Hernandez being hit historically hard
July, 9, 2008
If you set out to make a list of the worst pitchers in major league history, eventually you're going to run across Les Sweetland. As a rookie with the Phillies in 1927, he went 2-10 with a 6.16 ERA. He must have showed something, though, because the next year he was back and went 3-15 with a 6.58 ERA. But wait! This story does get happier. In 1929, pitching more than ever, Sweetland went 13-11 with a 5.11 ERA all the more impressive when you discover the National League ERA that season was 4.71, and the Phillies' home ballpark, the Baker Bowl, was notoriously tough on pitchers. In '29, the Phillies hit 153 home runs, tops in the league. They gave up 122 home runs, also tops in the league. Sweetland had fought and scratched and persevered, and in his third season he'd become a pretty darn good big league pitcher.