2) Mike Leake will give up 200 hits for the third straight year, and fifth time since 2012, is he really a top three starter?
Jordan Cordano – Mike Leake on any postseason contending team would be a 5th starter or even a long relief, bullpen guy. The Mariners lack pitching depth, that’s known. You could toss in Wade LeBlanc‘s name into this category as well. A good pitcher on an ok team, nonrelevant on a postseason team.
Herb Nightingale – I would have to say that most pitchers that give up that many hits in three straight years would probably not be in the major leagues anymore. Leake, to his credit, has started at least 30 games and pitched over 180 innings, as well He is in a league of his own.
Never the less I would consider him more of a fourth starter instead. His career record is 93-87. Leake’s best years were 2011 when he was 12-9 and 2013, 14-7 with the Cincinnati Reds. Since 2013 he has been a .500 pitcher at best. His best value to the Mariners is the ability to start 30 games and average over six innings a game. He gives them a chance to win most games.
Matt Barry – I am not a Mike Leake fan. He is not a top 3 starter. In fact, this is an area of need for the M’s. Judging by that stat alone, Leake is far too hittable. He’s signed through 2020 so the Mariners are kind of stuck for a bit. The better option is to move him down to the bottom of the rotation and upgrade.
Jaymin Bernhardt – I believe that Mike Leake was one of the reasons the Mariners had a bit of success this year. Some of his starts were just masterful and a beauty to watch. However, I do feel like he’s not the guy you want near the top of your rotation. He’s a four or five guy in my opinion that will get you like 10-12 wins throughout the year while giving you a big, innings pitched total.
Ed Stein – I want to like Mike Leake, but he is a mediocre, at best, pitcher. Jordan is correct, Leake wouldn’t be in the rotation of a contending team. Leake is in the Mariners rotation because he’s the best guy they could find, who could throw five or six fair innings.