Detroit Tigers: Take a Sad Stat and Make It Better
Spencer Turnbull Average Walk Rate
Walks have been Spencer Turnbull’s Achilles’ heel this year — he has the 2nd highest walk rate of any starter in baseball at 15.1%. So what happens if we drop it to 8.3%, the league average for starting pitchers?
First, it would drop Turnbull’s walk totals from 23 to 13. If we use the linear weight walk value this drop instantly saves Turnbull 5.5 runs. We could also use real-world numbers, like this:
At that rate, a drop of 10 walks means a savings of 6-7 runs for Turnbull. But, we do need to consider what happens with those 10 former walks. At Turnbull’s current rates, 10 fewer walks would also mean 2 more strikeouts and probably 2 more hits. We’ll call one hit a single and one a double, so we have to add 1.7 more runs back on his ledger. Still, a league average walk rate would save Turnbull 4-5 runs, lowering his ERA from 3.90 to 2.86 or 2.60. Strikes are cool.