Home > Uncategorized > Is Wily Peralta the Brewers’ ace?

Is Wily Peralta the Brewers’ ace?

August 7, 2014

When you think of the Milwaukee Brewers’ best starting pitcher, what name comes to mind?

Matt Garza? Kyle Lohse? Yovani Gallardo? Maybe even Jimmy Nelson?

None of them has been nearly as good as Wily Peralta since the All-Star break.

In winning his last five starts, Peralta has allowed just six earned runs over 33 innings, good for a 1.34 ERA. His most recent outing Thursday afternoon made the Brewers right-hander baseball’s first starter to 14 wins.

Does that make Peralta the Brewers’ best starter?

He certainly has been over the last month. You could make the same argument looking at some of his numbers for the entire season as well. But a closer look shows he’s not quite there — yet.

With the win, Peralta improved to 14-6 with a 3.42 ERA. Only Lohse (3.40) has a better ERA this season among Brewers starting pitchers. Lohse and Gallardo also are the only Brewers starters with more strikeouts this season.

Peralta also leads the rotation in ground ball rate, which he demonstrated by recording 11 of 20 outs on the ground Thursday afternoon. The other nine were strikeouts.

It’s numbers like those that have allowed Peralta to put together such a dominant stretch over the last month.

But digging deeper, you find that while Peralta has been the Brewers’ best lately, Lohse, Garza — and even Gallardo — have been better this season.

All three have higher WAR totals that Peralta, with Garza’s 2.2 leading the pack. Peralta also trails all three in terms of fielding independent pitching (FIP), with Garza’s 3.53 FIP being the best.

You can also count home run rate, walks per nine, strikeouts per nine, win probability added and strikeout-to-walk ratio among the stats in which Peralta does not lead the staff.

So where does Peralta rank?

While he’s not the team’s best starter, he certainly is its hottest. More importantly, he may be the biggest key to the Brewers’ success down the stretch.

Whereas Peralta was strong through 10 starts this season and again in his last five, the 25-year-old right-hander struggled through the eight outings in between. Despite picking up wins in five of those eight, Peralta posted a 6.38 ERA.

But if he can maintain something close to his current form, Peralta has the potential to be that ace that allows the rotation to carry the Brewers down the stretch.

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