Skip to content

Yu Darvish is striking out a lot of hitters

May 5, 2013, 9:25 PM EDT

yu darvish reuters Reuters

Underwhelming title? Rangers starter Yu Darvish‘s strikeout rate will overwhelm you. The 26-year-old right-hander struck out 14 Red Sox over seven innings today, lowering his ERA to 2.56. The 14 K’s bring his total to 72 on the season in 45 and one-third innings, a rate of 14.3 per nine innings. On a batters-faced basis, his strikeout rate is 40 percent.

To put that in perspective, the only pitchers to have a strikeout rate of 40 percent or better last year were relievers: Craig Kimbrel (50%) and Aroldis Chapman (44%). The leader among starters was Max Scherzer at 29 percent, followed by Darvish himself at 27 percent.

In baseball history, only two starters have qualified for the ERA title and finished with a K/9 above 13: Randy Johnson in 2001 (13.4 in 249.2 innings) and Pedro Martinez in 1999 (13.2 in 213.1 innings). Today marked the second time this season Darvish had struck out 14 — he opened up the season with a 14-K performance (and 8.2 innings of no-hit ball) against the Astros. The last starter to have two 14-strikeout performances in one season was Roy Halladay in 2011, on April 24 against the Padres and on August 16 against the Diamondbacks. It was also Darvish’s fourth double-digit strikeout game in seven starts.

In terms of overall swing-and-miss rate, Darvish at 41 percent vastly outpaces second-place Ryan Dempster at 34 percent. Darvish led all pitchers last year at 29 percent, followed by Scherzer at 28 percent.

While it is unlikely Darvish will keep up this frenetic pace of missing bats, it is still something to marvel at, as we see it so rarely even as strikeouts continue to rise to historic levels.

Latest Posts
  1. Jacob Turner taking Edwin Jackson’s spot in Cubs’ rotation

    Aug 23, 2014, 2:15 PM EDT

    Jacob Turner Jacob Turner

    Jacob Turner will start on Wednesday, taking over Edwin Jackson’s spot in the Cubs’ starting rotation.

  2. Joe Maddon calls Hellickson-Buehrle match-up “The Tortoise and the Hare”

    Aug 23, 2014, 1:24 PM EDT

    Joe Maddon Joe Maddon

    Saturday’s match-up between the Rays and Blue Jays pits Jeremy Hellickson against Mark Buehrle, who are very dissimilar.

  3. Nationals call up Nate Schierholtz, option Michael Taylor

    Aug 23, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    Nate Schierholtz Nate Schierholtz

    Outfielder Nate Schierholtz is expected to join the Nationals in time for Saturday afternoon’s game against the Giants.

  4. Xander Bogaerts feels fine after being hit in the head by a pitch

    Aug 23, 2014, 12:05 PM EDT

    Xander Bogaerts Xander Bogaerts

    Xander Bogaerts was hit in the head by a Felix Hernandez pitch on Friday night, but the rookie says he is fine. He is not in Saturday afternoon’s lineup.

  5. Walt Jocketty expected to remain Reds’ general manager in 2015

    Aug 23, 2014, 12:04 PM EDT

    Walt Jocketty Getty Getty Images

    The Reds have lost seven straight and are currently on pace for their worst season since 2008, but Walt Jocketty is expected to return as general manager next season.

  6. Doug Fister recently had skin cancer removed from his neck

    Aug 23, 2014, 11:05 AM EDT

    Doug Fister AP AP

    Nationals right-hander Doug Fister revealed last night that he had skin cancer removed from the left side of his neck this week.

  7. Drew Smyly has been really good since joining the Rays

    Aug 23, 2014, 10:12 AM EDT

    Drew Smyly AP AP

    Many around the game were underwhelmed when the Rays acquired Drew Smyly, Nick Franklin, and Willy Adames in the three-team David Price deal last month. It will probably take years before we can make a fair assessment, but the early returns are positive for Tampa Bay.

