The offensive struggles the Brewers experienced in the beginning of the season have seemed to stopped for the most part. The team is not relying as much on the historicly good starting rotation to carry them, and is instead scoring runs and producing runs to back up the starters.
Except, it seems when Brandon Woodruff is on the mound.
Despite Brandon Woodruff putting together one of the best seasons by a starting pitcher in Brewers history, the offense is incapable of providing him with run support.
On the season Brandon Woodruff has throw 169.1 innings, struck out 198 batters and has an ERA of 2.55, including allowing more than 4 runs only 4 times on the season. Despite those numbers, the Brewers are 16 -12 when Woodruff is a starter.
The reason comes down to run support. Baseball-Reference uses Run Support per Game (RS/GS) as a way to measure how much help pitchers get from their offense. The results: Woodruff trails each starter on the team except for Brett Anderson, who is only one tenth of a run behind Woodruff.
However, when looking at Run Support per inning (RS/IP), which measures runs scored per 27 outs when the pitcher in in the game, it is clear how much the Brewers struggle to score with Woodruff on the mound.
When Brandon Woodruff pitches, he only gets 2.5 runs of run support per 27 outs he records. That lack of support is above only John Gant and Mike Foltynewicz, who are tied at 2.4 runs per 27 outs for the lowest in baseball among pitchers with a minimum of 18 starts. Gant has been solid for both the Cardinals and Twins, and Foltynewicz has struggled in Texas. Neither of those pitchers is close to the caliber of pitcher Woodruff is, nor on the same caliber team as the Brewers are offensively.
For as well as Woodruff has pitched this season, he has not been backed up by the team behind him. Even in a start that went fairly well in Detroit, he allowed 3 runs in 6 innings, which is considered a “quality start”, the team had only scraped across 1 run in support.
This trend may be cause for concern when the playoffs come around. Woodruff can only do so much to keep the team in the game, and he has, it will be up to the offense to back him up.