Wow! How many of you watched Jake Arrieta's debut? I've been watching and waiting on this guy even longer than for Chris Tillman to be called back up. I've been critcal about the O's management starting their young prospects against hard hitting teams as with the hard-hitting Yankees, BUT Jakes defied his improbable start to not only win, but throw a 4 hitter.
Even Stephen Strasburg got the "nerf throw" this week starting vs. the lowly, soft-hitting Bucs and Tribe. It makes you wonder:
a) how well Jake would've done comparatively against the Pirates (or the upcoming Indians for that matter) in his first start.
b) how well Strasburg would've handled the Yanks in his first start....if the roles were reversed.
The only thing that can be said for Jake's success more than Strasburg's is that he has a good deal more experience (4 minor league seasons to 2 months) than Stras does. However, they were both similarly dominant in their respective MLB debuts.
Stras's Debut stats: Jake's Debut stats:
7 INN (94PC) 6 INN (106PC)
14K's (9K/9INN) 6 Ks (18K/INN)
2.57 ERA 4.50 ERA
0.5714 WHIP 1.3333 WHIP
4 hits allowed (1HR) 4 hits allowed (no HR's!)
2 ER 3 ER
0 BB 4 BB (2 intentional)
3 pies to the face 1 pie to the face
Considering their respective opposing line-ups they faced, I'd say that their respective debut's success' and statlines could be considered near equal with just Stras's just a notch better because of the 14 K's and "Zero" walks (with Jake's arm, he's not trying to walk anyone just yet). Everything other stat difference can be attributed to the vast difference in the opposing team's hitting ability.
Arrieta definitely had to overcome much more in his debut; the Orioles management being one of them. Even though there wasn't nearly the same public outpouring of excitement or congratulations as Strasburg's, Arrieta deserves a lot of credit.
In any event, the O's showed up to play and support their new, young pitcher -- in bigtime fashion. I'm sure batters will soon begin to adjust to these young pitchers and we'll see them struggle at times, but these great debuts bode well for their futures as MLB pitchers.
Congratulations Jake! Here's to many more victories!