There is a White House petition to ban the pitcher win statistic

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MLB Network’s Brian Kenny is an interesting person to follow on Twitter. He has a pet cause symbolized by the hashtag #KillTheWin. The intent is to show the various ways in which the pitcher win statistic is flawed. It has the double-sided benefit of educating less-stat-savvy fans and providing humor to those in the know. An example:

Perhaps motivated by Kenny, someone took the time to go on the White House website to create a petition to ban the use of the win statistic via an executive order.

The petition says:

The win is an ineffective tool in pitcher evaluation, far outliving its usefulness as pitchers no longer pitch complete games. Focusing on wins as a method of pitcher effectiveness gives a distorted and inaccurate picture:

1. Pitchers can perform well and receive a loss or no decision through lack of run support or poor team defense

2. Pitchers can perform at a subpar level and receive a win if their team has excellent offense

3. Relief pitchers can record just one out and receive credit for a win.

Eliminate the win and develop more effective statistics to measure pitcher performance.

As of this writing, it has 56 of 100,000 signatures needed by September 30. Not that anything would actually happen if it got to 100,000 anyway. But it’s a funny little gag.

Phillies sign Francisco Liriano and Neil Walker to minor league deals

Francisco Liriano
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
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Robert Murray and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported earlier, respectively, that the Phillies signed pitcher Francisco Liriano and infielder Neil Walker to minor league contracts. If he makes the major league roster, Liriano will earn a salary of $1.5 million with an additional $1.25 million available through performance incentives. Walker’s contract information is not yet known.

Liriano, 36, struggled from 2016-18 but enjoyed a productive year out of the bullpen for the Pirates this past season. He posted a 3.47 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 35 walks over 70 innings. The lefty was quite effective against same-handed batters, limiting fellow lefties to a .659 OPS. That would figure to be a key component if Liriano makes the Phillies’ Opening Day roster.

Walker, 34, hit .261/.344/.395 with eight home runs and 38 RBI over 381 plate appearances with the Marlins last year. The veteran is versastile, having played first, second, and third base along with both corner outfield spots in recent seasons. Despite Walker’s versatility, it is tough to see room on the Phillies’ roster for him, barring injuries to other players. It never hurts to have depth.