Comparing Luis Severino to Pedro Martinez

Since his MLB debut in 2015, Yankees ace Luis Severino has been compared to fellow Dominican superstar Pedro Martinez, who was one of the most electrifying and intimidating pitchers of his time. Severino’s arsenal of pitches and his mechanics are very similar to those of Martinez and many baseball experts are saying that he has the potential to have a Pedro Martinez type career. To get a good comparison of the two pitchers, the stats that will be compared will be from each of their first full seasons as a starter. Luis Severino’s 2017 stats will be compared to Pedro Martinez’s 1994 stats The statistics that will be compared will be strikeouts, wins and losses, ERA, and opponent’s batting average, all of which are important in showing pitcher’s success.

When someone thinks of a good pitcher, they often think of how many strikeouts they rack up throughout a season and while there are many pitchers that don’t usually have lots of strikeouts per game, many pitching legends are known for their strikeouts. In 1994, Pedro Martinez was currently playing for the Montreal Expos where he was a starting pitcher for the first time. Over the course of the 1994 season, Martinez became one of the most solid starting pitchers in the league with 142 strikeouts in 144.2 innings pitched. In 2017, Yankees starter Luis Severino was dominant throughout the course of the season after struggling in the bullpen in 2016. The offseason allowed Severino to reach out to Pedro Martinez for advice and it certainly paid off. The 24 year old had 230 strikeouts in just 193.1 innings pitched. This particular stat is what led him to become an all-star and finish 3rd in the Cy Young rankings.

Wins and losses can also determine how well a pitcher’s career went, and it is well-known in the baseball world that if a pitcher is a twenty game winner, he is often in the running to win a Cy Young and his team has a decent possibility of being in the playoffs. While neither Pedro Martinez or Luis Severino won 20 games in their respective years that are being analyzed, they both still had a winning record in those years, Martinez having an 11-5 record and Severino having a 14-6 record. Lots of factors go into the win-loss statistic. In Major League Baseball, the winning pitcher is defined as the pitcher who last pitched prior to the half-inning when the winning team took the lead for the first time. For example, if Luis Severino tosses 7 scoreless innings and only gives up 2 hits but the Yankee offense also fails score and they take Severino out after 8 innings to bring in Aroldis Chapman and they score in the bottom of the 9th to win the game 1-0, Chapman would get the win. This is why the win-loss statistic is flawed in certain aspects.

Earned Run Average (ERA) is a stat that is more set in stone and is often directly correlated with a pitcher’s success. By definition, ERA represents the number of earned runs a pitcher allows per 9 innings – with earned runs being any runs that scored without the aid of an error or passed ball. It is also the most commonly accepted statistical tool for evaluating pitchers. In 1994, Pedro Martinez had a 3.42 ERA which is considered good in today’s standards. His career ERA was a 2.93 which shows that his ERA improved over an 18-year career. In 2017, Luis Severino posted a 2.98 ERA which is very good, considering he had to pitch against some of the best hitters in the MLB in the American League East. Severino’s career ERA is a 3.50 but because he is only 24 years old and has only 4 big league seasons under his belt, his stats are just a sample size.

While Luis Severino is very young and still has roughly ten to twelve years left in his career, his stats from his first year could potentially show a very promising career for the young superstar.

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