The bullpen seems to have the thickest cloud of impending doom hanging over it and I was curious how our group fairs against the rest of the league.
Most of the numbers so far aren't that bad. They certainly aren't great, but they are in the top ten for ERA, Batting Average Against, OPS against, and Strikeouts per nine innings.
The concerning number is the Strikeout to Walk ratio. That is the one stat where they are awful, and that is going to have to change going forward or some of the other peripheral numbers are going to start heading south as well.
Granted, the season is only ten games old and these stats are capable of changing wildly with every game played, but overall, I was pleasantly surprised at how much worse things could be in the bullpen
The other aspect I looked at was how much work we are asking an average/above average bullpen to get done. The Cubs bullpen has pitched 33 innings which puts them right in the middle of the pack, tied for 16th most with the Mets.
So, our starters haven't abused the bullpen, but our starters are supposed to be the strength of this team. We are asking a group of guys who are mostly failed starters, failed closers, or kids with no experience to do a lot of the heavy lifting in the 6th and 7th innings where the starters should still be pitching.
That is simply asking for trouble and we pay our starting rotation too much to constantly leave games in the hands of someone like Angel Guzman, Neal Cotts, or Aaron Heilman.