Shane Bieber pitched eight tremendous innings for the Cleveland Guardians Tuesday night, crossing two important milestones in the process.
In Cleveland’s 4-1 victory, Bieber notched the 50th win of his career, which tied Bob Feller for the fifth-most wins in franchise history through 108 appearances. Perhaps more impressive is that Bieber also notched his 800th strikeout, which not only made him the sixth Cleveland starter to reach 800 strikeouts by age 27 or younger, but Bieber reached that mark in the second-fewest games in major-league history. Only Yu Darvish has him beat; it took him 99 games to reach the mark.
Bieber has seemingly reinvented himself as a pitcher on the fly, which makes his ongoing success all the more impressive. And he’s really anchoring the pitching staff during this pivotal stretch run, posting a 1.79 ERA in his last eight starts, striking out 61 batters in 55 1/3 innings. His season ERA has now dipped below three, as he maintains a 2.96 ERA (good for ninth in the American League at the moment) and 2.88 FIP in 167 innings.
All the more reason to revisit the potential of a long-term extension as soon as possible.