Is it supposed to be raining this much at the end of April? I propose that every team moves to California where it's always sunny and between 60 and 95 degrees. Problem solved. I should be the new commissioner. In honor of all the rain-outs Wednesday I'm gonna change things up a bit in today's piece.
Rays @ Red Sox (2 games)
Dodgers @ Twins (2 games)
Pirates @ Orioles (2 games)
Mariners @ Yankees
Braves @ Marlins
Brewers @ Reds
Blue Jays @ Royals
Mets @ Rockies
A BALLPARK OVERVIEW
(Provided the weather cooperates)
According to Park Factors...
Fenway in Boston is 3rd in runs scored but 27th in homers.
Target Field in Minnesota is 21st in runs, 15th in homers.
Yankee Stadium is (surprisingly) 25th in runs but 8th in homers.
Marlins Park is actually 9th in runs though it's 25th in homers.
Great America Ballpark in Cincinnati is ranked 1st in baseball in homers.
Kauffman Stadium in KC is 12th in homers and 22nd in homers
Coors Field is 2nd in runs, 2nd in homers & 9th in walks.
I saved Camden Yards in Baltimore for last because what is going on there is obviously a sample size thing, but it's been a month so it deserves to be mentioned. Currently Camden Yards, a noted offensive environment, is 29th in runs and 28th in homers.
HOT THE LAST TWO WEEKS
Not really sure how, but Mike Moustakas has scored 11 runs despite hitting .205 with a .250 OBP. Five homers helps.
HOT THE LAST WEEK
Brett Gardner has hit .368 and stolen five bases.
Dioner Navarro is batting .476 with a homer.
Kyle Seager has five homers and 11 RBIs.
COLD THE LAST WEEK
Carlos Beltran .167/.259/.292.
Chris Colabello has five RBIs but he's also hit .158 with a .516 OPS.
Juan Francisco has 13 strikeouts in 23 at-bats.
Carlos Gonzalez has hit .160 with no homers, no steals and no walks.
Brandon Phillips say hit to no homers, zero steals an a .417 OPS.
Aramis Ramirez has gone a week without a hit.
Maybe Coors Field can help David Wright who is batting .130 with no homers or steals.
Robinson Cano is batting right around .300 but he's not flashing any power. He does get to take on his ex-mate though, Hiroki Kuroda, who is struggling. Cano has also hit .317 against righties this season, albeit with a mere .766 OPS.
DISH DISASTERS – Worst Hitting Matchups of the Day
Apparently this guy is all about being “green.”
Starling Marte is a total disaster right now. He's struggling to hit .230. His OPS is barely .600. He's got four times as many strikeouts as walks. Does it really matter who is pitching? He faces two righties and that's been his strong side. He's hitting .234 against them.
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MOUND MAVENS – Starting Pitchers to Target
Homer Bailey has a 6.15 ERA. I must have put him in the wrong column. Nope. Start him. Bailey has walked only three batters his last three outings as he's struck out 21 batters. There's just no way the homers keep coming like they have (seven in five games). Bailey takes on the Brewers who are averaging just slightly less than one homer a game.
Marco Estrada has held current Reds batters to a .224 average and .262 OPS in 98 at-bats and he's the proud owner of a 2.87 ERA and 0.96 WHIP at the moment. The only issue has been the long ball as he's allowed eight to the Reds. Just keep the ball away from Mr. Bruce Mr. Estrada.
Charlie Morton gets to pitch in Camden Yards, and as noted above that's a good thing thus far this season. He also faces a club with no Chris Davis and Adam Jones hasn't looked very star like this season hitting just .265 with one homer.
And you think you know how to garden.
Ervin Santana takes on the Marlins. Ervin Santana is 3-0 with a 1.95 ERA and 31 Ks in 27.2 innings. The Marlins are hitting a mere .220 with a horrendous .618 OPS, and they are also tied for second in baseball in strikeouts.
MOUND MESSES – Starting Pitchers to Avoid
Bartolo Colon is fat (stop me if you've heard this before). Bartolo Colon is a cheater. Bartolo Colon is also able to get outs more effectively than anyone has the right to expect him to. Oh, and he's Bartolo Colon.
Bud Norris has a 4.44 ERA and one victory in four starts. In his last six starts at Camden Yards he has a 5.68 ERA and 1.80 WHIP. The Pirates should have some success.
Jake Peavy goes up against a Rays team that is in the top-10 in baseball in OPS against righties. Peavy has also allowed a homer in every outing this season and in three starts at home he's posted a 3.93 ERA and 1.58 WHIP.
Felix Doubront faces the Rays, but he's a mess against anyone right now. Through five starts he owns a 6.00 ERA, 1.70 WHIP and sickly 1.45 K/BB ratio. Don't matter the cost or level of desperation... you just can't trot him out there.
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