COREY Scott KLUBER
Image of Klubes or Klubot
Nickname:   Klubes or Klubot Position:   RHP
Home: N/A Team:   RAYS
Height: 6' 4" Bats:   R
Weight: 215 Throws:   R
DOB: 4/10/1986 Agent: Jet Sports Mgmt.
Uniform #: 28  
Birth City: Birmingham, AL
Draft: Padres #4 - 2007 - Out of Stetson Univ. (FL)
YR LEA TEAM SAL(K) G IP H SO BB GS CG SHO SV W L OBA ERA
2007 NWL EUGENE   10 33.1 28 33 15 7 0 0 0 1 1   3.51
2008 CAL LAKE ELSINORE   19 85.1 93 75 34 16 0 0 0 2 5   6.01
2008 MWL FORT WAYNE   10 56 49 72 13 10 0 0 0 4 3   3.21
2009 TL SAN ANTONIO   9 45 45 35 34 9 0 0 0 2 4   4.60
2009 CAL LAKE ELSINORE   19 109 110 124 36 19 0 0 0 7 9   4.54
2010 IL COLUMBUS   2 11 10 8 6 2 0 0 0 1 1   3.27
2010 EL AKRON   5 26.1 38 21 10 5 0 0 0 2 2   3.76
2010 TL SAN ANTONIO   22 122.2 121 136 40 21 0 0 0 6 6   3.45
2011 IL COLUMBUS   27 150.2 153 143 70 27 0 0 0 7 11   5.56
2011 AL INDIANS   3 4.1 6 5 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.3 8.31
2012 IL COLUMBUS   21 125.1 121 128 49 21 1 0 0 11 7   3.59
2012 AL INDIANS   12 63 76 54 18 12 0 0 0 2 5 0.295 5.14
2013 AL INDIANS   26 147.1 153 136 33 24 0 0 0 11 5 0.271 3.85
2013 IL COLUMBUS   2 12.1 14 12 3 2 0 0 0 1 1   6.57
2014 AL INDIANS $514.00 34 235.2 207 269 51 34 3 1 0 18 9 0.233 2.44
2015 AL INDIANS $1,000.00 32 222 189 245 45 32 4 0 0 9 16 0.231 3.49
2016 AL INDIANS $4,700.00 32 215 170 227 57 32 3 2 0 18 9 0.216 3.14
2017 EL AKRON   1 5 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 0   0.00
2017 AL INDIANS $7,700.00 29 203.2 141 265 36 29 5 3 0 18 4 0.193 2.25
2018 AL INDIANS $10,700.00 33 215 179 222 34 33 2 1 0 20 7 0.223 2.89
2019 EL AKRON   1 4 2 6 1 1 0 0 0 0 0   2.25
2019 IL COLUMBUS   2 4 2 2 3 2 0 0 0 0 0   4.50
2019 AL INDIANS $17,200.00 7 35.2 44 38 15 7 0 0 0 2 3 0.297 5.80
2020 AL RANGERS $6,481.00 1 1 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00
2021 AL YANKEES   16 80 74 82 33 16 1 1 0 5 3 0.247 3.83
Personal
  • Kluber was one of former Stetson University coach Terry Rooney's final recruits before Rooney left for Notre Dame.

  • In 2007, Corey was the Atlantic Sun Conference Pitcher of the Year after going 12-2 with a 2.05 ERA.
  • In 2011, the Baseball America Prospect Handbook rated Kluber as the 26th-best prospect in the Indians' organization.

    FREAK INJURY 

  • Corey Kluber did what any good baseball dad does during the offseason. In November 2012, he picked up his eight-month old daughter, found a spot on the floor, and went to work on changing a diaper. Sitting with his legs crossed, Kluber finished, grabbed Kendall and pushed himself up. That is when the Indians pitcher blew out his right knee. Talk about an embarrassing phone call to the Indians' medical staff.

    "It was," Kluber said. "My knee was stuck back, because the meniscus flipped under and got pinched between the bones. I couldn't straighten my leg out. I was basically lying down on the couch trying to straighten it, telling them, 'Hey, I don't really know what happened.'"

    It is a funny story to tell now because of what has happened in the months since the injury. The knee, which was surgically repaired on Nov. 30, 2012, has not been an issue for Kluber.

    "I'm so proud of him," Terry Francona said in July 2013. "You've heard me refer to the glass being half-full a lot of times, and it's because of guys like him. He's getting better, it seems like, almost every start, whether he's learning something or gaining experience. And, in the meantime, he's winning games."

  • A large part of the pitcher's success in 2013 has been an aggressiveness with his two-seam fastball that was not there in his dozen starts as a rookie in 2012.

    "He knows that when he pitches aggressively with his fastball, he's a much better pitcher," Francona said. "And there's innings where he's gotten away from it, and he knows it, but that's part of maturing as a pitcher. When the damage is starting, handling it, regrouping, trusting your stuff, that's part of it."

    Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway said the roots of Kluber's transformation were planted during the 2012 season. As the Minor League pitching coordinator at the time, Callaway noticed that Kluber was too reliant on his four-seam fastball and off-speed pitches in the first half with Triple-A Columbus. Callaway discussed things with Ruben Niebla, Columbus' pitching coach at the time, and the consensus was that the pitcher could benefit from focusing more on his two-seamer.

    If Kluber could establish that pitch aggressively and efficiently, it would open the door for his slider, cutter, and changeup to be more effective.

    "It was a good learning experience for me," Kluber said. "I did go through some troubles at the beginning, but toward the end of the year I had some good outings to build off. I think I was getting caught up a little too much in the different scouting resources (in 2012): 'This against this guy,' or 'This against that guy,' instead of falling back on what works for me. Stick with what you do well." (Jordan Bastian - MLB.com - 7/25/13) 

  • Former Padres scouting director Joe Gayton and Joe Bochy, the San Diego scout who signed Kluber, saw the potential in Kluber's delivery, demeanor and drive. These days, it has become a running joke in Cleveland that Kluber rarely smiles and operates like a machine. Gayton laughed when told that the pitcher has been called "Klubot" for his personality behind the scenes and poise on the field.

