Brewers: Hunter Strickland Another Great Bullpen Addition
By Josh Waldoch
When the Brewers made a seemingly minor trade in June for Hunter Strickland, few could have imagined he’d have the impact he has had.
Since coming to Milwaukee Strickland has proven to be a valuable bullpen arm. He has thrown 21 innings over 19 appearances, and recorded an ERA of 1.29, while striking out 8.57/9 innings, and walking 3/9 innings.
After pitching well for Tampa Bay to start 2021, Strickland was traded to Los Angeles where he struggled.
Hunter Strickland has proven to be a valuable arm coming out of the bullpen for the Milwaukee Brewers this season.
While he has been primarily used when the Brewers are trailing, or when they are up by more than 4 runs, he has finished 7 games for the Brewers.
Strickland has kept runners on base, and prevented them from scoring. He has left 98.8% of all batters on base (LOB%), which is second in baseball among relievers since June 14th (when he made his Milwaukee debut).
Strickland has an elite ERA since coming to Milwaukee, Strickland’s percentages have returned to nearly exactly where they were in Tampa Bay to start the season. In Tampa Bay he had a Strikeout Rate of 24.2, Walk Rate of 9.1. In Milwaukee he has a slightly lower walk rate of 8.8, and a strikeout rate of 25%.
The changes come with the hits allowed. Opponents are hitting only .141 against Strickland, which has helped his WHIP fall to 0.81 in Milwaukee. Those hoping that Strickland’s dominance will continue at the level he is pitching at right now might be a little disappointed. Since coming to Milwaukee he has recorded a BABIP of .163, much lower than his career average of .274, indicating he is getting lucky with the defense that is behind him.
Strickland’s FIP is still 3.79, and his SIERA is 3.91. Those numbers are much higher than his actual ERA because they factor in a more normalized BABIP, instead of Strickland’s exceptional BABIP he has put up in Milwaukee. Those are not bad numbers though, and show that Strickland has been an exceptional pick up, and a great addition to the Brewers bullpen.
Hunter Strickland can add his name to the long list of players who have been able to maximize their potential in Milwaukee after struggling elsewhere.
His experience in the big leagues has been a big help to a very young bullpen and may not show in his stats, but has been invaluable to the group of relievers out there with minimal MLB experience.