Today’s Sportstat: March 21, 2020

Wins and complete games are not always compatible

If you spend any time following baseball, you know that the complete game is becoming a stat of the past. Let’s take a look at a set of numbers where the compatibility of wins and complete games does not match.

Since 2000, there have been six MLB pitchers who have won 20 or more games in a season but did not have a complete game that year. Just last season Gerrit Cole of the Houston Astros ended the year with 20 wins yet he did not have a complete game in 2019.

Here is a look at those six pitchers in baseball history with 20 wins and no complete games in that season.

Roger Clemens, 2001, New York Yankees, 20 wins-no complete games
Mike Mussina, 2008, New York Yankees, 20 wins-no complete games
Max Scherzer, 2014, Detroit, 21 wins-no complete games
J.A. Happ, 2016, Toronto, 20 wins-no complete games
Blake Snell, 2018, Tampa Bay, 21 wins-no complete games
Gerrit Cole, 2019, Houston, 20 wins-no complete games.

The Brewers in their history have had six pitchers who have won 15 or more games in a season without a complete game. They are:

2005: Chris Capuano, 18 wins
2011: Zack Greinke, 16 wins
2012: Yovani Gallardo, 16 wins
2014: Wily Peralta, 17 wins
2017: Zach Davies, 17 wins
2018: Jhoulys Chacin, 15 wins

There is a flipside to this stat. There have been several pitchers who have had 10 or more complete games in a season yet had less than 10 victories in that year. Of course, that has not happened in more than 30 years. In fact the last pitcher to have 10 or more complete games with less than 10 wins was Jack Morris with the Detroit Tigers. He had six wins and 10 complete games in ’89.

The Brewers have two pitchers that fit into this category. In 1974 Clyde Wright had nine wins for the Brew Crew and 15 complete games; in ’85, Danny Darwin had eight wins and 11 complete games for the Brewers that campaign.

The pitcher with the most complete games in MLB history with less than 10 wins is Howard Ehmke (you say you don’t remember him?). In 1925 with the Boston Red Sox, Ehmke has nine wins with 22 complete games that season.


Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp


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