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Tracking Jacob deGrom’s 2021 season: Start #9

deGrom was dominant in seven scoreless innings against the Padres last night.

New York Mets v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Last night in San Diego, Jacob deGrom once again looked as good as ever, this time going seven scoreless innings with 11 strikeouts, one walk, and just three hits allowed on 85 pitches. With that, he now has a 0.62 ERA on the season, the best mark in all of baseball, with Lance Lynn’s 1.23 ERA sitting in second place.

Despite having made three fewer appearances than everyone else in the top ten, deGrom ranks seventh in baseball with 93 strikeouts. Among qualified starters, his 45.4 percent strikeout rate is the best, his 3.9 percent walk rate is fourth-best, his 1.02 FIP is the best, and his 16 ERA- is the best. His percentile rankings in the metrics measured by Statcast look like someone went overboard while creating a player in a video game.

Throughout this series, we’ve been comparing deGrom to three of the very best pitching seasons in Mets history, and it’s gotten to the point here that is almost feels unfair to keep doing that—which is absurd since we’re talking about the very best of Tom Seaver and Dwight Gooden here.

Through 9 starts

Pitcher/Season IP ERA K BB
Pitcher/Season IP ERA K BB
deGrom '21 58.0 0.62 93 8
Seaver '71 73.0 2.10 77 15
Gooden '85 69.1 1.69 66 18
deGrom '18 51.1 1.75 69 14

On top of comparing favorably to those Mets pitching seasons—by a comfortable margin, at that—deGrom’s ERA through nine starts is the best in the history of ERA. And compared to Bob Gibson’s fantastic 1968 season, which he finished with a 1.12 ERA deGrom’s first nine starts still look better. Through his first nine starts, Gibson threw 80.2 innings and had a 1.34 ERA with 57 strikeouts and 20 walks that year. Obviously, the way starting pitchers are used has changed since then, but the fact that deGrom’s stats look superior to that is something else.