Dodger Thoughts

Jon Weisman's outlet for dealing psychologically with the Los Angeles Dodgers, baseball and life

Tag: Bob Gibson

Remembering ’65: Tied!


By Jon Weisman

“Breathing defiance in the face of the Giants’ seemingly insurmountable lead,” wrote Frank Finch in the September 24 edition of the Times, “the doughty Dodgers face the Cardinals tonight to open their final homestand of the gruelling, grinding National League campaign.”

Already, the Dodgers had made progress, trimming a 4 1/2-game deficit to two games. But their defiance was matched, and then some, by the Giants, according to UPI.

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Zack Greinke’s adjusted ERA is better than Bob Gibson’s in 1968

Philadelphia Phillies vs Los Angeles Dodgers

Adjusted ERA July 9By Jon Weisman

In 1968, Bob Gibson famously had a 1.12 ERA that was baseball’s lowest in more than 50 years.

Right now, adjusted for park and era factors, Zack Greinke is better.

At right, you can see where Greinke stands among the greatest adjusted ERAs (ERA+) of all time, according to (Click to enlarge the chart.)

The next-closest Dodger doesn’t come until Roger Craig (205 ERA+, 1959), in 46th place. Clayton Kershaw’s best single-season ERA+ was 194 last year, and Sandy Koufax’s was 190 in 1966 (77th).

Of course, Greinke has only thrown 123 1/3 innings so far this year.  Gibson threw 304 2/3 in 1968, and adjusted ERA doesn’t factor in that level of durability.

Greinke has been boosted by a career-low .235 opponents’ batting average on balls in play, and in his 17 starts, he has allowed nine hits total with runners in scoring position (.203 on-base percentage, .224 slugging percentage).

Read more about Greinke’s unbelievable exploits in 2015 in Thursday night’s post.

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