The Texas Rangers thrillingly kicked off their 2023 campaign, sweeping the Philadelphia Phillies in their opening series. One of the standout performances of the series was Martin Perez's first start of the season, where he led the Rangers to a 2-1 victory, showcasing his exceptional pitching skills.
Perez's pitching line for the game was impressive.
He pitched 5.2 innings, allowed only one run, and struck out seven batters while walking three. He also threw 98 pitches with a remarkable ERA of 1.59, making him a crucial part of the Rangers' starting rotation.
While Perez's ERA was noteworthy, his calculated FIP, using a FIP constant of 3.2, for the game was even more impressive, with a score of 2.33. This stat puts him in the same league as the other starters in the series, who were also excellent, statistically speaking.
One of the most impressive things about Perez's performance was his ability to use a variety of pitches effectively. Unlike some pitchers who rely heavily on one or two pitches, Perez mixed up his pitches throughout the game.
For example, his four-seam fastball was only used 4.1% of the time, while he leaned heavily on his sinker (42.9%), cutter (22.4%), changeup (27.6%), and slider (3.1%).
Perez's command of his pitches was displayed throughout the game, as he generated many swings and missed (11), especially with his changeup. His sinker and cutter also proved effective, inducing more ground balls.
Perez's first start of the season was a promising sign for the Rangers. His ability to use a variety of pitches effectively, coupled with his excellent command, bodes well for the rest of the season. If he can continue to pitch at this level, he could be a vital component of the Rangers' push for the playoffs in 2023.