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Lesser Brewers: Randy Wolf

Randy Wolf helped fill some innings for the Brewers, but couldn't repeat the effectiveness that he had in 2011.

Mike McGinnis

PROGRAMMING NOTE: The Frosty Mug is taking a day off. It will return on Monday.

MVBrewers is a player-by-player look at the most valuable members of the 2012 Brewers, as voted on by you. Here's our top ten:

1. Ryan Braun
2. Aramis Ramirez
3. Yovani Gallardo
4. Corey Hart
5. Norichika Aoki
6. Jonathan Lucroy
7. Carlos Gomez
8. Zack Greinke

9. Marco Estrada
10: Mike Fiers

Honorable Mentions: Martin Maldonado, Rickie Weeks, Jim Henderson, Mark Rogers, Shaun Marcum, Wily Peralta, Jean Segura, Jose Veras, John Axford, Francisco Rodriguez

Lesser Brewers: Nyjer Morgan, Travis Ishikawa, George Kottaras, Randy Wolf

The series now continues with Lesser Brewers, to cover some of the remaining Brewers that we have not covered so far. This is the fourth installment in that segment. The series will continue Monday with the fifth of the Lesser Brewers. You can see all the player profiles in the Most Valuable Brewers 2012 section.

Coming into the 2012 season, Randy Wolf had done enough to justify the Brewers giving him a 3 year / $29.75 million contract before the 2010 season. He hadn't been stellar but had put up some effective innings for the team. He even got them a win in the 2011 NLCS against the Cardinals. The Brewers weren't looking for anything stellar again in 2012, just some good innings to keep them in games. However, he couldn't keep up the effectiveness that he had over the last two years.

In the 24 starts he made for the Brewers, Randy Wolf put up a 5.69 ERA and 4.74 FIP. He did eat some innings by pitching 142.1 innings, averaging almost six innings per game. However, the effectiveness of those innings is debatable. He allowed no runs in only two of his appearances, only had eight quality starts, and allowed four or more runs in 13 of his 24 starts. Looking at some of the peripheral numbers, his K/9 rate slightly increased (5.68 in 2011, 6.07 in 2012) and his BB/9 rate was almost identical (2.80 in 2011, 2.85 in 2012). However, his HR/9 rate jumped (0.97 in 2011, 1.33 in 2012) as well as his H/9 rate (9.1 in 2011, 11.3 in 2012). His BABIP allowed also jumped to its highest rate in his career (.286 in 2011, .340 in 2012).

Looking at the pitches Wolf threw this season, you can notice some patterns. His fastball, curveball, and changeup remained mostly unchanged. However, his slider and cutter both had more noticable changes. Here's a table to show some of these differences (data from FanGraphs):

4-Fastball 2-Fastball Cutter Slider Curveball Changeup Eephus
2011 MPH 88.4 88.2 82.2 83.5 67.6 78.6 -
2012 MPH 88.6 88.2 84.7 81.2 68.3 78.4 56.1
2011 Selection 19.6% 30.1% 1.9% 17.3% 19.0% 12.1% -
2012 Selection 20.7% 29.9% 10.6% 8.6% 19.1% 10.5% 0.5%

In the end, Randy Wolf was released by the Brewers on August 22. He ended up signing with the Orioles on August 31 to help in their stretch playoff run. However, he only appeared in five games for them before he injured his shoulder and had to sit out for the rest of the season.

Best Game

Randy Wolf didn't have many good outings, but on May 11, he put up one of his better outings of the season. He pitched six shutout innings, allowing four hits and three walks while striking out five. The bullpen made the game interesting by allowing seven runs, but the Brewers would go on to win the game 8-7 in extra innings.

Contract Status

Randy Wolf became a free agent after the end of the 2012 season. He will most likely sit out the 2013 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery. The Brewers will still owe Wolf $1.5 million in 2013 to cover the buyout of his 2013 option.