|Ben Sheets||Wandy Rodriguez|
|8 - 9, 3.54||8 - 5, 6.09|
I've dabbled on the subject; I've touched the crux of the matter at its outskirts, on its corners, but it's time to just come out front and say it: Wandy Rodriguez is a full-blown statistical freak, an oddity among oddities, and one of the most unique pitchers in Astros history, at the very least, right now he is.
Wandy, as you can see explicated beneath his picture above, currently has 8 wins and 5 losses to go with an ERA that is rather bloated.
The guy wins games while posting a very high ERA, and I'm frankly not sure how he does it. No-one else in Astros history has ever done both these things to the extreme that Wandy Rodriguez has. Wandy's career is understandably short so far--and he might lower the ERA some, to boot--but no pitcher in Astro history--none--has won as many as eight games in his Astro career and carried such a high ERA. Furthermore, only two pitchers have ever had a year in which they won so many games with an ERA over even 5.00. Jeriome Robertson had his 15 - 9, 5.05 year in 2003, and Pete Harnisch was 8 - 5 in the strike year of 1994. Note that neither pitcher was over 6.00, and note also that both pitched for better than average offensive teams. Now try to parse what Wandy has managed to do while pitching for a team that is without question subpar.
A stroll through Astro history reveals what you might guess anyway: usually, you don't have a winning record when you have a seasonal ERA over 6.00. Usually you end up like Jose Lima, who was 7 - 16 with a 6.65 in 2000, or if you're lucky, you end up like Kirk Saarloos, who was 6 - 7 in 2002 with a 6.01.
Lima, Saarloos, and now Wandy represent the complete list of pitchers in Astros history who posted an ERA over six while winning more than five games.
Whatever it is he's doing, I hope he keeps doing it. Wandy is also the only starting pitcher on the staff coming off a win right now, and I hope I can say that same thing at one past midnight Sunday--regardless of the state of his earned run average.