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Old Nov 19th 2009, 12:10 pm
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John Grabow Re-Signs but good deal?

According to Paul Sullivan, the Cubs will announce later today that they have re-signed John Grabow to a two year contract. Previous reports have put the value of the deal at $7.5 million.

Once again, we’re witness to the power of ERA as a negotiating tool. Over the last two seasons, Grabow’s thrown nearly 150 innings and posted an ERA of 3.09, giving the impression that he’s a high quality LH reliever. Yet again, ERA misleads.

Grabow’s FIP the last two years? 4.37, thanks to an atrociously high walk total. The entirety of his low ERA over the last two years is driven by an 82 percent rate of stranding runners, which is just not sustainable. He’s succeeded by putting men on base and then wiggling out of jams, but that’s not the same thing as pitching well.

It would be one thing if Grabow had developed this knack for stranding runners by elevating his strikeout rate, but he’s not any different now than he has been for his entire career.

Instead, he’s just posted artificially low BABIPs the last two years, and by not giving up hits, he was able to keep the guys he walked on the bases. That’s not a recipe for success.

Grabow is a generic left-handed middle reliever, the kind of guy you’re fine having for the league minimum but that you don’t really want to pay any real money to. He’s eminently replaceable, but the Cubs have decided to commit real money to him over multiple years because he has a low ERA.

The Cubs have money, and $3.75 million isn’t going to drastically alter their budget, but this is just a waste of cash. Betting on reliever ERA is a great way to get burned, and given Grabow’s actual talent levels, the Cubs are unlikely to be very happy with how this deal turns out for them.
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Old Nov 19th 2009, 12:33 pm
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There is one thing I know is that you will go broke betting on relief pitchers. You can never asses a contract until after the season Someone you think is a turd pitches a great season and vice versa.

I am not a big fan of paying for middle relievers , they seem to be a waste of money. Spend money on horses and the middle relief guys are not so important.
Christian Morgenstern : And thus , in his considered view ; What did not suit - could not be true
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Old Nov 19th 2009, 2:18 pm
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THe Cubs gave Aaron Miles $5 million because he hit 300 and is a swithhitter

The Cubs are giving Grabow $7 million because he had a low ERA and throws with his lefthand.

Last year Grabow/Marmol walked a total of 105 batters in 140 innings. I hope Lou is taking his heart medicine.
Whether it comes from [the media] or even comes from some fans, who are deservedly upset at a given point, it's really just noise. If we let it affect our decision making, shame on us
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