After a stellar spring training in which he held opposing batters to a .191 average and struck out 29, Trevor Rogers made the 2021 Opening Day roster and did not disappoint the Miami Marlins. His terrific rookie campaign earned him a trip to the 2021 All-Star Game in Colorado and gave fellow rookie Jonathan India a fierce competition for the NL Rookie of the Year Award.
- April 5: Rogers immediately got into trouble in his first start of the season, issuing back-to-back walks to the St. Louis Cardinals lineup. He got one out on a fly ball, then threw a wild pitch before walking the next batter to load the bases. A passed ball allowed one run to score, then two more came home on a double off the centerfield wall. After a disastrous first inning, manager Don Mattingly tried to settle his young pitcher’s nerves by acknowledging the rough start and reassuring him that it couldn’t get worse than that. Rogers went out and shut the Cardinals, allowing just one baserunner over the next three innings.
- April NL Rookie of the Month: Rogers dominated opposing batters in his next four starts that month, earning him NL Rookie of the Month honors. He allowed just two earned runs the rest of the month, walking six and striking out 32 batters. Rogers’ combined statistics in his five April starts: 28 IP, 1.29 ERA, 10 BB, 38 K, 1 HR.
- May NL Rookie of the Month: After a stellar April, Rogers followed with a fantastic month of May. Over his six starts, Rogers allowed more than one earned run only twice (three in his first May start and two in his final May start). Rogers’ combined statistics in his six May starts: 34 2⁄3 IP, 2.34 ERA, 12 BB, 38 K, 2 HR.
- At the All-Star Break: Through the first half of the 2021 season, Rogers made 18 starts and held a 2.31 ERA over 101 1⁄3 innings. He walked 34 batters, struck out 122, and held opposing batters to a .204 batting average against him. He represented the Miami Marlins at the 2021 All-Star Game.
- Late-July stint on the IL and did not pitch in August: After his first start post-break, Rogers missed one start after dealing with muscle spasms in his lower back. He made one start after returning from the injured list, but was placed on the family medical emergency list at the beginning of August. He was transferred to the bereavement list before going on the restricted list in order to throw bullpens and work his way back into the rotation.
- September: Rogers rejoined the Marlins for the final month to wrap up his tremendous rookie year. He wasn’t as sharp as he was in the first half, but still pitched well. Rogers’ combined statistics in his five September starts: 23 IP, 3.52 ERA, 6 BB, 28 K, 1 HR.
By The Numbers
Rogers was adamant in spring training that he deserved a spot in the Marlins’ rotation, and he didn’t make the team regret their decision to add him to the Opening Day roster.
He missed barrels and induced whiffs at a rate on par with some of the best pitchers. Statcast has Rogers’ 5.0% barrel rate in the 89th percentile, and his 30.7 whiff rate in the 81st percentile. He racked up the strikeouts, too. His 122 first-half punch-outs were 18th-most in the league, more than Julio Urías, Joe Musgrove, and Walker Buehler. In fact, Ely wrote about how Rogers’ rookie year is nearly identical to Buehler’s.
Buehler came in third place in 2018’s NL Rookie of the Year voting, earning one of the three first place votes not given to Ronald Acuña Jr. I think the NL Rookie of the Year will be a closer race this year. India may be the favorite, but Rogers put up an excellent case of his own.
Will Trevor Rogers Be Back?
Absolutely. The Marlins have something special with Rogers, Sandy Alcantara, and Pablo López. I’m excited to see how Rogers adjusts in his sophomore season and I’m hoping for a healthy year for the trio.
This was a no-brainer, so I’ll pose another question: will Trevor Rogers win the 2021 NL Rookie of the Year? I think it would have been a closer race if Rogers didn’t miss a full month. India, though, didn’t play well the first two months of the season (.230/.333/.349). But I think recency bias will ding Rogers and not India.
On Monday, Rogers was announced as one of the NL ROY finalists. The award winner will be revealed on Nov. 15. Who do you think it will be?
Who will win the 2021 NL Rookie of the Year Award?
This poll is closed
Trevor Rogers, Miami Marlins LHP
Jonathan India, Cincinnati Reds 2B
Dylan Carlson, St. Louis Cardinals OF