Houston Astros: Top 10 Starting Pitchers in Franchise History
4th Best All-Time Astros Starter
Larry Dierker by Austin Swafford
Years before Larry Dierker became arguably the best manager in Astros history, and he was a stud in the early days of the franchise. He broke on with the Colt .45s at the age of 17, and while it took him a while to get a toe hold as a star, he took off mightily when he finally did.
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In 1969, coming off a season in which he led the league with an astonishing 20 wild pitches, he suddenly found himself the star of the team, leading in WAR (8.6). It was the best season of Dierker’s career, posting career bests in wins (20), complete games (20), ERA (2.33), WHIP (1.02), ERA+ (152) and strikeouts (232). From ’69-’72, Dierker went 63-69 with a 3.07 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 19.1 WAR and two all-star selections.
He also threw the club’s 5th no-hitter in 1976 against the Montreal Expos. His 13-year run with the club gives him an undeniable place among the Astros greats, amassing a 34.2 WAR over the length of his career. He is third all-time in wins (137), fourth in strikeouts (1,487), and holds club records for games started (320), complete games (106), shutouts (25) and innings pitched (2,294.1).
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