It’s hard not to get too excited about young John Ely, the 24 year-old starting pitcher who led the Dodgers to their eighth consecutive win with another strong pitching performance…this time over the Houston Astros, going 7 innings, and giving up only 5 hits with 0 walks. Oh, and he had eight strikeouts.
The kid doesn’t throw hard, but man, is he percise! As noted by Jon Weisman, Ely has faced 84 consecutive batters without walking one. How crazy is that? And better yet, he’s made it through the sixth inning in his last three starts…for a Dodgers club that couldn’t find a quality start earlier in the season, Ely has been a truly surprising find. Who would have thought that a kid who had never pitched above Double A ball could arrive and be 2-1 with a 3.51 ERA?
Vin Scully mentioned during tonight’s game that through the first 30 games of the season, Dodger starters were 7-11 with a 5.14 ERA. Their starters went an average of just 5 innings during this span. Before factoring in tonight’s game, over their last seven starts, the Dodger starters were 6-0 with a 2.00 ERA and have averaged 6.1 innings per start. Quite an improvement!
And as Eric Stephen notes, it’s hard to not get too worked up over the success of John Ely. As he makes his way through the National League a second time, he’s sure to stumble a little, but for now, Dodger fans can simply sit back and enjoy the ride.
Oh, and if you want to read some great Dodger fan/blogger humor, be sure and search #Elymania on Twitter. Here’s a quick sampling of what you will find:
The only reason Andre Ethier’s pinkie hasn’t healed yet is because John Ely hasn’t touched it (@truebluela)
John Ely killed the electric car. The only green Ely needs is the grass surrounding the mound (@MrLASportsFan)
Jon Ely could plug the oil pipeline leak with a single pitch (@dodgerfan_net)
John Ely struck out Chuck Norris… with 2 pitches (@russaldo13)
Janet Jackson actually made her album “Control” as a tribute to John Ely’s impending birth (@LetsGoNico)
Photo Credit: Ross D. Franklin/AP