Stats & Info: Dillon Gee

Mets ride pitching to Subway sweep

May, 30, 2013
Al Bello/Getty ImagesDillon Gee was the latest Mets starting pitcher to dominate the Yankees.

For the first time in the history of the New York Mets-New York Yankees rivalry, the Mets swept the season series, winning their fourth straight game Thursday.

It marked a significant turnaround in terms of what had happened this season up to this point.

The Yankees entered the series in first place in the American League East but ended it two games behind the Red Sox, whom they'll face next. The Mets looked to be sinking but now have won a season-high five straight games.

Here's a quick snapshot of how the sweep happened.

What went right for the Mets?
The Mets' starting pitching was outstanding.

Dillon Gee’s effort in Thursday’s win might have been the most impressive of the four, as he struck out a career-high 12, matching the most in any game between the two teams (Orlando Hernandez had 12 for the 2000 Yankees in the World Series).

The Elias Sports Bureau notes it’s the second time a pitcher had 12 strikeouts, no walks and four or fewer hits allowed against the Yankees since the team moved from Baltimore to New York in 1903. The other pitcher was Pedro Martinez in his 17-strikeout one-hitter in 1999.

The Yankees figured to have the advantage in terms of their bullpen in this series, but the Mets' relievers did the better job, allowing one run in 7 2/3 innings of work.

The unsung hero for the Mets' bullpen was Scott Rice, who until this season was a 14-year minor league veteran. Rice retired nine of the 11 hitters he faced, five via strikeout. Yankees hitters missed on nine of the 21 swings they took against him.

Mets pitchers recorded 34 strikeouts and no walks in the last three games of the series. Elias also tells us that it’s the first time in Mets history they had that many strikeouts and no walks in a three-game span.

The Mets' offense wasn’t great, hitting just .221, but the hits were timely. The team was 9-for-30 with runners in scoring position, including Daniel Murphy’s game-winning hit Monday night, and the tying and winning hits against Mariano Rivera on Tuesday night.

What went wrong for the Yankees?
It wasn’t just the first time Mets pitchers had 34 strikeouts and no walks in a three-game span.

Elias noted it was the first time Yankees hitters had a three-game stretch with that many whiffs and no walks.

Yankees hitters hit .235 for the four games (their right-handed hitters were a combined 8-for-47 with 13 strikeouts). Travis Hafner, Vernon Wells, Reid Brignac, Chris Stewart and David Adams were a combined 6-for-55.

The Yankees will be getting offensive reinforcements. Kevin Youkilis and Mark Teixeira are both expected to be activated in time for Friday’s series opener with the Boston Red Sox.

Will Kershaw continue to dominate Mets?

July, 1, 2012
Jason O. Watson/Getty ImagesClayton Kershaw is 4-0 in five career starts against the Mets.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are the fourth team in the live ball era to be shut out at least five times in a six-game span, joining the 1958 Senators, 1963 Colt 45s and the 1992 Cubs, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

The only team since 1900 to be shut out six times in a seven-game span is the Colt 45s.

The Dodgers are hoping to avoid that fate when they face the New York Mets tonight at 8 ET on ESPN. Of course, they need their bats to avoid being shut out, but they also need some help from their ace Clayton Kershaw, who goes head-to-head with Mets starter Dillon Gee.


Kershaw has dominated the Mets since 2009. In his last four starts, he’s 4-0 with a 0.31 ERA. He’s allowed one earned run in 28 ⅔ innings, while Mets opponents have hit .208 against him.

In Kershaw's five career starts against the Mets, he has a 1.39 ERA. Among starting pitchers with at least five starts against the Mets, only Doc Medich has a lower ERA (0.85) than Kershaw.

Among pitchers with a minimum of 500 innings pitched since 2009, Kershaw has the lowest ERA (2.65), just ahead of Roy Halladay (2.66).

In the last 30 years, Dwight Gooden (2.62) is the only National League pitcher with a lower ERA in his first five career seasons than Kershaw (2.86).

Kershaw’s slider hasn’t quite been where it was last year. In 2011, opponents hit .121 with three home runs and a .184 slugging percentage against his slider. This season, opponents are hitting .194 with six home runs and a .408 slugging percentage against Kershaw’s slider. Five of those six homers came in the last month.

Kershaw is 28-15 with a 2.51 in his career at home. No active starting pitcher with at least 400 innings pitched has a lower career home ERA.


Gee is 20-14 in his 1st 50 career games. Only two Mets – Dwight Gooden and Tom Seaver – have begun their careers with more wins in their first 50 games.

Based on peripheral numbers, Gee is having a better season than he did last year. After striking out 6.4 batters and walking 4.0 batters per nine innings last year, he’s striking out 8.4 batters and walking 2.4 batters per nine innings this season.

Dillon Gee
A stat that helps encapsulate this is xFIP (expected fielding independent pitching). Even though his ERA is unchanged this year, Dillon’s xFIP is significantly down in 2012 (3.42) compared to 2011 (4.46).

