Dodgers @ Cubs June 23, 2015: Jason Hammel Is Really Good

If it sounds like I’m pre-emptively making excuses for the Dodgers offense, well, maybe I am, but let’s at least note that tonight’s starter, Jason Hammel, is way better than you think he is.

Dodgers
Cubs
5:05 p.m.
Chicago, Ill.
RF
Puig
LF
Coghlan
CF
Pederson
1B
Rizzo
2B
Kendrick
3B
Bryant
1B
Gonzalez
C
Montero
C
Grandal
SS
Castro
LF
Ethier
RF
Baxter
3B
Callaspo
LF
Szczur
SS
Rollins
P
Hammel (R)
P
Greinke (R)
2B
Russell

I know you wouldn’t expect all that much from a guy who is nearly 33 and has kicked around from Tampa Bay to Colorado to Baltimore to Chicago to Oakland back to Chicago, but that pretty sorely underestimates him. Here’s Hammel’s K% the last three years:
– 15.7%
– 22.1%
– 25.7%

And his BB% the last five years:

– 9.2%
– 8.5%
– 7.9%
– 6.2%
– 4.2%

More strikeouts and fewer walks generally help. So far this year, his fWAR is equal to Cole Hamels and Madison Bumgarner. His K%-BB% is 8th overall, better than Matt Harvey or Gerrit Cole or Johnny Cueto. How’s that happening? The old Hammel threw moderately-effective fastballs. The much more recent Hammel throws sliders, lots of them:

hammel_jason_pitches

In Hector Olivera news:

HE TOOK THE ENTIRE LOCKER.

Or actually he’s just rehabbing his injured left hamstring in Arizona, either/or. I suppose that’s not a particularly surprising injury for a guy trying to get back to game speed after so much time away from the game, but regardless, that’ll probably quiet down some of the questions about him for a while, since he’s expected to miss 2-3 weeks. It doesn’t, of course, make having Alberto Callaspo in the lineup any easier.

ThrowsRelieverSat 10/15Sun 10/16Mon 10/17Tue 10/18Wed 10/19Thur 10/20Fri 10/21
LAvilan--OFF-2421OFF
RBaez34-OFF-2727OFF
RBlanton28-OFF13-19OFF
LDayton3-OFF16-12OFF
RFields--OFF-910OFF
RJansen-18OFF21--OFF
RStripling10-OFF-2018OFF
LWood--OFF-32-OFF

About Mike Petriello

Mike Petriello
Mike writes about lots of baseball in lots of places, and right now that place is MLB.com.