“It is just spring training”, this along with many other variations saying the same thing, are commonly heard when reacting to spring training statistics. Pitchers are working on different pitches, they are throwing to minor league talent, hitters may be facing minor league pitching, and trying to find their rhythm. So what should we look at in spring training?
1. Position Battles – No I may not normally care if a guy has a .500 AVG in ST, but if he is competing for a starting job you bet I do.
1.5 – Rotation Battles – Are there a few guys competeing for that 5th starting spot? Then yes I care about that ERA and those Ks.
2 – Pitchers control – Though a pitcher may be working on a cutter, or building his endurance, I still want to see him controlling where his pitches go.
2013 Spring Training numbers I care about:
1. Julio Teheran – Competing (and seems to almost have) the 5th starter spot for the Braces rotation. Teheran this spring has put up a 4.17 K/BB ration (Kershaw’s in 2012 reg season 3.63) and a 1.35 ERA.
2. Jedd Gyorko – His strong spring has put him in line to start at 2B for the Padres. Entering the season as Baseball America’s 71st prospect, he has a .298 AVG with 3 HRs this far into spring.
3. Shelby Miller and Joe Kelly – Miller is the top prospect for the Cardinals and is drawing the most attention from fantasy owners. Neither have thrown very many innings in the spring so far, so fantasy owners will have to continue to monitor the situation.