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Good Morning, Charlie

Damn good, even

Cincinnati Reds v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

A Good Thing - Sonny Gray was shovin like a gd wiffle ball wizard yesterday.

He carved up the Brewers for six shutout innings. He now has accumulated 3.0 bWAR for the season, the fourth such starter to reach that level. We all kinda hoped the rotation would be solid enough to drag the soft warm brie of the bullpen across the line, but these dudes have been huckin’ the stinkiest of hard cheddars.

I keep the 2012 pitching staff close to my heart, you know. Johnny Cueto, Bronson Arroyo, Mat Latos, Homer Bailey, and Mike Leake combined to start 161 games that season (the straggler was the backend of a double-header started by a raffle winner). That whole staff (the bullpen was actually good, remember) - every pitch thrown by every pitcher that year - carried an ERA+ of 123 for the season. Here are some guys who have matched that for their careers:

Juan Marichal
Cole Hamels
Mike Mussina
Bob Feller
David Price

That 2012 rotation was incredible, but only two (Cueto and Latos) accumulated 3.0 bWAR (BroYo was at 2.9). So when was the last time the Reds had four pitchers chuck 3 bWAR’s worth of baseballs? Well, I dunno. When was the last time the Reds had really good pitching? The 1939-40 teams won back-to-back NL pennants on the arms of Bucky Walters, Paul Derringer, and Gene Thompson. But I can’t find any team that had four 3 bWAR pitchers.

Another Good Thing - Vladimir Gutierrez is sitting at 2.9 bWAR right now. He’ll make it five.