How the Twins Top 3 Pitchers Stack Up Against Each Other
Image courtesy of © David Berding-USA TODAY Sports2017-2019 statistics:
- Jose Berrios: 537 IP, 3.80 ERA, 3.87 FIP, 9.0 K/9, 2.7 BB/9, 1.20 WHIP, .298 wOBA
- Jake Odorizzi: 466 IP, 4.05 ERA, 4.29 FIP, 9.0 K/9, 3.5 BB/9, 1.27 WHIP, .308 wOBA
- Kenta Maeda: 371 IP, 4.12 ERA, 3.84 FIP, 9.8 K/9, 2.9 BB/9, 1.18 WHIP, .294 wOBA
I don’t think it’s hard to argue that Berrios is the most talented of the group, but he still hasn't taken the final step to becoming a true ace. 2020 was hopefully going to be his breakout year where he jumped into the next tier, but as we all know this season is going to be different. If I was ranking on talent alone then Berrios would likely win, but he has not shown he can be a truly elite starting pitcher.
Berrios has been an All Star in back to back seasons and in both seasons he has had stretches where he looked unstoppable. The problem for him is there is always a long stretch where everything seems to fall apart. For his career, every month leading up to August has an ERA at 4.03 or lower but his career August ERA is 5.96 so there is where the problem lies.
Doing a three year split really hurts Odorizzi because he pretty much became a new pitcher in 2019. In the two years prior, he was an average starter that could slide into the fourth or fifth spot of an okay rotation and it looked like that was where he would stay. After an offseason of revamping himself, Odorizzi became an All Star and had a career best stat in almost every category. You could argue he was the best of the three in 2019.
Last season, Odorizzi had the best ERA, FIP, and K/9 among the three as he seemed to become a new pitcher. He improved his fastball command and utilized the top of the strike zone and also swapped out his slider for an improved cutter.
It’s always surprising to me how good Kenta Maeda is because he isn’t talked about like Berrios or Odorizzi. Of the stats I listed above, Maeda was the leader in the majority of them. One reason Maeda isn’t talked about as much is likely because of his innings. I sorted by only games he started so his innings as a reliever do not count here. Perhaps coming to Minnesota where his role as a starter will be solidified and he isn’t frustrated could help him become even better.
It is now known that he was frustrated with the Dodgers because they would never allow him to hit his innings limit to get paid more money. The Twins acquired him with the full intent to keep him as a starting pitcher all season. This gives the Twins a great top three of Berrios, Odorizzi, and Maeda with all three having upside.
Figuring out who is the best of the three is difficult and I think a full 2020 season would have been excellent to find out. Berrios would be in his hopeful breakout year, Odorizzi would be trying to repeat his All Star season, and Maeda would be in a new organization with a situation he is finally comfortable with.
How would you rank these three pitchers? Is Berrios the consensus number one among them? I feel like 2020 would have definitely been the season to show who is the best of the best so it is too bad the season was messed up.
MORE FROM TWINS DAILY
— Latest Twins coverage from our writers
— Recent Twins discussion in our forums
— Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
- mikelink45 and MN_ExPat like this