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Game Thread 7/7 Braves vs Mets

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Come chat with your fellow Talking Chop readers so you have something to do between Matsuzaka pitches

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Mike Minor day Braves fans! No really I promise you that's a good thing. Let's take a look at some quick numbers.

Mike Minor 2013:

K/9: 7.96

BB/9: 2.02

BABIP: .272

HR/FB: 8.8%

xFIP 3.64

Okay so now let us compare to Mike Minor in 2014:

K/9 8.96

BB/9: 2.69

BABIP: .351

HR/FB: 16.9%

xFIP 3.50

Okay so here we can see that Mike has drastically improved his strikeout rate while walking a few more guys. He is also suffering from an extremely high BABIP and an ungodly absurd home run to fly ball percentage. If you go by xFIP which correct HR/FB rate to the rate of homers a pitcher should have allowed. This link has all the details if you are interested but the point is that xFIP operates under the theory that an anomalous home run to fly ball rate is pure luck and will regress to the mean over a large sample. xFIP correlates better to future ERA than any other predictor except for SIERA. By xFIP Minor is actually pitching better than he did last season he just is being challenged by a fluke home run to fly ball rate.

Now I know what you are thinking, Minor is a guy who has always allowed too many homers. This is true. Minor has a career 10.6% home run to fly ball rate which isn't great but it is well below the mark he is at this year. You should always expect a player's performance to regress to the mean unless there is new information that invalidates previous performance. We should expect Minor to allow more homers than the average pitcher. We should not expect anything like what has happened so far this season. Minor will be fine he just needs some luck. By one of the best future ERA predictors around Minor is having the best season of his career. There really is no reason to panic.

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<h3>Today's Lineups</h3>

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<th align="left">ATLANTA BRAVES</th>

<th align="left">NEW YORK METS</th>

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<tr><td class="td-last td-name">B.J. Upton - CF</td><td class="td-first td-name">C. Granderson - RF</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">A. Simmons - SS</td><td class="td-first td-name">Daniel Murphy - 2B</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">Freddie Freeman - 1B</td><td class="td-first td-name">David Wright - 3B</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">Justin Upton - LF</td><td class="td-first td-name">Eric Campbell - 1B</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">Jason Heyward - RF</td><td class="td-first td-name">Juan Lagares - CF</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">Chris Johnson - 3B</td><td class="td-first td-name">Chris Young - LF</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">Tommy La Stella - 2B</td><td class="td-first td-name">Travis d'Arnaud - C</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">C. Bethancourt - C</td><td class="td-first td-name">Ruben Tejada - SS</td></tr><tr><td class="td-last td-name">Mike Minor - LHP</td><td class="td-first td-name">D. Matsuzaka - RHP</td></tr></tbody>

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