April 17, 2021

Zach Davies Continues To Change Things Up (FanGraphs)

When the Padres added Mike Clevinger to their starting rotation, they were bolstering what was already a team strength. San Diego’s rotation had cumulatively put up the fourth-best FIP in baseball through the end of August, and that mark has improved from 3.92 to 3.64 in just a few weeks’ time. Their rotation is now the second-best in baseball by FIP and fourth-best by ERA. Dinelson Lamet has led the way with his 2.12 ERA and 2.70 FIP, but their second-best starter might not be who you expect. It’s not last year’s phenom Chris Paddack (4.74 ERA/4.66 FIP) nor is it the finally healthy Garrett Richards (4.27/4.28). It is Zach Davies and his 2.69 ERA and 3.68 FIP.

Acquired from the Brewers in November in the same trade that netted them Trent Grisham, a budding superstar in his own right, Davies has been a surprising source of quality innings for the Padres. A command artist armed with a diving changeup and an 88-mph sinker, he put together a solid-if-unspectacular career in Milwaukee over 600 innings. Despite well-below-average fastball velocity, he’s managed to succeed with a pitch-to-contact mentality by avoiding hard contact.

In late March, Davies discussed his…

Read “Zach Davies Continues To Change Things Up” at FanGraphs