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Player vs. Team: What's In A Number?

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Not since Chappaquiddick has it looked so bad for a Kennedy: Joe Kennedy’s career line against the Angels is 0-8, 6.34 ERA, with an equally unsightly 1.71 WHIP and BAA of .338. If those numbers look familiar, it’s about what Kennedy’s stats would have looked like had he made one more start in the Cactus League—and pitched a no-hitter.

So do these numbers portend doom tonight, when Kennedy takes the mound? There is so much turnover on rosters that you wonder how important past match-ups are between a pitcher and a team. Going “inside the numbers,” only three players stand out as having owned Joe Kennedy:

  • One is David Eckstein, who is 12/26 (.462). Eckstein is no longer around.
  • One is Chone Figgins, who is 4/6, with a double, a triple, and two walks, for a whopping 1.917 OPS. Kennedy gets a break tonight, as Figgins is on the DL
  • One is Garret Anderson, who is 12/27 (.444), with 2 HR, and 10 RBI. Bummer.

On the other hand, more recent additions Orlando Cabrera (0/10) and Shea Hillenbrand: (3/20) have done Kennedy no harm, and they are more likely than Eckstein to be in the lineup tonight.

So what’s most important? Is it the uniform, in which case Kennedy is in trouble? Or is it the players, in which case Kennedy might be just fine? Weigh in now and then we’ll find out tonight if Joe hangs around longer than Ted did…

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