CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Fantasy Beat: Value Pi... (04/26)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: A... (04/25)
Next Column >>
Prospectus Hit List: I... (05/02)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Prospects Will Break Y... (04/26)

April 26, 2011

Prospectus Hit List

Of Phils and Fish

by Tommy Bennett

the archives are now free.

All Baseball Prospectus Premium and Fantasy articles more than a year old are now free as a thank you to the entire Internet for making our work possible.

Not a subscriber? Get exclusive content like this delivered hot to your inbox every weekday. Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get instant access to the best baseball content on the web.

Subscribe for $4.95 per month
Recurring subscription - cancel anytime.


a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Purchase a $39.95 gift subscription
a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

RkTeam
Overall W-L
Week W-L
Hit List Factor
Comment

1


Phillies
15-7
5-2
.608
Down

Race to the Bottom: Jose Contreras gets barely a week into his new closing duties before hitting the DL, but the rotation looks like it doesn't much need a bullpen. Increasingly masterful performances from Roy Oswalt (6.0 1 0 0 2 7), Cole Hamels (8.0 4 0 0 3 8), and Roy Halladay (8.2 5 1 1 1 14) hide an uncharacteristically weak Cliff Lee and feeble offense (2.3 runs per game).

2


Marlins
14-7
6-1
.596
Up
Working Quickly: On the strength of great pitching and bad Pirates hitting (opponents held to just 2.3 runs per game on the week), Florida reels off a one-loss week in which every game lasts less than two hours. A slumping Hanley Ramirez sits before coming off the bench and putting his team over the top. Team ace Josh Johnson notches his fifth consecutive start of six innings or more with two or fewer earned runs. His seven-inning, three-hit, one-run outdueling of Ubaldo Jimenez actually raises his ERA ... to 1.06.

3


Cardinals
12-10
4-2
.588
Up
Coming Home: Cards return from a road trip and promptly win home series against the Nationals and Reds. Hot (.333/.440/.524) and hotter (.588/.667/.824) weeks from Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman help give Albert Pujols (.286/.360/.714) a welcome-home party. Kyle Lohse (9 2 0 0 2 6) looks like he has his 2008 form back, and new closer Mitchell Boggs is making himself feel comfortable (15 K, 3 BB in 12.1 IP).

4


Rockies
15-7
3-3
.566
Down
Falling from the Peaks: The Rox drop consecutive series to the Giants and Marlins, as they fall to merely alpine heights. Carlos Gonzalez hits an 0-for-21 skid that drops his season averages to .217/.272/.289, as Jonathan Herrera (4-19 with 1 XBH) cools off as well. Meanwhile, the rotation holds its own while it can, though only Jason Hammel and Jorge de la Rosa hang on to the end of the sixth inning. Monday night marks the 24th combined game for late-inning relievers Huston Street (13) and Rafael Betancourt (11).

5


Brewers
11-11
3-3
.532
Up
Braun over Brains: $105 million richer, Ryan Braun finds himself the object of both ill-advised marriage proposals and Player of the Week honors. None of that is enough to avoid a .500 week, though, as the Brewers briefly lose Rickie Weeks to an injured pinkie, but his return (3-5 with a home run and a double) suggests he's no worse for the wear.

6


Reds
12-11
3-4
.526
Down
Gentle Eyes: Dusty Baker looks into Mike Leake's eyes and sees something positive; others just see effective pitching (7.0 4 3 3 2 6). The starting pitching, among the team's biggest weaknesses, is at least consistent: they allow between three and five runs every game this week. Joey Votto, of course, fails yet again to hit an infield fly ball—a streak that started back in the 2009 season, by at least one accounting.

7


Giants
10-11
1-4
.520
Down
Sweep Mystery of Life: The Giants host the Braves at home and hit the road again without a win to show for it. Rough weeks from Miguel Tejada (.167/.214/.167), Aubrey Huff (.143/.182/.333), and Aaron Rowand (.125/.263/.250) make clear the offensive limitations of a team that scores just 3.4 runs per game on the week. The difficulties of Jonathan Sanchez (starts of 6.1 and 5 IP) and Madison Bumgarner (2.2 IP last start) in going deep into games puts a strain on the bullpen, which yields seven runs in five innings on Sunday to blow the lead.

