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Fernando Rodney has the lowest ERA in baseball history

Oct 2, 2012, 11:51 AM EDT

Fernando Rodney AP

Fernando Rodney had to go and ruin his perfect statistical match with Dennis Eckersley’s historic 1990 season by throwing a scoreless inning last night, moving past Eckersley for the best ERA of all time among pitchers with 50-plus innings.

Technically they both still have a 0.61 ERA, but Rodney has now allowed five earned runs in 74.1 innings while Eckersley allowed five earned runs in 73.1 innings. So it’s officially Rodney at 0.605 and Eckersley at 0.614.

Here’s what the rest of the leaderboard now looks like:

                     YEAR       IP      ERA
Fernando Rodney      2012     74.1     0.61
Dennis Eckersley     1990     73.1     0.61
Rob Murphy           1986     50.1     0.72
Earl Hamilton        1918     54.0     0.83
Nick Maddox          1907     54.0     0.83

What a weird list and what a crazy season at age 35 for Rodney, who prior to this season had posted an ERA worse than 4.00 in five straight years and had more walks than strikeouts in 2011.

  1. xjokerz - Oct 2, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    unbelievable.. could have used this type of production in the 06 playoffs, thanks Rodney

    • chuckj1234 - Oct 3, 2012 at 2:05 PM

      Baseball is a funny game. Last year with the Angels he stunk, and was booed often. Now this.Go figure.

    • thalooch - Oct 3, 2012 at 3:52 PM

      I’ve seen this a lot. Bitter Tigers and Angels fans voicing their frustration cause he didn’t do this for their team. Maybe have you considered that the Rays pitching staff has just done a phenomenal job in terms of coaching and turning relievers into studs? It’s quite possible Rodney would never have had this season, let alone held onto a closing job on any other team. It’s been documented that they’ve changed his stance on the mound, where he stands, and probably many other things.

      Get past the bitterness, the guy has put together a record-breaking season (assuming he doesn’t give up any runs tonight). Just enjoy that this is what makes baseball a great sport. Not every accomplishment has to directly benefit your team. I’m not a Rays fan, or an Angels fan, or a Tigers fan, but Rodney, Miggy, and Trout’s accomplishments are amazing and I have the utmost respect for their hard-work and dedication.

  2. frenchysplatediscipline - Oct 2, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Of course he is not cheating!

    …most guys get better after age 35!

    • atworkident - Oct 2, 2012 at 12:16 PM

      Pine tar is only cheating if you get caught (doing it for the other team, right Nats).

      Joel Peralta has taught him well.

    • steve7921 - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:49 PM

      I have watched Rodney all season and remember his performances with the Angels and Tigers. As opposed to his mediocre stats from previous years, the difference this year does not appear to be “cheating” but the realization that he has a 95+mph fastball and when combined with his 80+mph changeup, he is just about unhittable.

  3. Lukehart80 - Oct 2, 2012 at 12:07 PM

    Shoot dem arrows.

  4. chill1184 - Oct 2, 2012 at 12:13 PM

    Congrats to Rodney

  5. indaburg - Oct 2, 2012 at 12:18 PM

    Generally speaking, I don’t agree with relievers getting the Cy Young but Rodney definitely has earned entry into the conversation.

    • nbjays - Oct 3, 2012 at 7:34 AM

      Yeah, but it would suck if he took the award away from David Price.

  6. 1baseballfan - Oct 2, 2012 at 12:31 PM

    This is almost too weird.
    Eckersley and Rodney both did this in their age 35 seasons. Each gave up 9 runs, 5 earned runs and 2 homeruns.

    • thefalcon123 - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:03 PM

      If only Rodney would have pitched one fewer inning and had one more save! (Eck had 48, Rodney has 47).

  7. Jeremy T - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:04 PM

    Yet another bizarre performance in a bizarre season. Between Rodney, Trout, Miggy’s triple crown, the Orioles, the A’s, and the Nats, there’s a whole lot of “didn’t see that coming” going around this season.

    • Jeremy T - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:06 PM

      And I didn’t even mention Dickey, the Pirates first half, Harper, etc…

      • uwsptke - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:44 PM

        Can we put the Pirates second half in the “I totally saw that one coming” category?

    • WhenMattStairsIsKing - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:36 PM

      That’s why I love baseball.

  8. protectthishouse54 - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:50 PM

    The Rays should choose me as their closer for next season. Though I haven’t played ball since high school, I’d be super cheap and I’m sure they would be able to turn me into a top-5 closer in no time.

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