IS%). A reliever’s job is to get guys out without allowing runs to score, and he often comes in with men on base. An average IS% is around 30%.

Relievers who are effective in all five of these categories go a long way toward helping their teams win games. For reference, the relievers will also have Goose Eggs (GE) (and their counterparts, Broken Eggs (BE) and Mehs (M)) listed. A Goose Egg is a statistic for clutch relief innings invented by Nate Silver of the website Five Thirty-Eight, and it is quite telling. Anyway, here is the pitching staff for the Padres All-Decade Team of the 2010s.

Padres All-Decade Starting Rotation

Chris Paddack (2019)

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The craziest part of Chris Paddack being number one on this list is that he’s only pitched one season. Furthermore, the Padres received him in a one-for-one trade for Fernando Rodney. When Paddack was born on January 8, 1996, Rodney was the age of a freshman IN COLLEGE.

Paddack had an extraordinary season in 2019. In 26 starts, he went 9-7. That record is nothing special, but the rest of his stats are. His 3.33 ERA translated into an incredible ERA- of 78. He also struck out 153 while walking 31 and putting up a WHIP of 0.981 in 140 2/3 innings. This made him third in ERA-, 11th in strikeouts, ninth in walks, and first in WHIP for an average rank of 6.00.

Mat Latos (2010)

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The last time the Padres had a winning record was 2010, when they went 90-72. The top starter on that team was Mat Latos, who went 14-10 with a 2.92 ERA (79 ERA-). Over 31 starts and 184 2/3 innings, he struck out 189, walked 50, and had a 1.083 WHIP. This ranked him fourth in ERA-, fifth in strikeouts, 23rd in walks, and third in WHIP – an average of 8.75.

Drew Pomeranz (2016)

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Despite making only 17 starts and pitching 102 innings, Drew Pomeranz went 8-7 with a 2.47 ERA (61 ERA-). He struck out 115, walked 41, and had a 1.059 WHIP. These totals ranked the lefty first in ERA-, 25th in strikeouts, 16th in walks, and second in WHIP for an average of 11.00.

Cory Luebke (2011)

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Do not let Cory Luebke’s 5-8 record in 2011 fool you. The team went 71-91 that season. He had a 3.31 ERA – 94 ERA- – to go along with 111 strikeouts, 29 walks, and a 1.093 WHIP that season. That ranks the southpaw 11th in ERA-, 26th in strikeouts, fifth in walks, and fourth in WHIP for an average ranking of 11.50. This was the fourth-highest ranking of the decade by a Padres hurler.

Andrew Cashner (2013)

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Andrew Cashner started 26 games for the 72-90 Padres in 2013. He went 10-9 with a 3.04 ERA (85 ERA-), 119 strikeouts, 41 walks, and 1.117 WHIP. This ranked him sixth in ERA-, 22nd in strikeouts, 16th in walks, and sixth in WHIP. It works out to an average of 12.50, tying him with the 2014 version of himself for fifth on the list.

Stats

Padres All-Decade Relief Corps

Two interesting notes about the relievers. First off, all seven had a WHIP below 1.000, which is remarkable. Second is that a surprising omission comes in the form of Heath Bell. What did him in were his walks and WHIP. He walked a lot of batters and, consequently, also allowed a lot of baserunners. His overall scores suffered greatly as a result. For example, in his best year – 2010 – he ranked seventh in ERA- (52), first in IS% (0% – 0 for 9), and ninth in strikeouts (86), but his walks and WHIP ranked him 48th (out of 54) and 37th, respectively. That made his average rank 20.40, six spots away from making the cut. Here are the seven who DID make the cut.

Kirby Yates (2019)

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It’s too bad that the Padres fell apart in the second half of 2019, because Kirby Yates would have been a tremendous weapon in the postseason. He was lights-out, plain and simple. In 60 relief appearances, he had 41 saves in 44 opportunities with a league-leading 1.19 ERA (28 ERA-). He also had a Goose Egg-Broken Egg-Meh (G-B-M) line of 39-4-3 – a G to B ratio of 9.8 to 1. (The historical average since 1921 is 3 to 1.) In addition, Yates had 101 strikeouts, 13 walks, a 0.890 WHIP, and an 18% IS% (2 out of 11). This ranked him first in ERA-, 11th in IS%, third in strikeouts, ninth in walks, and fifth in WHIP. His average of 5.80 was by far the best of the decade by a Padre.

