Trevor Bauer is A Great MLB twitter personality, and now he's one of their best starting pitchers TOoRead Now
By: Salvatore Gagliardi
Trevor Bauer, previously known more for his enigmatic off-field twitter feuds, training habits, or drone enthusiasm, has this year, quietly thrown his hat into the ring for most improved player, and just maybe a shot at a Cy Young. The deadly combination of Bauer, Cy Young award-winner Corey Kluber, and 18-game winner Carlos ‘Cookie’ Carrasco formed one of, if not the best starting rotation in all of baseball last year. Even with the emergence of young Mike Clevinger, the Indians starting-5 seemed to regress this year when compared to the off-season acquisitions and early on-field production of the World Champion Houston Astros.
Dallas Keuchel — Houston’s own Cy Young award-winner — has surprisingly been the most lackluster of the Stros starting-5. With Justin Verlander rediscovering his best baseball and former Pittsburgh Pirates ace Garrett Cole leading their rotation and the AL in strikeouts, many now believe the Astros have usurped the Indians for best starting 5 in the game. However, even with Bauer’s breakout season last year, he is now on pace to cement himself as one of baseball’s best pitcher, elevating the Tribe’s starting rotation to new heights once again.
Selected 3rd overall by the Arizona Diamondbacks all the way back in 2011, Bauer quickly fell out of favor with the Arizona regime after his unorthodox pitching routine and self-declared quirky-reserved attitude soured his relationship with management and his teammates. He was subsequently traded just one year later to the Indians, who, rather then try to change Bauer, sought to make comfortable and embrace some of his unique pitching techniques, hoping over time it would bring out the dominant pitcher they believed he grow into.
The Indians patience has finally been rewarded. Bauer is spinning the ball better than he has ever done. His swing-and-miss breaking balls are moving all over the plate with greater unpredictability, generating the fourth most strikeouts in the AL (109), the best K/9 rate of his career (11.4), and leading directly to the 6th lowest ERA in the AL, and by-far of Bauer’s career (2.63). Bauer has also always prided himself on having a rubber arm, wanting to pitcher more frequently and longer outings if granted the opportunity. This year he’s getting his chance, leading the AL in pitches thrown per outing, which, during his starts is keeping the league's most disastrous bullpen out of the game, another plus. Bauer is only 27 years young, and there is every reason to believe his pitching prime has just begun. If he and Kluber -- 10-2 with the AL’s 2nd lowest ERA (1.99) — continue on their current All-Star trajectory, the Indians will soon regain the title as best starting rotation in baseball.
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