This is from Paul Daugherty on Cincinnati.com. He's using some interesting statistics about Rivera as evidence that Aroldis Chapman would help the Reds more as a starter than closer. Whether you agree with that or not (or even care), these things are from an angle I hadnt considered before. How big an impact did Rivera REALLY have in the all important one run save? The kind pitchers like him are paid to convert? Cue yelling Yankees fans in 3, 2, 1..........GO!
"Chapman will get far more starts than he would appearances in one-run, ninth-inning save situations.
Still not sold? A stat from my pal Joe Posnanski:
During his career, Mariano Rivera converted 140 of 158 one-run save chances, in the ninth inning. That’s a conversion percentage of .886. During the 2000s, according to Baseball Prospectus, the major league average was .848.
Posnanski writes, “The average team with that lead would have been expected to hold the lead in 134 of those 158 games. With Mariano, the Yankees held the lead six more times over 16 seasons.’’
Roll that around in your seam head. The greatest reliever in history, the Muhammad Ali of closers, directly accounted for six more Ws than the major-league norm. In 16 seasons. For a team that was winning a lot of games in those 16 years."