Yanks open with a win, 9-5By
The consensus is that Carl Pavano didn’t pitch too poorly, and I tend to agree with that, though WPA does not. He ended up with -.222 for the game, meaning he took the Yankees 20 percent further away from a win. The Upton single in the second hurt a bit, costing him .115. This is where WPA gets very tough, though; I had already debited Jeter for the error that allowed Iwamura to reach base. Do I further debit him for the run he eventually scored?
The Dukes homer cost him another .103, though the Baldelli single was his worst pitch of the day, putting him a further .128 in the hole.
The Yanks picked him up later, though. The biggest gain of the game was — big surprise — Jeter’s two-run single to tie the game (.189). Giambi singling home Alex to take the lead was .118, and that was all the Yanks would need. For sealing the game, Abreu and Alex received .059 and .037, respectively.
Farnsworth headed up the pitching end of the WPA, racking up a total of .120 (it’s easy to calculate relievers). For Vizcaino’s effortless outing, he was credited .089.
A regular features with the WPA graphs last year was a table listing each player’s contribution for the game. Unfortunately, it is just not going to happen this year. I’ve had to switch from the excellent spreadsheet that Dave Studeman from Baseball Graphs and The Hardball Times created to Walk Off Bunt’s WPA calculator. Scoring the game isn’t a ton harder (a few formulas in Excel does the trick), but I’m not nearly advanced enough to have everything sorted by player. If I find someone with the know-how and the time to develop a simple Excel program to help me out, maybe they’ll return. But for now, we’ll just go with the biggest plays of the game and other little tidbits.