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Bartolo Colon aiming to put himself in select company

Jun 16, 2013, 10:45 PM EDT

Bartolo Colon AP

Before a public health disaster at Coliseum sent players scrambling, Athletics starter Bartolo Colon pitched well against the Mariners, holding the opposition to two runs over seven innings on eight hits and zero walks. Colon lowered his ERA to 2.89 on the season and improved to 9-2.

If, somehow, Colon manages to keep his ERA below 3.00 by the end of the season (Sabermetric statistics indicate he won’t), he would join a select group of pitchers to toss enough innings to qualify for the ERA title and post a sub-3.00 ERA at the age of 40 or older. The last to do it was Roger Clemens in 2005, who put up a 1.87 ERA in 211.1 innings with the Astros. Both Clemens and Randy Johnson accomplished the feat in 2004. Prior to those two, Nolan Ryan did it with the Rangers in 1991.

The full list:

Player Year ERA Age Tm Lg IP
Bartolo Colon 2013 2.92 40 OAK AL 83.1
Roger Clemens 2005 1.87 42 HOU NL 211.1
Randy Johnson 2004 2.60 40 ARI NL 245.2
Roger Clemens 2004 2.98 41 HOU NL 214.1
Nolan Ryan 1991 2.91 44 TEX AL 173.0
Rick Reuschel 1989 2.94 40 SFG NL 208.1
Nolan Ryan 1987 2.76 40 HOU NL 211.2
Warren Spahn 1963 2.60 42 MLN NL 259.2
Connie Marrero 1952 2.88 41 WSH AL 184.1
Johnny Niggeling 1944 2.32 40 WSH AL 206.0
Ted Lyons 1942 2.10 41 CHW AL 180.1
Jack Quinn 1928 2.90 44 PHA AL 211.1
Pete Alexander 1927 2.52 40 STL NL 268.0
Eddie Plank 1916 2.33 40 SLB AL 235.2
Cy Young 1910 2.53 43 CLE AL 163.1
Cy Young 1909 2.26 42 CLE AL 294.1
Cy Young 1908 1.26 41 BOS AL 299.0
Cy Young 1907 1.99 40 BOS AL 343.1
Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/16/2013.
  1. beebopthearcher - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:53 PM

    I feel I speak for everyone here when I say “Who the fuck is Connie Marrero?”

    • beebopthearcher - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:56 PM

      Well, after some research, here are some interesting facts about him:

      1. He’s the oldest living former MLB player at 102
      2. He’s the only formed MLB player living in Cuba
      3. He made his major league debut at age 39

      • missthemexpos - Jun 17, 2013 at 12:44 AM

        From those stats I would say that making your major league debut at a older age leads to a long life.

      • badintent - Jun 18, 2013 at 1:23 AM

        Cuban birth records are suspect.So are their PEDs

    • don444 - Jun 17, 2013 at 2:28 AM

      You don’t speak for me as I actually read an article dealing with his life and MLB career earlier this year. Oh well, always nice to hear that you were already aware of something most others were clueless about.

  2. duckthefodgers - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:58 PM

    Colon starting while toilets are backing up…There a joke here somewhere.

    • don444 - Jun 17, 2013 at 2:33 AM

      lol Yeah, and something tells me you’re the perfect candidate to wade through the sewage and recover it.

  3. fbwangus8736 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    Lets see a well known cheat who was good, but never this good, is pitching lights out! One might think He is still cheating! Duh, hello! This turd and Ryan Braun deserve to be kicked out of baseball.

    • 18thstreet - Jun 17, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      Why stop there? I say they should be executed and their severed heads rotated among the American League and National League stadiums, respectively, as a warning. For the kids.

  4. tuberippin - Jun 17, 2013 at 1:39 AM

    Not going to happen. Bet on it.

  5. Samuel - Jun 17, 2013 at 1:45 AM

    Reblogged this on But at the end of the day… and commented:
    I know it’s not going to happen. I have watched him all year, even today at the Coliseum, but it’s just too crazy to think he’ll handle this consistency for the whole year. But hey, I’ll ride out as much as he can give for the A’s this season.

  6. kiwicricket - Jun 17, 2013 at 2:08 AM

    I would of thought he is in very select company already? There are very few species of Dugongidae left in the wild, let alone playing in the Major Leagues.

  7. Stiller43 - Jun 17, 2013 at 4:05 AM

    Who’s that Cy Young guy on that list? I feel I may have heard of him

    • badintent - Jun 18, 2013 at 1:26 AM

      what was Cy throwing ? A spitter ? Forkball ? THE first splitter ? ALL THREE ??

  8. indaburg - Jun 17, 2013 at 5:37 AM

    I’m not arguing that he won’t maintain this level performance–in fact, I agree with you, Bill, but just out of curiosity, which specific saber stats are you referring to when you say sabermetric stats indicate that he won’t? Inquiring minds want to know. I just looked up some basic numbers, and they’re better than I would’ve guessed. BABIP .288, FIP 3.25, WHIP 1.10, BB/9 1.00, HR/9 0.70, GB/FB 1.37 Thanks.

    • unclemosesgreen - Jun 17, 2013 at 6:45 AM

      Top o’ the mornin’ to ye Burgie. As an early-rising longtime stat geek, allow me to have a swing at this one.

      Colon is doing this with fastballs and more fastballs – he’s a flyball pitcher and he appears to be a bit lucky on homeruns so far. His park certainly seems to have something to do with this – and in 14 starts split evenly home and road he’s given up 5 road jacks and 2 home jacks – small sample size but follow expectation as well. Nice bit of confirmation bias at worst. Where was I?

      xFIP assumes a HR/flyball rate of 10.5, to take FIP a degree further in trying to assess the role of luck in ERA. Last year he had a 9.1% HR/FB ratio, which is low, with the Yankees in 2011 he was at 11.4%. This year so far he’s at 6.6%, which is the single most unsustainable stat I see on his virtual and totally amazing baseball card.

      I often wonder what would have become of me had there been this much information available on players when I was a kid. Baseball cards took enough of my time as it was.

      • indaburg - Jun 17, 2013 at 7:13 AM

        Insomnia bit me again. What does any reasonable person do? Look up Bartolo Colon stats.

        Your explanation makes complete sense. I missed the 6.6% outlier. Thank you.

        I hear you. I wonder too, if I hadn’t grown up in a time where you saw no women working in baseball. I didn’t have the courage as a kid to say “well, I’ll be the first.”

      • unclemosesgreen - Jun 17, 2013 at 9:08 AM

        My pleasure – an opportunity to bloviate about stats? Please.

        Nice new profile pic – may we assume OG has the power to change into a dolphin?

      • indaburg - Jun 17, 2013 at 10:10 AM

        One of his many talents. I was framed in that pic.

  9. billymc75 - Jun 17, 2013 at 5:52 AM

    amazing like Clemens what PEDs do for a 40 yr old fat man

    • 18thstreet - Jun 17, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      Try them. See how they work for you.

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