In life perfection is something we all hope to achieve, as it signifies no mistakes were made. The reality is that, this isn’t something that can be accomplished with great ease, because it requires tremendous focus and concentration.
This is even tougher to achieve in baseball, as there are so many variables that come into play. However, one player has come very close to perfection, and this would be Milwaukee Brewers reliever Francisco Rodriguez. Milwaukee has the best record in baseball (20-8) after the first month of the season and it’s mainly due to the performance of Rodriguez.
The right hander has been lights out on the mound, going 13-for-13 in save opportunities. In 16 innings pitched, he hasn’t allowed a run and has yielded just seven hits. This includes striking out 23 batters with only four walks, and WHIP of 0.69.
Francisco Rodriguez named #Brewers Pitcher of the Month for March/April (16g, 16ip, 7h, 0r, 4bb, 23k, 13-for-13 save opps, .132 opp avg).
— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) May 1, 2014
Only six times in MLB history has anyone recorded more than 10 saves before the month of May. Mark Davis (1989) and Rod Beck (1997) each had 11 saves. Lee Smith had 12 saves before May in 1994 and Kazuhiro Sasaki notched 13 saves in 2011.
The other two occurrences, were accomplished by K-Rod. In 2008, Rodriguez saved 11 games before May and would continue to save 62 games – which is still the all-time single-season record in MLB.
The second time is obviously this season for Rodriguez, with him helping the Brewers start the season off great. One interesting thing to know is that, he’s only thrown 20 or more pitches in five of his 16 appearances this season.
So Rodriguez is being very efficient with his pitches and generating plenty of bad swings, as indicated by his SO/9 of 12.9.
Only time will tell if Rodriguez can break the mark he set back in 2008, but his run at perfection is off to a blazing start.
Photo: Howard Smith, USA Today