Thursday, February 27, 2014

How Dominant will Pitching be in 2014?

# of teams that allowed a Slugging % at .370 or below (Pre/Post All Star Break)
2004 (0/0)
2005 (0/0)
2006 (0/0)
2007 (1/0)
2008 (1/0)
2009 (1/2)
2010 (2/2)
2011 (7/3)
2012 (3/3)
2013 (2/8)

If this trend holds and teams are able to carry dominance like this in both halves of the season, 2014 is going to be an extraordinary year for pitching.  Maybe the 2nd half of 2013 was like the first half of 2011 and that number will be a fluke. 

From 2000-2008, there was only 1 team (2003 Dodgers) that allowed a slugging % of .370 or lower for the full season.  Since 2008, it has happened 12 times, including 4 times in 2013 (Pirates, Dodgers, Braves, Cardinals).  Along with the skyrocketing strikeout numbers, it will be fascinating to see if these numbers hold steady, go down or keep going up.  My guess is that they hold steady, but it is difficult to predict anything right now. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

More Strikeouts = Fewer Runs Scored?

Top 5 in K by an offense (rank in runs scored)

#1 Astros (26)
#2 Twins (25)
#3 Braves (13)
#4 Mets (23)
#5 Mariners (22)

#1 A's (14)
#2 Astros (30)
#3 Pirates (23)
#4 Nationals (10)
#5 Rays (18)

#1 Nationals (24)
#2 Padres (28)
#3 Pirates (27)
#4 Mariners (30)
#5 Indians (16)

#1 D-Backs (20)
#2 Angels (2)
#3 Rangers (10)
#4 Brewers (9)
#5 Rays (7)

#1 Reds (4)
#2 Brewers (16)
#3 Rangers (3)
#4 Rockies (14)
#5 Dodgers (26)

#1 Cardinals (8)
#2 Brewers (26)
#3 Marlins (29)
#4 Padres (24)
#5 A's (4)

What's going on here?  Obviously this doesn't include every season since 2000, but the trend it pretty clear.  Over the past few years, the number of teams that were in the top five in strikeouts and scored a respectable number of runs plummeted.  One of the most obvious answers is that home runs have also gone way down and it is more difficult for teams to make up for striking out a lot with a lot of power.

Most of the teams that had a lot of strikeouts and runs (2000 A's, 2000 Cardinals, 2005 Reds, 2005 Rangers) hit well over 200 home runs.  That's just not happening anymore.  In 2013, only 1 team (Orioles) hit over 188 home runs, and that's probably going to continue.  The days of an entire team leading the league in strikeouts and being near the top in runs scored appear to be over for the time being. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

More on Strikeouts in 2014

15+ K/9, 25 + IP (since 1900)
2012 Craig Kimbrel 16.66
2011 Kenley Jansen 16.10
2010 Carlos Marmol 15.99
2013 Aroldis Chapman 15.83
2012 Aroldis Chapman 15.32

Until 2010, there had never been a pitcher that had more than 25 innings and averaged more than 15 strikeouts per nine innings.  Since then, it has happened 5 times in 4 seasons.  Last year, Kimbrel's strikeout rate went down (13.3), while Marmol and Jansen don't seem to be threats to repeat either.  It wouldn't be a surprise, though, to see several pitchers with 15+ SO/9 in 2014 considering the huge increase in strikeouts that we've seen recently.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Review of baseball themed slots game "hot shot"

Review of baseball themed slots game "hot shot" No matter how you look at it online casinos are getting more and more popular every day, the main reason behind this is a fact that they are so easily accessible these days that anybody can get online and play an online casino almost instantly. You don’t even need to have a computer with you any more than order to play casino games as a phone or tablet with an Internet connection will do just as good a job.

Once you get to the online casino website for the first time you will be amazed at the sheer number of games available for free to play and for real money. Fortunately these free to play games on the same ones so you can practice before you put any real money into your account in order to win a big jackpot. Online casinos such as have seen that online slots games are actually the most popular type of game on their platforms and this is mainly due to how simple they are as well as how much fun you can get out of them.

There is a great online slots game named Hot shot which is definitely a must see if you are starting to get into online casino games as it is a very simple game to play that offers great experience for both new and old players. The basis of the game is that it is a five reel slots game with up to 9 different pay lines available on the board. In order to win you have to match two or more symbols from left to right across the is no different pay lines however more pay lines you have active the more each spin costs. If this sounds interesting to you, you should definitely Google it and check it out at one of the many different online casinos.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Ubaldo Jimenez

After doing almost nothing the entire offseason, the Orioles signed Ubaldo Jimenez to a 4 year contract today.  Is this a good signing?  He rebounded nicely last year after several down seasons, but he has been wildly inconsistent. 

In 2010, he was on his way to having one of the all-time great seasons, going 15-1 with a 2.20 ERA before the All-Star Break, but finishing 19-8 with a 2.88 ERA after a struggling down the stretch.  He went 19-30 over the next 3 seasons, before going 13-9 with a 3.30 ERA in 2013.  Those are good numbers, but it is the splits that make the case that he's ready for a strong 2014.

Pre-All Star: 7-4, 4.56 ERA, 94 SO, 53 BB
Post-All Star: 6-5, 1.82 ERA, 100 SO, 27 BB
September: 4-0, 1.09 ERA, 51 SO, 7 BB

If the final few months of his 2013 season were an aberration, he sure picked the right time to do that.

Rank: Post All-Star (60+ IP)
ERA: 1.82 (3rd)
SO: 100 (2nd)
SO/BB: 3.70 (21st)

September 2013 (25+ IP)
ERA: 1.02 (3rd)
SO: 51 (2nd)
SO/BB: 7.29 (6th)

When you put all of his numbers together, he was one of the two best pitchers in baseball last September, along with Kris Medlen.  He was constantly pitching in high pressure games the entire month, as the Indians were fighting for their lives every day.  If the Orioles are counting on Ubaldo to be the ace on a playoff team, that might seem like a stretch, but he has the talent.

The Orioles were ranked 27th in ERA for their starting rotation in 2013, after being 21st in 2012.  It might not be ideal to give Ubaldo Jimenez a 4 year deal, but they had to do something.  He was at the top of his game when it counted the most last year, and he might be ready to finally put it all together for a full season.
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