Minnesota sports and their fans are used to flying under the radar and being disrespected by the national media. It always pisses us off when it happens but here we are again. This time, it is MLB.com disrespecting two Minnesota Twins pitchers in the weekly Pitcher Power Rankings, which included 18 pitchers this week, none of which were named Kenta Maeda or Randy Dobnak.
Sure, you might not think either of these Twins pitchers are leading the Cy Young race, but it’s an abomination that neither was included in an 18-pitcher power ranking. Maybe it is time to consider the long-term effects of working from home on these media members…
No Maeda or Dobnak in the Top 18. Those voting must not be paying attention to the Twins all too much. https://t.co/7NTBKmzN4w— Jack Kewitsch (@JackKewitsch) August 20, 2020
When you read the list initially, the names you see aren’t shocking. Shane Bieber, Jacob DeGrom, Gerrit Cole, and Trevor Bauer all deservedly grace the top ten. Still, Maeda and Dobnak have been two of the best pitchers this season… so I decided to do some digging.
Stats Don’t Lie
The first thing to do was make a list of the stats to look into. While it wasn’t tricky, the stats selected had to be relatively all encompassing. This list doesn’t include everything (because Eric says nobody cares about the stats that have upper and lower-case letters in their abbreviations), such as xBA, xSLG, or Barrel%, but this list is comprehensive enough to prove my point (which is all I really care about).
Can’t Get No Respect
Looking solely at where Randy Dobnak and Kenta Maeda land on these lists, you get a good sense of the disrespect level. Out of all the statistical categories in the above charts, Maeda’s average rank MLB-wide is 6.77. Dobnak’s average rank is 10.08. This isn’t the most scientific way of measuring a pitcher’s impact, but it certainly shows both Maeda and Dobnak should be mentioned in a Power Ranking that includes 18 of the best pitchers.
What is even more interesting is that Cole and DeGrom, who placed second and third on the MLB.com ranking, place in between Maeda and Dobnak in this breakdown. This shows that the writers voting on these lists are just as bad as the BBWAA.
Shake My Damn Head
Again, this isn’t an absolutely comprehensive list. Yet when you look at how Randy Dobnak and Kenta Maeda have carried the Twins, their omission is criminal. Maeda being left out is the worst of all. He ranks in the top five for seven of the categories listed above and lands in the six to ten range for six more! Remember, we are talking about an 18-pitcher power ranking that left Maeda out…
Leaving Dobnak off the list is more palatable than Maeda but he still should have made the cut… or, at the least, been included as an honorable mention. He is still a rookie, no less. With how these two have played, the lack of recognition is sickening. Minnesota sports fans should not stand for this type of milquetoast content. Demand and expect better. Sure, power rankings are subjective and utilized to drive content, but people need to incorporate more research before spewing their half-baked responses.
Kenta Maeda should be in the current conversation to be the Cy Young winner and Randy Dobnak should be considered a Rookie of the Year frontrunner. If they continue their torrid paces and don’t get consideration, it shows you all you need to know about what the rest of the country thinks about Minnesota sports.
Jack Kewitsch | Minnesota Sports Fan