Patrick Corbin’s nightmare season has finally come to an end. Was his recent string of success a mirage or has the lefty found a way to replicate his success moving forward?
In a season full of setbacks and disappointment for the Washington Nationals, Patrick Corbin stands out. After signing a six-year deal worth $144 million to start the 2019 season, the lefty was instrumental in the franchise winning their first-ever World Series title. Most notably, he came out of relief and pitched three shutout innings during Game Seven against the Astros.
A year into the contract and Corbin had already lived up to the lofty expectations. Unfortunately, he has been unable to replicate his early success with the Nats, morphing into one of the worst pitchers in baseball. After posting a shaky 4.66 ERA during the shortened 2020 season, Corbin was expected to bounce back after receiving an extended off-season and normal spring training.
Sadly, from the start, Corbin was shelled and no longer resembled the player the Nationals signed. In the past, he would throw the fastball early in order to set up his slider, known as one of the best pitches in all of baseball. Instead, he failed to locate his heater and when it did finally find the zone, it was usually taken for a ride.
In 2019, he posted a 10.60 K/9 rate, a 3.12 BB/9 rate, and a 1.07 HR/9 rate. This year he had a 7.50 K/9 rate, a 3.15 BB/9 rate, and a 1.94 HR/9 rate. Corbin’s biggest problem was keeping the ball in the yard. He has allowed the second-most homers in all of baseball (37).
It was reported yesterday that Patrick Corbin developed a blister on his finger during his last start and will be shut down for the rest of the season. He finishes the year 9-16, with a 5.82 ERA, 143 strikeouts, and a 5.40 FIP.
Corbin’s 2021 season will be remembered for his struggles and understandably so. But the lefty was able to end the season strong, posting dominant outings in four of his last five starts.
Over his last five starts, Corbin is 2-2, with a 3.82 ERA, and 29 strikeouts. Part of his recent success stems from getting opponents to bite at his pitches. In his last start Monday night, he struck out a season-high nine, while only allowing two runs across six innings.
The question arises, has Corbin finally turned back the clock, or will his contract start to become worse and worse?