During Wednesday night’s press conference, Kansas City Royals GM Ned Yost finished his answer to the second straight question regarding Danny Duffy saying, “We’re kinda beating a dead horse. Danny Duffy‘s a really good major league pitcher.”
KC inched out a win in the second game of their series with the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday, and Duffy threw 5 2/3rds innings while allowing just one run. The 25-year-old Royal lefty was successful despite giving up four runs and six walks, which just goes to show how much he has already developed. Luckily for Royals fans, Duffy is already great, and he’s only expected to get better.
KC had just three hits in the first five innings against Minnesota starter Phil Hughes, so they needed every bit of Duffy’s gutsy performance to muster a win. Wednesday’s outing brings Duffy’s ERA down to 2.42 and further widens the gap between him and the rest of KC’s starters in that statistic. The second-best ERA owned by a Royals starter is a 3.31 belonging to the injured-ish Jason Vargas. Four KC starters have more total strikeouts than Duffy so far, but Duff’s opposing batters’ average of .206 is .051 better than any other Royal in the rotation.
In fact, only six pitchers in MLB have lower opposed averages than Duffy in more playing time. A quick look at that short list – Johnny Cueto, Clayton Kershaw, Chris Sale, Felix Hernandex, Garrett Richards and Adam Wainwright – will very simply explain why fans in KC are eager to see what becomes of this All-Star level lefty in his next start, not just his next season. His secondary breaking balls will keep getting nastier, and his command can only get better from here. By continuing to excel, even through difficulty, Duffy is proving that he is a top-shelf starter right now.