    "He's very serious. I remember that. Very serious," Gayton said. "For me, as the scouting director, I wasn't going to get to know him like some other kids over a short period of time. He was just a quiet kid. Stetson head coach Pete Dunn told me, 'He's a great kid. He's fun to be around.' I said, 'Really, he opens up?'"

    One attribute that really stood out to Gayton early on was Kluber's willingness to take advice.

    "He was just a great kid, very open to suggestions," said Gayton, who currently works as a professional scout with the D-backs. "He was just outstanding to work with."

  • Asked about Kluber's rapid ascension to becoming a Major League ace, Indians general manager Chris Antonetti cracks a smile. "It's been really fun to watch," Antonetti said. "More than anything, it's been great to watch the way Klubes has gone about it. His success is not accidental. He didn't just turn into a Cy Young Award winner. He puts in the work every single day—whether it's during the offseason or during the regular season—to be the best he can be. He's constantly looking to improve."

  • The pitcher downplays capturing the AL Cy Young Award. "I'm sure you can imagine that all that attention isn't really my thing," Kluber said. Naturally, Kluber downplays the heightened expectations for his encore. "I don't think that adds any pressure for me, what other people are expecting," Kluber said. "I think I probably hold myself to a higher standard than the outsiders do anyways."

    Such responses, and Kluber's seemingly unflappable demeanor, are what have earned him the nickname "Klubot" over the past few years. He is the same on the mound, almost expressionless in both good and bad moments.

    Francona said Kluber's personality is another advantage on the mound.  "It's a very good trait," Francona said. "When other guys in the other dugout don't know if you're happy, sad, feeling good, feeling bad, that's really good. Because a lot of times, by your body language, you give the other team a little bit more motivation or more confidence by how you're carrying yourself." (Bastian - mlb.com - 4/3/15)

  • "He had raw stuff [in the Minor Leagues]," Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway said. "The erratic fastball command was concerning for me. But I knew, if he can get his fastball over and make that a priority, he was going to have some really good success. When Kluber kind of made that adjustment, he took off."

    And Kluber didn't look back. "It makes me look really good, doesn't it?" catcher Yan Gomes said with a laugh. "Things aren't just happening because he's getting lucky. He's really put in work. I think guys are really starting to pay attention to that. Everybody knows the young pitching staff that we have. That's the kind of guy that we want up there leading us."

    "It's exciting for me personally that next time out there will be when it counts," Kluber said. "I'm happy with where I'm at both physically and mentally. I'm ready to go. I'm looking forward to it." (Bastian - mlb.com - 4/3/15)

  • "Kluber pays attention to detail so well," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "You kind of wind him up and let him go. There's a reason when we talk to our young pitchers, we say, 'Watch what he does.' He does everything with precision."  

    "Corey's approach shows with the rest of our staff every day," catcher Yan Gomes said. "They follow the way he goes about it. He wasn't the guy who was brought in to be the ace. He earned it and people saw that. It motivates everyone else. They know what can happen with dedication."  

    "Sometimes it's human nature if you're warming up and playing catch that you kind of just go through the motions, but he has an intent with every pitch, every throw," Francona said. "And that's the way he makes his living. So it does carry over, and whether it's PFP [pitchers' fielding practice] or whatever he does, he does it the way you're supposed to. Its part of the reason he's so good. He does it to a really extremely high level. You couple his talent with that ability to consistently do things, it does make you pretty special."  (Ringolsby - MLB.com - 3/14/16)

  • Corey does not have to say much. As far as the Indians are concerned, the way their stoic starter goes about his daily work behind the scenes, and then how he attacks hitters on the mound, is leadership enough for the rest of the pitchers.

    Kluber does not need to give a of speech to rally his team for the long 2016 season ahead. His preparation and performance will set the tone. There is no one that Chris Antonetti, the Indians' president of baseball operations, would rather see take the ball to start the season.  

    "It's a great thing organizationally," Antonetti said, "when you can point to your best pitcher and say, 'If you want to be like him, go do things the same way he does. You want to win a Cy Young? Go follow what Klubes does. Watch his routines. Watch the way he prepares for a start. Watch how diligent he is in the training room and in the weight room.' It's a pretty powerful message."

    When Cleveland acquired him from the Padres in a three-team deal at the 2010 Trade Deadline, there was a collective yawn. A year later, Kluber began overhauling his pitching style, focusing more on a two-seam fastball and adding a cutter to go with his other offerings.

    "The way you saw Corey kind of evolve into the guy he is now is not by coincidence," said fellow Tribe starter Josh Tomlin. "That guy puts his head down and goes to work every day. That's somebody we all need to look at, no matter if you're a position player, pitcher or bullpen guy. Whoever you are."  

    Hints of Kluber's potential were there down the stretch in 2013, but everyone took notice in the following season. The right-hander developed one of baseball's best curveballs and, combined with his sinker and cutter, featured a combination of pitchers that baffled batters. The strikeouts came in bunches and the wins followed in 2014, culminating in one of the more surprising Cy Young victories in recent memory.

    "That's the biggest key to our success," Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway said of Kluber's emergence. "If you go back and look, once Kluber became the main leader, everything changed. He's one of the biggest reasons why you start thinking of the Cleveland Indians, you think about pitching. That probably has more to do with Corey Kluber than anything."  (Bastian - MLB.com - 4/4/16)

  • Each offseason as the holidays approach, Corey Kluber starts his throwing program in preparation for the season ahead. As he has done since Corey was a kid, Kluber's father, Jim, grabs his glove and offers to play catch with his son to help. Those rounds of catch have become a little more painful over the years.