8


Braves
11-13
4-3
.515
Up
Taking a Walk: Fifth in bases on balls but second-to-last in OBP in the NL, the Braves lack singles (.226 team batting average) and doubles (just 32 as a team). Meanwhile, the team's pitching looks eligible for a Cy Young Award (216.2 IP, 3.24 ERA, 185 K, 66 BB), and the rotation puts up a quality start in all but one game for the week. Encouraging signs from Freddie Freeman and Jason Heyward (each with two home runs last week) may mean the offensive troubles will end soon.

9


Padres
9-14
2-5
.451
Down
Where We're Going, We Don't Need Runs: The Padres stay on pace to get shut out 42 times, adding two more en route to a four-game sweep at home by the Phillies—they average just two runs on the week as a result. Even after adjusting for home park, only two Padres hitters rate above average: Nick Hundley, whose bubble has begun to burst (.208/.269/.292), and Will Venable, who has just one XBH so far (.235/.409/.235). Clayton Richard has a nice pickoff move and a nice effort (7.1 6 2 2 4 4) despite a loss. Tim Stauffer ties a career high as he strikes out seven (6.0 4 2 2 1 7).

10


Dodgers
12-12
4-3
.448
Up
Community Property, Indeed: Come on down! You're the next contestant on Misalign Your Incentives, the only game show where respectable franchises become laughingstocks. MLB promptly names attorney/ambassador, and former business partner to George W. Bush, J. Thomas Schieffer to run the team. There's tough competition for crummiest management decision, though, as Don Mattingly continues to write Aaron Miles' name atop the lineup. The early returns on Jerry Sands (6-22 for the week) suggest patience may be necessary.

11


Diamondbacks
9-12
3-4
.438
Down
They Can't Do it By Themselves: The Snakes snap a four-game losing streak by blanking the Phillies on the road on the strength of the best performance of Ian Kennedy's career (9.0 3 0 0 0 10). Kennedy's stingy way with the walks hasn't carried over to the rest of the rotation, as Daniel Hudson (4.4), Joe Saunders (5.4), and Armando Galarraga (4.3) all walk more than four per nine. Time on the road deprives Justin Upton (.240/.286/.440) of any towering moon shots (or home runs of any sort), while Stephen Drew (.346/.370/.654) grows tired of going 3-4 with two doubles in Arizona losses.

12


Mets
9-13
4-2
.430
Up
What a Difference Bad Opponents Make: Nothing cures what ails the Mets like a pair of series at home against two of the Hit List's weakest teams: the Astros and Diamondbacks. Winners of four straight, the Mets get strong performances from Mike Pelfrey (7.0 5 1 1 2 4), Chris Capuano (7.0 6 1 1 2 4), and Dillon Gee (6.0 5 4 2 1 5). Jason Bay slugs his way back into the lineup looking like he never left (.333/.412/.667), and Daniel Murphy's bat more than makes up for his defensive miscues at the keystone (.353/.421/.529).

13


Nationals
10-11
2-4
.422
Down
Pulling a Roosevelt: In the absence of Ryan Zimmerman (DL, abdominal), the Nationals struggle to score runs (3.5 per game on the week) even against the likes of Jeff Karstens and Paul Maholm. Wilson Ramos sees his early luck run out (.167/.167/.250), big bopper Jayson Werth can't carry the team by himself (.261/.320/.435), and Danny Espinosa cools off (.280/.308/.360) as he loses hold of his power stroke. That puts the onus on the rotation, all of whom fail to record more than three strikeouts in a start this week. Sometimes it seems like the games are rigged.

