MLB

Ranking Masahiro Tanaka Among the MLB’s Top 20 Aces

Ranking Masahiro Tanaka Among the MLB's Top 20 Aces

Masahiro Tanaka New York Yankees
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There is little doubt in the fact that Masahiro Tanaka is proving worth the effort that the New York Yankees put forth, not to mention the money, to bring him in. His debut season in MLB has been very good and is certainly gathering tons of attention from media all over the world. He is the best in the game right? Well, maybe not. Take a look at where he ranks among the MLB's top 20 aces through two starts.

20 – David Price – Tampa Bay Rays

David Price Tampa Bay Rays
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20 – David Price – Tampa Bay Rays

David Price Tampa Bay Rays
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Price is still with the Rays but he is not having a very Price-like season right now. It isn't a huge problem to have a 4.05 ERA at this point but he certainly does not rank at the top of the list of aces with that number.

19 – Zack Greinke – Los Angeles Dodgers

Zack Greinke Los Angeles Dodgers
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19 – Zack Greinke – Los Angeles Dodgers

Zack Greinke Los Angeles Dodgers
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Greinke isn't going to be the ace of the Dodgers all season long but because of the DL stay for Clayton Kershaw, he gets moved up. He is doing well with a 3.27 ERA and 2 wins to go along with 13 strikeouts.

18 – Masahiro Tanaka – New York Yankees

Masahiro Tanaka New York Yankees
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18 – Masahiro Tanaka – New York Yankees

Masahiro Tanaka New York Yankees
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That didn't take long. Tanaka is having a very good year with a 3.21 ERA, one win and 18 strikeouts. Honestly though he isn't doing as well the ERA department as teammates Michael Pineda and Hiroki Kuroda. Click through for a look at all of the aces who are having better seasons than Tanaka through two starts.

17 – Francisco Liriano – Pittsburgh Pirates

Francisco Liriano Pittsburgh Pirates
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17 – Francisco Liriano – Pittsburgh Pirates

Francisco Liriano Pittsburgh Pirates
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Liriano is doing the job on the mound but having bad luck in the wins column. His ERA is a very good 3.00 and he has compiled 14 strikeouts.

16 – Travis Wood – Chicago Cubs

Travis Wood Chicago Cubs
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16 – Travis Wood – Chicago Cubs

Travis Wood Chicago Cubs
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With a 2.92 ERA, Wood is one of the bad luck guys along with Liriano because he has no wins to show for it. He'll do fine as the year goes along with those numbers as well as the 17 strikeouts he already has.

15 – Julio Teheran – Atlanta Braves

Julio Teheran Atlanta Braves
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15 – Julio Teheran – Atlanta Braves

Julio Teheran Atlanta Braves
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The default winner of the ace label for the Braves after multiple injuries is doing quite well. He has one win and a 2.77 ERA thus far. More importantly for the Braves, he has remained healthy for now.

14 – James Shields – Kansas City Royals

James Shields Kansas City Royals
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14 – James Shields – Kansas City Royals

James Shields Kansas City Royals
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Shields is still doing his part for the Royals though he has zero wins to show for it. With a 2.70 ERA through 13.1 innings, he is certainly showing up every time out.

13 – Jon Lester – Boston Red Sox

Jon Lester Boston Red Sox
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13 – Jon Lester – Boston Red Sox

Jon Lester Boston Red Sox
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Though the champions are off to a not-so-great start, you can't look to Lester for the reason. He has posted a 2.51 ERA over 14.1 innings with 14 strikeouts and still has a 0 – 2 record.

12 – Andrew Cashner – San Diego Padres

Andrew Cashner San Diego Padres
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12 – Andrew Cashner – San Diego Padres

Andrew Cashner San Diego Padres
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Toss Cashner's name into the pot with those starters who are having tough luck right now. Though he is without a win, he does have a nice 2.25 ERA thus far. No surprise there as he is proving himself to be one of the best in the game.

11 – Bartolo Colon – New York Mets

Bartolo Colon New York Mets
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11 – Bartolo Colon – New York Mets

Bartolo Colon New York Mets
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Colon wasn't perfect his first time out but when his second start rolled along he was all over it. The elder statesman of the Mets' rotation has a respectable 2.08 ERA through 13.1 innings.

