The Tampa Bay Rays’ starter for Game 1 of the World Series, Tyler Glasnow, will make you feel old
Glasnow was asked about facing Clayton Kershaw, the Los Angeles Dodgers’ ace and starter of Game 1.
“It’s unbelievable. I grew up watching him pitch,” Glasnow said during a group interview Monday with reporters.
Glasnow isn’t exactly a spring chicken himself, born in August 1993.
That’s only about five years younger than Kershaw, born in May 1988.
Still, Kershaw made his MLB and postseason debut in 2008, when Glasnow turned from age 14 to 15.
A look at Tampa Bay Rays World Series Game 1 starter Tyler Glasnow
The right-handed Glasnow is one of the tallest pitchers, at 6-foot-8. But he makes it work for him.
With 10.9 strikeouts per nine innings across five years of his career and 14.3 K/9 in 2020, Glasnow is not afraid to attack hitters. That strikeout percentage (38.2 percent this year) puts him in the top three percent of pitchers, per Baseball Savant.
He sticks mainly with his fastball, throwing it more than 60 percent of the time, with his curve picking up the bulk of the remaining pitches with some changeups mixed in.
He combines some solid velocity (averaging 97 mph on the fastball) with some of the highest spin percentages found in the game to keep hitters off balance.
Glasnow gives credit to Rays pitching coach Kyle Snyder for his improvements.
“Now that I feel like I have more body control and two more years of experience (since coming over from the Pirates), game-planning has been even more important,” Glasnow said. “It’s still a big emphasis on out-stuff guys, but it’s kind of marrying the two of game plan and stuff now.”
Glasnow has gone 2-1 in the 2020 postseason, allowing 10 earned runs in 19 innings (4.66 ERA). He has struck out 25 batters and walked eight. Batters have hit .236 off him with .813 OPS.
A look at LA Dodgers World Series Game 1 starter Clayton Kershaw
Clayton Kershaw doesn’t need that much of an introduction. Dodgers ace. Future Hall of Famer. Three time Cy Young, eight-time All-Star, MVP, winner of the pitching triple crown (wins, ERA, and strikeouts) in 2011.
However, the knock is frequently his postseason numbers don’t keep up with his regular-season numbers.
His regular-season ERA? 2.43. His postseason ERA? 4.70.
Kershaw has pitched in just three games this year, rewriting the narrative a bit, though not necessarily looking like the ace that he is in two of them.
NLDS vs. Padres: 6 innings, 3 runs, 6 hits, 6 strikeouts
NLCS vs. Braes: 5 innings, 4 runs, 7 hits, 4 strikeouts
Combine that with his Wild Card start (eight shutouts innings vs. the Brewers) and you get a better 2020 postseason: 3.32 ERA, 23 strikeouts in 19 innings.
A battle of youth vs. experience in Game 1? Or is it more of Kershaw vs. himself?
First pitch for Game 1 of the World Series is scheduled for 8:11 p.m. You can watch it on Fox or stream it via FuboTV.