How did the Philadelphia Phillies’ starting pitchers perform in 2021?
If the Philadelphia Phillies’ starting rotation was a class of students, they’d have the same variety that you’d expect in a school.
There were star pupils, worthy of a spot on the honor roll, but there were also individuals who could use extra tutoring, having failed assignments during the year.
Here are some grades for the Phillies’ starters and the class average for the rotation as a whole.
Philadelphia Phillies RHP Zack Wheeler
If there’s one thing for Phillies fans to smile about, it’s the emergence of Zack Wheeler as a true ace on the team this season.
Wheeler recorded a 2.78 ERA and 1.008 WHIP this season, both fifth-best in the majors. He led the majors with 213 1/3 innings pitched and three complete games, with two shutouts. His 247 strikeouts ranked second in the majors, just one shy of Robbie Ray, who only knocked him off the top spot at the end of the year. All of these numbers marked career-highs in his seventh season.
The right-handed pitcher had a 14-10 record in his 32 starts, with 10.4 strikeouts per nine innings and 1.9 walks per nine innings. He was effective in most outings, giving up more than three runs in just nine starts and going six or more innings in 27 starts.
Wheeler was named an All-Star, though he faced just one batter at the end of the All-Star Game and he’s in the mix to win the Cy Young Award. Regardless of the Cy Young outcome, he was easily the Phillies’ best year-long starter.