Zac Gallen is one of the most talented young pitchers in baseball, and one of my favorites to watch. His pitch arsenal is diverse and he's methodical about his sequences, which made the shock of watching the Phillies get eight hits and three home runs off of him in Game 1, then six and two in Game 5, all the more palpable.
Through the 2023 regular season, Gallen's dominance couldn't be understated. With 210 innings pitched and 220 strikeouts, he ranked sixth among league-wide strikeout leaders. In 2022, he developed a reputation for being literally unhittable when he put up the seventh longest scoreless inning streak in MLB history with 44 1/3 innings pitched through August and September. In his two starts in the NLCS this year, he only managed to K five batters and gave up nine earned runs.
As Arizona's ace, not to mention the National League's All-Star starter this year, he needs to be a tone setter and get back to throwing the confounding pitches he's known for. More than any of Arizona's other pitchers, much of the Dback's success in the World Series will depend on Gallen.