Tiger Pitcher of the Year: Mike Maroth

There's an old saying that goes you can't really appreciate the good until you experience the bad. Well, if there has ever been someone that understands that quote, it is Tiger pitcher Mike Maroth. Maroth experienced one of the worst season's a pitcher could go through in 2003 - losing an incredible 21 games. But, Maroth didn't let that get to him and came back in 2004 determined to have a better year.

SP Mike Maroth

It wasn't so much that Maroth didn't pitch well in 2003 - he had his fair share of solid outings. But at the end of the year, the numbers certainly didn't show a performance that would be considered good. But Maroth ensured this year would be different - and a stronger lineup with more run support certainly didn't hurt. The 27-year old lefty was a mainstay in the rotation all year long, never missing a start. Maroth lowered his ERA almost a point and a half, seeing it drop from 5.73 to 4.31. His record also improved significantly, going 11-13, as opposed to 9-21 in '03. But possibly the best part of Maroth's 2004 campaign was something that isn't picked up from a stat sheet. Every 5th day when Maroth took the ball - the Tigers knew they'd have a chance to win. Unlike some other starters, Maroth came to play every time he came to the mound. And while he wasn't the aggressive strikeout pitcher that Jeremy Bonderman and Nate Robertson were, he still led the team in innings pitched. Maroth never has been and never will be a #1 starter, but for a team that needed improvement over 2003, Maroth led the charge.

RECORD: 11-13
ERA: 4.31
K/BB: 108:59

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