Aaron Nola being Aaron Nola
The Phillies’ starting rotation was a complete dumpster fire in 2017 except for one pitcher: Aaron Nola. In fact, he was among the best in the league. His 4.3 fWAR ranked 13th among all starters in the league, slotted between Jacob DeGrom and Justin Verlander. That is some good company.
In 27 starts, Nola racked up 168 innings pitched, 184 strikeouts, 49 walks, a 3.54 ERA, 3.27 fielding-independent pitching, and 1.21 WHIP. He returned to his 2015 and early-2016 form, which everyone was hoping for after he ended the 2016 season on the disabled list after two months of struggles.
As of now, Nola remains the frontline starter in Philadelphia’s rotation. It’s highly likely the team acquires someone via trade or rotation to bolster the rotation, but even then Nola should still remain one of the team’s premier starters.
Last year, Nola was worth watching every time he took the mound, and that should still continue in 2018.