One day after Josh Tomlin of Cleveland smacked a one-hitter down on the Mariners offense, Felix Hernandez returned the favor.
As in: 8.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 9 K.
OK, Tomlin might have had a slightly better weekend (a complete game and 11 K while Felix got an inning of help from Fernando Rodney), but Felix is having the monster season.
Let’s see how he stacks up against the other possible All-Star starter Masahiro Tanaka:
- Wins: Tanaka 11, Felix 10
- ERA: Tanaka 2.10, Felix 2.10
- WHIP: Felix 0.92, Tanaka 0.95
- BB/9: Tanaka 1.40, Felix 1.54
- K/9: Tanaka 9.88, Felix 9.61
- IP: Felix 128.1, Tanaka 115.2 (Felix has one more start)
- baseball-reference WAR: Tanaka 4.4, Felix 3.7
- fangraphs WAR: Felix 4.8, Tanaka 3.0
- ERA+: Tanaka 190, Felix 179
- FIP: Felix 1.96, Tanaka 2.91
- xFIP: Felix 2.37, Tanaka 2.46
- “RE24” runs saved vs. average: Tanaka 23.71, Felix 22.44
Boy, you can’t get much closer than that.
Except that Felix is clearly superior, since his xFIP is 0.09 lower! [Tongue-in-cheek.]
Funny how the two WAR calculations are so different, which is one reason I don’t use WAR as a gold standard.
Let’s just say it’s pretty clear who the two best starters in the American League have been.
We’ve mocked him a bit for his “wild ride” approach, but he’s put the lid on the opposition where it counts: 0.3 HR/9 and .050 ISO-against.
He is co-leader with Kansas City’s Greg Holland for the AL lead in saves, with 23.
Lefty starter for Cleveland meant the funky RH-hitter-enhanced lineup, including:
- Willie Bloomquist shortstop
- John Buck designated hitter
- Stefen Romero right field
- Cole Gillespie left field
Of course it’s kind of sad when your corps of RH-hitting “enhanced” hitters has a max OPS of .645 (Bloomie), but we’ve been saying that all year.
But it worked.
- Baseball-reference.com boxscore here.
It was Romero’s swan song (for the moment at least), as he was sent down to make room for Taijuan Walker who will start Monday’s game.
Will they find a way to keep Brandon Maurer in the bullpen? Well, they have to. Can they make room for Corey Hart and/or Justin Smoak and still have enough outfielders?
Seems like trades are inevitable, and that Smoak’s Mariner days may be numbered, and probably one of Tom Wilhelmsen, Danny Farquhar or Yoervis Medina.
Dustin Ackley, Nick Franklin and Jesus Montero would have to be in the trade mix, too.
Can’t keep all those guys around not contributing to the MLB club and then not have a real MLB-caliber RH-hitting OF (or two) worth playing (apologies to the Beaver fans). Or course, easier said than done.
- Mariners affiliates scoreboard here.
- Speaking of Franklin, he had a double and two walks, and, while down from his torrid run for Tacoma earlier, he’s at .300/.400/.495. GMs won’t get much flack for trading for a middle infielder with those numbers.
- Boy, does Xavier Avery love El Paso. He hit his 4th home run in four games there. He’s only got two everywhere else in the nation. But Lucas Luetge blew a 4-3 lead in the 8th to allow the Chihuahuas to win.
- Ketel Marte had two triples in Jackson’s loss.
- Tyler Marlette got his 9th homer for High Desert, and Jabari Henry had three hits and is at .296/.402/.571. Adelanto-enhanced but still impressive.
- Christian Carmichael doubled and homered to lead Clinton. Edwin Diaz: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K.
- Everett lost despite two more hits for 3rd-round pick Austin Cousino, who’s started his pro career 18-for-56 in 14 games. He also has 7 steals. And 4th-round pick Ryan Yarbrough had a strong relief line: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K.
- Wayne’s World! Two more hits for the 16th-rounder out of Stanford, Wayne Taylor. He’s now 15-for-34 with 3 doubles, 3 HR and 4 BB in his first nine games at Pulaski.