1 – Jose Quintana, Chicago White Sox
That’s right; Quintana gets the first spot in my rotation for his April numbers. His HR/9 rate – oh, it’s only zero. Quintana hasn’t allowed a home run yet this season. He leads all of the American League in FIP with a dazzling 1.75. Amazingly, he’s been unlucky in BABIP with .321, meaning he could actually get better.
2 – Taijuan Walker, Seattle Mariners
Walker gets included due to his second place figure in FIP (2.06), the sixth lowest WHIP (0.96), and the third lowest BB/9 in the AL (1.08).
3 – Corey Kluber, Cleveland Indians
Kluber would be unlikely to be selected to any All-Star team with a 1-3 record and a 4.24 ERA in April. But that’s why this is the Advanced Stat All-Star team. Kluber has the fifth lowest FIP (2.68), the 16th highest K/9 (9.26), and the fifth lowest BB/9 in the AL (1.32).
4 – David Price, Boston Red Sox
Doubling down with Price to show how little the common stats show about a player’s performance. Price has a 5.76 ERA but has a 2.38 FIP. He has the highest swinging strike percentage in the AL (15.9 percent). He pairs that with the lowest contact rate in the league (65.8 percent). Price has gotten “lucky” with a 3-0 record this April but that’s only because his earned runs have been unlucky.
5 – Chris Sale, Chicago White Sox
Quintana takes the top prize but that doesn’t mean his teammate shouldn’t be included as well. Sale has the lowest WHIP in the AL (0.68) and is averaging the most innings per start (7.6). His strikeout numbers are down but that’s because he’s baffling hitters by letting them hit into outs.
Set-up man – Justin Wilson, Detroit Tigers
Wilson leads all of baseball with eight holds. His 0.9 FIP is microscopic. He faced 37 batters in April, striking out 14 while only allowing seven hits.
Closer – Andrew Miller, New York Yankees
Miller was thought to possibly miss the beginning of the season due to an injury to his non-pitching hand. Thankfully for all baseball fans, he has not missed any time. He has a negative FIP (-0.27). His swinging strike percentage is 17.5. He has not allowed a run, a home run, or even a walk – enough said.