Sam Benschoter was named the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week on Monday afternoon. The right-handed pitcher threw 5.0 hitless innings on Saturday for the Daytona Tortugas. He struck out six batters and walked three en route to earning the honors.
That wasn’t the first time that the righty out of Michigan State exited the game without allowing a hit. Back on April 14th he struck out seven batters in 4.0 perfect innings in a start against the Palm Beach Cardinals. For Benschoter, it’s been a little bit of a hit-and-miss season so far. Let’s take a look at how he’s performed over his six appearances this season:
Three of his six outings have produced no runs, while in his other three outings he’s allowed eight runs in 9.2 innings. But even when he’s allowed some runs in those games, there were things to take away from those outings on the positive side of things.
One of the things that’s really stood out this season for Sam Benschoter is how many swings-and-misses he’s getting. He’s thrown 344 pitches and he’s gotten 76 swinging strikes. That’s a 22.1% swinging strike rate. For context, the average swinging strike rate in Major League Baseball this season is 11.2%. And while the Florida State League is a far cry from Major League Baseball, at each level the competition level is relative and Benschoter is absolutely dominating the league he’s been asked to pitch in when it comes to getting opposing hitters to swing at pitches and not make any contact.
It’s been interesting to see the kind of performance that Sam Benschoter has had as a professional compared to what he did while at Michigan State. In his parts of five seasons with the Spartans he posted a 6.97 ERA in 124.0 innings with 73 walks and 143 strikeouts. Since signing with the Reds as an undrafted free agent he’s thrown 31.2 innings with a 2.84 ERA, 11 walks, and 53 strikeouts.