    "The ball just smacks into the glove so hard," Jim said. "And he's not even trying to throw hard. It just has so much behind it, effortlessly. You look at your hand afterwards, and it's red."

    Jim speaks with pride when discussing what Corey has become for the Indians. And he gets a kick out of the fact his son's success has come with Cleveland, the team Jim pulled for during his childhood on the east side of the city. The elder Kluber began following the Tribe in 1959—you can still hear the pain in his voice when he mentions how the White Sox edged the Indians for a spot in the World Series that fall. Jim brings up Rocky Colavito, Sonny Siebert, Fred Whitfield, and Max Alvis. He speaks of how Bob Feller was a local celebrity in Gates Mills, Ohio, two towns over from where Jim grew up in Highland Heights.

    All of that made the phone call from Corey in 2010 so special. Both of Corey's parents answered, but Jim told his son he would catch up with him after he spoke with his mom. Corey insisted his dad stay on the line. Corey had been traded to the Indians by the Padres.

    "It had a lot more significance to him that it was the Indians," Corey said. "To me, at the time, it was just another one of 30 teams. I didn't have any connection to the Indians, but for him, it was the team that he always grew up watching and rooted for." Jim, who now lives in Cape Cod, was stunned with joy. "I literally could not believe it," he said. "I probably screamed or something like that, because I've always been an Indians fan. Our family, my family, we've always been baseball people. Especially for me, for him to go to Cleveland was like a dream come true."

    In the years since, Corey has won the American League Cy Young Award in 2014, and tied the Tribe's nine-inning franchise record with 18 strikeouts in a game in 2015. Corey shares that record with Feller, and his name is alongside other franchise greats—names like Sam McDowell, Herb Score and Luis Tiant—for numerous achievements. It is all a bit surreal for his father.

    "Corey has said it, that it's an honor to be just mentioned along with them," Jim said. "I feel the same way."

    Jim is just as proud of what his son has become away from the field. Indians fans are used to seeing the stoic pitcher—one who shows no emotions on the days he starts. Jim said that not only comes from his own personality, but from a youth coach who emphasized being emotionless on the field. In fact, Jim said Corey is a "jokester" with a great sense of humor.  (J Bastian - June 19, 2016)

  • Corey and his wife, Amanda, have 4-year-old Kendall, 2-year-old Kennedy, and another child due in early December. "I'm definitely outnumbered," Corey said with a smile, a smile his fans don't typically see inside the ballpark. "If I have to do stupid things to make them laugh out in public, so be it. I didn't know how to put hair in a ponytail before I had daughters. Now, I can do it halfway decent."

    Good dads will do anything for their kids—that includes playing catch, even when it's painful. "It's probably not his favorite thing to do anymore," Corey quipped. 

    "He has great accomplishments as a baseball player," his dad, Jim, said, "But an even greater accomplishment is what he's done as a husband and father. He's got a great family. Two little girls that he's totally devoted to. That's really what means the most to him."

  • Feb 3, 2017: There is a quote painted on the wall at Cressey Sports Performance in big, bold red letters that no one can miss. It reads: "Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard."

    Underneath it, on this overcast and frozen first day of February, Corey Kluber is putting in his work. There is no disputing the talent. The lanky Indians righthander features a breaking ball so tricky no one knows if it's a curve or a slider, plus a two-seamer to make Greg Maddux drool. And he won two games against the Cubs in the 2016 World Series.

    But there are no accolades without the everydays, and today, Kluber will put in a three-and-a-half-hour training session, which I had the opportunity to participate in. "Corey understands that what we do in the weight room is a means to an end," says Eric Cressey of Cressey Performance, who has been training Kluber in the offseason since 2010. "It's not just about lifting heavy weight or trying to impress people on social media or randomly putting a number out there that you want to hit."

    "Training with the weighted balls helps me build a solid base for my arm and shoulder strength, and it helps me to be ready and where I need to be when Spring Training comes around, so I'm not caught playing catchup," Kluber says. "The day after throwing for the first month of the offseason was always pretty tough, and I feel like my recovery from throwing is easier when I'm using the weighted balls as opposed to when I wasn't. They also keep me from getting too long with my arm action and help me to find my natural arm slot. The weighted balls just really help me to get ready for the year."

    Kluber warms up his shoulder with a 32-ounce ball. Then, he does walking windup drills with an 8-ounce ball before doing most of his throwing work—75 or so tosses—with a standard 5-ounce ball. His throwing partner is Royals pitching prospect Luke Farrell, son of Red Sox manager John Farrell. Following that throwing session, Kluber goes back to the weighted balls for some more aggressive work with balls from 6 to 9 ounces, as well as an underweight 4-ounce ball.

    "Just because we're making some throws with an 8- or 9-ounce ball, you can't lose sight of the fact that Corey will be making the bulk of his throws with a standard 5-ounce ball," Cressey says. "The weighted balls get all the love because they're controversial, but in reality, we still throw the 5-ounce ball more than anything else." 

    Afterwards, Kluber continues his training session with a workout designed by Cressey to build general athleticism; the goal is to teach the body to move efficiently, build strength, then layer power on top of that before focusing on specific, baseball-related skills.

    "Every offseason, the No. 1 goal is to get things moving the way you want them to," Kluber says. "The wear and tear of the season takes its toll on your body and things get out of whack, so it's always the first goal to try to realign my body the way it's supposed to be. And once you have that, you can start working on strength and power."

    Once the season starts, Kluber's training volume will again drop. He typically lifts weight the day after a start and the day after his bullpen session, within the five-day rotation. That translates to two or three lifts per week, focusing on what Kluber calls the "money-maker" exercises: compound multi-joint movements like trap-bar deadlifts and single-leg exercises such as weighted reverse lunges. The goal is to maintain the strength and power developed in the offseason, with an eye on the bigger goal: to win the World Series.

