Wednesday, June 6, 2012

HOF Watch: Johan Santana

On Saturday Johan Santana became the first New York Mets pitcher to throw a no-hitter. It wasn't pretty, but it was a no-hitter nonetheless. For more analysis check out Tim's article. Since then myself and a couple of buddies have been discussion Santana's chance at making the hall of fame.

Johan Santana spent the first half of his career with the Minnesota Twins, and was arguably the best pitcher during that time frame. Not only was he one of the best pitchers, but he was also one of the most feared. He struck out 27% of batters that he faced, while keeping his walk rate in the 6% range. He was able to do that without a ton of overbearing stuff as well. His average fastball velocity was 92 MPH. His ERA-/FIP-/xFIP- were equally impressive, in order they were 65/72/73. During his tenure with the Twins he managed to compile 32.4 fWAR.

From 2004-2006 Johan Santana had a very impressive streak, and was widely considered to be the best pitcher in baseball. His ERA-/FIP-/xFIP- was an uncanny 61/66/70 and he continued to show dominant control. His strikeout rate was above 27% and his walk rate was less than 6%. In terms of WAR he had 22 and overall had one of the best stretches from 24-26 since the 1970s.

As of today he currently has 48 fWAR and he is only 33 years old. He's obviously past his prime, but he should be able to put together a few 3 WAR seasons. He'll have to stay healthy, and overall he'll be cutting it close. One thing that hurts him is that fact that h doesn't have any postseason heroics to his name. I don't know if he'll get in but he definitely has a shot.