Boston Red Sox left-handed pitcher Felix Doubront is a prime example of how a win-loss record can be misleading.
After getting shelled by the Minnesota Twins in a no-decision at Fenway Park on May 8, Doubront’s record stood at a respectable 3-1. However, the record didn’t tell the whole story. His ERA stood at a bloated 6.40, but he’d only lost once thanks to outstanding run support.
After today’s 4-0 victory against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Doubront has now gone 15 straight starts since that May outing without giving up more than three earned runs. It is the longest such streak by a Red Sox left-hander since 1920. In that time, he’s seen his ERA drop from the high watermark of 6.40 to 3.56. However, he’s just 5-4 in that time period, including two tough-luck losses to the Tampa Bay Rays.
But while the win-loss record might not be representative of how well he’s pitched, his other statistics certainly are. Since June, he has an ERA under 3.00 and is striking out almost one batter per inning, and opposing batters are hitting a paltry .233 against him.
Today was no different.
Pitching in the rubber game of the three-game set against the Diamondbacks today, Doubront was tremendous again. He went seven innings, allowing just five hits and no walks, while striking out five.
The Red Sox have more high-profile pitchers, but at this point, they might not have a more reliable starter than Doubront. There is no clear indication when Clay Buchholz might return from the DL, and even though they traded for Jake Peavy, their starting rotation still had question marks.
In the last two months, Doubront has done his best to erase any doubts that he belongs in their rotation for the long term.
B.L. is a sports writer for Rant Sports and can be followed on Twitter @coachlip.