    "Last year was a great year," Kluber says. "We were a game away from doing that, and now we're hoping to finish it off. Last year gave us more confidence, but now we have a target on our backs, and I don't think that's something to run away from. I think it's something to embrace. We need to go out there and work just as hard as we did to get to that point last year." (Lindsay Berra - MLB.com - Feb 3, 2017)

  • Jan. 17, 2018:  Kluber was named the Professional Athlete of the Year at the 18th Greater Cleveland Sports Awards.

  • July 2018: Kluber was selected to the MLB All-Star game. But Kluber decided not to participate, allowing him time to rest a minor issue with his right knee that has been bothering him for the past few weeks. 

  • 2018: Kluber had the highest current WAR (33.6) of any Indians player.

  • You aren't truly a star until you've been given a nickname, whether you're The Man, the Kid or Big Sexy.

    But the nickname is not just an American phenomenon. Fans of the Chinese Professional Baseball League, or CPBL, have their very own nickname system. And just as many English language nicknames are based on puns, these nicknames are also largely based on the player names' phonetic similarity to Mandarin words.

    Rob Liu, who runs CPBLStats.com—one of the greatest English-language information sources on the league—spoke to MLB.com from his home in Taiwan to introduce us to these glorious nicknames, and to give a little more info for some of them. Though these nicknames may not be as popular with non-baseball fans, Liu says, "If you are really into baseball, [fans] will know these sorts of names."

    Here are some of the best. We've included the Mandarin spelling of each nickname and its pronunciation to help illuminate their lore.

    Corey Kluber: Uncle Skeleton (Ku-Lou-Bo)

    Bartolo Colon: Eight-headed Dragon (Ba-Tou-Long)

    Francisco Lindor: Chairman Lin­ (Lin-Dom)

    "In the business world in Taiwan, if you're a chairman, they always use your last name and add 'Dom.' So, if you're Lin, you're Lin-Dom."

    Miguel Cabrera: Ricecake (Mi Gao)

    Dallas Keuchel: Mouth Open (Kai Kou)

    Albert Pujols: The Bionic Man (Sheng Hua Ren)

    "This is more for Pujols' performance and the way he plays than how it sounds." Note: It's also a play on his American nickname, The Machine.

    Justin Morneau: Ferocious Bull (Meng Niou)

    "Morneau is a ferocious bull and Morneau hit well for the organization. So, you put two and two together."

    Chi-Chi Gonzalez and Didi Gregorius: Chip and Dale ... Chi-Chi and Di-Di

    "Whenever those two have a matchup, the people of Taiwan call them Chip and Dale: Rescue Rangers. Because in Taiwan, we call Chip and Dale, Chi Chi and Didi." (Michael Clair -MLB.com-Feb. 28, 2019)

  • Corey has had a tough time watching his team from the sideline in the Spring of 2019. 

    He’s able to run and work out on cardio machines at the gym. He’s able to lift weights with his lower body. He’s becoming more comfortable eating left-handed and folding laundry while using his non-dominant hand and his teeth. But the easiest action of all may have been hosting his second-annual Corey Kluber Baseball ProCamp for over 200 kids, offering hands-on instruction at Mentor High School on Monday.

    “It’s a lot of fun to get out and see how much enjoyment they get out of being outside, running around and just playing the game,” Kluber said. “It reminds you that as much of a job as it is for us, it is still a game and you should enjoy it and have fun with it.” 

    “It’s fun to see,” Kluber said. “You start with the younger kids and they’re out there swinging, just running around, trying to have a good time. Eventually, you [make] your way to the older kids and they’re out there actually playing the game, competing against each other. It’s fun to see the different age groups—what they get out of it.”  (Bell - mlb.com - 6/10/19)

  • June 10, 2019: Kluber hosted his second-annual Corey Kluber Baseball ProCamp for over 200 kids, offering hands-on instruction at Mentor High School.

    “It’s a lot of fun to get out and see how much enjoyment they get out of being outside, running around and just playing the game,” Kluber said. “It reminds you that as much of a job as it is for us, it is still a game and you should enjoy it and have fun with it.”

    The campers participated in some drills inside the school’s gyms before moving outside to play wiffle ball games on the turf. The participants were broken up into age groups, as Kluber and local high school and college coaches gave tips to all the kids in attendance.

    “It’s fun to see,” Kluber said. “You start with the younger kids and they’re out there swinging, just running around, trying to have a good time. Eventually, you [make] your way to the older kids and they’re out there actually playing the game, competing against each other. It’s fun to see the different age groups—what they get out of it.”

    Kluber rotated between watching, instructing and even squatting down behind the dish—though he was sure to toss the ball back to the mound with his left hand.

    “I’m getting better at it,” Kluber said with a grin. “I’m not sure I’m quite ready to be ambidextrous, but I’m getting better at it.” (M Bell - MLB.com - June 10, 2019)

           TRANSACTIONS

  • June 2007: Corey signed with Padres' scout Joe Bochy after the team chose him in the fourth round, out of Stetson University in DeLand, Florida. His bonus was $200,000.

  • July 31, 2010: The Indians acquired Kluber from the Padres in the three-team trade deadline deal in which RHP Jake Westbrook went to the Cardinals. St. Louis sent OF Ryan Ludwick to San Diego for LHP Nick Greenwood.

  • March 11, 2015: Kluber and the Tribe agreed on a one-year deal.

    April 4, 2015: Cleveland reached an agreement on a five-year contract with Kluber that is worth $38.5 million.  (J. Bastian - MLB.com - April 4, 2015)

  • Oct 2019: The Indians exercised Corey Kluber’s $17.5 million option for 2020. 

