Saturday, September 29, 2012

Why are the Orioles scoring so many runs in September?

Orioles, Ranking (Runs scored, Batting Average)
April - #12, 14
May - #9, 21
June - #27, 26
July - #17, 25
August - #20, 21
September - #1, 7
Pre All Star Break - #19, 26
Post All Star Break - #7, 13
Overall - #13, 20

They've consistently hit home runs (ranked #3 pre and post all star game), but this is the first time they have had a quality batting average to go along with all of the home runs.  Impressively, they've done it without Nick Markakis, who was their best hitter in August, but hasn't played since September 9th. 

Matt Wieters, Adam Jones and Chris Davis are all hitting over .300 in September after floundering in August.  If they are able to continue hitting .300 into the playoffs, the Orioles could be a very dangerous team.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

End of the 100 BB season?

# of players with 100+ BB
2012 - 1 (Adam Dunn has 100 on 9/25, #2 is Ben Zobrist with 91)
2011 - 5
2010 - 4
2009 - 6
2008 - 4
2007 - 11
2006 - 13
2005 - 6
2004 - 9
2003 - 11
2002 - 12
2001 - 10
2000 - 17

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

What is the the value of having the largest run differential

Biggest Run Differentials, Playoff Results
2012 Nationals (+129)
2011 Yankees (210) Lost ALDS
2010 Yankees (166) Lost ALCS
2009 Dodgers (169) Lost NLCS
2008 Cubs (184) Lost NLDS
2007 Red Sox (210) Won WS
2006 Yankees (163) Lost ALDS
2005 Cardinals (171) Lost NLCS
2004 Cardinals (196) Lost WS
2003 Braves (167) Lost NLDS
2002 Angels (207) Won WS

The Nationals are on pace to have the smallest top run differential of the last ten years (Texas is 2nd at 115).  It hasn't mattered that much, and the two teams that won the world series had much larger run differentials.  The Yankees have suffered from poor pitching and some bad hitting from star players in their playoff losses. 

Are the Nationals built for the playoffs?  They have the pitching, and their hitting has been decent (12th in runs overall, 5th in the 2nd half).  They will suffer from not having Stephen Strasburg and from not having a real closer, but the NL is wide open.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

2012: A New Record for Strikeouts

Strikeouts Per Game
2012: 7.47
2011: 7.10
2010: 7.06
1994-2009: between 6 and 6.99
1951-1994: between 4 and 5.99
1930-1950: beetween 3 and 3.99

Friday, September 14, 2012

Guest Post: Who Is The Most Valuable Player In The National League?

As the MLB season starts to wind down, the race for the NL MVP is heating up. Several players are in contention for the coveted MVP crown, and the race should be a good one up until the last days of the season. Here is a look at the front runners for this year’s awards.

Andrew McCutchen - Pittsburgh Pirates:

McCutchen has easily had one of the best seasons in recent Pittsburgh Pirates history. His .341 batting average and .409 On Base Percentage lead the National League. When you add in his 26 homeruns and 85 RBIs, it is easy to see why opposing pitchers do not like to face McCutchen on a nightly basis. If the Pirates can right the ship and find a way into the playoffs, McCutchen can expect to receive a lot of NL MVP votes.

Buster Posey - San Francisco Giants:

Posey is another player having an exceptional year. Posey is batting .330 with a .404 On Base Percentage, easily the best in both categories among catchers. However, playing out on the west coast may hurt Posey’s chances of claiming an NL MVP award as many baseball fans do not get to see him play on a daily basis.

Ryan Braun - Milwaukee Brewers:

Even though he plays on a mediocre Milwaukee Brewers team, Braun is having one of the best seasons in recent memory. Braun leads the National League in homeruns with 38 and is second in the RBI race with 100. He is just two RBIs shy of Chase Headley of the San Diego Padres, so there is a great chance that Braun will pass Headley before the season is over. The Brewers’ slugger is also batting .311 with a .388 On Base Percentage in a lineup that does not offer much support. If Braun was on a team in contention for a division title, he would easily be running away with the NL MVP race.

Matt Holliday - St. Louis Cardinals:

Holliday is another slugger having a fine season. Holliday is batting .304 with a .379 On Base Percentage for the Cardinals this season. The right handed slugger has also belted 26 homeruns and driven in 94 runs so far this year. If he can have an excellent end to the season and help his team make the postseason to defend their World Series title, Holliday could work his way into the top three in the NL MVP debate.

If the season were to end today, Ryan Braun would more than likely win the NL MVP award. His homerun total and RBI numbers would help set him apart from the rest of the field. While McCutchen is having a great year in Pittsburgh and definitely more important to his team’s success, Braun has had a better year in terms of individual stats. This could help propel him to the top of many voters’ list when they cast their ballots for this year’s NL MVP award.

About the Author: Don Phan is an avid baseball fan and recommends FansEdge for the latest MLB gear including official pro baseball jerseys for all major league teams.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Guest Post: Who Is The Most Valuable Player In The American League?