10 – Johnny Cueto – Cincinnati Reds

Johnny Cueto Cincinnati Reds
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10 – Johnny Cueto – Cincinnati Reds

Johnny Cueto Cincinnati Reds
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Cueto being one of the starters who is pitcher much better than their winless record is actually good news for the Reds. They see that their ace is finally healthy and is one of the top aces in the game with a 1.93 ERA.

9 – Felix Hernandez – Seattle Mariners

Felix Hernandez Seattle Mariners
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9 – Felix Hernandez – Seattle Mariners

Felix Hernandez Seattle Mariners
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With the injuries that the Mariners had to deal with before the start of the season, Hernandez posting a 1.88 ERA is about the best thing that could have happened. He also has a not surprising 19 strikeouts.

8 – Chris Sale – Chicago White Sox

Chris Sale Chicago White Sox
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8 – Chris Sale – Chicago White Sox

Chris Sale Chicago White Sox
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The jury is still out on exactly how good the White Sox will be this season but not for Sale. He has two wins, a 1.76 ERA and has pitched over 15 innings.

7 – Adam Wainwright – St. Louis Cardinals

Adam Wainwright St. Louis Cardinals
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7 – Adam Wainwright – St. Louis Cardinals

Adam Wainwright St. Louis Cardinals
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With their supposed great offense, you would figure Wainwright's 1.29 ERA over 14 innings would not possibly give him a loss. It has but I think we all know where their season is heading or at least has the potential to go.

6 – Tim Hudson – San Francisco Giants

Tim Hudson San Francisco Giants
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6 – Tim Hudson – San Francisco Giants

Tim Hudson San Francisco Giants
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Who is the actual ace for the Giants now? I figure they have at least three on any given week. Right now the nod might as well go to the veteran addition Hudson. Nobody even remembers that ankle injury when looking at his 2 wins and 1.15 ERA over 15 innings.

5 – Max Scherzer – Detroit Tigers

Max Scherzer Detroit Tigers
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5 – Max Scherzer – Detroit Tigers

Max Scherzer Detroit Tigers
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I know that Justin Verlander got the Opening Day start but Scherzer is the ace here now and he is proving it once again. The 1.20 ERA and 15 strikeouts over 15 innings does that well but it isn't good enough for the Tigers to hand him a win just yet.

4 – Sonny Gray – Oakland Athletics

Sonny Gray Oakland Athletics
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4 – Sonny Gray – Oakland Athletics

Sonny Gray Oakland Athletics
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Thrust into the Opening Day and ace role because of injury, Gray is doing plenty well for himself. How does one win and a 0.75 ERA over 12 innings sound? It sounds pretty good to me.

3 – Jose Fernandez – Miami Marlins

Jose Fernandez Miami Marlins
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3 – Jose Fernandez – Miami Marlins

Jose Fernandez Miami Marlins
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This kid just doesn't know how to pitch any other way than lights out. It truly is incredible what he is able to do at his young age. So far in 2014 he has posted two wins, 17 strikeouts and a minuscule 0.71 ERA over 12.2 innings.

2 – Scott Feldman – Houston Astros

Scott Feldman Houston Astros
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2 – Scott Feldman – Houston Astros

Scott Feldman Houston Astros
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Feldman is surely the first of the two surprises at the top of this list. The Astros are flirting with the .500 mark in win percentage and their ace is responsible for two of their wins in the process. Feldman might have been called a non-ace by many this offseason but his 0.66 ERA and 14 strikeouts over 14 innings disagrees.

1 – Yovani Gallardo – Milwaukee Brewers

Yovani Gallardo Milwaukee Brewers
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1 – Yovani Gallardo – Milwaukee Brewers

Yovani Gallardo Milwaukee Brewers
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Here we go. Some are really fuming about this but you simply cannot rank another ace or even another starting pitcher above him right now. Through two starts he has 7 strikeouts and two wins along with an ERA of 0.00. I'm sure you can tell that is as low as it gets. If he drives in one run does it go to the negative? Either way he has been dominant for the resurgent Brewers so far.