  • Dec 15, 2019: The Indians traded Kluber and cash considerations to the Rangers in exchange for outfielder Delino DeShields and righthanded reliever Emmanuel Clase. 

  • Oct 30, 2020: Corey chose free agency. The Rangers declined to pick up an $18 million option on Kluber and will instead pay a $1 million buyout.

  • Jan 16, 2021: The Yankees signed free agent Kluber to a one-year deal for $11 million.

  • Nov 3, 2021: Kluber chose free agency.
  • Nov 29, 2021: The Rays signed Kluber to a one-year contract for $8 million guaranteed and could be worth $13 million if he reaches his incentives.
Pitching
  • Kluber has a lively 91-96 mph FASTBALL, an 88-90 mph CUTTER, a very good 84-86 mph SLIDER (his best pitch) with good depth, a fair CURVEBALL, and a decent 85-87 mph CHANGEUP with some sink and fade.

    He gets in trouble when his fastball flattens out, which happens more than it should for a pitcher his size. Really, it all comes down to command of his fastball.

    "Kluber's slider might be the best breaking pitch in the game, right now," Billy Ripken said on MLB Tonight. (May 15, 2015)

  • 2016 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball: 15.3% of the time; Sinker 35% of the time; Change 4.5%; Slider 21.4%; Cutter 23.7% of the time.

  • 2017 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball: 14.3% of the time; Sinker 28% of the time; Change 6.3%; Slider 27.2%; Cutter 24.3% of the time.

  • 2018 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball 9.1% of the time, his Sinker 32.7%; Change 6.5%; Slider 22.5%; and Cutter 29.3% of the time. Average velocity: 4-seam 92.5 mph, Sinker 92.6, Change 85.7, Slider 84.3, and Cutter 89.1 mph.

  • 2019 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball 13.3% of the time, his Sinker 26.5%; Change 8.4%; Slider 22.9%; and Cutter 29% of the time. Average velocity: 4-seam 92.4 mph, Sinker 91.8, Change 85.3, Slider 83.2, and Cutter 88.6 mph.

  • 2020 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball 5.6% of the time, his Sinker 44.4%; Change 5.6%; Slider 27.8%; and Cutter 16.7% of the time. Average velocity: 4-seam 92 mph, Sinker 92, Change 84.1, Slider 83.9, and Cutter 88.9 mph.
  • Corey lacks a true put-away pitch. But he pounds the strike zone with all of his stuff. He knows how to attack hitters and reads swings well. He has a good feel for pitching.

  • Kluber maintains his velocity into the late innings and has a smooth, clean repeatable arm motion. He has a short-arm delivery.

  • June 10, 2013: Tribe manager Terry Francona has been impressed with Kluber's growth. "He's getting better right in front of our eyes," Francona said. "He's pitching in with his fastball so aggressively, and it's opening up the whole plate. He had a minor knee surgery this winter, and he never said two words about it during the spring. But I don't think he was able to push off that leg a lot. To his credit, he never said a word.

    "You can see now, obviously, he feels better physically and I think he's starting to understand it." 

  • June 12, 2013: Kluber has shown the potential to become a strikeout artist for the Indians, but he altered his style midway through the 2013 season. After posting impressive strikeout totals in recent starts, Kluber took advantage of an aggressive lineup, using his slider and cutter to induce a wave of ground-ball outs. The righthander ended with only three strikeouts in his eight innings, but induced 14 outs on the ground.

    Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway said Kluber picked up on his opponents' approach and exploited it. "I thought it was more their game plan against him," Callaway said. "I'm sure they looked and said, 'Hey, this guy has really good secondary stuff. Don't let him get ahead of you, because he's going to wipe you out.' But he continued to pound the zone and he didn't try to do too much.

    "When they're giving you outs early in the count, you take them. He knows that. I think all the pitchers know that, and he did a great job of making pitches early and letting them try to do too much with them."

    Callaway said Kluber has continued to show improvement in making adjustments on the fly. "Definitely," said the pitching coach. "He's been so good at recognizing when he needs to adjust and what his game plan is, and sticking with a game plan and knowing what people are trying to do against him. He's very prepared and likes information."

  • May 4, 2014: Kluber fanned seven straight White Sox hitters, setting a new Indians record for consecutive strikeouts. He struck out the first six swinging.

  • July 24, 2014: Over the past 100 seasons, only four pitchers have had a no-decision with at least nine innings logged, at least 10 strikeouts, no walks, and no more than two hits allowed. That list includes Kluber, Harvey (May 7, 2013), Seattle's Erik Hanson (Aug. 1, 1990), and the Dodgers' Bill Singer (June 4, 1969).

    Also: Kluber became the only Indians pitcher in the past 100 seasons to have at least five starts in one season with at least 10 strikeouts and no more than one walk issued. The previous mark, four, was set by Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley in 1976.

  • September 17, 2014: Kluber baffled the Astros with 14 whiffs, setting a new career high. It was his 10th game with 10 or more strikeouts, which is the first time that has happened for an Indians pitcher since 1970.

  • September 27, 2014: Yan Gomes had the best possible view of Kluber's incredible season for the Indians. From behind the plate, the young catcher helped guide the pitcher through brilliant outings and got to experience a firsthand look at an emerging ace.

    "He made it pretty easy," Gomes said. "You see the hard work he puts in and how focused he is coming into a start. We have a pretty good game plan going in every day and it just shows how good of a communication level we had this year.

    "What we took a lot of pride in this year was the adjustments we made, quick adjustments, throughout the games."

    Kluber is quick to praise Gomes for those in-game tweaks.

    "I think Yan's by far the best catcher in the league," Kluber said. "I don't think you can really put an amount on how much he helps us out as a staff, especially for it being his first full year back there. He's been back there almost every day. I think he does a lot more than he gets credit for back there."

    Gomes rolls his eyes when told of such compliments.

