Dunn stunned to be team wins leader
MIAMI — When Jose Fernandez went down with season-ending elbow surgery in May, the Marlins were looking for someone to step up. For the most part, Henderson Alvarez has done so, establishing himself as the interim ace.
Alvarez rose to the occasion and even made the All-Star team.
But the surprise pitcher on the roster, at least in terms of wins, has been setup lefty Mike Dunn. On Thursday night, he threw two scoreless innings. As the game played out, the Marlins rallied to beat the D-backs, 5-4, in 10 innings.
The victory went to Dunn, which has been common for much of the season.
Now 10-5 with a 3.65 ERA, Dunn’s line reads more like a starter than a reliever. The 10 wins also are the most of any reliever in the Majors, with Pittsburgh’s Tony Watson next with 8.
Dunn leads the Marlins in victories, and he set a franchise record for most wins in a season by a reliever. Jarred Cosart also has won 10, but nine of them came before he was traded from the Astros to Miami on July 31.
Taking it all in stride, Dunn says he would hand all the wins over to starters if it meant he could get holds for their performances. The rest of Miami’s bullpen is having fun with the 10 wins, joking that Dunn is a “vulture,” striking when wins are for the taking.
On Thursday night, Dunn’s bullpen mates flapped their arms, their vulture symbol.
What Dunn has done, actually, is interesting.
Dunn not only paces the Marlins in victories, he has more wins than a number of prominent starting pitchers.
Starts with nine wins include, Jason Hammel, Homer Bailey, John Danks, R.A. Dickey, Aaron Harang, Stephen Strasburg, Jason Vargas, Yordano Ventura and C.J. Wilson.
With eight wins, the list includes Tim Hudson, Jesse Chavarez, Chris Archer, Anibal Sanchez and Jordan Zimmermann.
– Joe Frisaro