J_C_Steel wrote:
I understand that starters began working less innings over the last 20 years or so, Bucfan, and I understand that created more opportunities for saves to be blown, but how would that effect the overall percentage (as opposed to gross numbers)? In fact, if LOOGYs are effective, shouldn't it reduce the blown save percentage?
No, it should not. The set-up guys have the opportunity to "blow" saves, but not the opportunity to actually earn a save.
The new approach thereby increases the number of pitchers who are put into a save situation, but can never increase the number who successfully earn a save, since that always remains a static number - 1.
Look at it this way. The save percentage overall is simply a product of adding the save percentage for each game together. The save percentage for each game is this:
x/1, where "x" is the number of pitchers brought into the game in a save situation. If that number is "1," then the chances of blowing a save are as low as possible.
If that number is 4, then the chances of blowing the save become increased substantially since now not 1 or 2 pitchers have to do their job successfully, but ALL FOUR have to do the job.
Therefore, when the Pirates use Justin Wilson, and Jared Hughes, and Marc Melancon, and Jason Grilli to close out the game, and all succeed, only one player is actually credited with the save.
If any one of those four pitchers gives up the lead, "blown save" is credited. The blown save is skewed by the fact that so many pitchers are now put into "save situations" in the 6th inning and later, while the number of successful conversions remains constant.
Further, if the pen is given a 1-run lead in the 6th inning, and a RP'er gives up a run in the 8th that ties the game, the team then comes back to get the lead the and closer does his job, the "save percentage" for that game is just 50%. Again, this is due to the greater number of set-up guys used now by all managers, following the template that Larussa created.