Winning 300 games will require Randy Johnson-type run
No active pitcher can claim Randy Johnson’s combination of imposing height (6-foot-10) and explosive fastball (100 mph and up). But the trajectory of Johnson’s 303-win, Hall of Fame career should give hope to a number of contemporary big leaguers.
Through his age-26 season, Johnson was 24-24 with a 97 ERA+, 4.12 FIP, and 1.395 WHIP.
Last year, among all major-league pitchers in their age-26 season or younger, 22 had matched or surpassed the 24 career victories Johnson had at the same point of his career.
The full list, with assistance from Baseball-Reference.com:
Of that group, all but Minor and Doubront have a better ERA+ than Johnson’s 97.
As we ponder whether we’ll see another 300-game winner, it’s worth remembering this list. For all the variables involved — health, run support, bullpen performance, late-career adaptability amid diminished velocity — Kershaw, Bumgarner and the less-talked-about Porcello are off to decent starts.
Now comes the hard part: pitching like Randy Johnson did between the ages of 26 and 40.