The Mets gave him 4.8 runs per start last year. That’s down to 4.4.

Gee has the highest chase percentage among National League starters. His 34 chase percentage is slightly ahead of Jeff Samardzija, Cliff Lee, R.A. Dickey and Ian Kennedy.

Gee will be making his third career start against the Dodgers. In his previous two starts, he’s 0-1 with a 5.73 ERA. With Josh Thole behind the plate, Gee was a 3.42 career ERA.

Verlander brings heat, crowns Royals

April, 17, 2012

AP Photo/Reed HoffmannJustin Verlander and Alex Avila celebrate following the Tigers 3-2 win over the Royals Monday night.
Justin Verlander found himself in a familiar position after the eighth inning with a two-run lead on Monday night against the Kansas City Royals.

Unlike his two previous starts when he and the Detroit Tigers bullpen blew leads in the ninth inning, Verlander went the distance this time and made sure he got his first win of the season. Verlander threw 131 pitches, one shy of his career high, and now has an MLB-best 33 120-pitch games since 2010.

Verlander this season has allowed one earned run in the first eight innings of his three starts, and five earned runs in the ninth inning. Prior to this year, he had allowed just one earned run in the ninth inning in his first seven seasons combined.

Verlander cranked up the heat in the final frame, averaging 97.5 mph with his fastball. He threw four heaters to Alex Gordon in the last at-bat, and each one hit 100 on the radar gun. Those were the four fastest pitches he threw the entire game.

Since 2009, Justin Verlander has the highest average fastball velocity for any starter in the ninth inning. He is the only starter in that time frame to throw a pitch over 100 mph in the ninth inning.

Verlander also had success getting ahead and finishing off the Royals batters. He allowed just one hit in 17 at-bats that reached a two-strike count, and this season opponents are now hitting .073 (3-41) with two strikes against Verlander.

Big Game shuts out Red Sox
James “Big Game” Shields lived up to his nickname on Patriots Day in Boston, tossing 8⅓ scoreless innings as the Tampa Bay Rays avoided the sweep against the Boston Red Sox with a 1-0 win this afternoon.

James Shields
Shields allowed just four hits – all singles – as he shut down a Red Sox offense that had averaged more than 10 runs per game in the first three games of the series. This was just the third 1-0 shutout by the Rays over the Red Sox and all three have come at Fenway Park.

Shields heavily featured his slider against Boston, throwing it 41 times, and using it to get 10 outs. Both of those are his most in any start over the last three seasons. He had thrown just 28 sliders in his first two outings this season and recorded only five outs in nine at-bats with the pitch.

Around the Diamond
• The Minnesota Twins beat the New York Yankees for just the sixth time in 34 regular-season games in the Bronx since Ron Gardenhire’s first season as Twins manager in 2002. Justin Morneau homered and now has five home runs in 11 career games at the new Yankee Stadium. He has five homers in 80 games at Target Field.

• Dillon Gee pitched seven innings of one-run ball as the New York Mets beat the Atlanta Braves 6-1. Gee recorded 11 groundball outs, one shy of his career-best, and induced grounders on 65 percent of balls hit into play, the highest groundball rate in a game in his career.
Tuesday saw three pitchers come into games with extended amounts of success against the teams they were facing. Unfortunately, all three saw their notable streaks come to an end.
New York Yankees' CC Sabathia: lost for the first time in nine starts against the Baltimore Orioles. He also lost at Yankee Stadium for the first time since July 2, 2009. That was a stretch of 21 consecutive home starts without a loss, which tied Whitey Ford for longest streak in franchise history. As for the pitcher who has suffered the most home losses July 2, 2009? The Cleveland Indians' Fausto Carmona, who is 8-12 in 24 starts at Progressive Field.

Chicago White Sox's Freddy Garcia: lost for the first time as a visitor at Comerica Park since Aug. 20, 2002 when he was with the Seattle Mariners. The White Sox had won all nine previous starts of Garcia's in Detroit prior to Tuesday's defeat.

Atlanta Braves' Tim Hudson: entered Tuesday with a 3-0 record while giving up just one unearned run in his last three starts against the Pittsburgh Pirates. On Tuesday, Hudson allowed four runs in 6⅓ innings and took the loss in the Braves 5-0 defeat in Pittsburgh.

Tuesday's notables:

• New York Mets' Dillon Gee took a no-hitter into the sixth inning in his major-league debut against the Washington Nationals (he allowed two hits in seven innings). Gee is the third Mets pitcher to take a no-hitter through five innings in his major-league debut, joining Randy Sterling (Sept. 16, 1974: five innings at Montreal Expos) and Brian Bannister (April 5, 2006: 5⅓ innings vs Nationals). Gee also is the first Mets pitcher to drive in a run in his debut.

