The eleventh in an alphabetical and irregularly updated series of seasons-in-review for each of the players we predicted last winter. (All entries are linked in the right-hand sidebar, below the LL Exclusives.)
LL Community: 4.60 FIP (n=9)
Bill James Handbook: 4.66
Actual: 5.00 (4.88 xFIP)
Kudos to PECOTA (which took a stab in the dark), ZiPS, and Marcel on this one. LL came in last, for a few possible reasons: (1) small sample size, (2) belief that his 2005 4.58 was repeatable, or (3) underestimation of the difference that Moyer constantly has between his FIP and his ERA. Moyer's been outpitching his peripherals for so long that he's clearly an outlier, an exception to the rule that the amount of runs a pitcher allows is proportional to his walks, strikeouts, and homers. This from a guy whose repertoire leaves more to be desired than freezer taquitos. As a result, things like FIP and xFIP and PERA and STUFF mean little, because they just don't tell enough of the story. Should've gone with ERA for the community projections here, but it's too late now. Oh well.
I don't have a single bad thing to say about Jamie Moyer. I don't have anything new to say about him either, which is why this is a short post. Jamie's one of the best players and one of the best people in the history of the organization, a pleasure to have and a privilege to watch. His drive to succeed as an individual is exceeded only by his drive to win as part of a team, and it's a shame the Mariners never got him the ring he so badly deserves. 44 in a week and a half, Jamie's been steady for a decade, rarely missing a start and throwing more innings in one year than Gil Meche does in three. He just signed a two-year extension with Philly, which seems unusual, but if nothing else he's earned the right over the years to say when he's through, and clearly he doesn't think he's close to that point. And who are we to say if he is or isn't? People were ready to write him off after a miserable 2000, but here we are six years later, and he's still just as good as he's ever been. The guy's just a marvel in every sense of the word.
Jamie Moyer is the embodiment of what's good in baseball, and his departure last August signaled the end of an era for baseball in Seattle. Needless to say, he will be missed, as much for being Jamie Moyer the pitcher as for being Jamie Moyer the man. The Mariners will never have another guy like that for as long as they exist.