After falling short in each of the last two off-seasons, the Toronto Blue Jays finally landed their prized possession earlier this winter when they acquired starter Kevin Gausman, who featured one of the top pitches in the sport during the 2021 campaign.
Coming off the best statistical performance of his career, where he posted career bests in innings pitched (192.0), ERA (2.81), xERA (3.55), FIP (3.00), OPP AVG (.208) and fWAR (4.8), Gausman – who accepted his qualifying offer last winter – reached free agency and ultimately agreed to a five-year, $110-million contract with the Blue Jays.
Putting his all-star showing into perspective with the rest of the majors, though the 6’2″ hurler finished sixth in voting for the 2021 National League Cy Young Award, he still proved to be one of the top-performing starters amongst the competition. In turn, the 30-year-old’s 4.8 fWAR rating finished eighth highest among all qualified starting pitchers, according to FanGraphs.com.
One of the biggest factors that led to Gausman’s remarkable 2021 season was the success of his mid-80s splitter, which dominated opposing batters on both sides of the dish all year long.
It didn’t matter if a left-hander or right-hander was at the plate, his devasting off-speed offering was extremely effective …
Author: Thomas Hall / Blue Jays Nation