Fast forward to last night's dominating performance against the San Francisco Giants. Lannan made his way through 7 innings, gave up just 1 run on 4 hits, induced 9 ground balls, and got 6 strikeouts. He was the benefactor of some decent offense by the Nats, too. Despite all of that, Lannan ended up with a no decision because a combination of Coffey, Burnett, and Rodriguez were unable to hold on. Anyways, Lannan has made it through at least 6 innings in 5 of his last 6 starts. In those same 6 starts, he's induced double digit ground ball outs in half of them.
In 2 of his last 3 starts, he has been the victim of a blown save in his dominating 2-hit shutout performance over 7.2 innings against the Padres on May 27th and a blown 3-run lead on Monday night against the Giants after pitching 7 strong innings. All in all, the Nats are
With every outing, Lannan seems to get stronger, and in 12 of his 13 starts, Lannan has made it through at least 5 innings. His breaking stuff is getting better; his fastball is getting harder with more consistency, getting up into the low-90s. He's striking batters out with increasing frequency. His BB/9 is right at the league average: 3.30, so he's had pretty good control.
With all this good news, I thought there must be something out there that would indicate he was due for an implosion. I read and read and even looked at our trusty friend, BABIP, for assistance. Even there, Lannan is right at the league average: around .300. With the way Lannan has pitched lately, it looks like he may be legitimately here to stay. Maybe that first win over Philadelphia is all John needed to help his career fly upwards. Maybe it's just an anomaly, and he'll come crashing down to mediocrity.
What do you think, CapBallers? Is this the real John Lannan?