Staying with the Mets, Ike Davis hit his 18th home run. He's two shy of joining Darryl Strawberry (26 in 1983) as the only Mets to hit at least 20 HR in their rookie season.

• The Colorado Rockies' Carlos Gonzalez became the first player in the National League to 100 RBI on Tuesday. The last time a Rockies player was the first to 100 RBI in the NL in a season was Preston Wilson in 2003.

• The Toronto Blue Jays have now hit at least three HR in 33 games this season. That's the most such games by a team since the Texas Rangers had 35 such games in 2005.
• The Minnesota Twins' Jim Thome hit his 586th career HR, tying Frank Robinson for eighth on the all-time list. It's also the 40-year-old veteran's third straight game with a HR. He's the first 40-year-old to homer in three straight games since Barry Bonds in 2006. The last 40-year-old Twins player to hit an HR in three straight games was Dave Winfield in 1993.
Today’s Trivia: The New York Yankees' Derek Jeter has had double-digit home runs in 15 straight seasons, but never eclipsed 30 HR. That’s tied for the third longest such streak. Who holds the record for consecutive 10+ HR seasons without hitting 30 or more?

Quick Hits: On Monday, Alex Rodriguez made it 13 straight seasons with 100 RBI. That tied Jimmie Foxx and Lou Gehrig for the longest streak all time. Not to be outdone, Jeter picked up his 150th hit. He’s now done that in 15 straight seasons. Only Hank Aaron (17) and Pete Rose (16) had longer streaks.

So who else is looking to extend streaks in 2010?
Ichiro Suzuki
• Perhaps the most notable consecutive season streak belongs to the Seattle Mariners' Ichiro Suzuki. He needs 21 hits in the final 24 games to make it 10 straight 200-hit seasons. He already holds the record with nine straight, having passed Willie Keeler last season.

• Alex Rodriguez needs eight home runs to reach 30 for the season. It would be his 13th straight season with at least 30 HR, which would tie Barry Bonds’ record. Rodriguez currently is tied with Jimmie Foxx for the second-longest streak.

• The St. Louis Cardinals' Albert Pujols is well on his way to a 10th consecutive season with a .300 batting average and .950 OPS. Only two players have double-digit streaks with that combination: Lou Gehrig did it in 12 straight seasons, while Ted Williams managed 17 straight.
Bobby Abreu
• With 112 strikeouts, the Los Angeles Angels' Bobby Abreu has already made it 13 straight seasons with 100 or more. Only Reggie Jackson and Carlos Delgado can share that distinction in major-league history.

• With his 14th straight 20-save season, the Yankees' Mariano Rivera has already broken Lee Smith’s record. With his next save, he will tie Trevor Hoffman’s record of eight straight 30-save seasons. Hoffman’s streak will be coming to an end this year.

• The Washington Nationals' Livan Hernandez (9-10) needs two more starts to join Phil Niekro as the only pitchers since 1901 with 13 straight seasons of 30 starts and 10 losses.
Carlos Pena
• The Tampa Bay Rays' Carlos Pena needs four home runs to join Gorman Thomas as the second player in history with three straight seasons of 30 HR with a batting average below .250. Pena currently his hitting .205

• The Philadelphia Phillies' Ryan Howard entered the season hoping to join Babe Ruth as the only players with five straight 45-HR, 135-RBI seasons (Ruth had six). However, at 26 HR and 88 RBI, Howard will have to settle for a tie for the second-longest streak with Sammy Sosa.
• Can the Florida Marlins' Dan Uggla maintain his incredible statistical consistency? To start his career, Uggla has had four straight seasons hitting between 27 and 32 home runs with between 88 and 92 RBI. In MLB history, the only other player to have consecutive seasons in between those totals was Eddie Mathews, who did it for two straight. With 29 HR and 87 RBI, Uggla is essentially already where he normally finishes.

Tuesday’s Leaderboard: In Yunesky Maya and Dillon Gee, both the Nationals and Mets send out starting pitchers who are making their MLB debuts today. It’s the first time opposing starters are making debuts since Rick Porcello and Ricky Romero last season. For the Nationals, it will be their 14th starting pitcher of the season, three more than any other team. With their 11th starter, the Mets are now tied for second most.
Ryan Howard
Key Matchups: Ryan Howard is 9-for-20 with five home runs in his career against the Marlins' Chris Volstad. In fact, all five long balls have come in his last 13 at-bats. The only pitcher that he’s taken deep more is Tim Hudson (six).

As for Hudson, he hasn’t allowed an earned run to the Pittsburgh Pirates in his last three starts, spanning 22 innings. Take a look at the Pirates' roster and the outlook is not great. Active Pirates position players are 3-for-39 against Hudson, which equates to an .077 batting average.

Trivia Answer: Al Kaline had 10+ home runs in each of his final 20 seasons, but never hit 30. The next longest streak belongs to Harold Baines at 18. Both players had 29 as their career high.