I’d intended to launch into a tirade about drawing seven walks against the opposing starter and losing, but it turns out that happens fairly often. Since 1920, teams are 2077-2158 in games where the starting pitcher allows at least seven walks. That’s a .490 winning percentage, which is both surprising and hardly cause for a tirade.
That said, failing to score against Jonathan Sanchez on Friday night irritates me — in much the same way that Sanchez himself irritates me (or letting Aubrey Huff beat you with his legs, but that’s another story). Actually, failing to score against a starter who issues at least seven walks is uncommon. Again going back to 1920, it’s happened just 181 times out of 4235 total 7+ walk starts, or a shade under 4.3 percent.
There were no such games in 2009, but Sanchez’s performance was the second this year. Edwin Jackson, you may recall, walked eight while tossing a no-hitter on June 25.
The most walks ever issued by a starting pitcher without allowing a run? Eleven, both by Yankees hurlers. On August 1, 1941, Lefty Gomez did it against the St. Louis
Blues . On May 21, 1970, Mel Stottlemyre victimized the Washington Senators.
Chase Headley for MVP?
Oops, my bad; that should read “Carlos Gonzalez”… I was looking at road numbers, so you’ll forgive my confusion:
Player PA BA OBP SLG HR Headley 293 .297 .342 .450 7 Gonzalez 271 .288 .310 .450 7
I should have looked at their home numbers as well:
Player PA BA OBP SLG HR Headley 300 .234 .310 .320 3 Gonzalez 287 .381 .429 .770 25
If there is a player who takes better advantage of his park than Gonzalez, I don’t know who it is. How cool would it be to magically transform from Juan Encarnacion into, oh, Jeff Bagwell v. 1994 whenever you return home from a road trip? I so want that super power.
Speaking of Splits
Have you noticed that the two best road ERAs in MLB this year belong to Ubaldo Jimenez and Mat Latos?
Player IP ERA H/9 HR/9 BB/9 K/9 Jimenez 101.2 2.30 5.49 0.35 3.98 8.50 Latos 99.1 2.36 6.16 0.91 2.45 10.06
I just found it a little unusual that one pitcher who should be hindered by his home park and one who should be helped both end up at the top in less extreme environments. I think the take-home is that they’re pretty good.
Strunk and White: Unless there is a good reason for its being there, do not inject opinion into a piece of writing.
Me: Thanks for injecting that opinion into your writing.
Eh, stuff just bugs me sometimes. Losing, for example…