Erasmo Ramirez 9.30.12 - the Offseason Crunch
So he turned out to be Doug Fister, pretty much


Q.  Where is he going into the offseason?

A.  Erasmo Ramirez, if he qualified, would rank in the AL's top 10 for ERA, FIP, and xFIP.  That's because few pitchers fan 7 men per game and walk 2, not unless they're giving in like Colby Lewis does, and coughing up a ton of homers.  If you've been watching a ballgame now and then, you're not encumbered by the hackneyed "small sample size" cliche here.  Erasmo does not, and will not, walk batters, end of story.  And he's got dangerous weapons.  He can and does finish off 2-strike counts - against anybody.

Let's call this the 7K, 2BB template.  Precision pitchers, totally reliable command on a game-in game-out basis.  Who are not overwhelming, but who are dangerous enough to put hitters away and embarrass them.

AL starters in this category include Dan Haren, Jered Weaver, Jake Peavy, Doug Fister, Erasmo Ramirez and Hiroki Kuroda.  That's it.  Roy Oswalt when he's right; you could argue Colby Lewis though I wouldn't, because the rising gopheritis and fading precision are worrying.  Troy Patton of the Orioles is coming on and will be a huge roto sleeper in 2013.  

Erasmo has not certified himself as a Dan Haren or Roy Oswalt, yet.  That's an important fact.  And it's the only thing separating him from those other guys:  having sustained it over 300+ innings.

It's not a given that Erasmo can handle 200 innings, not by a long shot.  And the same goes for Mr. WBC-san.  Jason Vargas doesn't grow on trees.


Q.  Fister y'say?

A.  Around the 5th inning Sunday, the tired (?) Erasmo sailed three or four real sloppy 90 MPH fastballs high and armside.  Disgusted, he shook his head, mashed the re-set button and ... came back with 8 strikes in a row.  Blowers aptly pointed out that there are a lot of young pitchers who don't fight through that so quickly.  Ramirez' makeup is, as Gordon has always said, Fister-like.  You don't have to sweat Ramirez' composure out there, at any time.


Dr. D was jazzed to see a 4th pitch on Sunday, also.  Ramirez threw 6-8 really sharp 75-77 MPH curveballs, power curves rolling straight down off the top of the table and IIRC the A's were locked up on all of them.  ... One lefty, he started with a 76 MPH overhand curve and .... came back with a changeup for 0-2.  A changeup after a change curve?!

Fister used his glorious mechanics and hard wrist snap to add pitch after pitch and now he throws 39 different identifiable pitches.  Erasmo, Sunday, showed flashes of doing exactly that.  ... and as he started mixing in his change curve, he got onto a roll wherein 13 consecutive A's hit only one ball out of the infield.

Fister didn't start off dominating.  Over the period 2009-2011, he was a snowball rolling downhill.  Eventually he took out the ski lodge.


Doug Fister will always have angles that Erasmo doesn't, and Fister has that "hidden velocity" based on the close release point.  Ramirez will never have those things.  But on the other hand, Ramirez has more juice in the arm.  He's comfortable at 93-95 MPH, whereas Fister labored at 88-90 MPH for quite a while.

I'd rather have Doug Fister than Erasmo Ramirez, but Erasmo is the next best thing in the AL right now.  That's how roto championships are won:  your rival takes Dan Haren in the 3rd round and you take Erasmo in the 8th.

Yeah, Erasmo turned out to be Fister, pretty much.  


Dr D



I'm not too focused on Erasmo avoiding walks, "8 strikes in a row" isn't always a good thing. It seems like every pitcher who comes up with the 1.5 BB/9 control ultimately ends up with Carlos Silva syndrome. What Erasmo does well - perhaps as good as any SP in the AL - is change speeds and locate his pitches. He's a finesse pitcher, except with a 93-95 MPH fastball. Batters need to be guess hitters against him, there's no alternative. When you're "too precise", the guessing game becomes a step easier for the opposition.

