Kyle Gibson pitched eight scoreless innings in the Minnesota Twins 2-0 victory over the first place Kansas City Royals last night. The win moves the Twins to 3.5 games back of the Royals for first place in the American League Central.
Gibson is 6-6 on the year with a 3.04 earned run average. Is 3.04 earned run average is 11th best in the American League and 27th overall.
Gibson’s growth during his second full season as a starter has been evident. Gibson has put the consistency issues that plagued him last year behind him. During his 13 wins last season Gibson owned a 1.42 earned run average. During his 12 losses his earned run average was 11.04.
In 16 starts this season Gibson has pitched six or more innings in 11 of them. He has only given up four or more earned runs in three of those 16 starts; one of those was his first start of the season. He has made three starts in which he didn’t give up an earned run. In 13 of his starts he hasn’t allowed more than three runs.
Gibson may not be the prototypical ace that goes out there and throws hard. He’s not going to overpower you with his fastball. He keeps you off balance with his pitches and induces double plays. He has induced 18 groundball double plays, which is first in the major leagues.
An ace is a pitcher that goes out and gives their team a chance to win each time they are on the mound. As noted above, Gibson has held teams to three runs or less in 13 of his 16 starts; I’d say that’s giving your team a chance to win. Yes, Gibson is the Twins ace.
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