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Colby Lewis To Start Game Two

Per Richard Durrett, ESPN:

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Washington says Colby Lewis will start Game 2.

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It's nice to see a move that makes all sorts of sense.

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Colby Lewis's road ERA in 2011 was more than two runs lower than it was at home, and there is a reason for that. Lewis led all starting pitchers by allowing 49% of his balls in play in to the air. The average is only 35.7%.

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A fly ball rate that outrageous is extremely damaging in the Ballpark in Arlington, where StatCorner says homeruns are inflated by 19% for left-handed hitters (14% for righties). It is extremely difficult to be an extreme fly ball pitcher in that park and not allow runs, let alone the most extreme fly ball pitcher.

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The new Busch Stadium, however, is on the other end of the spectrum deflating homeruns by 18 and 26% for lefties and righties respectively. It is the kind of park where Colby Lewis can be the elite pitcher he was a year ago, and on the road in 2011. The kind of park where he can get back to being seen as some sort of postseason deity.

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There is no guarantee he will pitch well, it just did not make any sense for him to pitch at home when there are two perfect road games set-up for him (should the series even need a sixth). And it is very nice to see Ron Washington (or Mike Maddux) agree.

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Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.