Felix Hernandez in 2009
While reading a newspaper while on vacation I came across the Mariners signing of Felix Hernandez to a one-year, $3.8 million contract. God, that’s quite a deal when compared to the Silva’s and Washburn’s of the world. Another feather in the arbitration, pre-FA contract’s cap.
Any who, looking at Felix he’s bound to have a breakout season sooner or later. In 2008 he went over the 200 IP mark for the first time in his career. The M’s could certainly be accused of making Felix’s individual game pitch counts too high, yet they have brought along his seasonal IP nicely, from 191 to 190 and finally to 200.
In his 200 IP Felix set down 175 via the strikeout, walking 80. This screen cap via fangraphs.com does show a decrease of nearly 1.00 in his K/BB ratio.
On the plus side we can also see a decline in his HR/9 and his opponents batting average against.
Getting back to his K/BB, what we can see via this daily career graph is a good deal on inconsistency across each season.
In a round about way what I’m trying to say is this; if Felix can string together a number of starts with consistent K/BB ratio then he’ll go from an above average starter to one of the elite. He still has plenty of time to do this, as he’ll still be only 22 on opening day of 2009.
Odd Felix Hernandez Fact: While many think that Felix is the prototypical hard thrower, he’s also a groundball machine. In 2008 his 52.1% groundball ratio was second in the AL, trailing only Roy Halladay.