Glen Perkins, stat-head closer

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Parker Hageman at Twins Daily has an excellent article about Twins left-hander Glen Perkins, who went from injured, mediocre starter to excellent late-inning reliever and now full-time closer.

Perkins talked about how he started getting into sabermetrics when he was hurt in 2010 and has embraced statistical analysis ever since:

I didn’t get into any advanced stats until 2010 when I was in Triple-A and struggling. It was a combination of [Ryan] Vogelsong and when Brandon McCarthy came back and I started to hear about those guys who were injured or unsuccessful and then they adjusted their pitch selections and focused doing different things. That got me thinking, maybe it’s something I should do.

Since then Perkins has 132 innings with a 2.52 ERA and recently signed a $12 million contract.

There’s also some interesting stuff from Perkins about the unreliability of Pitchf/x classifying his pitches and whether or not he believes the numbers when they show he’s getting squeezed by umpires. Definitely worth checking out the whole article. Good stuff.

Jackie Bradley, Jr. named ALCS MVP

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Red Sox outfielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. was named the Most Valuable Player of the American League Championship Series after his club punched its ticket to the World Series on Thursday night against the Astros.

Coincidentally, the Astros’ Game 5 starter Justin Verlander was ALCS MVP last year en route to a championship.

Bradley went 0-for-3 with a walk in Thursday’s Game 5, but he hit a three-run double in Game 2, a grand slam in Game 3, and a go-ahead two-run home run in Game 4. That’s nine RBI and three extra-base hits across five games. He also drew four walks.

Though Bradley had a solid regular season, he was not near the top of the list most people would’ve expected to win ALCS MVP heading into the series. During the season, he hit .234/.314/.403 with 13 home runs, 59 RBI, 76 runs scored, and 17 stolen bases in 535 plate appearances.