I have written about Florida Marlins starting pitcher Ricky Nolasco a few times recently where he has showed up in the NL top breakout pitchers, as well as the NL top pitchers since the All Star Break writeups.
Peter Bendix over at www.BeyondtheBoxScore.com provides some additional comparisons in his recent writeup:
CC Sabathia has been incredible over the last couple of months. So has Ricky Nolasco. Each man had a start on July 28. Here are their respective numbers, dating from that start:
On June 10, Sabathia threw a complete game shutout and Nolasco gave up zero earned runs over six innings. Here are their numbers since those starts:
Obviously, given the fact that Sabathia has a much more extensive track record of dominance, we should not equate the abilities of these two pitchers just yet. But it's still worth noting that, as dominant as CC Sabathia has been over the last three months, Ricky Nolasco has matched him pitch for pitch.
Here is how his performance stacks up, since June 10th, vs. other NL aces:
|All Pitchers 6/10/08 - 9/1/08 MLB Standard Stats|
|Sabathia, CC SP MIL||128||16||15||12||126||24||1.55||0.94|
|Nolasco, Ricky SP FLA||111.7||16||14||8||115||13||2.82||0.92|
|Santana, Johan SP NYM||108.3||16||13||5||93||30||2.41||1.1|
|Pelfrey, Mike SP NYM||107.7||16||10||11||67||25||3.09||1.14|
|Billingsley, Chad SP LA||105||16||11||9||98||35||2.83||1.28|
|Hamels, Cole SP PHI||104.7||15||12||5||95||17||2.92||1|
|Maholm, Paul SP PIT||103||15||11||4||74||25||3.32||1.19|
|Cain, Matt SP SF||102.3||15||11||5||90||41||3.08||1.25|
|Haren, Dan SP ARI||102.3||15||11||8||105||15||3.08||1.13|
|Lilly, Ted SP CHC||102.3||16||13||8||91||34||3.52||1.23|
|Lincecum, Tim SP SF||101.7||15||10||7||127||38||2.66||1.15|
|Webb, Brandon SP ARI||101.3||16||10||8||85||31||3.91||1.33|
|Jimenez, Ubaldo SP COL||98||16||10||8||78||49||3.31||1.35|
|Cook, Aaron SP COL||97||15||7||8||43||19||4.55||1.44|
|Sheets, Ben SP MIL||96.7||15||9||6||81||26||3.26||1.19|
|Dempster, Ryan RP CHC||96||15||10||8||96||34||3||1.25|
|Lowe, Derek SP LA||96||15||10||7||72||15||3.28||1.09|
|Perez, Oliver SP NYM||96||15||11||5||91||39||2.91||1.19|
|Lohse, Kyle SP STL||95.7||15||10||6||62||23||3.86||1.32|
|Peavy, Jake SP SD||95||15||12||5||95||29||2.56||1.13|
The K-BB ratio is what really stands out for me. Nolasco, along with Josh Johnson, Chris Volstad, a healthy Anibal Sanchez, and a more experienced Andrew Miller should form a formidable rotation for the Marlins for years to come. I assume Scott Olson could be trade bait in the offseason.
The question going into spring training 2009 will be: can Nolasco follow up his breakout 2008 season and firmly place himself in the ace category of NL starting pitchers?