“Short rest” starters in Post-season?


When a Post-season series comes down to the final game or two, managers may be desperate enough to pitch a starter on “short rest.”  If a pitcher pitches with less than his normal 4 or 5 days of rest, do they succeed?

Happily, Zachary D. Rymer (MLB Lead Writer) at Bleacher Report ran the numbers.

“Sure, Curt Schilling was basically a god on short rest twice in the 2001 postseason. We all remember Josh Beckett’s series-clinching shutout in the 2003 World Series. The last two starts on short rest turned in by Hiroki Kuroda and Kershaw have been terrific.

But of the 54 starts listed, only 14 resulted in a game score of 60 or better. I also counted only 23 quality starts. Over half of these 54 outings were non-quality starts, which is obviously not what a team is looking for in these situations.

And now for the portion of the program in which we add it all up:

Postseason Starts on Short Rest, 2000-2013
StartsIPERAWHIPK/9BB/9H/9HR/9Avg. GScTeam Record


The K/9 here could be worse, but the other numbers aren’t very ace-like. A 4.80 ERA is the mark of, at best, an average collection of starters. The same goes for the walk, hit and home run numbers, and that collective game score of 48.7 is a step down from the starting point of 50.”

For his study, Mr. Rymer relied on Baseball-Reference.com:

Postseason Starts on Short Rest, 2000-2013
Clayton Kershaw10/7/201360613067W
Hiroki Kuroda10/14/20127.231105068L
Chris Carpenter10/28/201162526055W
Chris Carpenter10/2/201134235032W
Zack Greinke10/2/201154708342W
C.J. Wilson9/30/201156617330L
Derek Lowe10/11/20106.12822165L
Andy Pettitte11/4/20095.23354147W
A.J. Burnett11/2/200926244122L
CC Sabathia11/1/20096.21637151W
CC Sabathia10/20/200981525171W
Derek Lowe10/13/200852415050L
CC Sabathia10/2/20083.25546130L
James Shields10/2/20086.13416152W
Chien-Ming Wang10/8/200714005127L
Ted Lilly10/4/20073.16447122L
Oliver Perez10/19/200661424062L
Paul Byrd10/11/200562115154W
John Lackey10/9/20055.21642063L
Tim Hudson10/9/200573516057L
Matt Morris10/24/20044.14344038L
Derek Lowe10/20/200461311068W
Kevin Brown10/20/20041.15124125L
Brandon Backe10/13/20044.24625142L
Roy Oswalt10/11/200452437246W
Roger Clemens10/10/200452526050L
Johan Santana10/9/200451735057L
Josh Beckett10/25/200390925084W
Andy Pettitte10/19/20038.20716076W
Mark Redman10/19/20032.14225131L
Barry Zito10/6/200364424250L
Mike Hampton10/5/20036.24717250L
Russ Ortiz10/4/200352247143W
Tim Wakefield10/2/200363734052L
Mike Hampton10/1/200362954060W
John Lackey10/27/200251414058W
Kevin Millwood10/7/200252704158L
Mark Mulder10/6/200272919059L
Tom Glavine10/6/20022.27157112L
Jarrod Washburn10/5/200251216050W
Tim Hudson10/5/20023.12425034L
Tom Glavine10/2/2002563210024L
Curt Schilling11/4/20017.12906167W
Curt Schilling10/31/200171913175L
Tom Glavine10/21/200151335149L
Greg Maddux10/20/200134208025L
Freddy Garcia10/18/20017.13647054L
Aaron Sele10/17/200163337146L
Jamie Moyer10/15/200161613067W
Chuck Finley10/15/20014.12744050L
Wade Miller10/9/200172607161L
Andy Pettitte10/8/20003.254210023W
Roger Clemens10/7/200056546132L
Jim Parque10/3/200063216149L