For years, sports fans have been fascinated by the concept of clutch performance.
What determines if a certain athlete, or team, is clutch?
Is it something that has any predictive value at all?
MLB is no exception, and we are currently witnessing a marvelous, yet somewhat undervalued showing of clutch play.
The Miami Marlins are at their best when the game is on the line, with both teams separated by just one run near the end of the contest.
They even broke a record.
Marlins insider Craig Mish explains.
“The 2023 Miami Marlins have broken MLB’s all-time record for most 1-Run wins to start a season (12). They defeat the Diamondbacks 5-4 and move back to .500 at 19-19,” he tweeted.
The 2023 Miami Marlins have broken MLB’s all-time record for most 1-Run wins to start a season (12) They defeat the Diamondbacks 5-4 and move back to .500 at 19-19.
— Craig Mish (@CraigMish) May 10, 2023
It’s hard to predict a one-run win, but here we are, and the Marlins are absolutely thriving in close games.
Most teams that earn a lot of victories of this kind have several common traits: a strong bullpen but a somewhat mediocre offense.
The Marlins certainly fit the bill: they have the worst offense in the National League with their 129 runs scored, and have several relief aces in Huascar Brazoban, AJ Puk, and Dylan Floro, among others.
A bad offense and a solid bullpen can help explain the success in one-run games, at least partially.
The other element that needs to be added is luck and randomness, which is to be expected in small samples.
As currently constructed, the Marlins pitching is good and deep enough to seriously compete, but they need to find a bat…or three.NEXT: Marlins Will Call Up Top Pitching Prospect To Start On Friday