Posted: Saturday March 2, 2013 5:31 PM

Kimbrel looks to duplicate dominating 2012 season

Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font

(Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated. With AP Photos.)

KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) - Craig Kimbrel has a tough encore in 2013.

After all, he's coming off one of the most dominant seasons for a closer in baseball history.

Kimbrel had 42 saves for the Atlanta Braves, but that only tells part of the story. His ERA was a microscopic 1.01. He allowed just 27 hits in 62 2-3 innings. Most astonishing, he had 116 strikeouts - fanning more than half of the 231 batters he faced.

The right-hander can blow batters away with a 100 mph fastball. When Kimbrel mixes in a knee-bending slider - which is harder than most pitchers' fastballs - well, it just doesn't seem fair. He's also improved his control, issuing only 14 walks last season.

Kimbrel leaves Sunday to close for the United States in the World Baseball Classic.

 
SI.com
Hot Topics: NBA Playoffs NHL Playoffs NFL schedule LaMarcus Aldridge Michael Pineda Phil Jackson Tiger Woods
TM & © 2014 Time Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you. Read our privacy guidelines, your California privacy rights, and ad choices.
SI CoverRead All ArticlesBuy Cover Reprint