    "If people try to give any type of credit to me," Gomes said with a pause. "I just think it's all him and all his work he put into it." (Jordan Bastian - MLB.com - 9/27/2014)

  • In 2014, Kluber's 18 wins were the most by an Indians pitcher since Cliff Lee went 22-3 during his 2008 AL Cy Young campaign.

    Kluber is the fourth different AL pitcher over the last 20 years to reach the 18-win, 260-strikeout plateau, and an ERA no higher than 2.50.

    CY YOUNG WINNER

  • In 2014, Kluber won the AL Cy Young Award, his second full year as a starter. He went 18-9 with a 2.44 ERA and 269 strikeouts in 236 innings. He led the league in wins, finished second in strikeouts, third in innings pitched, and was third in ERA.

    Kluber received 17 first place votes and 169 points, narrowly edging out King Felix Hernandez of the M's, who earned the other 13 first-place votes and 159 points. 

  • In 2014, the 28-year-old Kluber was dominant down the stretch with the Indians (85-77), who fell just short of a post-season berth despite posting a winning record for the second straight year. He posted a 1.73 ERA after the All-Star break and won his last five starts, recording 54 strikeouts and a 1.12 ERA over that stretch.

    Kluber became the fourth Indians pitcher to win the award, joining Cliff Lee (2008),C.C. Sabathia (2007), and Gaylord Perry.

    When asked how he would celebrate the award, Kluber revealed plans far from flashy.

    "Probably go home and give my daughters a bath," he said.

  • Way back, during the 2011 season, rain washed away one of Columbus's games and forced Kluber to throw indoors. Ruben Niebla, who was the Triple-A pitching coach that year, suggested that the pitcher try out a two-seam sinker during the workout. Willing to try anything at that point, Kluber began working more on the pitch and quickly found a comfort level with the grip.

    Over the course of the next three years, Kluber reduced the volume of four-seamers and began featuring a two-seam sinker as his primary fastball. Combined with a devastating curveball and deceptive cutter, the righthander now had three tiers of pitch velocity and increased command—along with a four-seamer, slider, and changeup—in his back pocket.

  • "I've tried to keep things as similar as possible to my 2014 season. I had a pretty good routine that put me in a great spot. My goal is to be cognizant of how much I threw in 2014, but not try to reinvent the wheel," Kluber said. "I think what I've done in the past puts me in a good position.

    "I didn't necessarily go into the offseason trying to make specific improvements; I just want to become a better pitcher. I want to be able to adjust better to hitters, just as they do to me."

    Not to say there aren't expectations surrounding Kluber's meteoric rise in 2014. "I don't really set individual goals for myself. It is more a matter of trying to focus on the process and get better each day and [staying] consistent. I try not to focus on things out of my control," Kluber said.  (Zahneis - mlb.com - 3/23/15)

  • Spring 2015: "Klubot" takes his Opening Day assignment in stride. At this time two years ago, Corey Kluber was packing his bags for Columbus. He was not deemed ready to join Cleveland's Opening Day rotation, so the pitcher headed back to Triple-A, waiting and hoping for another opportunity to arise.

    "All along, we thought this kid could be a starter for us," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "I don't know if anybody knew where it would go."

    When Kluber got another chance, he took full advantage, providing baseball with a remarkable story of a player pitching his way from obscurity to prominence.

    Kluber will be on the mound at Minute Maid Park to take on the Astros in the first Opening Day start of his career. Not only did he grab hold of a regular starting job with the Tribe two years ago, Kluber developed into a workhorse for Cleveland's staff and blossomed into the Cy Young winner last season.

    Asked about Kluber's rapid ascension to becoming a Major League ace, Indians General Manager Chris Antonetti cracks a smile.

    "It's been really fun to watch," Antonetti said. "More than anything, it's been great to watch the way Klubes has gone about it. His success is not accidental. He didn't just turn into a Cy Young Award winner. He puts in the work every single day—whether it's during the offseason or during the regular season—to be the best he can be. He's constantly looking to improve."

    Kluber's seemingly unflappable demeanor, are what have earned him the nickname "Klubot" over the past few years. He is the same on the mound, almost expressionless in both good and bad moments.

    Francona said Kluber's personality is another advantage on the mound.

    "It's a very good trait," Francona said. "When other guys in the other dugout don't know if you're happy, sad, feeling good, feeling bad, that's really good. Because a lot of times, by your body language, you give the other team a little bit more motivation or more confidence by how you're carrying yourself." (J Bastian - MLB.com - April 3, 2015)

    18-STRIKEOUT GAME

  • On May 13, 2015, Kluber recorded a career-high 18 strikeouts in a 2-0 victory over the Cardinals. In eight innings, the reigning A.L. Cy Young Award winner allowed just one hit and issued no walks. Here is a glance at the historical perspective of Kluber's night:

    • This marks the 30th time since at least 1914 that a pitcher recorded at least 18 strikeouts in a game, but only the 22nd time (15 pitchers) in a nine-inning contest. The previous pitcher to fan 18-plus in a game was Ben Sheets on May 16, 2004, for Milwaukee.

    • Kluber's 18 strikeouts equal Hall-of-Famer Bob Feller's franchise mark for a nine-inning game (Oct. 2, 1938). The overall single-game record is held by Luis Tiant, who struck out 19 in a 10-inning performance on July 3, 1968.

    • This marks only the second time since at least 1914 that a pitcher recorded at least 18 strikeouts in no more than eight innings. The only other pitcher to achieve that feat was soon-to-be Hall-of-Famer Randy Johnson for Seattle on Sept. 27, 1992.

    • Kluber joined Roger Clemens (three times), Johnson (twice), Kerry Wood (once) and Tiant (once) as the only pitchers since at least 1914 to have at least 18 strikeouts and no walks in an outing. Johnson was the last to accomplish it on May 8, 2001.

