After winning my bet, how much misery can I cause with a single dollar?
Meche has more strikeouts than any Royals pitcher had in the previous 11 years, but he doesn’t even lead this year’s team. Greinke does. In 182 innings, Greinke has 167 strikeouts, enough to rank fifth in the league in both Ks and Ks per 9 innings. He’s walked just 52 batters, meaning that he’s just the second starting pitcher since 1991 to post a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 3 or better. (The other was Paul Byrd in 2002, when Byrd walked just 38 batters in 228 innings.)
Greinke hasn’t had a true breakout year, partly because he’s given up 21 homers, and partly because his BABIP is an unimpressive .315, leading to more hits than innings pitches. Some of that is bad luck, some of that is bad defense. But the important thing to take away from this is that when you look at the things that are within a pitcher’s control – innings, walks, strikeouts, homers – Greinke has had arguably the best season of any Royals starter this decade.
While Meche is under contract through 2011, Greinke can be a free agent after 2010. I’ve said this a million times, but let’s go ahead and make it a million-and-one: signing Greinke to a long-term deal is Dayton Moore’s #1 priority, whether he realizes it or not."