Mariano faced the #3 hitter 506 times, Pedro Martinez faced the #3 hitter 1345 times, and Christy Mathewson faced the #3 hitter 6.8* million times. (*unofficial)
In the end, the great Mariano Rivera pitched 1,283.2 innings and gave up 1,284 hits and walks combined. In other words, if Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte had not gone out to the mound last week so they could dramatically remove Rivera from his final game as a Yankee, the greatest reliever in the history of baseball might have finished with an immaculate WHIP measurement of 1.0000.
Pettitte and Jeter showed up on the mound with one out to go in the top of the ninth last Thursday, precipitating a moving scene in which Rivera wept on Pettitte’s shoulder while the Yankee Stadium crowd roared. Then Rivera departed, with the little-known Yankee Matt Daley recording the final out by striking out Ben Zobrist.
In other circumstances that would have been Rivera’s out, and he would have finished his career with a WHIP as sublime as his cutter. As it was, his WHIP — walks and hits divided by innings pitched — came out to 1.0003, which, in the record books, will often be rounded to 1.000 anyway. But 1.0000, of course, is just a little bit better.
Not surprisingly, Rivera’s numbers put him near the top of the career WHIP list of pitchers, dating to the 1800s, who pitched at least 1,000 innings in the major leagues. At the top of the list, according to baseball-reference.com, is Addie Joss (1902-10), with a WHIP of 0.968, and Ed Walsh (1904-17), whose WHIP of .9996 just edges Rivera’s.
Right behind Rivera is Monte Ward (1878-94) with a WHIP of 1.0435; Pedro Martinez, who retired four years ago with a WHIP of 1.0544; Christy Mathewson, the great New York Giant, who had a 1.0581 WHIP in a career that extended from 1900 to 1916; and Trevor Hoffman, who held the career record for saves, with 601, until Rivera rolled past him on the way to 652, and who had a WHIP of 1.0584.
Posted: October 03, 2013 at 12:17 PM | 15 comment(s)
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