Arizona Diamondbacks’ Merrill Kelly, 35, has moved into a tie for the National League lead in wins.
Kelly started the game against the Detroit Tigers on April 10 at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan, USA, allowing three runs on seven hits (one home run) with two walks and five strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.
After playing for SK (now SSG) in the KBO from 2015 to 2018, Kelly signed with Arizona in 2019 to fulfill his dream of making his Major League debut. Since then, he has become a mainstay in Arizona’s rotation and has become the poster child for the KBO’s reverse export program.
In 110 career major league games (650 innings), Kelly is 44-38 with a 3.84 ERA and is coming off his best season this year. With an 8-3 record and 2.92 ERA in 13 games (77 innings), he is tied for the National League lead in wins with Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers).
Kelly, who signed a two-year, $18 million contract extension with Arizona in April with a team option for 2025, has been sensational in his first year of the extension. In addition to being tied for the National League lead in wins, he ranks among the league’s top pitchers in key metrics, including fifth in ERA, seventh in innings pitched, and ninth in strikeouts (82).
The key to Kelly’s improvement this season has been his command and variety of pitches. His slider, which he started throwing last season, has increased significantly to 5.2%, and his repertoire of pitches includes a four-seam (25.8%), changeup (23.4%), cutter (18.5%), curve (13.7%), and sinker (13.3%). Of these pitches, the changeup has proven to be the most effective, with his batted ball rate dropping from 2-for-43 (45-for-185) last season to 1-for-9 (70-for-9) this season.토토사이트
According to Fangraphs, a metric that calculates the value of a pitch’s location (where 100 is the average), Kelly ranks seventh in the majors with a location+ of 107. Despite not having a fastball average of 92.4 miles per hour (148.7 km/h), Kelly has been able to use a variety of pitches with good location to successfully hit major league hitters.
Fans will be eager to see if Kelly can make this year his best season yet, as he’s certainly worth every penny of his salary.