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Pedro Martinez vs. Randy Johnson

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  • Pedro Martinez vs. Randy Johnson

    Here are two modern greats. Pedro Martinez won 219 games, had a .687 winning percentage and a 2.93 ERA in his career. He struck out 3,154 batters, posted a 154 ERA+ and won three Cy Young Awards.

    Randy Johnson, for his part, won 303 games in his career and he struck out 4,875 batsmen. His ERA was 3.29, his ERA+ was 135 and he won five Cy Young Awards.

    Johnson had three 20-win seasons, Martinez had two. Martinez had nine sub-3.00 ERA seasons, Johnson had seven. Johnson had six 300-strikeout seasons, Martinez had two. Martinez never walked 100 batters in a season, Johnson did it three times.

    Two modern legends...but which one was better?
    25
    Pedro Martinez
    12.00%
    3
    Randy Johnson
    88.00%
    22

  • #2
    Have to go with Randy here. His peak is on the same level as Pedro's if not a notch below, but he did it for longer and his counting stats leave Pedro's in the dust. I think they were equally dominant during their primes.
    My top 10 players:

    1. Babe Ruth
    2. Barry Bonds
    3. Ty Cobb
    4. Ted Williams
    5. Willie Mays
    6. Alex Rodriguez
    7. Hank Aaron
    8. Honus Wagner
    9. Lou Gehrig
    10. Mickey Mantle

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    • #3
      I would have Johnson a bit higher than Pedro due to greater career length. Maybe 8-13 all time vs. 10-16 or so. Keep in mind while Pedro at his peak may have been as good as anyone ever including Koufax, Walter Johnson or Maddux, Randy Johnson was only a shade below that. Like 1 10.0 v. 9.95.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by GiambiJuice View Post
        Have to go with Randy here. His peak is on the same level as Pedro's if not a notch below, but he did it for longer and his counting stats leave Pedro's in the dust. I think they were equally dominant during their primes.
        Agreed - Johnson's big longevity advantage is too much for Pedro's smaller peak advantage. Johnson is probably just inside the top 10 all-time and Pedro is probably just outside the top-10.
        1885 1886 1926 1931 1934 1942 1944 1946 1964 1967 1982 2006 2011

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        The Top 100 Pitchers In MLB History
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        • #5
          Randy Johnson, for exactly the reasons that GJ said.



          But Pedro's 1999-2003 might be the most dominant stretch of pitching in MLB history.

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          • #6
            I like Pedros peak but when its all said and done Johnson takes this.
            "(Shoeless Joe Jackson's fall from grace is one of the real tragedies of baseball. I always thought he was more sinned against than sinning." -- Connie Mack

            "I have the ultimate respect for Whitesox fans. They were as miserable as the Cubs and Redsox fans ever were but always had the good decency to keep it to themselves. And when they finally won the World Series, they celebrated without annoying every other fan in the country."--Jim Caple, ESPN (Jan. 12, 2011)

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            • #7
              Pedro's peak blows out Johnson's. However, Pedro only pitched 2800 innings compared to Randy's 4100. I have Randy taking this one due to longevity. Pedro's peak is by far the best in history, when factoring in his park, the DH, and league quality. I put Johnson in my top 3 ever and Pedro in my top 10. Pedro might make my top 5, despite his reduced innings. His peak was that good.

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              • #8
                Either in their primes would destroy anyone currently pitching in MLB. I hate having to choose, but I'm picking Randy.
                Lou Gehrig is the Truest Yankee of them all!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by White Knight View Post
                  Either in their primes would destroy anyone currently pitching in MLB. I hate having to choose, but I'm picking Randy.
                  Pedro in his prime destroyed anyone pitching ever.
                  http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index...ts-in-context/

                  From 1999-2003, over 900+ innings, Pedro gave up runs at 45% of the league average rate (by ERA- and FIP-).


                  In the history of baseball, there have been 20 seasons (starters with 100+ innings pitched) with an ERA- below 45 and 1 season with an FIP- below 45. The 1 FIP- season WAS Pedro and 2 of the ERA- seasons were also Pedro.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pheasant View Post
                    Pedro's peak blows out Johnson's. However, Pedro only pitched 2800 innings compared to Randy's 4100. I have Randy taking this one due to longevity. Pedro's peak is by far the best in history, when factoring in his park, the DH, and league quality. I put Johnson in my top 3 ever and Pedro in my top 10. Pedro might make my top 5, despite his reduced innings. His peak was that good.
                    --I would have to disagree about Pedro's peak blowing away Randy's. Martinez was better per inning, but Johnson was more durable in-season as well as over his career. I really don't care so much about Johnson's later years as a solid, but unspectacular starter. What sets him apart more is that he was able to take the ball more often and go deeper into those games. Martinez was never exactly a horse.

