What both pitchers are doing right now is incredible, and they should be guaranteed wins for their teams each time they’re on the mound. Instead, even with allowing minimal runs, they don’t get enough support to win games. Burnes’ latest example came on Thursday afternoon against the Cardinals.
After a first inning run came across against Burnes, he locked things down the rest of the way. With nine innings to catch up, the Brewers offense couldn’t even get out of the starting gate. The Brewers lost 2-0 after Angel Perdomo came out of the bullpen and threw the baseball into right field on a pickoff attempt and allowed another run to score.
Jacob deGrom has been dealing with this for a long period of time in New York, far longer than Burnes has even been in the league. deGrom and a lack of run support have almost become synonymous.
Jacob deGrom and Corbin Burnes don’t get enough run support, and the emergence of Burnes as a pitcher makes him a ‘deGrom 2.0’.
Burnes doesn’t have the track record to be considered deGrom’s equal yet, but he’s pitching just about as well as him and his lack of run support puts them both in eerily similar situations.
In his career, deGrom has received better than 3.6 runs of support per innings pitched in just two seasons in his career: 2017 (5.2) and 2020 (5.8). In his other six seasons, deGrom’s has gotten 3.6 runs or less in support. His lowest in a full season is 2.9, which was 2018. So far in 2021, deGrom has received just 2.7 runs of support per innings pitched.
Corbin Burnes, so far in 2021, is getting 2.3 runs of support per innings pitched.
In three of Burnes’ six starts this season, the Brewers have been shut out entirely. He has received no support in half of his starts.
In another start, he received just one run of support. In Burnes’ two wins of the season, he got six and seven runs of support, respectively. Burnes pitched a shutout in both those wins.
He doesn’t need much, but he needs something, and the Brewers offense has given him less than the Mets offense has given deGrom.
Burnes has been incredible for the Brewers in 2021, while deGrom has been incredible for the Mets.
Burnes now has a 1.57 ERA on the season in 34.1 IP with 58 Ks, one walk. and a 0.64 WHIP. deGrom has a 0.68 ERA in 40 IP with 65 Ks, seven walks, and a 0.60 WHIP. Both have been lights out and similarly dominant.
The Mets are 3-3 in deGrom’s six starts while the Brewers are 2-4 in Burnes’ six starts.
With worse run support so far and fairly similar numbers, it’s fair to say that Burnes is turning into a ‘deGrom 2.0’. Having him pitch at that level is great. Being a ‘deGrom 2.0’ in that sense is what the Brewers want. But also matching deGrom’s lack of run support is not what Milwaukee had in mind.
Hopefully, the Brewers can start getting Burnes some run support, so when the comparisons to deGrom happen – and they will happen as the Cy Young race heats up – the focus can remain on what these pitchers are doing and not how their own teams don’t give them run support.
With a great starting rotation, the Brewers are in a prime position to win a lot of ballgames. They just need to support their aces with a few more runs, Burnes especially.