Trio of Sox pitchers K'ing competition

Trio of Sox pitchers K'ing competition
May 3, 2012, 9:59 pm
Share This Post

The strikeout has long held its place as the glamor statistic among moundsmen, and rightfully so. Studies in the fluctuation in batting average of balls in play (BABIP) have proven that luck plays a big role once the ball leaves the bat.

The strikeout eliminates any possibility of a ball eluding the fielders. Runners advance on sacrifice flies and groundouts; they advance far less frequently on strikeouts. A rare find is a pitcher who collects more strikeouts than hits allowed; only eight times in White Sox history has a pitcher qualified for the league ERA title (1.0 IP per team game played) and done it.

White Sox ERA Qualifiers, More Strikeouts than Hits Allowed in a Full season

PitcherYearSOHIPERAEd Walsh
1910258242369.2
189Juan Pizarro
1961188164194.2128Gary Peters
1967215187260132Bart Johnson
1971153148178123Floyd Bannister
1983193191217125Jason Bere
1994127119141.2124Esteban Loaiza
2003207196226.1159Javier Vazquez
2007213197216.2126
So why bring this up today? Because no fewer than three White Sox pitchers have maintained that pace thus far this season:

PitcherSO
HIPERAChris Sale
292432150Jake Peavy
332137.2252Gavin Floyd
311931.2135
The hits have been few and far between; so have baserunners in general. The White Sox staff as a whole leads the American League in WHIP (1.10); they've allowed the fewest hits in the AL (174) and their walk rate was second to the Rangers (2.5 to 2.4 per 9 innings) before the team issued eight walks to Cleveland Wednesday.

And this is all despite a poor start by John Danks, who was expected to take over the role of staff ace after Mark Buehrle's departure to Miami. Don Cooper's staff has allowed the White Sox to climb the AL Central standings despite an inconsistent offense, and their continued excellence will allow Robin Ventura extra time to find the right formula to get the bats back on track.