The so-far-special debut of Mariners rookie Michael Pineda is illuminated by a stat that puts him in the same flattering sentence as Cy Young Award winner Randy Johnson.
How does Michael Pineda’s strikeouts-to-walk ratio compare to other starting pitchers in Mariners history?
When Michael Pineda (5-2) fanned seven and walked none in beating the Minnesota Twins on Monday night at Safeco Field, he pushed his season strikeout total to 52 and kept his walk total to 13, a strikeouts-to-walk ratio of 4.00.
If extended over a full season, this would constitute the second-best strikeouts-to-walk ratio in franchise history, behind Randy Johnson’s 4.52 mark in 1995, the year he went 18-2 and won the first of his Cy Young awards.
Of more intrigue than Pineda’s comparison to the Big Unit is that only a dozen pitchers under the age of 25 — Pineda is 22 years old — have posted a strikeouts-to-walk ratio of 4.00 or higher since 1900. The list includes three Hall of Famers (Tom Seaver, Walter Johnson and Don Sutton) and the last man to win 30+ games in a season (Denny McLain).
Best single-season strikeouts-to-walk ratios by pitchers under the age of 25 (since 1900):
Pineda’s 4.00 strikeouts-to-walk ratio is exceeded in Mariners annals only by Johnson’s in 1995. The best single-season strikeouts-to-walks ratios by Seattle pitchers: