2016 by the numbers: Pitching


Highest starting pitching grade of 17

Last night, I posted some breakdown number on defense from the new set. It’s time for the second in our 2016: by the numbers series which deals with pitching.

The big stories?  There are no A&C or A&B pitchers.  Two of the highest graded pitchers, Rich Hill and Clayton Kershaw, on the same team.  Yet, the Cubs seem to get the edge overall.

By the way, the disk uses pitching grades similar to the Master Game.  For those that don’t play the MG, here is a reference that might help:

MG grade BG grade
1-4 D
5-9 C
10-14 B
15-19 A
20-24 A&C
25+ A&B

Let’s get started with some general distribution breakdowns starting with starting pitching.  There were no A&C (or A&B) starters in the 2016 APBA set.

Starter Grades Distribution
A&B 0
A&C 0
A 7
B 45
C 82
D 87


There were seven A starters though.  Here they are.  You know, I drafted Rich Hill in the Illowa APBA League as a Cub rookie way back when.  I had since released him.  Who knew?

Starter Grade
Rich Hill 17
Clayton Kershaw 17
J.A. Happ 16
Kyle Hendricks 16
Jon Lester 16
Rick Porcello 16
Max Scherzer 15


Here is how the relievers break down.  By the way, split grade pitchers are counted twice as far as this informal process is concerned.

Reliever Grades Distribution
A&B* 2
A&C* 9
A* 40
B* 86
C* 80
D* 49


Zach Britton and Cam Bedrosian are among the elite with an A&B grade in 2016.  They are joined by nine A&C relievers.

Reliever Grade
Zach Britton 28
Cam Bedrosian 25
Donnie Hart 24
Aroldis Chapman 23
Andrew Miller 23


Taking a look at the control rating distribution among the set.  FYI… the ZZ rating does not reveal itself in the disk so we have no idea who has that yet.

Control ratings Distribution
W 99
Z 140


Like the ZZ rating, the K and R rating are unbeknownst to us via the disk.  Still, he are the X, Y and the XY strikeout ratings and how they play out among the set.

Strikeout ratings Distribution
X 96
Y 117
XY 84


I know many of you play the Master Game so I thought I would work with the HR ratings…

MG HR ratings Distribution
L 92
M  19
G 104
H 34


I’ve always found A pitchers with no strikeout or control letters to be somewhat of an oddity.  Turns out there were only three in this set, all relievers.

A* “plain” pitchers Team
Donnie Hart BAL
Jeremy Jeffress TEX
George Kontos SF


So which team had the best three starters based strictly on grade?  It was close.  Appropriately, the Cubs win out with two As and a very high B.

Pitcher Team Grade
Kyle Hendricks CHC 16
Jon Lester CHC 16
Jake Arrieta CHC 14


The Los Angeles Dodgers who made the postseason were very close. They also had two As with a slightly lower graded B pitcher.  Of course, Hill is slightly limited and didn’t play for LA for much of the season.

Pitcher Team Grade
Rich Hill LAD 17
Clayton Kershaw LAD 17
Kenta Maeda LAD 11


Finally, which team had the best bullpen? There were some good ones out there but alphabetically, I had to go all the way to the end to get to the best one.  No team could really touch Washington’s five A (or better) relievers.

Pitcher Team Grade
Mark Melancon WAS 22*
Matt Belisle WAS 17*
Sammy Solis WAS 17*
Blake Treinen WAS 17*
Marc Rzepczynski WAS 16*


The Texas Rangers came close with four A* pitchers.

Two down and I’ve got Hitting up next.  That’s always a fun one.  Don’t change that dial!

photo credit

Thomas Nelshoppen

I am an IT consultant by day and an APBA media mogul by night. My passions are baseball (specifically Illini baseball), photography and of course, APBA. I have been fortunate to be part of the basic game Illowa APBA League since 1980 as well as the BBW Boys of Summer APBA League since 2014. I am slogging through a 1966 NL replay and hope to finish before I die.


  1. Nice job Tom. Always enjoy reading your articles

  2. “Zach Britton and Cam Britton?”

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