He fell in the right organization, though, one that gave him everything he needed to succeed, and then some.
Four years later, we can firmly say that he is one of the best pitchers in baseball, which is an excellent outcome given his draft profile.
He has been absolutely amazing in 2022, and even more impressive in his last six turns.
Shane McClanahan’s last 6 starts:
7 IP, 0 ER, 11 Ks
7 IP, 1 ER, 7 Ks
6 IP, 0 ER, 9 Ks
6 IP, 1 ER, 7 Ks
6 IP, 2 ER, 8 Ks
8 IP, 0 ER, 9 Ks
0.90 ERA over that span
— MLB Metrics (@MLBMetrics) June 9, 2022
He has an incredible ability to strike people out: over that six-start period, he has earned 51 strikeouts in just 40 frames.
Of course, when you throw 97-mph gas from the left side and have excellent control, things will be that much easier for you.
He Has The Tools To Succeed Long-Term
McClanahan’s raw stuff might be top-five in the league: in addition to his incredible fastball, he throws a wicked changeup, a splitter, and a slider.
He is just toying with MLB hitters at this point and is yet another proof that the Rays’ scouting and player development departments are really top-notch.
It’s fair to say McClanahan is an early contender for the Cy Young award in the American League: in 64.1 innings, he has a 2.10 ERA and has struck out 12.45 per nine frames, one of the highest rates in the majors.
His elite control allows him to succeed, too: with 1.68 walks per nine innings, he rarely puts people on base and costs himself some runs.
The most amazing part is that he is just 25, so he might get even better.
The Rays got themselves a really good one in McClanahan.