Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Huston Street on the Move

The Colorado Rockies and San Diego Padres agreed to a trade that will send closer Huston Street to the San Diego Padres. For the most part I like the deal. The one downside in the deal is Street's salary. This upcoming season he's due to make $7.5 million, the Rockies will pay $1 million of that. In 2013 he's set to make $9 million dollars but there's a $500k buyout.

Since Street came up in 2005 he's totaled 10 WAR, averaging 1.67 WAR per season. His ERA-/FIP-/xFIP- since he's come up is 71/72/80.  This past season he should have been better then his ERA- and FIP- suggest. This year they were 92/91 but his xFIP- was 81 so he should expect a bounce back year. The statistic SIERA (situational ERA) likes him even better, it was 2.94. Much of this can be contributed to him pitching at Coors which is known to hurt pitchers. One indication of this is if you look at the spike in his HR/9 since he came to Coors. Previously he gave up .9/9 in 2007 when he was still with the A's. This past season he gave up 1.54 HR/9, his highest of his career.

For his career he's always had an above average strikeout percentage as well as an above average walk percentage. I see no reason why that should change next year at PETCO.

Contract wise Street shouldn't have a problem giving the Padres a return on their investment. He's due to make $7.5 million this season so he needs to get roughly 1.75 WAR, something he shouldn't have a problem doing. In 2013 he's due to make $9 million meaning he'd have to get 2 WAR, again something he should be able to achieve especially since he's going to PETCO. If he isn't that good the Padres can always cut him.

Finally, he is already joining a solid bullpen. With Heath Bell and Mike Adams gone, the three other relievers who pitched at least 40 innings last year averaged a 3.53 FIP, which is very solid. With Street coming it should be even better. If he isn't what the Padres imagined they can also trade him at the deadline before or during the end of July.


  1. Your lesson today: park factors. You know how the raw stats are affected by the park, but not the value stats. If the replacement level ERA/FIP is 5.00 and PETCO decreases runs scored by 10%, then a Padre pitcher has to be below a 4.50 ERA/FIP to have a positive WAR. Also, 2 WAR for a reliever is tough. He hasn't done it since 2006, so he's unlikely to live up to his contract terms, even when considering the million the Rockies are sending over.

  2. Ahh, thanks for clearing that up! Do you know of a book that talks about Park Factors?

  3. The Fangraphs glossary has a page on park factors, where there are a couple links about their derivation.