Drew Smyly is not getting it done. Four starts, fifteen total innings. He’s not even getting twelve outs per game.
The bottom three pitchers in the Rangers rotation aren’t getting it done. The Rangers surprising start has obscured the fact that this team has a starting pitching crisis.
It has a badly lopsided rotation. The top two are very good. The bottom three are very bad. Wing and prayer bad. Fortunately, the prayers have been answered.
How long will it last until the baseball gods turn their attention elsewhere to more deserving teams without self-inflicted problems?
When sixty percent of your rotation puts you in a position to legitimately lose each time they start, you have a bad rotation.
In the third slot of the rotation, in four starts Drew Smyly has managed:
3 innings, 1 earned run.
3.1 innings, 4 earned runs.
5 innings, 4 earned runs.
3.2innings, 4 earned runs.
That’s an ERA of 7.80. The Rangers have lost all four of Smyly’s starts.
In the fourth slot, Edinson Volquez and Adrian Sampson have managed:
4.0 innings, 4 earned runs (Volquez).
3.2 innings, 2 earned runs (Volquez).
4 innings, 7 earned runs (Sampson).
That’s an ERA of 10.33. Yet the Rangers have won all three starts from the fourth-spot in the rotation.
In the number five spot, Shelby Miller’s output is:
3.2 innings, 2 earned runs.
2 innings, 4 earned runs.
4.1 innings, 4 earned runs.
That’s an ERA of 9.00. Yet the Rangers have won two out of three of his starts.
The Rangers are averaging 3.8 innings per start from their third, fourth, and fifth spots in the rotation. Not even twelve outs a game. That inevitably leads to overworked, overstrained bullpens.
The bottom three have an ERA of 8.53. But are 6-5. Yes, of all the numbers baseball churns, with even more being manufactured every day, the only number that matters is the W.
So all seems well. The team is winning when the Inept Three start. So why be an alarmist, right?
The fact that this the team is over .500 means the offense has been able to bail them out of a lot of messes. That can happen in the short term. But over the course of a long season, the water levels always correct themselves.
But, on a positive note. If you’re one who likes parades, you’re in luck. Come to a Rangers game, stay for the parade of relief pitchers.
Gerrit Cole (1-2, 3.24) vs. Adrian Sampson (0-1, 5.93)
Game time: 7:05