I'm back from Hawaii. I don't want to be back from Hawaii. If you want to see some photos of why I wish I was still in Hawaii scroll down to the bottom of my piece titled and The Hits Keep Coming.
* NOTE: Players are listed in alphabetical order for the sake of making them easily sortable/findable. The matchups are also generated based on Batter vs. Pitcher data. Just because a player is not listed does not mean that he is a bad or good play. The players listed below are mentioned merely because of the BVP data for the matchup.
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DISH DIAMONDS – The Best Hitting Matchups of the Day
J.P. Arencibia has nine strikeouts in 24 at-bats against Hiroki Kuroda. In the other 15 at-bats he's produced a homer and nine hits. Overall he's batting .375 in the matchup.
David Murphy rides the success train when Felix Hernandez is on the bump. In 78 at-bats Murphy has hit .308 with three homers and an impressive 16 RBIs. Don't forget Michael Brantley either. He seems to hit everyone this season regardless of who they are. He's always hit King Felix well with a .364 average, a homer and six RBIs in 24 plate appearances.
Derek Norris has hit .455 in 11 at-bats against the struggling Dallas Keuchel. It's only six at-bats for Yoenis Cespedes but you have to take note of the fact that he's picked up five hits in the matchup.
David Ortiz has a whopping 79 at-bats against Mark Buehrle. He's doesn't well hitting .316 with a .939 OPS. He's gone deep four times and driven in 14 runners during his successful run. Dustin Pedroia has battered MB to the tune of a .375 average over 40 at-bats. Jonny Gomes is hitting .333 with five RBIs over 33 at-bats as well.
David Wright has a .914 OPS against Kyle Kendrick over 49 plate appearances. He's gone deep three times with seven RBIs as well. Ruben Tejada has a big fly, three RBIs an a .318 average in 22 at-bats.
DISH DISASTERS – Worst Hitting Matchups of the Day
Jose Bautista doesn't like to see Jon Lester on the bump, especially when he's rolling like he is right now. In 61 at-bats Bautista has hit a mere .230 with a .310 OBP. The power is still there though with five homers. Go big or go home I guess. Dioner Navarro is at .510 with the old OPS over 29 plate appearances and poor Jose Reyes at .212 over 24 plate appearances. That's his OPS by the way.
Adam Dunn is one of many who struggle against Max Scherzer. No shame in that. Still, 21 Ks in 41 at-bats is embarrassing. The fact that Dunn is hitting .227 with three homers given all those punchouts is rather amazing. Paul Konerko has 16 whiffs an a .238 average in his 42 at-bats. Gordon Beckham is even worse at .220 with 12 Ks in 41 at-bats. The worst play of the day, regardless of the matchup, is Alexei Ramirez. The dude is putrid against Scherzer with a .118 average over 51 at-bats. How is that even possible?
Russell Martin has six strikeouts an a .100 batting average in 20 at-bats against Tim Lincecum. Ike Davis has eight Ks and has hit .200 in his 20 at-bats. Meanwhile, Andrew McCutchen is sitting there with a .211 batting average in 19 at-bats though he does have a homer and steal.
Pablo Sandoval has a pathetic .541 OPS over 24 plate appearances against Charlie Morton. Hunter Pence has been even worse in his 29 plate appearances with a .526 mark. Don't expect much in the realm of fireworks from that duo.
Nick Swisher has 53 at-bats against Felix Hernandez. Pretty obvious he cannot hit him. He's batting .208 with 13 Ks an a .300 OBP. Others who struggle: the white hot Carlos Santana has hit .188 in 16 at-bats while Asdrubal Cabrera is at a mere .176 in 17 at-bats.
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MOUND MAVENS – Starting Pitchers to Target
Brett Anderson has allowed six hits and just one run over his last two starts. He pitches in Wrigley against the Cubs. The Cubbies are 23rd in home OPS this season though they are in the top-5 in OPS against lefties. Always a risk if the wind is blowing out. Check the weather report here.
Danny Duffy is a must start. Can't believe I just typed that. Over his last three starts he's allowed two earned runs, and in five of his last six outings it's been one or fewer earned runs. That run includes a 5.2 innings outing with one run allowed on June 30th against the Twins. He pitches at home against the Twins Wednesday.
Kevin Gausman has allowed one earned run in three of his last four starts. He's also walked a total of seven batters over his last four starts. Now he's only lasted six innings in one of his last five starts but in four night starts this year he has posted a 1.46 ERA and 1.09 WHIP.
Zack Greinke faces the Braves at home. He allowed two runs to them over six innings in his last outing. He's also sporting a 2.73 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 6.8 K/BB ratio in eight home starts this season.
Corey Kluber is a must start at this point, is he not? In 10 home starts he has a 3.01 ERA, 1.07 WHIP and 80 Ks in 71.2 innings. He faces the Mariners.
Hiroki Kuroda tossed seven shutout innings against the Rangers the last time they squared off and in 10 starts this season away from Yankee Stadium he owns some solid ratios (3.88 ERA, 1.23 WHIP). The Rangers have all been struggling the last two weeks with a pretty darn poor slash line of .241/.293/.335.
Garrett Richards faces an Orioles club that cannot get out of it's own way right now. The last two weeks the club has hit 11 homers but that's pretty much been the entirety of their offense given that they have hit .202 with a .266 OBP as a group.
MOUND MESSES – Starting Pitchers to Avoid
Mark Buehrle has a 4.46 ERA and 1.46 WHIP in 163.1 career innings against the Red Sox. He's also posted a 3.90 ERA and 1.49 WHIP in 14 night starts this season. Moreover, he's been beaten around the yard for 17 hits and 11 runs over his last nine innings. The bottom has officially fallen out.
Phil Hughes stinks. I keep selling it, but folks keep balking. Why? I mean, isn't the evidence there? Despite being blah for years people still hold out hope. I know he's not walking anyone but when a guy has a 5.20 ERA over 10 starts while he's allowed 81 hits in 62.1 innings, why can't people give up the ghost? Hughes faces the Royals in Kansas City.
Joe Kelly faces the Padres. The numbers say start everyone against the Padres. Don't believe those numbers right now. Believe what you see with Kelly and that includes two of three outings in which he failed to complete five innings while allowing at least five earned runs since he returned from the DL.
Dallas Keuchel faces the Athletics in Houston. He looked sharp in his last outing, but he's still failed to produce a quality start in six of his last seven outings. Plus, we know the A's are an often potent club who currently ranks 11th in OPS against lefties.
Alex Wood faces the Dodgers Wednesday. He's got good stuff, but consistency has eluded him this year. In two of his last three starts he's allowed four earned runs, and in two of the last four outings he's also walked at least three batters. Hard to feel confident about him at the moment.
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