Dan Haren Player Projection No. 41

Key Stats: After a disappointing fantasy season in 2010, Dan Haren bounced back last year. In 2010, Haren had 13 quality starts that resulted in either no decisions or losses. Last year he was still somewhat unlucky as he had 10 quality starts without getting a win out of the deal, but that’s pretty much the difference between a 12-win season in 2010 and a 16-win season in 2011. He also continued to enjoy the benefits of pitching in pitcher-friendly Angel Stadium where he was great for the 94 innings he had there in 2010. His 1.02 WHIP showed that he is still at the top of his game.

Skeptics Say: Haren got worse in the second half again last season. The difference between his pre and post all-star ERA in his career is 0.86 and the difference in his WHIP is 0.19. In five out of the last six years his ERA has been more than a run worse in the second half. Haren is clearly a player worth trading sometime in late June or early July if there’s an owner that doesn’t believe in or care about this detail. I am a Haren owner and a believer that this is not coincidence.

 

Peer Comparison: Haren’s teammate with the Angels Jered Weaver has finished each of the last two seasons in the top twenty of the overall player rater at Yahoo. Not surprisingly Weaver is ranked ahead of Haren at CBS, Yahoo, ESPN, and in this player countdown. If you look at the numbers though, a case can certainly be made to place Haren ahead of Weaver. The numbers would have you know that Weaver was a bit luckier than Haren last season:

Player

ERA

FIP

LOB%

WAR

WHIP

Weaver

2.41

3.20

82.6

5.6

1.01

Haren

3.17

2.98

71.5

6.4

1.02

It’s close and the wall is caving in on Weaver who saw his K/9 drop by almost 2 strikeouts per 9 innings. Given that the two have the same fielders behind the ERA and FIP gap should close significantly in 2012. I wouldn’t at all be surprised to see Haren out for Game 1 of a potential playoff series.

Team Outlook: Did someone say playoffs? Yes, Jim Mora, someone said playoffs. After watching the divisional rival Rangers play in the World Series the last two seasons Arte Moreno said enough is enough. The impact of Albert Pujols to a lineup that did not have a player drive in 90 runs, hit 30 home runs, or hit .290 is of course enormous. Haren has a club option for 2013, so what the Pujols deal means for Haren owners is that there is basically zero chance that he gets traded since the Angels will be competitive and he will also be pitching with team motivation all the way through September.

What They’re Saying: CBS Sportsline: #11 Starting Pitcher; Tristan Cockcroft of ESPN.com: #9 Starting Pitcher & #32 Overall; Yahoo: #11 Starting Pitcher & #43 Overall; Mock Draft Central ADP: #10 Starting Pitcher & #61 Overall; RotoChamp: #62 Overall

Projection: At a position where health is often the biggest concern, it’s nice to have a player that has never been placed on the DL and has been in the top twelve in baseball in innings pitched six seasons in a row
18 wins 3.19 ERA 1.07 WHIP 190 K in 230 innings