Is Blake Snell a Good Pitcher?

Frank Jones

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Is Blake Snell a Good Pitcher

Blake Snell is a left-handed starting pitcher for the San Diego Padres of Major League Baseball (MLB). In 2018, Snell had an outstanding season, leading the MLB with 21 wins and an impressive 1.89 ERA, earning him his first ever Cy Young Award and All-Star Game selection.

Many fans and analysts consider Snell to be one of the league’s top pitchers, but is he really that good? In this blog, we will analyze his performance in 2018, compare him to other elite pitchers, and evaluate his achievements and criticisms to determine whether Blake Snell is a good pitcher.

Statistical Analysis

In 2018, Blake Snell had an outstanding season, leading the league with 21 wins, which was three more than the second-place finisher.

His ERA was an impressive 1.89, which was the lowest in the American League and second lowest in all of MLB. Snell’s strikeout rate was also impressive, with 221 strikeouts in 180.2 innings pitched, which equates to a rate of 11.0 strikeouts per nine innings.

When compared to other elite pitchers in 2018, Snell’s stats stack up very well. He led the league in wins and ERA, and finished fourth in strikeouts.

His ERA+ (a statistic that measures a pitcher’s ERA adjusted for ballpark factors and league average) was an outstanding 219, which was the best in the league.

Snell also ranked highly in other important pitching statistics such as WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched) and FIP (fielding independent pitching), which are key indicators of a pitcher’s effectiveness.

Overall, based on his 2018 stats, Snell was undoubtedly one of the top pitchers in the league.

Snell’s performance in 2018 also ranks highly when compared to other Cy Young Award-winning seasons. In terms of wins and ERA, he had one of the best seasons in recent memory, and his strikeout rate was also impressive.

Compared to other Cy Young winners in the past decade, Snell’s 2018 season ranks among the very best.

In terms of his ranking among other pitchers in the league, Snell was clearly among the top performers in 2018. He finished third in the American League in WAR (wins above replacement), a comprehensive statistic that measures a player’s overall value to his team.

Snell also received 17 first-place votes in the Cy Young Award voting, which was the most of any pitcher in the American League that year. Based on these metrics, it is clear that Snell was one of the best pitchers in the league in 2018.

Achievements and Awards

In 2018, Blake Snell won the American League Cy Young Award, which is given annually to the best pitcher in each league.

He also earned his first ever All-Star Game selection, which is an annual exhibition game where the best players from each league are selected by fans, players, and coaches to represent their respective teams.

Winning the Cy Young Award is a major achievement for any pitcher, as it recognizes them as the best in their league for that season. Snell’s 2018 season was undoubtedly exceptional, as he led the league in wins and ERA, two of the most important pitching statistics.

Winning the Cy Young Award also puts a pitcher in rare company, as only a select few are able to win the award in their career. For Snell, winning the Cy Young Award in just his third full season in the league was a major accomplishment.

Being selected to the All-Star Game is also a significant achievement for any player, as it recognizes them as one of the best players in the league.

For Snell, being selected to the All-Star Game in 2018 was a testament to his talent and the respect he had earned from his peers and fans. It was also an opportunity for him to showcase his skills on a national stage, and to compete against other top players from around the league.

Overall, Snell’s Cy Young Award and All-Star Game selection in 2018 were major achievements that recognized him as one of the best pitchers in the league.

These honors not only reflect his outstanding performance in 2018, but also highlight his potential for continued success in the future.

Criticisms and Weaknesses

While Blake Snell had an exceptional 2018 season, there were some criticisms of his performance.

One area where he struggled was with his control, as he had a high walk rate of 3.2 walks per nine innings, which was the fourth highest in the league among qualified starters. Snell also had some struggles in the postseason, with a 4.20 ERA in three starts.

Despite these criticisms, there are counterarguments to suggest that Snell’s strengths outweigh any weaknesses. While his walk rate was high, he was still able to limit hits and runs, which is evident in his league-leading ERA.

Additionally, Snell’s strikeout rate was among the best in the league, which helped him get out of tough situations.

Furthermore, Snell’s postseason struggles were a small sample size of just three starts, and do not necessarily reflect his overall ability as a pitcher. In fact, he was dominant in the 2018 AL Wild Card Game, pitching five scoreless innings with four strikeouts.

Overall, while there may be some areas where Snell could improve, his performance in 2018 was exceptional and clearly put him among the best pitchers in the league.

His strengths, including his ability to generate strikeouts and limit runs, outweighed any weaknesses, and his Cy Young Award and All-Star Game selection are a testament to his talent and potential for continued success.

2018 Pitching Statistics Comparison

Blake Snell211.892210.97
Max Scherzer182.533000.91
Jacob deGrom101.702690.91
Justin Verlander162.522900.90
Chris Sale122.112370.86

This table shows how Blake Snell’s 2018 season compared to other top pitchers in the league, including Max Scherzer, Jacob deGrom, Justin Verlander, and Chris Sale.

Snell had the most wins and the lowest ERA among this group of pitchers, while also recording a high number of strikeouts and a low WHIP (walks plus hits per inning pitched). This comparison highlights Snell’s exceptional performance in 2018 and why he was deserving of the Cy Young Award.


What is Blake Snell’s pitch repertoire?

Blake Snell is known for his four-seam fastball, which he throws at an average speed of around 94 miles per hour. He also throws a slider, changeup, and curveball.

How long has Blake Snell been in the MLB?

Blake Snell made his MLB debut with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2016, and has been with the team ever since.

Has Blake Snell ever pitched a no-hitter?

Blake Snell has not yet pitched a no-hitter in his MLB career.

What other awards or accolades has Blake Snell won in his career?

In addition to winning the Cy Young Award and being selected to the All-Star Game in 2018, Blake Snell has also won a Gold Glove Award for his defense in 2018 and was named the AL Pitcher of the Month multiple times.

Does Blake Snell have any notable achievements in postseason play?

Blake Snell played a key role in helping the Tampa Bay Rays reach the World Series in 2020, with an impressive postseason performance that included a 2.70 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 30 innings pitched.


Blake Snell’s performance in 2018 was nothing short of exceptional. He had a league-leading 21 wins and an outstanding 1.89 ERA, which earned him the American League Cy Young Award and his first All-Star Game selection.

While there may be some criticisms of his performance, including his control and postseason struggles, these do not detract from the fact that Snell was one of the best pitchers in the league that year.

Snell’s achievements in 2018 reflect his talent and potential for continued success in the future. As he continues to develop as a pitcher and improve on his weaknesses, there is no doubt that he will continue to be a dominant force on the mound.

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