Robbie Erlin (2018)

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In 2018, the left-handed Robbie Erlin put up tremendous numbers in middle relief. He relieved 27 games, posting a 2.05 ERA (52 ERA-) in 52 2/3 innings. In the process, he only allowed 14% of his inherited runners to score (3 of 22) while striking out 44 and walking four. To top it all off, he posted a 0.797 WHIP in 52 2/3 innings. These numbers ranked him seventh in ERA-, ninth in IS%, 46th in strikeouts, first in walks, and third in WHIP for an average of 13.20.

Brad Hand (2017)

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Brad Hand relieved 72 games in 2017, saving 21 games in 26 opportunities with a 2.16 ERA (51 ERA-). He also posted a G-B-M line of 38-6-6 during his 79 1/3 innings of work. The southpaw added 104 strikeouts, 20 walks, a 0.933 WHIP, and an IS% of 23% (8 of 35). This ranked him sixth in ERA-, 18th in IS%, second in strikeouts, 33rd in walks, and eighth in WHIP. The average of 13.40 made him the third pitcher on this list.

Luke Gregerson (2010)

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In 80 relief appearances, Luke Gregerson had 40 holds in 2010 as a seventh-inning setup man. In 78 1/3 innings, he racked up a 3.22 ERA (87 ERA-) with a G-B-M line of 33-10-1. He added 89 strikeouts, 18 walks, a 0.830 WHIP, and an 18% IS% (7 of 38). This ranked him 33rd in ERA-, 11th in IS%, fifth in strikeouts, 24th in walks, and fourth in WHIP, averaging 15.40. That score gives him the fourth spot in the Padres all-decade bullpen.

Joaquin Benoit (2014)
Nick Vincent (2013)

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These players tied in average ranking with 16.40. Joaquin Benoit started 2014 in a middle relief role but became the closer after Huston Street was traded to the Los Angeles Angels. In 53 relief appearances, Benoit saved 11 of 12 with 16 holds and a G-B-M line of 31-2-1. That 15.5 to 1 G to B ratio is insane! He added 64 strikeouts, 14 walks, and a 0.773 WHIP in 54 1/3 innings. His ERA of 1.49 translates to an ERA- of 43. However, he allowed 43% of his inherited runners to score, and that knocked his average down a little bit. His rankings – third in ERA-, 45th in IS%, 21st in strikeouts, 11th in walks, and second in WHIP.

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Nick Vincent relieved 45 games in 2013, mostly in the seventh inning. He posted a 6-3 record with a 2.14 ERA (60 ERA-) and 10 holds in 46 1/3 innings. While only allowing 19% of his inherited runners to score (4 for 21), he struck out 49 and walked 11. In addition, he had a G-B-M line of 17-4-2 and a 0.950 WHIP. He ranked 11th in ERA-, 14th in IS%, 41st in strikeouts, sixth in walks, and 10th in WHIP.

Edward Mujica (2010)

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This season snuck in under the radar, because in 36 of Edward Mujica’s 59 relief appearances in 2010, the Padres were behind when he entered the game. This limited his saves and holds. However, the other numbers he posted were rather solid. In 69 2/3 innings, he went 2-1 with a 3.62 ERA (98 ERA-) and a 29% IS% (5 of 17). In addition, he had a G-B-M line of 7-1-0 with 72 strikeouts, six walks, and a 0.933 WHIP. The ranks of 39th in ERA-, 29th in IS%, 16th in strikeouts, second in walks, and eighth in WHIP gave him an average of 18.80.

Stats

Full Roster

Starters

Chris Paddack (2019)
Mat Latos (2010)
Drew Pomeranz (2016)
Cory Luebke (2011)
Andrew Cashner (2013)

Relievers

Kirby Yates (2019)
Robbie Erlin (2018)
Brad Hand (2017)
Luke Gregerson (2010)
Joaquin Benoit (2014)
Nick Vincent (2013)
Edward Mujica (2010)

For the full stat table, including rankings, click here.

Click here to see the position players.

Main Photo
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