One of the stats that they track at The Hardball Times is “Expected Fielding Independent Pitching” (xFIP). It’s a stat that is supposed to a good predicter of a pitcher’s future ERA. It’s sort of like Component ERA.
For example, last season, Mike Mussina’s ERA was 5.15 – but, his xFIP was 4.58 – and this suggested that Moose was not as bad as he appeared to be in 2007…and could have had a better ERA with some luck/good fielding. (Click here to see where Moose was last year in terms of Component ERA.)
This season, to date, Joba Chamberlain has an ERA of 2.24 – which is awesome. However, so far, Joba’s xFIP is 3.14 – which is still a great ERA-ish number for a starter to have these days…but it’s not like having one that’s near two.
Just some food for thought…when looking at Chamberlain’s ERA. It appears that it may be so low via some help from his defense…when you look at his xFIP.
As a side note, to date, Mike Mussina has an ERA of 3.56 this season versus an xFIP of 3.62…
…looks like Moose’s ERA is right where it should be, this year.