14


Cubs
10-12
2-4
.418
Down
Win the Close Ones: The Cubs post winning records in one-run (4-3) and extra-inning (2-0) games but are outscored 12-37 in games decided by five runs or more. One blowout, a 12-2 daytime drubbing at Wrigley, features a disaster start by Casey Coleman (2.2 6 6 6 4 4) and a rough bullpen showing (collectively, 6.1 8 6 6 6 4). The offense bails out a beats up on a struggling Ted Lilly on the back of 16 hits but without the benefit of a home run. With Starlin Castro (.222/.250/.259) posting back-to-back oh-fers for the first time all season, there may be reason to worry about the bats as well.

15


Pirates
10-12
2-4
.394
Down
At Least Nobody Has To See This: If a franchise flails in obscurity, do they ever really lose? The Pirates' home series against the Nationals draws 40,239 fans in three games, fewer than the Yankees or Phillies have drawn in a single home game all season. How do you blame them? The young bats—Andrew McCutchen (.211/.318/.263) and Jose Tabata (.143/.208/.190)—struggle mightily. On the bright side, Pedro Alvarez (.294/.333/.588) shows signs of life, and Ronny Cedeño (.176/.176/.294) is replaced by the just-acquired Brandon Wood.

16


Astros
8-14
3-3
.339
Flat
Grounded as the Space Shuttle: A 3-3 week belies a nine-run Pythagorean deficit, as the Astros get blown out in consecutive games in Queens (9-1) and Milwaukee (14-7). Wandy Rodriguez, at least, posts a pair of promising outings (14.0 13 5 5 6 16 combined), and Bud Norris holds his own despite yielding 10 hits (6.0 10 3 3 1 6), but the rest of the staff to a man gets knocked around for at least five runs. Don't expect relief from the lineup, either: Chris Johnson (.125/.125/.208) and Carlos Lee (.167/.200/.333) can't get off the ground. Brett Wallace is alone on the launch pad (.476/.500/.667).


The Prospectus Hit List rankings are derived from Won-Loss records and several measurements pertaining to run differentials, both actual and adjusted, from Baseball Prospectus Adjusted Standings through the close of play on every Thursday.

Related Content:  The Streak

9 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Fantasy Beat: Value Pi... (04/26)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: A... (04/25)
Next Column >>
Prospectus Hit List: I... (05/02)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Prospects Will Break Y... (04/26)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Daisy Cutter: Russell's Adjustments
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: So, Do You Come to Mil...
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Yo Yo Yo Your Boat
5 O'Clock Power: Scouting a Series: Aberdeen...
Premium Article Everything You Could Have Learned This Week:...
Premium Article The Call-Up: Ketel Marte
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Houston is Hip to Gome...

MORE FROM APRIL 26, 2011
Transaction Analysis: Return of the Busted P...
Premium Article Divide and Conquer, NL West: At Least We Don...
Premium Article Manufactured Runs: 3-2-1 Contact
Painting the Black: Pitching Backward
Premium Article Prospects Will Break Your Heart: An Embarras...
Fantasy Article Fantasy Beat: Value Picks at Catcher, Second...
Fantasy Article Fantasy Beat: Tout Wars FAAB Update 4/25

MORE BY TOMMY BENNETT
2011-05-10 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Beasts of the East
2011-05-06 - Premium Article Expanded Horizons: Get it While it's Hot
2011-05-02 - Prospectus Hit List: It's 1998 All Over Agai...
2011-04-26 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Of Phils and Fish
2011-04-22 - Expanded Horizons: Eight, Ten, Here We Go Ag...
2011-04-18 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Cleveland Rocks
2011-04-15 - Premium Article Expanded Horizons: Relying on Relievers
More...

MORE PROSPECTUS HIT LIST
2011-05-09 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: The Hitless Parade
2011-05-03 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Where Were You
2011-05-02 - Prospectus Hit List: It's 1998 All Over Agai...
2011-04-26 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Of Phils and Fish
2011-04-25 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: A Return to Normalcy
2011-04-19 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Feast or Famine
2011-04-18 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: Cleveland Rocks
More...

INCOMING ARTICLE LINKS
2011-04-29 - What You Missed: 4/25-4/29