  8. Position player pitching alert: The Tigers turned to Andrew Romine in a blowout

    Aug 23, 2014, 9:32 AM EDT

    Andrew Romine AP AP

    The Tigers turned to infielder Andrew Romine to pitch in a blowout last night.

  9. Settling the Score: Friday’s results

    Aug 23, 2014, 8:56 AM EDT

    Sean Doolittle AP AP

    A quick recap of a busy Friday around MLB, including an important AL West battle.

  10. Garrett Richards underwent surgery to repair his left knee

    Aug 22, 2014, 11:55 PM EDT

    Garrett Richards Garrett Richards

    Garrett Richards had surgery to repair a torn patellar tendon in his left knee, meaning he’ll be out between six and nine months.

  11. MLB.tv’s blackout restrictions could be over in 2015

    Aug 22, 2014, 11:05 PM EDT

    old TV

    The frustrating blackout restrictions could come to an end as early as 2015, according to Maury Brown of Forbes.

  12. Felix Hernandez reaches 200 strikeouts for a sixth consecutive season

    Aug 22, 2014, 10:10 PM EDT

    Felix Hernandez Felix Hernandez

    Felix Hernandez has struck out 200-plus batters in each of the last six seasons, something no other starting pitcher will have done when the season is over.

  13. Mike Minor loses his no-hit bid with two outs in the eighth

    Aug 22, 2014, 9:17 PM EDT

    Mike Minor Mike Minor

    Mike Minor is on point in Cincinnati against the Reds on Friday night.

  14. Giants aren’t ready to take Buster Posey out from behind the plate yet

    Aug 22, 2014, 9:15 PM EDT

    Buster Posey Buster Posey

    The Giants don’t have any plans to move Buster Posey out from behind the plate just yet, even though his numbers are much better as a first baseman.

  15. Dodgers moving Triple-A affiliate from Albuquerque to Oklahoma City in 2015

    Aug 22, 2014, 8:20 PM EDT

    dodgers logo

    The Dodgers’ Triple-A affiliate will reportedly move from Albuquerque, New Mexico to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma for the 2015 season.

  16. Kyle Lohse to rejoin Brewers’ rotation on Monday

    Aug 22, 2014, 7:25 PM EDT

    Kyle Lohse Getty Images

    Kyle Lohse was dealing with a sore right ankle, but is expected to rejoin the Brewers’ rotation on Monday to start against the Padres.

  17. Manny Machado to undergo season-ending knee surgery

    Aug 22, 2014, 6:33 PM EDT

    manny machado o's getty Getty Images

    Manny Machado’s season is likely over, as he is expected to undergo season-ending knee surgery within a week, according to a report.

  18. The Angels may have trouble getting starting pitching on waivers

    Aug 22, 2014, 6:20 PM EDT

    Bartolo Colon Bartolo Colon

    According to Peter Gammons, the Orioles and Yankees are “claiming everyone” on waivers, which will make it difficult for the Angels to improve their starting rotation after losing Garrett Richards.

  19. Javier Baez hit the ball really far again, trails only … Mandy Brooks?

    Aug 22, 2014, 5:28 PM EDT

    Javier Baez Getty Getty Images

    His latest, a solo shot off Orioles right-hander Kevin Gausman.

  20. A’s send Dan Otero back to Triple-A with 7-1 record, 2.28 ERA

    Aug 22, 2014, 3:45 PM EDT

    Dan Otero A's AP

    Sometimes the life of a player with a minor-league option remaining just isn’t fair.

Featured video

Can Angels recoup loss of Richards?
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. R. Castillo (5229)
  2. M. Cuddyer (2621)
  3. K. Bryant (2380)
  4. W. Myers (2068)
  5. G. Richards (2051)
  1. H. Ramirez (2021)
  2. D. Ortiz (2002)
  3. A. Cashner (1897)
  4. J. Hamilton (1870)
  5. A. McCutchen (1828)