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                    • #11
                      I go with Randy. he had amazing longevity when you consider that his career basically started when he was nearly 30. he made the Majors at Age 24 and was an average pitcher till Age 28 (101 ERA+).

                      however from Age 29-40 he had a Monster run and continued to add after that. very unusual career arc and rare for such a late starter to rack up 4000 IP. aren't most HOF pitchers racking up more then 50% of their merits in their 20s?

                      Randy produced 85 of his 98 WAR from Age 30 on. did ever a HOFer other then him do that? Pedro produced more then half his WAR before Age 30 (42 of 82).
                      I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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                      • #12
                        Gotta go w ze Beeg Eunuch here. Pedro's Great, but there's just an incredible roll that Johnson went on that's hard to top.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by pheasant View Post
                          Pedro's peak blows out Johnson's. However, Pedro only pitched 2800 innings compared to Randy's 4100. I have Randy taking this one due to longevity. Pedro's peak is by far the best in history, when factoring in his park, the DH, and league quality. I put Johnson in my top 3 ever and Pedro in my top 10. Pedro might make my top 5, despite his reduced innings. His peak was that good.
                          It wasn't just that Johnson lasted longer though, he threw more innings at his peak so I could believe that he had the better "peak".

                          Pedro
                          7 years,
                          213 ERA+
                          201 innings per season
                          .940 WHIP
                          11.3 Ks per 9 IP

                          4 years,
                          219 ERA+,
                          226 innings .
                          925 WHIP,
                          11.5 Ks per 9 IP

                          Randy Johnson
                          8 years
                          171 ERA+
                          231 Innings
                          1.065 WHIP
                          11.9 Ks per 9 IP

                          4 years
                          187 ERA+
                          258 innings
                          1.044 WHIP
                          12.4 Ks per 9 IP

                          Lets look at their 4 year peaks.
                          Pedro had a 219 ERA+ meaning that he gave up about 45.7% of the league average in runs (or saved 54.3%)
                          Johnson had a 187 ERA+ meaning that he gave up 53.5% of the league average in earned runs (or saved 47.5%)
                          That means that Johnson saved 87% as many earned runs per 9 innings as Pedro (or that Pedro saved about 14% MORE per 9 innings)

                          BUT
                          Johnson pitched 14% more innings per season. Who's to say that if we reduce Johnson's innings by 14% and ALSO don't require him to bat and run the bases in 3 of those seasons, versus one for Pedro that he doesn't save 54% of the league average runs per game instead of 47%? Pedro would have had to add about 30 more innings a season at an average level to match Johnson in innings and ERA+, and personally I'll take the extra 30 at an average level because its generally going to be taking innings from the bottom of the bullpen (or rotation if a pitcher goes on 3 days rest a few extra times).

                          Johnson by the way is the only pitcher in history with 7 seasons of 175 ERA+ or better.
                          Last edited by brett; 02-05-2013, 08:00 AM.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by filihok View Post
                            Pedro in his prime destroyed anyone pitching ever.
                            http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index...ts-in-context/

                            From 1999-2003, over 900+ innings, Pedro gave up runs at 45% of the league average rate (by ERA- and FIP-).


                            In the history of baseball, there have been 20 seasons (starters with 100+ innings pitched) with an ERA- below 45 and 1 season with an FIP- below 45. The 1 FIP- season WAS Pedro and 2 of the ERA- seasons were also Pedro.
                            210 innings versus 260 though. If "prime" is defined as relative ERA then Rivera tops Pedro.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by leecemark View Post
                              --I would have to disagree about Pedro's peak blowing away Randy's. Martinez was better per inning, but Johnson was more durable in-season as well as over his career. I really don't care so much about Johnson's later years as a solid, but unspectacular starter. What sets him apart more is that he was able to take the ball more often and go deeper into those games. Martinez was never exactly a horse.
                              Fair enough. A blow out is a hyperbole. However, I am giving Randy a deduction for his incredible peak since it was in the NL, a slightly inferior league to the AL. Pedro's accomplishments in hitter-friendly Fenway against the DH were mind-boggling. Randy wouldn't have pitched as many innings under those circumstances. I believe his ERA+ would have taken a 10 point hit. I believe Maddux would have taken an even bigger hit under those circumstances. Maddux allowed a career .280 avg in interleague play. Granted, he was past his prime most of those years. On the otherhand, he shouldn't have gotten shelled against guys that weren't all that familar with him. Randy's peak was much longer than Pedro's. I have Randy>Maddux>Pedro. But all 3 are in the top 10. Since I'm such a peaky type of guy, I could see Pedro joining Johnson and Maddux in the top 5 club.
                              Last edited by pheasant; 02-02-2013, 11:20 AM.

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