It’s another lean slate with just 10 games on this MLB getaway day slate, but there’s some pretty interesting pitching going on, even if it is in relatively small doses. Check ’em out!
Aces in Isolation
RHP José Berríos (MIN) versus Seattle LHP Ariel Miranda
After posting an ERA in excess of 8.00 last year, Berríos has been brilliant this time around. He’s got a sub-3.00 ERA (2.84), more than a strikeout per inning, fairly good walk rates and is doing a good job at keeping the ball in the ballpark (four homers in 38 innings). The worry was that, based on his short frame, he’d have trouble getting ample plane on his fastball, which might lead to a bit of a home run problem. So far, other than allowing three home runs to the Orioles in his second start of the season, it’s been mostly a non-issue. Now, he’ll get a pretty good Mariners offense, which will be a good test after coming off facing the abysmal Giants offense last time out. While everyone is talking about Ervin Santana, this is the guy to watch in the Twins rotation.
LHP Chris Sale (BOS) versus Philadelphia RHP Nick Pivetta
The Red Sox have won Sale’s last four starts and seven of his last eight. But, there have been a few more crooked numbers in his final line scores than there were early on. Though, to be fair, expecting him to sustain the 1.19 ERA he headed into May with was never going to happen, either. He’s now up to 2.97, allowing three or more earned runs in each of his last four starts and five of his last six. Even still, he’s clowning batters left and right—pun intended—with a K/BB ratio of 31-4 over his last four starts in 25.1 innings. He’s sixth in the AL in ERA, and in the top-three in innings, WHIP and first in strikeouts. We’ll say it again: this is probably your Cy Young winner this year.
We’ll be keeping an eye on Rockies righty Jeff Hoffman today, as he’s off to a blistering start to his season (five games, four starts). Through 27 innings, he’s fanned 34 hitters with just three walks, posting an ERA of 2.33, a BAA of .175 and a WHIP of just 0.74. He’s on a three-start stretch of allowing just one earned run each time out. And if you’re a left-handed batter, you’d better pack a lunch. He’s allowed just a .163/.196/.224 line to them.