wily mo's picture

rather enjoying the erasmo updates, but commenting to say i'm fascinated by the troy patton name-drop. he used to be a reasonably prominent SP prospect, years ago, but he's been a reliever for a while now and i haven't heard much chatter that that's liable to change before now. the orioles are going to have a bit of a crowd in their rotation situation for next year - you start with chen, hammel, tillman, probably britton, then you've got quite a jumble towards the back - arrieta, the tattered remnants of brian matusz, wada coming back from tommy john, these "miguel gonzalez" and "steve johnson" characters, and lurking in the shadows just behind that lot of course is dylan bundy. hard to see patton shoving his way through that crowd, particularly in a world where lefty relievers are so beloved and he's now been registered as one. but if you're going to casually throw his name into this kind of company i'm curious what you've seen.

wily mo's picture

or did you MEAN britton, not patton. that would make more sense


Britton has allowed 32 BB in 59.1 IP. Guessing he was not the intended pitcher.


Named for the sake of completeness.  You're right - it's hard to see him being given much of a chance to start in 2012, given his competition.  Justin would know how feasible that is or isn't.
Patton right now is running 8+ strikeouts, 1+ walks, with no gopheritis.  (Granted he's probably gone against a disproportionate number of lefty batters.)
He does so based on 3.5 separate pitches, each one of which has a run value of 0.47 per 100 or greater.  (The slider is 82, the curve 77, but I can't tell whether he's just taking something off the curve.)
His lefty delivery is funky, sort of unbalanced, sidearm, and Furbush-y without much drive down the centerline, but he is far more reasonable in his funk than Furbush is -- and his level of relaxation on the mound is John Halama-like.
Patton is the kind of "dime a dozen lefty" that Zduriencik chases to the four corners of the earth -- Leutge, French, Olson, Vasquez, etc -- except Patton is the one in this group who could, IMHO, probably kick tail and take names in an ML rotation.  His curve and change are obviously very hard to see out of his hand, and hitters take garbage swings at 90 MPH fastballs way outside the zone.  Think George Sherrill with long arms and a Dustin Ackley personality.
Patton's been a starter in the minors, and has been up as a lefty out of the bullpen, spot starter type, a la Garret Olson when he was here.
Troy Patton didn't deserve to be named with Dan Haren and Hiroki Kuroda :- ) due to opportunity and due to the fact that his success in a rotation isn't as much a given as Erasmo's is.  But if I were Jay-Z I'd give up serious talent for him.
Would love to see Patton get a chance to start 25 games.  


Not many worries there with Erasmo I don't think Justin.  That was *originally* his Achilles' heel the first go-round -- over-challenging with the heater, out and over.  He came back with a sense of danger.
Agreed 100% on the general issue of throwing too many strikes.  We mention the 8 strikes in a row just as an illustration of correcting mechanics on-the-fly during an ML game.  IIRC the 8 strikes were mostly offspeed pitches, which if correct is another tip of the cap for Montero.
Team CERA's, as we wrap up the season:
Olivo - 3.87
Montero - 3.85
Jaso - 3.47 (a large % of which are Felix games)
There are things you can infer from that, and things you can't.  One thing you CAN infer is that Miguel Olivo is NOT miles ahead of the other two when it comes to managing pitchers.  Even if he were in theory, it did not affect anything that occurred in the ballpark in 2012.  Unless maybe you're talking about the development of Erasmo or Beavan, and that's a stretch, too.


In the past, this is the sort of thing (i.e. of personal interest not germane to the point of this post/blog/community) I would have asked Jeff directly, but the email/messenger function seems to have disappeared & my curiosity compels me to risk annoying others/appearing a complete twit. About that photo:
1) Is it a photoshop/composite or is that slide really that close to town? That is one impressive avalanche, especially that close to an settlement (given how things tend to not stay if built in or near slide zones) & is all the more surprising because the slopes appear too steep to allow accumulations that would produce such a large release.
2) Is that Telluride? It looks to be a North American (at the 99% confidence level) mining town in the Rockies (at the 95% CL, mountains look too sheer for the volcanic ranges) and I can’t think of any that close to similar mountains in WY or MT, so I’m guessing CO, UT, BC or AB & am only coming up with Telluride (it looks to me a lot like Leadville but that’s not close enough to the mountains), but neither the mountains nor the buildings look right.
Thanks for humoring the off-topic question, but my curiosity burns so very bright.

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