All told, the Diamondbacks’ pitching staff was considerably improved in 2022 over the previous year. Their ERA dropped from 5.11 to 4.25, a twelve point improvement in ERA+, which went from 83 to 95. Whether this was the result of new pitching coach Brett Strom, or some other factor, it was a significant factor in the team’s 22-game improvement over last season. Oh, there were still areas for improvement, no question about it: the back end of the bullpen was a queasy, white-knuckle ride, like going on a roller-coaster after a full English breakfast and several shots of tequila. But there were some excellent performances across the course of the season as well, and that’s what this category is for.
Now, let’s be clear: this feels very like it is going to be Zac Gallen’s category to lose, considering how long it has been since the last time Arizona had a player finish as high as fifth in Cy Young (and he, very arguably, should have been ahead of Julio Urias as well). But don’t forget: it’s an honor simply to be nominated, and there were quite a few others who perhaps deserve to get a nod of appreciation in this category. For your consideration, below you will find the stats for all the pitchers on the 2022 Diamondbacks who were better than replacement level by bWAR.
As usual, we need to narrow the candidates down to five or thereabouts, for the final poll. This will be done largely on the basis of recs in the comments, though the decision of the judging committee i.e. me, will be final in this regard. Just identify the player - maybe in bold, just to make it stand out, now there’s no more subject line for comments - and make your case in the body of the comment. If you agree with a choice already made, give it a rec. If you don’t see your choice, post a new comment. I will delete subsequent top-level comments about the same game. Poll to follow on Wednesday, though for Christmas related reasons, I’m pushing the rest of the series back a week, and the result will be announced Dec 31.