Amongst the glitz and glamor of Miami, Mark Buehrle remains Mark Buehrle.
In his 11 full seasons with the White Sox, Buehrle was a model of consistency. He averaged 220 innings over 33 starts with a 3.82 ERA, and while there were some peaks (2005) and valleys (2006) along the way, the Sox were able to pencil in Buehrle for 200 innings and a solid ERA every year.
With Miami, Buehrle has made 18 starts and thrown 120 23 innings with a 3.13 ERA. If all goes well, he'll hit the 200-inning plateau for the 12th consecutive season sometime in September.
What's interesting is that a move to the National League and a spacious ballpark hasn't affected Buehrle's home run prevention. He's allowing 0.97 home runs per nine innings while 9.7 percent of the fly balls he allows are going over the outfield fence. Buehrle's career averages: 0.99 HR9 and a 9.8 percent HRFB rate.
He's striking out batters at a higher rate (5.44 per nine innings) than he has since 2008, and if his average of 1.34 walks per nine innings holds, it'll be a career best. His 3.13 would only be topped by his 2005 campaign, too.
Buehrle's throwing far more changeups this season than he ever has, going with that offering on 30 percent of his pitches. That's nearly one in every three pitches Buehrle throws. He's also slightly increased his curveball usage.
His velocity has dropped, too, with his fastball averaging under 85 miles per hour for the first time in his career. But that hasn't stopped it from being his most effective pitch, according to Fangraphs' pitch value data.
As fellow high-priced teammates struggle to have their value match their contracts -- Heath Bell, Jose Reyes, Hanley Ramirez -- Buehrle is off to a good start in making the 58 million Miami is paying him a worthwhile investment. Just like the 56 million the White Sox paid him was, too.