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. Twins have inquired about watching Rafael Soriano throw

    Mar 27, 2015, 8:35 PM EDT

    Rafael Soriano Rafael Soriano

    The Twins reportedly have a bit of interest in free agent reliever Rafael Soriano.

  2. Domonic Brown unlikely to be ready for Opening Day

    Mar 27, 2015, 7:45 PM EDT

    Domonic Brown AP

    Domonic Brown is battling an Achilles injury, leaving him unlikely to play on Opening Day.

  3. Dodgers to shut Brandon League down for three weeks

    Mar 27, 2015, 6:55 PM EDT

    Brandon League Brandon League

    Brandon League isn’t likely to pitch for a couple of months according to manager Don Mattingly.

  4. Jordan Zimmermann on extension with Nationals: “It’s not looking good.”

    Mar 27, 2015, 6:05 PM EDT

    Jordan Zimmermann Jordan Zimmermann

    It doesn’t seem like the Nationals and Jordan Zimmermann will reach an agreement on a contract extension before the regular season begins.

  5. White Sox claim Kyle Drabek off waivers from Blue Jays

    Mar 27, 2015, 4:40 PM EDT

    Kyle Drabek Getty Images

    Drabek was once a top prospect and the Blue Jays acquired him from the Phillies in the Roy Halladay trade.

  6. Mariners pitcher David Rollins suspended 80 games for PEDs

    Mar 27, 2015, 4:13 PM EDT

    David Rollins Getty Images

    The Rule 5 pick had a decent shot of making the Mariners’ pen out of camp.

  7. 2015 Preview: Chicago White Sox

    Mar 27, 2015, 3:20 PM EDT

    Jose Abreu AP

    Should we be taking the rebuilt White Sox seriously as contenders?

  8. Justin Verlander leaves start with arm cramping

    Mar 27, 2015, 2:34 PM EDT

    Justin Verlander AP

    Verlander has continued to struggle this spring.

  9. Did David Ortiz admit to more than he realized with his Players’ Tribune editorial?

    Mar 27, 2015, 2:01 PM EDT

    David Ortiz David Ortiz

    There is only one reason a player should be tested for drugs as often as David Ortiz claims he has been: a previous positive test.

  10. Indians demote Danny Salazar to Triple-A

    Mar 27, 2015, 12:46 PM EDT

    danny salazar getty Getty Images

    Thanks to his mid-90s fastball and fantastic strikeout totals Salazar was a popular breakout pick for 2015.

  11. 2015 Preview: Atlanta Braves

    Mar 27, 2015, 12:00 PM EDT

    Wandy Rodriguez Wandy Rodriguez

    The Braves had one of the stranger off-seasons, both adding and subtracting players while also attempting to rebuild. How bad will they be in 2015?

  12. Rangers tell Ryan Ludwick he will not make the team

    Mar 27, 2015, 10:15 AM EDT

    ludwick getty Getty Images

    Ludwick signed a minor-league deal with the Rangers in early February and it would have paid $1.75 million if he made the team at age 36.

  13. Rob Manfred says it would be hard to reinstate Pete Rose in a limited way

    Mar 27, 2015, 9:39 AM EDT

    pete rose getty Getty Images

    But it probably doesn’t matter because a reinstated Rose would be pretty limited to begin with.

  14. Major League Baseball would be worth $36 billion if it was traded on a stock exchange

    Mar 27, 2015, 9:14 AM EDT

    Money Bag

    And 15 MLB teams are now worth at least $1 billion, according to Forbes.

  15. The Giants haven’t had many Tommy John cases. Why?

    Mar 27, 2015, 8:42 AM EDT

    tommy john surgery

    Dave Righetti thinks it may have to do with weight training.

  16. Theo Epstein and Curt Schilling had a pretty interesting exchange about Kris Bryant

    Mar 27, 2015, 7:47 AM EDT

    Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 7.43.35 AM

    Kudos to Epstein for a good answer. Kudos to Schilling for a couple of more probing questions.

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. H. Olivera (4093)
  2. J. Fernandez (3787)
  3. K. Bryant (3715)
  4. S. Souza (3565)
  5. S. Doolittle (3506)
  1. H. Ryu (3491)
  2. J. Kipnis (3308)
  3. A. Cobb (3304)
  4. G. Richards (3290)
  5. Y. Tomas (3234)