Category Archives: Baseball

Today’s Sports Stat: May 20, 2018

Here’s some free advice for the Milwaukee Brewers marketing department: Get going on producing some t-shirts made for left-handed reliever Josh Hader. The slogan on the shirt should read…

“Don’t Be a Hader” … or… “Be a Hader”

Hader is certainly putting together a season that has never been seen in baseball history, let alone during the Brewers 50 years as a franchise. Through games of May 19, Hader has 56 strikeouts in the 16 games he’s pitched. Not all that impressive; but if you consider that Hader has 56 strikeouts in only 27.1 innings pitched, more than two strikeouts per inning, that’s pretty darn impressive.

Hader is on a pace to have just under 200 strikeouts (197 to be exact) over the season. Considering that Hader has compiled these gaudy numbers coming out of the bullpen as a reliever, it’s important to point out that no relief pitcher in history has ever had 200 strikeouts in a season.

Let me be more precise: The MLB record for most strikeouts in a season by a pitcher who did not start a game that year is 181. Dick Raddatz fanned 181 in 1964 for the Boston Red Sox as a reliever who did not start a game that season.

Here’s a look at the pitchers who fanned 150 or more batters in a season without the benefit of starting a game.

150 or more strikeouts/No starts

181: Dick Raddatz, 1964, Boston
166: Mark Eichhorn, 1986, Toronto
162: Dick Raddatz, 1963, Boston
157: Brad Lidge, 2004, Houston
153: Dick Selma, 1970, Philadelphia
151: Goose Gossage, 1977, Pittsburgh

The Brewers record for most strikeouts in a season by a pitcher who did start a game was set last year by closer Corey Knebel. He had 126 strikeouts. He is followed on this list by Julio Machado (98 in 1991), John Axford (93 in 2012), Will Smith (91 in 2015) and Tyler Thornburg (90 in 2016).

Will Hader break the MLB record? Will he shatter the Brewers mark? There are still a lot of games to be played this season. But I for one won’t bet against Hader. The Brewers and Craig Counsell have figured out a way to use Hader effectively and it is working. It’s definitely one thing I will keep an eye on as the season progresses.

 

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp

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Today’s Sports Stat: May 14, 2018

Did Milwaukee Brewers fans get a peek at the future of their pitching staff when Freddy Peralta made his major League debut on Sunday by pitching one-hit ball and striking out 13 in 5.2 innings of work?

Peralta became only the fifth pitcher in MLB history to fan 13 or more batters in his first career game. The others:

JR Richard, Houston, 9-5-1971 (struck out 15)

Karl Spooner, Brooklyn, 9-22-1954 (struck out 15)

Stephen Strasburg, Washington, 6-8-2010 (struck out 14)

Cliff Melton, New York Giants, 4-25-1937 (struck out 13)

Peralta also broke the Brewers record for most strikeouts in a debut for the team. It was previously held by Steve Woodard who fanned 12 in his debut with the team on July 28, 1997 in a game versus the Toronto Blue Jays.

The 21-year-old Peralta, who is just a month shy of his 22nd birthday, became the 38th pitcher in baseball history to strike out 13 or more batters in a game before the age of 22. His 13 K’s at the age of 21-343 days, was the 69th time a pitcher under 22 had fanned 13 or more in a game.

Kerry Wood holds the MLB record for most strikeouts in a game by a pitcher under the age of 22. He had 20. Bill Gullickson and Bob Feller each had games with 18 strikeouts before 22, while Frank Tanana, Vida Blue and Feller (again) had 17 in a game before their 22 birthday.

Of the 38 pitchers who had 13+ strikeouts in a game before 22, Dwight Gooden did it seven times along with Bob Feller. Kerry Wood did it five times, and Frank Tanana, Jose Fernandez, Dennis Eckersley and Vida Blue did it three times each.

What might be even more amazing about Peralta’s performance, however, is that he became only the eighth pitcher in MLB history to have 13 or more strikeouts in a game with less than six innings pitched. It means that of the 17 batters he retired in the game, 13 came via a strikeout, a pretty remarkable feat.

Here are the eight pitchers who had 13 or more K’s in a game where they pitched less than six innings.

Max Scherzer, 14 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, May 20, 2010
Freddy Peralta, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, May 13, 2018
Eduardo Rodriguez, 13 strikeouts, 5.1 IP, September 25, 2016
Jose Fernandez, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, April 6, 2016
Alex Cobb, 13 strikeouts, 4.2 IP, May 10, 2013
Jeff Samardzija, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, April 7, 2013
Zack Greinke, 13 strikeouts, 5.0 IP, September 25, 2012
Kevin Appier, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, May 25, 1994

 

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Today’s Sports Stat: May 3, 2018

When Zach Davies takes the mound on Saturday at Miller Park versus the Pirates, he could find himself at the top of a couple of team lists if he doesn’t pitch a complete game. Let me explain…

Davies is currently tied with Chuck Crim for most wins by a Brewers pitcher without a complete game with 33. His next win without a complete game will put him number one on this obscure stat. (Note: Of course if he ever pitches a complete game with the Brewers he will immediately come off the list, but that may… or may not… happen).

