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A Look Back: 2013 Second Half Thoughts

What happened in the second half of the 2013 season that you missed but might need to know about? Here you go.

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Sometimes people loose sight of things. You start dating someone and all of a sudden you miss the fact that someone who has more to offer is flat out hitting on you every day when you go to pick up your latte in the morning. You just don't see it though cause you are otherwise engaged (well at least those of us that have a moral compass do that). We become distracted which causes our focus to shift completely. This happens to many folks in fantasy baseball each year when one of two things happen. (1) Your team sucks so you just give up. (2) You start worrying about your fantasy football squad at mid-season and stop paying close attention to your fantasy baseball team. Admit it. You've fallen into that trap before. I think it's human nature really. Let me help you with that.  I don't have a DeLorean to go back in time like Michael J. Fox so I can't fix what happened last season. However, I can point out some rather interesting facts that pertain to the second half of the 2013 baseball season that you might have missed when your focus was elsewhere. Maybe these facts will help you when assessing players for 2014.

NOTE: First and second half splits sometimes receive too much attention. Splits of any kind dealing with time – months, halves etc. – are really nothing more than random end points. Just because Player A was awful in the first half and fantastic in the second half doesn't mean that Player A will be fantastic in 2014. The opposite is also true. If Player B was fantastic at the start of last season and then failed at the end it doesn't automatically mean that he will be a dud in 2014. Basically this entire article is just to point out some cool factoids since a 65 game sample or run of 100 innings doesn't tell the whole story for any player. OK, you got it me. It was just fun to do and not necessarily the end all be all of analysis on players heading into 2014.


Jedd Gyorko blasted 15 homers in his last 62 games.

Matt Holliday is old and many look past him thinking he's boring. After a slow start last season he finished with a flourish batting .348 with 47 RBIs over 58 games.

Evan Longoria hit .257 over his final 67 games, a terrible mark. At the same time he did hit 14 homers  so he was still powering the ball like normal.

Victor Martinez led baseball with a .361 batting average. That mark was nearly double that of the man who had the worst mark in baseball – Mitch Moreland (.183). Others who limped to the finish line included: Nick Franklin (.194), Kyle Seager (.212), Mark Trumbo (.218), Anthony Rizzo (.222) and Ichiro Suzuki (.228).

Do you know who led baseball in homers in the second half? Nope, it wasn't Chris Davis who hit 16 homers. It wasn't Miguel Cabrera who hit 14. The answer was Alfonso Soriano who hit 18 big flies. Impressively, Soriano also led baseball with 52 RBIs after the All-Star Break in 63 games (the only other player to bat in 50 was Hunter Pence). Soriano even stole eight bases which helped him to offset that poor .248 batting average.

Mike Trout had an unsustainable .410 BABIP over his last 65 games. Surprisingly he only hit .324. Trout also only stole 12 bases in that time as well as he ran less as the year wore on (he says he wants to run more in 2014).

Joey Votto hit only .284 with nine homers and 31 RBIs over his final 67 games. Those aren't numbers any owner would be happy with. At the same time it's hard to get too down on him when he posted a .438 OBP.

Jayson Werth hit a robust .339 with a 1.032 OPS over his final 65 games. He also scored 46 times while driving in 49 runners.

Eric Young Jr. stole 30 bags in his last 67 outings to lead baseball. Two others stole 20+ bases after the Break: Elvis Andrus (23) and Alex Rios (23).

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Only two pitchers struck out 100 batters after the All-Star Game: Yu Darvish (120) and Ubaldo Jimenez (100). A.J. Burnett just missed out with 99. Darvish pulled off a rare double as he also led baseball in walks with 39, one more than C.J. Wilson.

Somehow A.J. Griffin allowed 18 homers in the second half, the most in baseball. Guess it shouldn't be that surprising given that he allowed 36 homers on the year. For more on Griffin and why I think he makes a fine target in 2013 see his Player Profile.

Greg Holland had 25 saves to lead the AL, one more than NL leader Craig Kimbrel. No other reliever had 20 saves but take a look at the for men who had 18 or 19: Kenley Jansen, Huston Street, Jim Henderson and Rafael Soriano. Jansen was the only one with 19.

I bet you will never be able to guess who led baseball in holds after the All-Star Break. OK you might get Joel Peralta who always seems to be at the top of the leader board. However the other reliever who had 17 holds to lead baseball pitched for the Brewers. You guessed it. The answer is Brandon Kintzler.

CC Sabathia had a 6.08 ERA in the second half. He had a 3.38 ERA in 2012. Some other unsightly ERA's in the second half last season: Patrick Corbin (5.19), Jeff Samardzija (4.72) and Tim Lincecum (4.54).

James Shields and Kris Medlen led baseball with nine wins after the All-Star game. Consider me less than surprised. For more on how consistently good Shields has been see his Player Profile. At the other end of the cow, the butt end, Derek Holland won only two games over his final 14 starts while Edwin Jackson, John Danks and Joe Saunders all lost eight games.

Koji Uehara had a 0.28 ERA over 32 innings. The second best mark, minimum 20 innings pitched, belonged to Kevin Siegrist of all people at 0.34 to lead the NL.


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