The fact that it occurred at Coors Field complicates things a bit, but Brewers rookie Mike Fiers finally came back down to earth last night after an incredible start to his career.
Fiers came into last night with a 1.80 ERA and 80/16 K/BB ratio in 80 innings … and then failed to make it out of the third inning while coughing up eight runs and recording just one strikeout. To put that in some context, he allowed a grand total of eight runs in his previous 62 innings.
Of course, it should be noted–again, even–that Coors Field does crazy things to a whole lot of pitchers and bad outing included Fiers still has a 2.63 ERA and 81/16 K/BB ratio. However, when trying to determine how “for real” a 27-year-old rookie with an incredible ERA through a dozen starts is … well, every rough outing gets attention, altitude or not.
Fiers will try to get back on track this weekend against the Phillies, in Milwaukee.
Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.
Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.
The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.