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Credit Where Credit's Due

I was thinking of turning this into a lengthy post of its own on here, but Matthew beat me to the punch over at Fangraphs, so I'll just send you guys there. Remember a little while ago when we were talking about Jarrod Washburn's statistical improvement in 2009? This came up in that comment thread, but fresh from Matthew's post, here's some updated data:

SwStr% vs LHB
2009: 14.9
2007-8: 8.5

Washburn's rate of missed lefty bats has increased by three-quarters from where it was in 2007-2008. Three-quarters, with the end result being 26 strikeouts and 3 walks over 82 plate appearances. Somebody's throwing better stuff. When you're able to so totally neutralize such a significant fraction of the batters you're facing, you'll be hard-pressed to allow that many runs.

Major kudos to Jarrod Washburn for taking steps to turn the course of his career around at 34. I don't really care for him, and I can't imagine that 26/3 represents his new true talent level K/BB against left-handed hitters, but you don't see a whole lot of guys his age suddenly figure out how to be a better pitcher, so Jarrod deserves plenty of credit. This is pretty impressive.