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Game Scores: A.J. Burnett

Mood Music - Fire by Jimi Hendrix

If you aren't familiar with Game Score (link):

  1. Start with 50 points.
  2. Add 1 point for each out recorded, so 3 points for every complete inning pitched.
  3. Add 2 points for each inning completed after the 4th.
  4. Add 1 point for each strikeout.
  5. Subtract 2 points for each hit allowed.
  6. Subtract 4 points for each earned run allowed.
  7. Subtract 2 points for each unearned run allowed.
  8. Subtract 1 point for each walk.

Thus, you can calculate a numerical estimate of the quality of a pitcher's start, with 50 being average, anything above 70 being excellent, and anything below 30 being a shelling.  A.J. Burnett has earned the reputation of being hot and cold, so let's take a look at his game scores over the past two seasons:

As you can see, while A.J. has been throwing above average starts at about the same frequency, the real difference between this season and last season is that he has really cut down on his clunkers.  He got knocked around twice, once each by the Red Sox and Rays, but other than that, he has kept the Yankees in the game every time he has taken the mound.

It might not be worth $16.5MM, but I'm certainly not missing the two-inning eight-run disasters.