At BDD, I look at the many bright spots that made up the Athletics’ pitching staff this season.
Gio’s problem, as it is with so many other young pitchers, is control. He has walked 56 batters in under 99 innings, a walk rate of over five per nine innings. Hitters have been fortunate on balls in play with a .362 BABIP and they’re not swinging all that often. If he had enough innings to qualify, his 42.3 swing percentage would be tied for fourth-lowest in the Majors. Further, his 75.2 contact percentage would be tied with Tim Lincecum for fourth-lowest in baseball. When he’s around the strike zone, he is dominant.