This week, we take a look at our second "September Star" pitcher: Madison Bumgarner.
Bumgarner made only one start in 2009, but wound up getting 18 in 2010. His season was a little up-and-down by month, but he was stellar in July and September.
Let's focus on his September stat line to try and discover if he can continue his effectiveness into 2011.
The lanky left-hander's September stat line was: 2-2/1.13/1.09/32:4 in 32 innings. When looking at his ground-ball, fly-ball and line drive percentages from FanGraphs below, you'll notice his line drive percentage dropped in that final month, along with his fly ball percentage, while his ground ball percentage increased.
These tendencies were in line with his stellar month of July in which he went: 4-2/2.27/1.18/31 in 39+ innings.
What's interesting about Bumgarner is that his August wasn't too bad if his start vs. Cincinnati is removed from his line. Instead of an August of 1-1/5.29/1.76/18:10 in 32+ innings, it would be 1-1/2.77/1.65/15:9 in 29+ innings.
August saw him walk more batters while striking out less. Interestingly enough, his line drive rate was relatively high in August, which seems to be the fulcrum of Bumgarner's success. His 2010 tERA of 3.59—not too different from his 3.00 ERA—is grossly understated because of his August.
His minor league statistics show us a player who is doing what he's always done—the exception being WHIP. His minor league career WHIP is 1.06, while it's been 1.29 for the Giants.
So, what can we expect from Bumgarner in 2011? I believe if he can limit his walks and keep his line drive percentage in check, Bumgarner will be in line for a very good year. He pitched over 190 innings last season, so expect him to approach, or go over, 200 this season while accumulating plenty of stats.
My 2011 Madison Bumgarner Projection: 13-10/3.25/1.20/155
While his current ADP shows him going off the board as the No. 37 starting pitcher, I currently have Bumgarner as my No. 30. Hard to predict wins, but his peripherals show us a very good pitcher with tons of value at his current draft position.
Bumgarner is currently posting a 4.76 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 20:5 strikeout-to-walk ratio and he has served up 3 home runs in 17 spring innings.
Our final 2011 "September Star" nomination coming up: Brian Matusz.
Previous "September Stars" include:
...Jose Bautista (Intro)