Can Chase Anderson end an “ugly” trend that has affected the Milwaukee Brewers over the past four seasons?
It was announced yesterday that Anderson will be the Opening Day starting pitcher for the Brew Crew this season. It is certainly an honor that Anderson deserves.
The problem, however, is that Brewers’ Opening Day starting pitchers over the last four seasons have gone on to have less-than-stellar seasons in the year they started Game One.
Anderson is the fifth different Opening Day starting pitcher for the Brewers in the last five years. The others: Yovani Gallardo (2014), Kyle Lohse (2015), Wily Peralta (2016) and Junior Guerra (2017).
The trend is that these last four pitchers mentioned in the previous paragraph had losing records that season they got the nod to start Opening Day: Gallardo went 8-11 in 2014; Lohse was 5-13 in 2015; Peralta ended 2016 at 7-11; and last year, Guerra ended the year with a 1-4 record. Needless to say, the Brewers are hopeful that Anderson can break this disturbing trend.
Looking back to the 18 Opening Day starting pitchers for the Brewers since 2000, there were only seven seasons where the Opening Day starting pitcher ended the year with a winning record. Gallardo was the O.D. starter each year from 2010-2013 and ended each of those four years with winning records. Ben Sheets was the team’s O.D. starter in 2005, 2007 and 2008 and ended those three years with more wins than losses. (Note: Doug Davis was the starter in 2006 and ended that year with an 11-11 record.)
The Brewers since 2000 have started nine different Opening Day starting pitchers…
Steve Woodard, 2000
Jamey Wright, 2001
Ben Sheets, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008
Doug Davis, 2006
Jeff Suppan, 2009
Yovani Gallardo, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Kyle Lohse, 2015
Wily Peralta, 2016
Junior Guerra, 2017
The above nine pitchers went a combined 179-183 in the years they were the O.D. starting pitcher for the Brewers, a .494 winning percentage. The best season of the O.D. starters since 2000 was Sheets in 2007; he was the O.D. starter that year and ended the season with a 12-5 record (.706 winning percentage). The worst was Steve Woodard in 2000; he was the O.D. starter in 2000 and ended that year with a 1-7 (.125 winning percentage) for the Brewers.
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TODAYSPORTSTAT-July 3, 2017
Brewers closer Corey Knebel will be the team’s lone representative in the MLB All-Star Game next Tuesday. Knebel becomes the 19th pitcher in team history to be selected to the ASG.
The only Brewers pitcher(s):
… to figure in the decision was Rollie Fingers; he took the loss for the American League in the 1981 All-Star Game.
… to start an ASG was Ben Sheets in 2008.
… to pitch three or more innings in one ASG were Teddy Higuera (1986) and Lary Sorensen (1978).
… selected to multiple All-Star Games were Ben Sheets (2001, 2004, 2007, 2008), Dan Plesac (1987, 1988, 1989), Rollie Fingers (1981, 1982) and Francisco Rodriguez (2014, 2015).
Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a sports statistics blog published daily that focuses on stats that go beyond the numbers.
Zack Greinke last night got the win in the Brewers 1-0 extra-inning win over the Chicago White Sox by tossing nine innings of three-hit ball. Greinke improved his record to 8-2 and lowered his ERA to 2.81 for the season. With the All-Star Game a little over two weeks away, there is a distinct possibility that Greinke will represent the Brewers at this year’s game.
Brewers pitchers have actually had a great deal of success at the All-Star Game in the franchise’s 43-year history. Twenty-three Brewers pitchers have been selected to the All-Star team since 1969 with 16 of them getting a chance to pitch in the game. Brewers hurlers have a combined 0-1 record (Rollie Fingers took the loss in the 1981 contest) but they have a 1.50 ERA with 14 hits allowed and nine strikeouts in 18 innings of work.
Here’s a look at one person’s opinion as to the 10 greatest pitching performances by Brewers pitchers in the All-Star Game.
10. Ben Sheets, 2007 (Pitching Line: 1IP, 2 hits): Sheets came in relief in the third inning with the N.L. holding a 1-0 lead. He gave up two-out hits to Ichiro Suzuki and Derek Jeter, but retired David Ortiz to end the inning. He was credited with a Hold in the game.
9. Danny Kolb, 2004 (Pitching Line: 1IP, one hit): Relieved N.L. starter Roger Clemens in the second inning after the A.L. had scored six runs in the first. Kold retired three of the four batters he faced, giving up a single to Ivan Rodriguez.
8. Trevor Hoffman, 2009 (Pitching Line: 1IP, one hit). Entered the game in the sixth inning with the score tied at 3-3. He gave up a one-out single to Josh Hamilton but then got Michael Young to ground into a double play to end the inning.
7. Ben Sheets, 2004 (Pitching Line: 1IP, one strikeout): This was the first time that two Brewers pitchers had pitched in the same All-Star Game (see Kolb above). Sheets came into the game with the N.L. down 9-4. He had a 1-2-3 inning.
6. Derrick Turnbow, 2006 (Pitching Line: 1IP, one hit): Turnbow entered the game with the N.L. holding a 2-1 lead. After giving up a lead-off single to Paul Konerko, Turnbow got Troy Glaus to hit into a double play. He then retired Michael Young to end the inning. He was credited with a Hold in the game.
5. Ben Sheets, 2008 (Pitching Line: 2IP, one hit, two walks, three strikeouts): The only time a Brewers pitcher was the starter of an All-Star Game. Sheets left the game with the score tied at 0-0. Gave up a one-out single to Jeter in the first inning, but retired Hamilton and Rodriguez to end the first. Had two walks and two strikeouts in the second inning.
4. Bob Wickman, 2000 (Pitching Line: 1IP, one strikeout): With the N.L. losing 3-2, Wickman had a 1-2-3 inning in the eighth, striking out Tony Batista sandwiched around retiring Fred McGriff and Edgar Martinez.
3. Dan Plesac, 1987 (Pitching Line: 1IP, one strikeout): Pitching for the American League, Plesac entered the game in the eighth inning with the score tied 0-0. Plesac had a 1-2-3 inning, striking out Hubie Brooks to end the inning.
2. Teddy Higuera, 1986 (Pitching Line: 3IP, one hit, one walk, two strikeouts): The first pitcher out of the American League bullpen, Higuera entered the game in the fourth inning with the A.L. ahead 2-0. He had 1-2-3 innings in the fourth and the sixth, and got out of a one-out, two-on jam in the fifth by retiring Dale Murphy and Hubie Brooks. He left the game with the A.L. leading 2-0.
1. Lary Sorensen, 1978 (Pitching Line: 3IP, one hit): With the score tied at 3-3, Sorensen gave up a lead-off single to Larry Bowa to start the fourth inning. He then retired nine straight, retiring Reggie Smith, Pete Rose, Joe Morgan, George Foster, Greg Luzinski, Steve Garvey, Ted Simmons, Dave Winfield and Bowa. He left the game with the score still tied at 3-3.
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