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Felix Hernandez reaches 200 strikeouts for a sixth consecutive season

Aug 22, 2014, 10:10 PM EDT

Felix Hernandez Felix Hernandez

Felix Hernandez stands alone. With a second-inning strikeout of Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts, the Mariners’ starter became the only pitcher to strike out at least 200 batters in each of the last six seasons. Tigers starter Justin Verlander entered the season with five in a row of his own, but as he currently stands at 118 strikeouts and hasn’t pitched in two weeks, Hernandez will be by himself when the season is over.

Hernandez was rolling until he allowed a sixth-inning, three-run home run to Yoenis Cespedes. It marks the first time he’s given up three-plus runs in a start since May 12. He left with two outs in the sixth, relieved by Brandon Maurer.

Hernandez came into tonight’s start in Boston with a league-leading 1.99 ERA and a 0.87 WHIP. While arguments can be made for some other starters, Hernandez appears to be the current favorite to take home the American League Cy Young award when the season ends. If he does, he’ll have two on his mantle.

Chris Sale of the White Sox is closest to Hernandez in ERA at 2.12, but has pitched 50 fewer innings and it will be close to 60 when tonight’s games are over. Corey Kluber is next in ERA at 2.46, but that’s about a half-run per nine innings ahead of Hernandez. Garrett Richards has the next-best ERA, but he just suffered a season-ending knee injury.

  1. uscoach - Aug 22, 2014 at 11:51 PM

    Jeez I knew he was good but 6 straight 200 k seasons?

    • mmeyer3387 - Aug 23, 2014 at 2:46 AM

      Hernandez has been very impressive for a while. He’s probably better than most realize when we consider that this is his first year with a quality team. However, he still hasn’t gotten good run support when he a pitched. Furthermore, he may be the most underrated pitcher of this decade. Yes, I knew he has won the Cy Young award once. But I still think that he’s over looked by most fans.

  2. The Bronx Bombers - Aug 22, 2014 at 11:52 PM

    Soon to be NY Yankee…

    • kruegere - Aug 23, 2014 at 3:53 AM

      Felix loves Seattle and signed a huge extension this offseason.

      Don’t think he’s going anywhere.

  3. sportsfan18 - Aug 23, 2014 at 12:22 AM

    King Felix has been dealing for year and years…

    Much respect to him.

    To me, he’s the best in the A.L. and not just this season.

    Clayton is the best in the N.L. and in the game with King Felix being the 2nd best pitcher in the game overall.

    Clayton will hit 200 K’s for the 5th consecutive season this yr. He has 184 K’s right now and barring an injury, he’ll get to 200 before the season’s end…

    Clayton career WHIP 1.062
    King Felix career WHIP 1.173 (yes, DH he has to face).

    Clayton career ERA+ 150
    King Felix career ERA+ 131 (Greg Maddux’s was 132 for his career)

    • Reflex - Aug 23, 2014 at 1:00 AM

      That is pretty much my assessment. Both are the respective best pitchers of their leagues. Felix also puts the lie to the idea that players will always take the highest contract offer. He gave the M’s a hell of a home town discount to stay in Seattle, and the city treats him like a real King in appreciation.

    • Hard On For Harden - Aug 23, 2014 at 9:33 AM

      Captain Obvious has landed! In other news, leBron James is the best basketball player in the world and Asrian Peterson is the best back in th NFL.

      • stercuilus65 - Aug 23, 2014 at 9:57 PM

        Great to hear from Major Dick!

  4. coryfor3 - Aug 23, 2014 at 1:46 AM

    Big deal. Incaviglia hit 200 k’s pretty regularly…oh wait…

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