Kyle Gibson Has Been Exactly What the Phillies Needed

MLB: AUG 11 Dodgers at Phillies
PHILADELPHIA, PA – AUGUST 11: Philadelphia Phillies Pitcher Kyle Gibson (44) delivers a pitch during the third inning of a Major League Baseball game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Philadelphia Phillies on August 11, 2021, at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire)

On Monday night, Kyle Gibson started off by giving up a first-pitch home run. He’d allow just one more run over a 5.2 IP. The start put Gibson at a 3.47 ERA through his first four starts of the season.

That’s exactly what the Phillies needed from Gibby.

In 2021, Gibby became an All-Star for the first time in his career. Before the All-Star break, the right-hander had a 2.29 ERA, a 6-1 record, and a .210 batting average against.

Kyle Gibson’s Success so far

While he probably won’t hit those numbers again, he’s looking much better than his 4.43 career ERA indicates. Gibson’s success comes a lot from his sinker and his slider.

The sinker helped Gibson turn a double play to get out of trouble in the 5th inning. A sinker in on the hands of José Iglesias left men on first and second with one out jam.

So far, Gibby has struck out 10 batters on the pitch. Opposing hitters are hitting just .167 against the sinker.

The slider continues to be Gibby’s best offspeed offering. He’s used it 24% of the time in 2022. Hitters are struggling even harder against it, only hitting .143. Gibby showed its effectiveness in an 0-2 count on CJ Cron. Cron has hit .333 against the Phillies in 2022.

After implementing it last season, Gibby has continued to utilize the cutter. After using it 14.9% of the time in 2021, he’s used it 20.4% of the time in 2022. That pitch, too, has found success. The opposition has hit .200 on it and its XBA (expected batting average) is only .133.

With Zack Wheeler and Ranger Suarez getting a late start to spring, Kyle Gibson has been everything the Phillies needed him to be.

Side note. Completely unrelated.

Spencer Howard has a 14.40 ERA to start the season in 5 IP.