Here’s a look at the Brewers pitchers who have the most wins without a complete game on their stat sheet.

33: Zach Davies, Chuck Crim

29: Dan Plesac

26: Manny Parra, Chris Narveson

25: Zack Greinke, Bill Castro

23: Marco Estrada, Chase Anderson

21: Bob Wickman, Mike Fiers, John Axford

20: Carlos Villanueva, Shaun Marcus, Jimmy Haynes

Davies will be making his 74th career start for the Brew Crew on Saturday. His 73 starts for the Brewers without a complete game is second on the team list, one behind Manny Parra, who made 74 starts for the Brewers without a complete game.

Following are the Brewers pitchers who have 60 or more career starts with the team without a complete game.

74: Manny Parra

73: Zach Davies

70: Marco Estrada

62: Chris Narveson, Jimmy Haynes

61: Chase Anderson

For the record, the MLB record for most career wins without a complete game is 99 by Sparky Lyle. It’s not surprising that relief pitchers top this list. Lyle is followed by Kent Tekulve with 94, and John Franco and Don McMahon each with 90.

The MLB mark for most career starts without a complete game is 188 by Bud Norris. Second on the list is former Brewer Marco Estrada with 167 (he is tied with Tony Armas). Davies’ 73 career starts without a complete game currently ranks tied for 32nd for this stat.

 

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Today’s Sports Stat: April 30, 2018

After being swept by the Chicago Cubs in a four-game series this past weekend, we have to ask:

Are the Cubs the Brewers “kryptonite”?

In fact, if we add the St. Louis Cardinals to the discussion, you can make a good case that if the Brew Crew wants to make a serious charge at a playoff spot this season, they better figure out a way to beat these two division opponents.

Let’s go back to 2016. Since then, the Brewers are 38-52 against the Cubs and Cardinals, a winning percentage of .422. From the 2016 season through games of April 29, 2018, the Brewers are 18-28 versus the Cubs (.391 winning percentage) and 20-24 (.455) versus the Cards.

Compare that to all other teams since 2016… the Brewers are 137-126 (.521) since 2016 in games against all other MLB teams other than the Cubs and Cards. That’s a difference of about 100 percentage points (99 to be exact)… .422 versus the Cubs and Cards and .521 against all other teams.

This season is no different. MLB standings show the Brewers at 16-13 this season. Ten of their 13 losses this year have come to the Cubs or Cards (1-7 versus the Cubs, 3-3 versus the Cards). That’s 4-10 versus the Cubs and Cards (.286 winning percentage) and 12-3 (.800) versus the rest of the league.

Any way you look at it, it’s a disturbing trend that the Brewers will need to figure out if they hope to challenge for a post-season spot in 2018.

 

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Today’s Sports Stat: April 21, 2018

With a three-run pinch-hit home run on April 19, Ryan Braun collected his 1,000th career RBI. He became the first Milwaukee Brewers player to collect 300 HRs and 1,000 RBIs with the team, and the 138th player in baseball history to reach those numbers in his career.

Of the 138 players with 300 home runs and 1,000 RBIs in their careers, Braun is also currently one of only 21 players who amassed those numbers with only one team for their entire career. Whether or not that remains the case for Braun as he winds down his career in the next few years, for the time being, he is among this select group.

The 21 players who had/have 300 home runs and 1,000 RBI in their careers, all with only one team in their entire career are:

Ryan Braun (Milwaukee), Ryan Howard (Philadelphia), Edgar Martinez (Seattle), Johnny Bench (Cincinnati), Todd Helton (Colorado), Jim Rice (Boston), Mickey Mantle (New York Yankees), Jeff Bagwell (Houston), Joe DiMaggio (New York Yankees), Willie Stargell (Pittsburgh), Al Kaline (Detroit), Mike Schmidt (Philadelphia), George Brett (Kansas City), Chipper Jones (Atlanta), Ernie Banks (Chicago Cubs), Cal Ripken (Baltimore), Ted Williams (Boston), Carl Yastrzemski (Boston), Mel Ott (New York Giants), Stan Musial (St. Louis), Lou Gehrig (New York Yankees).

As you might expect, the New York Yankees are the franchise with the most players who reached 300 home runs and 1,000 with their team. The Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves and the Boston Red Sox franchises have had five players each who reached 300 HRs and 1,000 ribbies in their tenure with those teams.

Following are the number of players each of the 30 franchises have had reach 300 HRs and 1,000 RBIs.

6: Yankees

5: Braves, Red Sox

4: Cubs, Giants, Tigers

3: Orioles

2: Astros, Cardinals, Dodgers, Mariners, Phillies, Rangers, Reds, White Sox

1: A’s, Blue Jays, Brewers, Pirates, Rockies, Royals, Twins

0: Angels, Diamondbacks, Indians, Marlins, Mets, Nationals, Padres, Rays

One final note on Braun: As of games through April 20, 2018, Braun has career numbers of 307 home runs, 1,002 runs batted in, and a .301 batting average. He is currently one of only 28 players in baseball history to have 300 career HRs, 1,000 career RBIs and a career batting average of .300 or higher.

 

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp