Mets Relievers and Leverage IndexBy: Brendan Bilko
The idea for this was 100% taken by Royals Review (and found via BtB). Leverage Index is a statistic that is essentially used to show how important a game situation is at a particular time. The index will flux higher if it is a close game, later in the game, with men on base, etc. Conversely it will be lower if it is a blowout, earlier in the game, no men on base, etc.
We all know Jerry Manuel’s bullpen use has been, um, questionable, at times during his tenure as Mets manager. Two concerns I have in particular this season are:
I’m sure the latter concern of mine might not bother some of you. In my opinion, he is the best option we have in the pen right now. Obviously, the team’s best option should be used in the highest leverage situation. A few definitions to look at:
- pLI: A player’s average LI for all game events.
- gmLI: A pitcher’s average LI when he enters the game.
- exLI: A pitcher’s average LI when exiting the game.
For some context, average is at around 1.0. Situations of high leverage are above 1.5 or so and low leverage is below 1. Now let’s take a look at how the Mets pen stacks up (Editor’s note: I completely forgot to arrange the average chart in numerical order. Will fix that later this evening.):
It looks as though our injured set-up man Ryota Igarashi was used in the highest leverage situations on average. “Mop up Mejia” is being used in the second lowest leverage situations, being beat out by Tabasco loan Raul Valdes. If he doesn’t serve an important role in that pen, he shouldn’t be up here (I don’t think I need to tell most of you that though). Here is a game by game chart of their use:
Only once was Frankie used in the highest leverage situation – the 20 inning game against the Cardinals, and we all know how that went. He has only been used in three games of high leverage situation altogether. Rodriguez is constantly talking about how he pitches better the more he is used. If the team and the player were to put that whole save thing aside, there are plenty of high leverage situations during the course of a year where he can and should be used. He will get more work in, and by his own account, actually might pitch even better.