As always, Fangraphs has some of the most interesting content on the internets. Today a post by Jeff Sullivan concentrated on how Gio Gonzalez got a bunch of strikeouts against opposing pitchers. The craziness is the Nats lefty had more strikeouts against pitchers than anybody in four decades.
In 2013, the Nationals southpaw, had 41 strikeouts of opposing pitchers.
The leaderboard of pitchers raking up strikeouts against their brothern is an interesting one.
And in second place was the Pittsburgh Pirates Wandy Rodriguez who sent 34 pitchers back to their dugout with a strikeout.
It’s nice to see Rodriguez abusing the opposing pitchers. We recall the Bucs staff having had their ups and downs in regards to getting the opposing pitcher out.
But the numbers made us want to take a quick look at Rodriguez’s strikeouts over the years. It didn’t take long to understand that those strikeouts are fading away. That concerns us a bit.
Neal Huntington addressed the declining strikeouts after the deadline deal was complete for the southpaw when he stated that Wandy had traded strikeouts for groundball outs. But let’s take a look at the decline: in 2008, Wandy put up 8.58 strikeouts per nine, in 2009 he had 8.45, in 2010 8.22 and starting in 2011 the decline quickened with 7.82 and he finshed 2012 with just 6.08.
Wandy had 139 total strikeouts in 2012. About six strikeouts per nine innings which is the worst K/9 he has posted since he was a rookie in 2005. In 2012, he struckout 27 less batters while pitching 14 more innings than he did in 2011.
Thank God for concentrating on the pitcher.
Fangraphs has it. Be sure to go check out the article which focuses on the tremendous run Gio had ’abusing pitchers’ in 2013. As Jeff Sullivan’s article says in closing:
Let it never be suggested that there’s anything in baseball that can’t be analyzed