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Putting the Greatness of Roy Halladay Into Perspective

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Believe it or not, Roy Halladay actually had a bad outing last week.Roy Haladay photo: Matt Slocum/AP.

Don't sound the alarms just yet.

After allowing 6 earned runs in a loss to the Brewers April 19th, he was back to his dominant self. Halladay mowed down the Padres on Sunday to the tune of 14 strikeouts and one earned run in 8.2 innings on his way to another impressive victory.
 
It’s hard to believe it has been just over a year since Harry Leroy Halladay made his first start as a Philadelphia Phillie. His 38-game tenure in Philadelphia has featured more memorable achievements than most pitchers achieve in an entire career.
 
In fact, Halladay is so consistently good that it can be easy to take for granted what he is actually doing from start to start. With that being said, here are a series of factors that put into perspective just how exceptional the best pitcher in baseball actually is:
 
1. Halladay has averaged over 240 innings pitched over the last four seasons. In that four year period, only four other players have thrown 240 innings in a SINGLE season, and each of them did so only once.
 
2. Since the beginning of 2008, Halladay has started 104 games and has lasted 7 or more innings in 81 of them. In fact, he has pitched 8 or more innings in an astounding 44 of those starts.
 
3. He has led the major leagues in complete games four years in a row, and 6 of the last 8 years. He has thrown 53 complete games in that 8 year span, and 59 complete games in his career. Only two other active pitchers have gone the distance more than 32 times.
 
4. Roy is first among all active pitchers in shutouts with 19, with the next highest total being 13 (Chris Carpenter). Only four active pitchers have more than 10 shutouts.
 
5. Halladay is first among active pitchers in walks per nine innings at 1.89. In fact, only one other pitcher in baseball has managed to walk fewer than two batters every nine innings for his career (Dan Haren).
 
6. In addition to his incredibly low walk total, Roy has only found himself in a 3-0 count to a batter 309 times in the 9511 batters he has faced in his career. That is once every 31 batters.
 
7. When Halladay wins, he dominates. In his 172 career wins, his ERA is a remarkable 1.92 and he has held opponents to an feeble batting average of .214.
 
8. He hasn’t averaged more than a homer per nine innings in over 10 years (to put this in perspective, Cole Hamels has never held opponents to less than a homer per nine innings for a full season, and Cliff Lee has only done so 3 times in 8 seasons).
 
9. Halladay has only given up 19 multiple-run homers in his 324 career starts. That means that a multiple-run homer against Halladay happens once every 17 starts, or 1.4 times per season!
 
10. One of Halladay’s most impressive stat lines is: 253.1 innings, 18 wins and 7 losses, 2.98 ERA. No, those are not the numbers from one of Halladay’s seven All-Star seasons. They are actually his career numbers against the New York Yankees.

 

Matt Babiarz was born and raised in the Philadelphia area.  He graduated from the University of Alabama, but remained a very close observer of the Philadelphia sports scene.  He recently began covering the Phillies for Philly2Philly.com.   You can also read his work at Bleacherreport.com within the Philadelphia Phillies section. 

Matt can be contacted at mattbabz@comcast.net  

 

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