Friday, October 21, 2011

A Few Good Men: 9 - Hernandez

It's week two of our journey to 44 player reviews covering each and every player that graced NatsTown's presence this past season. We will continue to tweak the process based on your comments, so keep those going.

Livan Hernandez - Age 36

How he became a Nat: Signed as a free agent back in August of 2009.

The Raw Numbers:
Record - 8-13
ERA - 4.39
FIP - 4.38
WHIP - 1.44
K/9 - 5.56 (his highest since 2004)
WAR - 1.9

Key Stat: 66.4 MPH. This is the average speed of Livo's curveball from this past year - shockingly not the slowest of his career. It was however the slowest pitch of any type in all of Major League Baseball. Livo's cartoonish eephus pitch kept even the most feared hitter guessing.

Best Game: Without question - June 15th vs the Cardinals - also one of the Nats best games of the year. Livan Hernandez went the distance of a Nats 10-0 win against the future NL Champions, allowing only three hits on the night. He struck out 6 batters and didn't walk a soul.

Worst Game: August 6th at Coors Field. Livan didn't even make it to the end of the 4th inning, pulled after 3.2 IP. He allowed 9 hits and 7 earned runs in a game the Nats lost 15-7. It was both his shortest outing of the year and his most runs allowed of the year.

CapBall Grade: B. This is probably a generous grade for a pitcher with a +4 ERA, but Livan helped the team in more ways than just his on the field performance; let it be known though that he had the 2nd highest pitching WAR of anyone on the team. In September, Livo stepped aside for the good of the team, giving management a chance to see Milone and Peacock in some live MLB-Action. In my mind that deserves some extra credit.

2012 Nats Status: Strangely, Livan has some sort of attachment to the city of Washington and he is on record saying that he would come back to the Nats as a reliever if that's the only way he could come back - specifically saying that he wouldn't give that offer to any other team. I have flipped back and forth of my own opinion as to whether or not I would like to see him back in a curly-W, but despite what my own opinion is I don't see him back next year. Rizzo wanting to keep the team younger coupled with the emergence of Craig Stammen as a solid long-relief option will leave Livan as the odd man out.

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