By Jeff Parker
As Zack Greinke continues to make history with every start I decided to compare him to the top 5 single season performers in ERA+ over the last thirty years. Not surprisingly all of them started off strong and kept it up all season long.
Here’s the top 5:
1. 291 – Pedro Martinez, 2000
2. 271 – Greg Maddux, 1994
3. 262 – Greg Maddux, 1995
4. 243 – Pedro Martinez, 1999
5. 228 – Dwight Gooden, 1985
Here’s where they were after 10 starts (with Greinke’s #’s included for comparison).
|Zack Greinke||2009||8-1, 0.84||75||9.7|
|Pedro Martinez||2000||8-2, 1.05||77.1||12.1|
|Greg Maddux||1994||7-3, 1.37||79||7.2|
|Greg Maddux||1995||5-1, 1.91||75.1||6.9|
|Pedro Martinez||1999||9-1, 1.98||72.2||13.3|
|Dwight Gooden||1985||6-3, 1.89||76.1||8.8|
I think it’s safe to say that Greinke has a touch of destiny about him this season and really the last couple years has been leading up to something special. Check where he ranks in several stats among AL pitchers from the ’07 and ’08 seasons (min. 300 IP) to see how 2009 is not simply a case of somebody pitching over his head and having a career year (see Lee, Cliff). He has already shown that he is one of the top ten pitchers in the American League.
ERA+ -7th 125
ERA – 5th 3.55
K/9 – 8th 8.02
K/BB – 12th 3.14
WHIP – 13th 1.28
I fully expect his ERA to go up of course but even if he pitches the rest of the year with his ERA from last season (3.47) he will still finish at 2.69, which is fantastic.