Another start, another dominating performance by Aaron Nola. Seems to happen a lot these days.
Like every fifth day.
His 78th career start and 18th start this year was typical Nola. Seven innings, one earned run, nine strikeouts, two walks and a win over the Orioles Wednesday afternoon (see story).
Which got us thinking. Just how well does Nola stack up at this point in his career with other great pitchers in Phillies history and major-league history?
So with assistance from the baseball-reference database, we checked!
So here are 10 (or slightly more than 10) random Aaron Nola stats that you absolutely won’t believe!
• Nola’s 489 career strikeouts are most in Phillies history by a pitcher after 78 games. The previous high was 484 by Cole Hamels. It’s also 15th-most in MLB history by a pitcher after 78 starts. And of the 14 ahead of him, only four had fewer walks (Stephen Strasburg, Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and Corey Kluber).
• Nola has already had 10 starts this year allowing four or fewer hits. That’s tied for the most in franchise history at this point in a season. Alexander had 10 such games 84 games into 1915.
• Nola’s 26 career starts allowing four or fewer hits are most ever by a Phillie after 78 career starts.
• Nola’s 14 starts allowing two or fewer runs so far this year are second-most by a Phillies starter 84 games into a season in the last 100 years. The only pitcher the last century with more such starts at this point in a season was John Denny, who had 15 in 1983 on his way to the Cy Young Award.
• Nola’s 14 starts this year allowing two or fewer earned runs are fourth-most in baseball, and his 32 starts over the last two years allowing two or fewer earned runs are fifth-most in the majors.
• Nola’s 35 wins are second-most in Phillies history after 78 starts, behind only Alexander (42) and tied with Tom Seaton (35), and Cole Hamels (35).
• Nola has had 12 starts this year where he’s gone at least six innings and allowed two or fewer earned runs, fourth-most in baseball. Only Max Scherzer (15), Justin Verlander (13) and Blake Snell (13) have more.
• Nola’s 43 career starts going six innings and allowing two or fewer runs are third-most ever by a Phillies pitcher in his first 78 career starts, behind two guys who pitched in the 1910s -- George McQuillan (54) and Alexander (47).
• Of the 87 pitchers in baseball who’ve pitched at least 85 innings, only one — Trevor Bauer of the Indians — has allowed fewer home runs than Nola. Bauer has allowed five in 113 2/3 innings. Nola has allowed six in 116 innings.
• Nola’s start Wednesday was the 46th of his career with six or more strikeouts and two or fewer walks. That’s the most in MLB history by a pitcher after 78 career starts, tied with Noah Syndergaard.
• Nola’s 35 wins are tied for the most in Phillies history by a pitcher in his first 78 career games. Hamels also had 35 wins after 78 starts.
• Nola’s 11 wins this year match the most by a Phillies pitcher 84 games into a season since Curt Schilling had 13 in 1999 – some 19 years ago. It’s the second-most wins by a Phillies pitcher this early in a season since 1980, when Steve Carlton had 15 on the way to 24 wins and the Cy Young Award.
• Nola’s 2.41 ERA is fifth-lowest by a Phillies starter at this point in a season (at least 75 innings pitched) in 50 years, behind Wayne Twitchell (2.08 in 1973), Carlton (2.14 in 1980), Denny (2.17 in 1983) and Roy Halladay (2.33 in 2010).
• Nola has started 18 games this year without allowing more than four earned runs. He’s the first Phillies starter to open a season with 18 straight games allowing four or fewer runs in 27 years. Two Phillies starters had longer streaks in 1991 - Tommy Green with 27 and Jose de Jesus with 20.