The MVP race is one of the intriguing stories as we head toward the end of the baseball season. There are several players who could very well win the award. Could Josh Hamilton find his way from relapse to redemption? Maybe Mike Trout will take the award. It may even be that a pitcher wins the MVP award this season.

Josh Hamilton

Hamilton is one of the most talented players in the league. He is first in the league in home runs with 40 and is first in the AL in runs batted in with 119. His batting average of .287 puts him within the top 25 in the AL. His story of overcoming personal demons could also help him win some votes.

Miguel Cabrera

Cabrera near the top in the league with a .326 batting average along with 35 home runs and a league leading 116 runs batted in. His 34 doubles also rank him in the top ten in the league. Considering that he is a key piece in the Tigers run for the playoffs, there is no reason why he shouldn't be considered.

Mike Trout

Could a rookie really win the MVP award? It is hard to argue that he hasn't been one of the most valuable players in the league this year. The Angels were floundering before he was called up to the big club in the middle of the season. In 117 games, Trout has 27 home runs, 77 runs batted in and has 44 stolen bases. His .328 batting average is also near the top in the AL. Mark Trumbo could very well be in this conversation as well, but he lacks the stolen base numbers as well as the high batting average.

David Price

Price is certainly going to be a strong candidate for the Cy Young award. While it is rare for a pitcher to win the MVP award, it could always happen. Price is 17-5 with an ERA right around 2.50. Those are the types of numbers that keep teams in games. If he has a dominating month of September, he could at least put himself in the conversation.

The AL MVP race is going to be a tight one throughout the rest of the year. How these players perform in September is going to determine how the voting goes down. Right now, it looks like Hamilton or Cabrera should finish first and second in the voting barring any kind of surprise.

About the Author: Don Phan is an avid baseball fan and recommends FansEdge for the latest MLB gear including official pro baseball jerseys for all major league teams.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Guest Post: Top 3 Most Dominant Pitchers in 2012

Top 3 Most Dominant Pitchers in 2012

Pitching in the MLB has been magnificent in 2012, but I’m going to narrow it down to the top 3 most dominate pitchers. Justin Verlander was undoubtedly the best pitcher in 2011, but some other pitchers have really stepped up their game in 2012.

This list was created based on analysis of several key pitching statistics including walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP), earned run average (ERA), strikeouts, opposing batting average, and wins.

As you probably noticed, I put wins last on the list because wins aren’t necessarily a good indication of how dominant a pitcher is. A pitcher could lead the league in every other category, but barely break the top 15 in wins. Win totals are completely dependent on the pitcher’s offensive support, how effective the bullpen is, and the amount of defensive mistakes committed. So keep this in mind when you read these rankings!

1. R.A. Dickey

Who would of predicted a knuckleballer to be the best pitcher in 2012? Mets’ ace R.A. Dickey has been the biggest surprise of the 2012 season. Not only is he having the best season of his career, Dickey has also proven to be the most effective pitcher in the league.

The numbers really do not lie. Dickey is currently ranked first with a 1.01 WHIP, first with 17 wins and 4 losses, fourth with a 2.63 ERA, and sixth in strikeouts with 190.

No other pitcher in the league ranks as high as Dickey for so many different categories. What makes his performance even more unreal is that he is purely a knuckleball pitcher. I don’t think there has been a knuckleball pitcher who has dominated like Dickey has in 2012, but his success is really no surprise.

A pitcher who can throw a knuckleball around 80 mph with accuracy, is practically unhittable.

First in WHIP 1.01, first in wins with 17, fourth in ERA (2.63), sixth in strikeouts with 190

2. Stephen Strasburg

Let’s face it, Stephen Strasburg is an absolute beast of a pitcher. Even with the Washington Nationals limiting his innings, Strasburg as still managed to compile 15 wins, and a ridiculous 195 strikeouts in only 156.1 innings.

That’s an average of 11.23 strikeouts per nine innings. If Strasburg wasn’t being limited to 5 or 6 innings per start, he would undoubtedly lead the league in wins and strikeouts.

Hopefully Strasburg can keep his arm healthy because there aren’t many pitchers who recover from two arm surgeries.

3. Justin Verlander

This choice may surprise you, but Verlander is still one of the most dominant pitchers in the MLB despite his lack of wins this season. Win total isn’t always a great indicator of pitching success or domination.

In fact, Verlander’s numbers aren’t much different than his 2011 MVP season.

2011: 24-5, 250 strikeouts, 2.40 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, and a .192 opposing batting average.
2012 (current): 13-7, 209 strikeouts, 2.73 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, and a .212 opposing batting average.

The only obvious difference is his win total, but Verlander currently leads the league in strikeouts and opposing batting average.

Honorable Mentions:
Felix Hernandez
David Price
Jered Weaver
Clayton Kershaw

I hope you enjoyed this article and feel free to disagree with any of my choices! My name is Nathan and I’m the owner of The Ultimate Pitcher, thank you for reading.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Albert Pujols

Home: .262
Away: .314

Bases Empty: .268
Runners On: .316

Pre All Star: .268
Post All Star: .331

Home: .327
Away: .300

Bases Empty: .322
Runners On: .339

Pre All Star: .307
Post All Star: .319
Site Meter