Devised originally in response to a challenge issued by viscount of the internet Rob Neyer, and expanded at the request of nobody, NERD scores represent an attempt to summarize in one number (and on a scale of 0-10) the likely aesthetic appeal or watchability, for the learned fan, of a player or team or game. Read more about the components of and formulae for NERD scores here.
Most Highly Rated Game
Kansas City at Cleveland | 18:10 ET
Ventura (22.0 IP, 90 xFIP-) vs. Salazar (13.0 IP, 61 xFIP-)
This game receives a higher score than Pirates-Cubs by mere decimal points according to the author’s very proprietary and useless methodology. That Yordano Ventura has been removed from each of his last two starts, however, likely adds a layer of intrigue to this contest which widens that gap. Or if not a layer of intrigue, then a shroud of it. And if not a shroud, then perhaps a mantle. And if not a mantle, then a cloak. What one learns more than anything is that, to describe the appeal of this game, some manner of loose-fitting cloth garment is necessary. What else what one learns is that Ventura and Danny Salazar have produced the fourth-highest and absolute highest average fastball velocities, respectively, among all 145 pitchers to have thrown 10 innings as a starter.
Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Cleveland Radio.
Two Brief Notes
The purpose of this brief entry is to note that right-handed Cincinnati prospect Michael Lorenzen is expected to make his major-league debut for that club at 12:35pm ET against Milwaukee. Lorenzen was ranked second among all Reds prospects by Kiley McDaniel this offseason and 88th among all prospects by that same lead prospect analyst. Lorenezen throws quite hard and has limited walks this far this year. He lacks the strikeout numbers one might expect given his arm speed.
Regarding Today’s Free Game
Today’s free game features Chicago AL at Baltimore, starts at 2:05pm ET, and can be accessed by means of this hyperlinked text. It is also, for obvious reasons, closed to the public — suggesting that this broadcast might represent an uncommon television event.
Here’s the complete and very sortable table for all of today’s games. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and also the rest of the internet. Note that the calculations both for team and game NERD scores have changed recently to better integrate playoff odds into same. Read more about those changes here, if you’re the sort of person accustomed to making poor life decisions.
|Matt Garza||MIL||5||2||6||5||10||CIN||Michael Lorenzen*||12:35|
|Drew Smyly*||TB||8||5||8||6||10||NYA||Michael Pineda||13:05|
|Shane Greene||DET||6||4||6||1||8||MIN||Phil Hughes||13:10|
|Jeff Samardzija||CHA||6||1||5||6||6||BAL||Ubaldo Jimenez||14:05|
|Dallas Keuchel||HOU||7||10||8||4||9||SD||Andrew Cashner||15:40|
|Yord. Ventura||KC||10||7||9||6||10||CLE||Danny Salazar||18:10|
|R.A. Dickey||TOR||7||8||7||5||7||BOS||Rick Porcello||18:10|
|Bartolo Colon||NYN||8||7||6||5||4||MIA||Mat Latos||19:10|
|J. Zimmermann||WAS||3||5||3||4||3||ATL||Alex Wood||19:10|
|Gerrit Cole||PIT||10||6||9||7||9||CHN||Kyle Hendricks||20:05|
|Felix Hernandez||SEA||9||5||6||3||5||TEX||Wan. Rodriguez*||20:05|
|Aaron Harang||PHI||6||1||7||6||10||STL||Carlos Martinez||20:15|
|Jordan Lyles||COL||4||4||4||5||4||AZ||Josh Collmenter||21:40|
|Matt Shoemaker||LAA||6||5||5||5||5||OAK||Jesse Hahn||22:05|
|Ryan Vogelsong||SF||3||3||5||7||6||LAN||Zack Greinke||22:10|
* = Fewer than 10 IP, NERD at discretion of very handsome author.
Carson Cistulli has published a book of aphorisms called Spirited Ejaculations of a New Enthusiast.