Sunday, December 6, 2009

Johnny Murphy, 1943 New York Yankees

Johnny Murphy's '43 season makes it seem like the New Yawk native could squeeze blood from a diamond if he put his mind to it. While Pollet was dominating the shit out of the NL, Murphy was finding a way to rack up his own Nintendo-like stats in his limited opportunities. Murphy, who had a 1.088 WHIP in '43, was clearly a good pitcher, though his 1.399 WHIP and 116 ERA+ between 1932 and 1942 indicate he wasn't "great" by any measurement. Who needs greatness, though? Everything just fell into place in '43, as Murphy went 12-4 and racked up 8 saves in only 68 innings, becoming the only player to ever win 12 or more games in 70 or fewer innings. This isn't to say that his season was the equivalent of going 36-12 in 204 innings (clearly that would be more impressive). Still, whether you ascribe it to skill, luck, or both, wringing 12 wins out of 68 innings almost makes you want to believe in the cliche about some pitchers "knowing how to win." Almost, but not quite.

12+ wins, 70- innings pitched

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