Improving Starting Pitching Performance

Ask any Strat player what they want more than anything else, a majority will say it's getting good production from the starting rotation. You can't win if your starters can't make it into the late innings. You can't win if your starters can't keep the opponents from scoring too many runs.

When you think about it, division or league titles are won by just a few wins. Titles are always in play during the last interval of regular season play. A win or two, here and there, can impact a league beyond belief. What matters is that your team wins and your pitchers get the job done.

Starting pitcher cards are affected by four components.
1. The player's own card.
2. The hitting and defensive abilities of his teammates.
3. The card value of the player's opponent.
4. Managerial choices for bullpen usage.

Trading one pitching card for another is an answer though it is not necessarily so that it is the right one. The best pitcher in the card set is going to have problems if the defense has poor range and error ratings. The best pitcher isn't going to give you many wins if your team doesn't score any runs.

Common sense tells us that great pitcher cards perform better than average or poor ones. Strat-O-Matic is also set up in such a way that you can take the average or poor card and minimize its risk factor. Using ballparks favorable for pitchers and good range ratings to help the lower-tier pitchers.

When you're starters aren't performing well, try looking at the offensive side of the coin. Teams that score runs will improve even the poorest of pitching staffs.

Set your rotation to impact the schedule. Put your best pitchers in games that you think you can win. Don't schedule a pitcher with a load of diamonds in a road game against a team at Coors Field. Use these pitchers for road games in parks where the ballpark effects aren't going to hurt them.

Finally, a huge portion of your success comes down to you. Your choice of a starting pitcher is just as important as your choice of relief pitchers. Good relievers protect leads and save games. You can't expect much success from your starters if your bullpen is constantly blowing games. Usually, two or three relievers will collect the majority of wins for a bullpen. They are rarely spread out over the entire bullpen. Without good relievers, pitchers who can get you one or two extra quality innings in a game, your team is going to have a much more difficult time winning.