Ryan Rowland-Smith Is the Worst Pitcher in Baseball

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Ryan Rowland-Smith is obviously not a good pitcher. You don't have be a stathead to understand that a guy who gives up 11 runs is probably not the second-coming of Randy Johnson, no matter how big or left-handed he is. Of course, if you did choose to check out the numbers, you might find out something surprising: not only is the hyphenated Aussie bad, he's actually the worst pitcher in baseball.

Now, there is no magical formula that can settle a barroom question like "who's the worst" with 100% certainty. But VORP -- or Value Over Replacement Player, which measures pitchers against a baseline average -- gets about as close to the answer as possible. (Plus it's fun to say: VORP VORP VORP)And VORP says that Rowland-Smith is epically awful.

Out of the 581 pitchers in Major League Baseball, Rowland-Smith ranks 581st. Dead last, with a VORP of -28.6. (For comparison's sake, the demigod and former Mariner known as Cliff Lee has a 32.3 VORP this season.)

Other stats paint a fuller picture of Rowland-Smith's nightmare year; he's 1-10 and has a 6.96 ERA. But VORP is the most damning of all because it doesn't take into account the defense behind the pitcher, one of the few areas in which the Mariners excel.

Bad news for Rowland-Smith. Good news for the guy who previously held the "honor."

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