Why is Pressly’s extension important?
Let’s first not dismiss just how great Pressly has been for Houston. Since coming over in 2018 via trade, the Dallas native has posted a 2.45 ERA with a 0.98 whip and a 12-strikeout per nine inning rate over his 170 innings. He’s been named an All-Star two times and has been the team’s primary closer for each of their recent deep postseason runs.
Pressly is also still an advanced stats darling. He ranks among the top 97th percentile in spin rates on his fastball. He still ranks in the 95th percentile in K%. He is in the fifth percentile in walk rates.
His slider’s arguably the best in all of baseball, generating a .161 opponent batting average and a 36% Put Away rate. His slider and curveball combo, which generates a nifty + 40% whiff rate, is among the best pitch combos by any major-league hurler.
Pressly has proved he’s in same class as Liam Hendriks, Josh Hader and Aroldis Chapman, while he gets whiffs, he gets out and he’s dependable in the clutch. Guys like this just don’t come around very often.