2015’s Hard Luck Pitcher
By the time you read this, Shelby Miller might already have given up one or two runs … and be well on his way to yet another loss.
Miller enters Wednesday night’s start against the Blue Jays — oh, the Blue Jays? then maybe three or four runs — with a 5-14 record, which would be pretty unlucky if he were pitching just decently this season.
But of course he’s been a lot better than decent. Miller went into Wednesday night with a 135 ERA+, which is really good. From 2006 through this season, only 64 pitchers have qualified for the ERA title with an ERA+ between 130 and 140. Here are the five worst winning percentages among them (via Baseball-Reference.com’s Play Index):
.263 Shelby Miller (2015)
.440 Chris Sale (2013)
.458 Doug Fister (2011)
.476 Jake Peavy (2008)
.500 Alex Wood (2014)
So Miller’s got zero competition over the last decade.
I went back another decade. Still nobody with a sub-.400 winning percentage.
In 1991, Jose DeLeon went 5-9 in 28 starts, for a .357 winning percentage.
In fact, in the last century Miller is the ONLY qualifying pitcher among many hundreds with an ERA+ at least 130 and a sub-.300 winning percentage.
Of course, there’s still some time. All these numbers might change, some.
To this point, though? You gotta feel for the guy.