BABIP delivery. Really, his Batting Average on Balls In Play was unequivocally low -- .246 -- but I just wanted a chance to use the "strikethrough" option like a cool blogger.
As a righty submariner (a baseball rarity) Ziegler put up an astounding 1.06 ERA in 59.2 innings pitched in 2008 -- his first year in the majors. But he posted a low strikeout-to-walk ratio (1.36 -- just 30 Ks to 22 free passes) and at 29, he's probably not going to get much better. He may have tied a major-league record last season by starting his career with 39 scoreless innings, but now he's ready for a serious regression from his crazy '08 numbers. The man who was
Bradford, who from 2001 to 2004 was a thriving specialty reliever for the A's, also had his success limited to facing right-handed hitters. The veteran's ERA stayed around 3.00 for his entire career until 2004, when he had a setback -- mounting back pain due to his submarine delivery. Ziegler could be in line for similar problems, and a much-higher ERA, if he's forced to face hitters from both sides regularly. Managers are probably just itching to throw a hefty lefty to the dish to face Oakland's right-handed, submariner closer with men on base.
Ziegler's role has become somewhat stable due to
There's still too small a sample to begin displaying 2009 statistics, so for now, the 2008 stats appear under each starting closer in italics. Let's get to the pecking order.