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Game LXX Thread: Astros at Royals

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A battle of two would-be left-handed aces.

Kansas City Royals v Oakland Athletics
That seriously looks painful. Pitchers are weird.
Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Danny Duffy and Dallas Keuchel are pitching against each other, today. They’re actually remarkably similar pitchers:

The career lines of Danny Duffy and Dallas Keuchel FanGraphs.com

The biggest difference between them is the groundball rate. Keuchel doesn’t strike out quite as many but he walks enough fewer and gets so many groundballs that his results have been a fair bit better including his Cy Young Award-winning season in 2015.

They’re both treated the same by their fanbases; considered aces by the teams with dominant left-handed approaches but frequently their results don’t quite get there. This makes more sense for Houston than it does for Kansas City because Keuchel really was that good, one year. The reality remains, however, that both pitchers should more likely be considered good second starters on a staff rather than aces. Especially since they both have trouble staying healthy as they have only a pair of 200 IP seasons between them and both are Keuchel’s.

In any case, the teams surrounding these two pitchers are very different. Carlos Correa and Jose Altuve against Alcides Escobar and Ryan Goins, alone, should be enough to help Houston win nine out of ten games even if all else was equal. All else is not equal.

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