Steven Wright, at age 32, had an incredible two-thirds of a baseball season until he landed on the DL with bursitis in his right shoulder; he is likely done for the season.
Nonetheless, 2016 was a coming-out party for Wright. From 2007 until the present, Wright spent the great majority of his professional baseball career in the minor leagues, where he compiled a record of 55-51 with a 3.79 ERA in nearly 1000 innings.
While there exist exceptions, knuckle-ball pitchers tend to be late bloomers. They typically begin as conventional pitchers and after years of languishing in the minors, eventually recognize that their stuff is not Major League caliber. They proceed to learn the knuckle-ball in their thirties and if they make it to the Majors, it usually occurs sometime in their thirties.
Wright has spent small portions of 2013-2015 at the big league level, all with the Red Sox, where he compiled a record of 7-5, with a 3.95 ERA in 107 IP.
One could argue that from Opening Day to August 5, 2016, Steven Wright was the best starting pitcher in the Red Sox rotation. Unfortunately, Wright jammed his pitching shoulder sliding back into second base on Aug. 6 against the Dodgers after he entered the game as a pinch runner. Wright landed on the disabled list and missed three weeks. He returned from the DL to make two ineffective starts against the Royals and Rays, allowing nine runs in 10 innings.
If one disregards Wright’s last two starts, in which he was injured, then Steven Wright’s breakout season yielded some very impressive statistics. In 22 starts, 15 of the “Quality” variety, Wright was 13-5, with a 3.01 ERA in 146.2 IP.
Unfortunately, Wright’s season ended prematurely; however, I would expect him to be ready to pitch at an equally effective level in 2017 and beyond.