What’s not to like about locking either of these pitchers up for the next decade?
Hernandez has probably been the better of the two pitchers up to this point in their careers, despite Greinke almost being pushed over the top by his Cy Young 2009, but which of the two has the best chance at being the biggest star between now and 2020?
I don’t think you can put much weight on Greinke’s personal depression-fueled problems in 2006 or his bullpen role in 2007, although it is something to keep in the back of your mind.
Both pitchers have thrown a similar number of innings, but Hernandez adjusted to pitching in the Major Leagues much quicker than Greinke did. While Greinke has had a number of ups and downs, Hernandez has been a little more consistent and he’s had the offensive support of a better team in Seattle than what Greinke has in Kansas City.
Pick your poison, I suppose.
Hernandez has overpowering stuff even though he is wild and erratic at times, and he has never really shown massive improvement from one year to the next. Part of that is because he came into the league as such a talented player, but it’s more likely because he hasn’t reached his peak yet. If he can improve his K:BB ratio by cutting down on some walks, there’s no telling just how far he can go. The only problem is there’s nothing to suggest that is likely.
Greinke on the other hand is two years older than Hernandez and has developed as a pitcher every year since 2007. The trend is clearly encouraging, but the worry is how much more he can grow. I don’t think we’ve seen the very best of Greinke, but we’re close.
He has cut down on his walks and harnessed a strikeout pitch and he is every bit the star that he is considered to be. But it’s unrealistic to think that he will reach even greater levels and then maintain them over the next decade.
If you ask me who will have the better career, I’m going to have to go with Hernandez. Greinke’s statistics may look a little better once he gets out of Kansas, but King Felix is impressive wherever he throws. In terms of this season, don’t worry about Greinke’s 0-4 record. He’s a stud who has been ridiculously unlucky, and these two will be battling for another Cy Young Award come October.