Sunday, June 13, 2010

Ubaldo Jimenez Is Chasing History

Colorado Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez is steadily chasing history during the 2010 baseball season. Currently he is 12-1 with a 1.16 ERA with 84 strikeouts, 34 walks and a WHIP of 0.98. As it is, Jimenez has been residing in rarefied air with his performance this season. As of his first 11 starts, he joined Hall of Famer Juan Marichal and Eddie Cicotte as the only pitchers to win 10 games in their first 11 starts and to have an ERA under 1.00. Marichal was 10-0 with a 0.80 ERA and Cicotti was 10-0 with a 0.95. Jimenez was 10-1 with a 0.78 ERA. Keep into consideration that Jimenez is pitching his home games in the high altitude of Denver, Colorado.

While Jimenez is visiting the rarefied air of the pitching immortals, he currently is on pace to match the ERA god of the modern era: Bob Gibson. in 1968, Gibson while pitching for the St. Louis Cardinals compiled a 22-9 record with a 1.12 ERA in 34 starts and 304.2 innings. Gibson threw 28 complete games and 13 shutouts. He gave up 198 hits, 62 walks and 268 strikeouts.

By comparison, Jimenez has a 12-1 record with a 1.16 ERA in 13 starts and 87.1 innings. Jimenez has thrown 2 complete games and 2 shutouts. He has given up 52 hits, 29 walks and 78 strikeouts. Will he be able to catch Gibson? Time will tell. What I do know is, barring any major injury or collapse by Jimenez, that they National League Cy Young will not be won with just 16 wins as it was with last year. Jimenez has the opportunity to cement himself with other dominant Latino starters such as Johan Santana, Pedro Martinez, Mike Cuellar and Juan Marichal. We'll keep an eye on it to see how it goes.

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