    • Kluber joined Wood (May 6, 1998) as the only pitchers since at least 1914 to have 18-plus strikeouts, one or no hits, and no walks allowed in an outing. Wood did so against the Astros in his 20-strikeout, one-hit gem for the Cubs in 1998.

    • Kluber and Wood (May 6, 1998) are also the only pitchers since at least 1914 with at least 18 strikeouts and one or no hits allowed in a start.

    • Kluber's performance marked the first time since at least 1914 that a Major League pitcher had 18-plus strikeouts, one or no hits allowed and no walks in no more than eight innings.

    • Kluber's Game Score of 98 represents the highest in a Major League outing consisting of no more than eight innings since at least 1914. It also equals the best Game Score in a nine-inning game in team history (Len Barker on May 15, 1981, and Dennis Eckersley on May 30, 1977).

    • Kluber's 18 strikeouts were the most all-time by one pitcher against the Cardinals. The previous record of 17 was held by Brooklyn's Dazzy Vance, who achieved that mark against St. Louis on July 20, 1925.

  • On the origins of Kluber’s curve:  Garrett Quinn has been retired from coaching for a little more than a year now. These days, he is running a baseball bat company, selling real estate and spending his time in Skowhegan, Maine, a small town west of Bangor. Several years ago, Quinn was the pitching coach at Stetson University, where a kid from Coppell High School in Texas came to him with a promising fastball and loopy curve. An elbow injury as a prep star led to the pitcher going undrafted in 2004. He would be a project.

    Quinn played a small, but important role in Kluber’s development. During those early days at Stetson, they worked together on developing a breaking pitch that would be a cross between a curve and a slider. Kluber has since turned that offering into one of the best pitches in baseball. MLB.com recently caught up with Quinn to discuss the origins of the best curveball in baseball.

    JB: What did Kluber’s curve look like when he arrived at Stetson and what was the goal when you began working with him on altering the pitch?

    Quinn: “He came to us with a big 12-to-6 curveball, but it was the makings of a very good breaking ball, because he could really impart really good spin on it. It was a slower pitch, but it had big break. So, it was very difficult to control. So, what I wanted Corey to do, because he was obviously a power pitcher in the making, what we wanted to do was to just kind of tighten up the break a little bit and give him something that he could throw hard, and get a more consistent release point on that was more similar to his fastball.

    “He threw a lot of four-seamers back then. He was a young guy and he really couldn’t get the feel of the two-seam fastball, but he could really, really command the four-seamer. So, the idea was, OK, let’s tighten up the break a little bit, so we can have more of a fastball release point, rather than having a different release point for all three pitches. I mean, Corey picked it up. He picked it up so fast it wasn’t even funny. It wasn’t even out of my mouth yet and he was doing it. There’s a genetic aspect to what he does that you can’t coach into pitchers.”

    JB: Kluber has said often that pitching for him is more about muscle memory and feel, rather than breaking things down analytically. Was he that way in college, too?

    Quinn: "Corey was one of those guys that was not an analytical kid. He was just kind of a grab it and do it. He picked that up so fast and literally it was barely out of my mouth and it was exactly the way we wanted it. It was like, 'OK, yeah, just keep doing that.' I don’t think we ever had to revisit it with him. He was just so good from that standpoint. He just took it and went with it.”

    JB: It’s funny you mention the lack of name for the pitch. That’s become kind of running joke here. Kluber calls it a curve. Pitching coach Mickey Callaway says it’s a slider. It’s classified different ways by different websites.Quinn: “I always thought it was ridiculous that we have to name our pitches. Just throw a good breaking ball. Who the heck cares what you call it? I don’t think the American League hitters care what it’s called. They just know they can’t hit it."

    JB: How much fun has it been to watch Kluber’s evolution as a pitcher, and do you take pride in the fact that he credits you for helping develop the curve?

    Quinn: “It didn’t surprise me that Corey would mention other people, because he’s such a humble guy. He’s just so down to earth. I’m just stoked for him, because he was such a good person to be around and such a good kid and such a hard worker. I couldn’t imagine a better kid to work with. The guy has intangibles that are off the charts. I just kind of like it and my kids think it’s really cool, because my son remembers Corey when he was just a little kid. We just have fun with it. We sit back and we watch him and we say, ‘Wow, that’s awesome. Look what that guy’s doing for himself and for his team and for the city of Cleveland now.’ If anybody deserves it, it’s him. I just couldn’t be happier for him.” (Jordan Bastian-MLB.com-Oct. 10, 2017)

  • In 2017, Kluber won his second AL Cy Young award.

  • In 2017, Kluber won the Bob Feller Man of the Year Award. It was voted on by the Cleveland chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America and honor Kluber as the Indians' top player for the season. Kluber who also won the award in 2014. And he became the first starting pitcher since Gaylord Perry (1972, 1974) to take home the honor twice.

  • 2018: Kluber's curveball is the best pitch among the elite offerings featured by the Indians' talented rotation. There is a case to be made as well that his breaking ball is the best pitch in baseball today.

    The running joke in Cleveland's clubhouse is that no one even knows what to call it.

    "It's a slider, curve and cutter all in one," Josh Tomlin said with a laugh late in 2017. "I don't know, man. I just know it's nasty."

  • September 18, 2018:  Kluber reached the 200-strikeout mark for the fifth time in his career when he retired Chicago's Ryan LaMarre on three pitches in the fifth inning at Progressive Field.

    Kluber matched Bob Feller with five 200-strikeout seasons, one behind franchise leader Sam McDowell (six). He joined teammates Trevor Bauer (214) and Carlos Carrasco (206) in the 200-strikeout club this season.

  • 2018 season: Kluber finished the regular season 20-7 with a 2.89 ERA in an AL-leading 215 innings. Kluber's 4.0-percent walk rate which was the lowest mark in the AL and his 5.6 WAR (per Fangraphs) ranked sixth overall.

