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Saturday, April 28, 2018

As Rays beat Red Sox, a new debate about Blake Snell — is he an ace?

Snell continued his impressive start to this season, and extended his late 2017 turnaround, with another impressive outing in a tough test, beating the baseball-best Red Sox on a cold Friday night at Fenway Park.

“He certainly looked the part tonight, looked the part of that No. 1, elite, whatever you want to call it,’’ manager Kevin Cash said, stopping just short of the a-word. “He did his job.’‘’

And a bunch of other Rays did theirs, as the 4-3 win over Boston was their seventh straight, extending their longest streak since 2014, as they continued their climb back from that 1-8 start to 11-13.

Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: April 28, 2018 at 11:25 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blake snell, rays

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   1. cardsfanboy Posted: April 28, 2018 at 04:42 PM (#5662283)
He's not an ace yet, but he's pitching acelike right now... an ace needs to have an established track record.
   2. sotapop Posted: April 28, 2018 at 06:01 PM (#5662298)
I know, cherry-picking, but take away the three-inning train wreck at Yankee Stadium on April 4, when there was a 20 mph wind blowing straight out, and he'd have a 1.21 ERA right now. Snell was their best pitcher in the second half of last season, too.
   3. Walt Davis Posted: April 28, 2018 at 09:28 PM (#5662370)
Is Mallex Smith the next Ichiro? Is Ozzie Albies the next Altuve (and 5 years ahead of schedule)? Snell's off to a nice start, both for his career and this season, and numbers-wise is a reasonable match to (for example) Scherzer or Cueto. That means he hasn't been quite as good quite as early as Price. He's clearly well behind (in terms of early performance) the early starters like Kershaw, Sale, Felix, Cain and Bumgarner. On the "downside" he hasn't established himself as better than Mat Latos, Jair Jurrjens or Matt Cain yet. (all very good pitchers for at least a while.) There's no clear reason to prefer him over Carlos Martinez.

Any of those would be very nice outcomes of course (yes, even if it's just the 700 or so very effective innings that Latos and Jurrjens put up before getting hurt) but it's also mainly speculation based on his last 90 innings, along with 254 career innings of very good pitching (and potential). Not that I think anybody here is yet claiming he's an ace, just tossing out some comps to frame any discussion.
   4. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: April 28, 2018 at 11:16 PM (#5662423)
Blake Snell is a pitcher with a single digit number. This is unacceptable and no matter what he ever does that will always loom over his performance.
   5. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: April 28, 2018 at 11:54 PM (#5662427)
Blake Snell is a pitcher with a single digit number. This is unacceptable and no matter what he ever does that will always loom over his performance.

Have you considered that it might be the new market inefficiency?
   6. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: April 29, 2018 at 11:03 AM (#5662463)



(I do make an exception for Adam Ottavino).
   7. cardsfanboy Posted: April 29, 2018 at 09:12 PM (#5662706)
We've had this discussion in the past, heck fangraphs wrote entire articles about the definition of pitcher roles....

but you are absolutely not an ace until you have done it over a full season plus... meaning you need to perform at an ace like level for one full season, and then another 7 or so starts in the next season to prove it wasn't a fluke or aberration.. Until then you are just a pitcher having a good year.

Ace like level would of course be both an era+ over 120--or even 130 and a corresponding fip(now that we have that data) over 30 starts in a calendar year... if you aren't delivering that, then you are a number two...
   8. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: April 30, 2018 at 04:47 PM (#5663136)
Sox losses this season:
3/29 Sale vs. Archer (TBR)
4/11 Price vs. Tanaka (NYY)
4/21 Sale vs. Manaea (OAK)
4/22 Price vs. Mengden (OAK)
4/24 Porcello vs. Happ (TOR)
4/27 Pomeranz vs. Snell (TBR)
4/28 Price vs. ..whoever (TBR)
   9. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 30, 2018 at 05:03 PM (#5663149)
#8 may be on to something. Sale & Price appear to be the weak links for the Red Sox. Better trade them now, eh?
   10. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: April 30, 2018 at 05:05 PM (#5663150)
Sale's appearance in that list is nothing but noise. Price, though, is conclusively garbage and should probably just be waived.

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