2013 GCL Cards Starting Pitcher of the Year

Ian McKinney is our top starter on the St. Louis Cardinals' US entry-level rookie league club.

Despite being a fifth-round pick this June, Ian McKinney did not draw too much attention on draft day. After all, the 18-year-old was the St. Louis Cardinals' fourth pitcher taken and third that throws from the left side.

McKinney
Being a high schooler, his logical first destination as a professional was the Gulf Coast League rookie-level club. There, McKinney joined more highly-touted hurlers Rob Kaminsky, Steven Farinaro and Mike Mayers from the 2013 draft.

Despite having just one decision, an August 19 win, in 10 appearances including five starts, McKinney was easily the most effective pitcher on the GCL Cardinals staff this season. As such, he is The Cardinal Nation 2013 GCL Cards Starting Pitcher of the Year.

The Orlando, Fla. native had a team best 0.89 ERA over 30 1/3 innings. McKinney gave up a run in his first appearance, a one-inning relief outing on July 6, and two runs to the Marlins in a four-inning start on August 24.

In the eight appearances between, McKinney was unscored upon.

Over the 25 1/3 innings between his first and last outings, McKinney did not give up an earned run. Even more impressive was the fact that his streak included three consecutive starts against the league's top offensive team, the Nationals. That club steamrolled its opposition to the tune of the best winning percentage of any domestic team in minor league history at .845 and won the GCL championship.

During that period, McKinney yielded 15 hits and 10 walks, for a WHIP just below 1.00. His overall WHIP was still solid at 1.13. Lefties hit only .043 against McKinney and no one took him deep all summer long.

The stats for the six GCL Cardinals pitchers who started in the majority of their outings and threw at least 10 innings are listed below, in ascending ERA sequence.

GCL Cardinals starters W L ERA G GS CG IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
Ian McKinney 1 0 0.89 10 5 0 30.1 23 7 3 0 12 24 1.15
Mike Mayers 1 0 1.50 5 3 0 12.0 6 4 2 1 6 13 1.00
Dewin Perez 2 4 3.23 11 7 0 39.0 29 19 14 0 23 34 1.33
Rob Kaminsky 0 3 3.68 8 5 0 22.0 23 14 9 1 9 28 1.45
Juan Perez 1 3 4.69 11 10 0 40.1 36 30 21 0 37 40 1.81
Steven Farinaro 1 3 6.29 10 6 0 24.1 36 18 17 2 6 21 1.73

Among those not included for consideration are the Cards' top pick in 2013, Marco Gonzales. The former Gonzaga lefty threw 6 2/3 innings over four outings with a 5.40 ERA before being promoted to a more appropriate level, the A-Advanced Florida State League.



Link to master article with all 2013 award winners, team recaps and article schedules for the remainder of this series. Of course, that will include our selection as the Gulf Coast League Cardinals Player of the Year.



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