  • 2018: Kluber's slider was voted as one of the nastiest pitches in baseball by MLB players.

    The only thing harder than hitting Kluber's breaking ball is labeling it. Kluber has called it a curveball (so does Statcast™), but the majority of those respondents who voted for this pitch called it a slider, so we'll go with that.

    Actually, some hitters have trouble differentiating Kluber's breaking ball from his cut fastball (that's part of the difficulty of trying to get a hit off him), so maybe it would be fair to say his "best pitch" is a slider/curveball/cutter hybrid sent by the Klubot to ruin lives.

    "What is it, a churve?" outfielder Cameron Maybin said. "It's like a cutter and a curve. The churve. That's the pitch."

    Per Statcast, Kluber's breaking ball limited hitters to 20-for-192 (.104) with 77 strikeouts in 2018. (Anthony Castrovince -MLB.com-Jan. 7, 2019)

  • March 23, 2019: Indians manager Terry Francona announced that Corey Kluber will start the March 28 season opener against the Twins in Minnesota.

  • 2019-20 Seasons: Kluber, 34, is a two-time AL Cy Young winner who’s appeared in just eight games since the start of the 2019 season. While various injuries including a fractured arm and strained shoulder, have kept him off the field for most of the last two years, Kluber remains one of the best pitchers of the 2010s after striking out 200+ batters in five straight seasons and leading the AL in shutouts three years in a row.

  • May 2, 2021: Kluber handcuffed Detroit batters to gain his 100th career win with a dominant performance.

  • May 19, 2021: Kluber pitched his first career no-hitter in a 2-0 road win over the Texas Rangers.

  • Kluber started the 2022 season with a career record of 103-61 and a 3.19 ERA, having allowed 140 home runs and 1,239 hits, while striking out 1,544 in 1,422 innings.
Career Injury Report
  • High school: Corey had a stress fracture in his throwing arm, which required surgery. And he still has a screw in his arm.

  • November 30, 2012: Kluber underwent a procedure to remove torn meniscus from his right knee at the Cleveland Clinic. The knee locked up on Kluber while he was changing his daughter's diaper.

  • August 6-September 7, 2013: Corey was on the D.L. with a sprained middle finger on his right hand.

  • May 3-June 1, 2017: Kluber was on the DL with lower back strain.

  • May 1, 2019: Kluber exited the game in the fifth inning after being struck by a comebacker. After the game, it was revealed that he sustained a non-displaced fracture of the right ulna, the longer of the two bones in the forearm and was put on the IL. 

    May 7, 2019: The 33-year-old addressed the media for the first time since the injury happened, with his right arm wrapped in a cast, resting on his lap. And although he knows there’s a substantial road to recovery ahead, Kluber said the words his team and fans are hoping to hold true: “In my mind, I’m not looking at it as season-ending.”

    June 10, 2019: Kluber is set for his six-week checkup with doctors after fracturing his right ulna in his May 1 start in Miami. At that point, they may be able to get a better idea of when Kluber may be able to rejoin his team. For now, his arm remains in a removable splint, a protection that only comes off when he does his range-of-motion exercises.

  • June 17-Nov 4, 2019: Corey was on the 60-day IL.

    August 18, 2019: Kluber was removed from the game after experiencing tightness to his left abdomen during the first inning. He was examined in Cleveland and imaging confirmed an internal oblique strain, the Indians said. He has been shut down from throwing and will begin a rehab program. His time frame for return to game activity is to be determined and he will be re-examined in two weeks to determine his readiness to resume throwing.

    Sept 10, 2019: Kluber is still not working out on land since experiencing a setback with his oblique last month. Kluber, who hasn’t pitched in a game since fracturing his right ulna (forearm) on May 1, continues to be limited to water-based exercises.

  • July 27-Oct 30, 2020: John Blake, the Rangers’ executive vice president of communications, announced that Kluber has a Grade 2 tear of the teres major muscle in the back of his right shoulder. As a result, Kluber will be shut down for at least four weeks. 

    July 28, 2020: Surgery is not planned, but Kluber will receive a platelet-rich plasma injection and he'll be shut down from throwing for a minimum of four weeks. That would take Kluber to the end of August and make it difficult for him to build back up as a starter by the end of the season.

  • May 25, 2021: Kluber said he experienced "fatigued feeling" in his shoulder.  Unable to get his right shoulder loose in warmups or on the mound, Kluber lasted only 58 pitches in the Yankees' 6-2 loss to the Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium.  Kluber said that the injury does not resemble the pain he felt after sustaining a significant shoulder tear last season; instead, he said this felt like more of a precautionary exit.  

    "As soon as I got the arm going, it felt kind of heavy, not painful or anything," Kluber said.  "I tried to throw a few innings in hopes that the adrenaline would get it going.  I just wasn't quite able to.  I felt like it was compromising my quality of pitches, combined with trying to be smart and not risk injuring something else."

    May 27-Aug 30, 2021:  Corey is on the IL He is expected to miss a minimum of two months after an MRI revealed a strain of the subscapular muscle of his right shoulder. Kluber, who sustained the injury sometime between his no-hitter in Texas on May 19 and his start against the Blue Jays on May 25, will be shut down from throwing for at least four weeks. He then is expected to need that much time to build stamina and velocity.

    June 1, 2021: Kluber is seeking second and third opinions to determine if there are other injuries.

    June 19, 2021:  Kluber is in a throwing program, though his workload has not advanced beyond playing catch at distances of 60 feet. Kluber’s tossing sessions have taken place almost daily, tacked on to a weight-room program. 

    July 23, 2021: For the first time in nearly two months, Corey Kluber ascended a mound at Fenway Park, tossing about 25 fastballs and informing club personnel that his right shoulder responded as expected.