Jose Fernandez had himself a nice little May.
The Miami Marlins ace vaulted himself into early discussions for the National League Cy Young Award alongside the likes of Clayton Kershaw and Jake Arrieta with a month-long performance during which he was virtually unhittable.
With a sparkling seven innings of shutout ball and six strikeouts Tuesday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Fernandez finished the month with a 6-0 record and 56 strikeouts.
Not bad, right? According to the Elias Sports Bureau (via ESPN), Fernandez is just the third pitcher since 1893 to post a 6-0 record with 50 or more strikeouts in May. You might have heard of the other two pitchers to do so: Roger Clemens in 1997 and Pedro Martinez in 1999.
Via Baseball-Reference.com, here’s how the three dominant months stack up against each other:
Across the board, the numbers are pretty comparable. Fernandez’s ERA and batting average against both come in better than the other two, although he couldn’t touch Martinez’s strikeout total. It’s also worth noting that Fernandez struck out more batters in seven fewer innings than Clemens, and the new Toronto Blue Jays ace would go on to strike out 292 batters that season.
And just because, here’s Martinez needing just nine pitches to strike out the side to start a game against the Seattle Mariners:
Thumbnail photo via Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports Images
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