Welcome back to volume 12 of today with baseball. For those who are unfamiliar with what the phrase means. Check out the intro blog here.
Today’s Moment? Jake Arrieta’s 2015 Cy Young season
There are so many ways a pitcher can have a good season. Being healthy from start to finish? that already puts you at “pretty decent” level.
You have inning eaters, low WHIP guys, punchout artists and dudes with just unreal nasty stuff like Cole and Scherzer. Of all the qualities you’d want from a starter, Arrieta was damn near all of them throughout the 2015 season.
Jake started off 2015 with a solid 2.03 ERA across 26 odd innings through April (did not pitch in March.) Following the first full month of the season, the Cubs ace came back down to earth in May spotting a 3.99 ERA spanning 38 innings.
From that point on, Arrieta was simply doing whatever the hell he wanted on the mound. He first took the bump in June with a 4-4 record and 3.18 ERA to match. The Cubs would go on to lose just three Arrieta starts the rest of the season.
After a June 16th start against the Cleveland Indians (his worst start of the season), Arrieta’s ERA rose to 3.40; the highest it would ever be the whole year. Until the end of the season, his ERA never rose more than .01 following a start. Even more remarkable, following a loss at home against Philly and a no decision at Milwaukee, Jake would win every start the rest of the season, including a no-no in LA against the dodgers.
From 4-4 at the beginning of June to 21-6 at the end of September, Jake was simply pitching a level we had not seen in decades. It wasnt even a close call on NL Cy Young, the real conversation was if he would take home MVP as well. Arrieta would even dazzle in his lone playoff start that year striking out 7, walking nobody and giving up 2 hits across 6 strong innings against the Brewers.
There was nobody more excited than me when the Phillies emerged as a real suitor for Arrieta following Chicago’s decision to part ways. A lot of people want to complain about the contract now but he deserved damn near every penny he got from Klentak and co.
After 2 injury riddled seasons, there are very few people in town that believe Arrieta still has any stuff left in the tank. Call me an optimistic homer but I am one of those people that still believes. I think the pitching coaches we have on this roster compared to last year is going to a bigger deal than most people think.
With a 2021 club option for the Phillies, Arrieta is in a walk year, even if he comes back and resigns in Philly. Although he will be 34 with whatever team he and Boras are in talks with, he doesn’t have that much wear and tear on his shoulder. Arrieta is entering 11th season with under 1500 innings under his belt.
Can Arrieta bounce back or will he be signing a Felix Hernandez like minor league deal with the Brewers, Cardinals or Braves a year from now. Who knows. Only think I’m sure of is that I am ready for opening day. 25 Days!