Thursday, March 25, 2010
30 A's in 30 Days – Andrew Bailey
Acquired: Drafted in sixth round (2006).
Contract: One year thru 2010. (Not yet eligible for arbitration.)
Position: Closer, Rookie of the Year, Raconteur
Projected ERA: 3.48
Over/Under: Pretty much all of the complex projection systems have Bailey regressing from his terrific 2009 form, but none is more pessimistic than the CHONE output above. 3.48 ERA? Yes, Bailey's been recently shelved this spring with what's being described as "tennis elbow" by the notoriously injury-obfuscating A's. Yes, he appeared in 68 games last year (easily a career high) and had to adjust to the "all-out" closer's philosophy after three seasons in the minors where he could pace himself as a starting pitcher.
But, a 3.48 ERA? On June 10, Bailey gave up three ninth-inning runs in a loss to the Twins – driving his ERA up to 2.58. In his next 40 appearances, through the end of the season, his ERA was 1.20 (in 45 innings). I don't think a regression is entirely unreasonable, but an ERA of 3.48 would be more akin to a collapse. Take the UNDER.
By the Numbers: 0 – The number of current video game commercials that can touch this one for sheer awesome AND unintentional comedy.
Surefire 2010 Prediction: Bailey will finish third in the AL in saves. Why third? Look for the A's to play several close, low-scoring games that require Bailey's late inning services. The team won't win enough to get him a Mariano amount of chances, but, he'll continue to convert the leads he's given.
Snoop Dogg Track for the Season: My Heat Goes Boom