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Prospectus Hit List for September 16



by Clark Goble and Daniel Rathman

Hit List for September 15 Hit List for September 19
Hit List updates are published Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, starting April 2, 2014. Data presented here is based on games through the day prior to publication.
Teams are ordered based on Adjusted Hit List Factor, a computer generated number, and the author isn't responsible for the order of the teams.

Yesterday's games marked our entry into the final two weeks of the regular season.

RkTm WLW1W2W3HLFAHLFWin Div%Win WC%Playoff%1-Day7-Day
1

97

51

95.3

93.7

92.7

.640

.621

100.0%

0.0%

100.0%

0.0%

0.0%

The Phillies are a ridiculous 28-4 when Brian Schneider starts at catcher. Schneider's line: .171/.238/.261. He must be one heck of a leader.
2

90

58

94.5

88.9

88.7

.612

.631

95.3%

4.7%

100.0%

-0.0%

-0.0%

Curtis Granderson has tumbled out of the AL MVP discussion thanks to a 9-for-48 rut with 15 strikeouts in September. Perhaps the off-day--New York's first since August 27th--was exactly what he needed to clear his head.
3

87

63

81.1

84.0

83.2

.559

.539

99.3%

0.1%

99.3%

-0.1%

-0.5%

With Prince Fielder talking about leaving next season and K-Rod complaining about not getting save opportunities, there's a lot of drama in Milwaukee. Has that phrase ever been written?
4

87

63

80.9

84.5

83.0

.559

.579

100.0%

0.0%

100.0%

0.0%

0.9%

Jim Leyland announced on Thursday that he had not changed his underwear (or washed, mind you) during the Tigers' 12-game winning streak. Maybe it's a good thing they lost'he'll don a new pair for Friday's game.
5

87

63

80.6

76.4

76.4

.534

.514

99.6%

0.0%

99.6%

-0.1%

1.8%

Ryan Roberts isn't a big fan of PETCO Park. In 44 plate appearances in the spacious ballpark, Roberts has five hits and 13 strikeouts.
6

86

63

89.0

92.1

91.4

.601

.620

4.7%

90.4%

95.1%

-2.5%

-4.6%

If you had told Theo Epstein before the start of the season that the Red Sox would start Kyle Weiland in a potentially pivotal game in September, the Wonder Boy would have lost his lunch.
7

86

64

82.0

81.5

80.4

.550

.530

0.0%

96.0%

96.0%

-0.1%

-3.0%

As the Braves close in on the NL Wild Card, Fredi Gonzalez's top priority should be finding ways to rest his overworked relievers. With five walks in his last 7.1 innings, eighth inning guy Jonny Venters looks most in need of a breather before the playoffs start.
8

86

64

89.9

93.1

93.5

.604

.623

94.8%

0.2%

95.0%

2.8%

4.9%

Pointless stat of the day: The Rangers picked up nine hits on Thursday, ending a club-record seven-game stretch of games with 12 hits.
9

83

66

83.8

84.4

84.9

.564

.584

0.0%

3.8%

3.8%

2.2%

3.6%

Jeremy Hellickson pitched 5.2 innings of one-run ball. Evan Longoria, B.J. Upton, and Casey Kotchman homered. Balkin' Bob Davidson called a balk. And then, the AL Wild Card gap was three.
10

82

67

78.8

78.0

77.8

.531

.551

5.2%

0.9%

6.1%

-2.5%

-3.9%

Dan Haren has had some really good performances this season'SHOs on April 12, July 5, and Sept. 10'and some really bad ones -- seven ER on July 20, six ER on June 18 and Aug. 26. The Angels hope they see the good on Friday.
11

81

68

80.0

79.7

78.6

.536

.516

0.7%

3.5%

4.2%

0.0%

3.2%

Jaime Garcia makes his 30th start of the season on Friday, marking the first time he's reached that plateau. Since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2008, Garcia has been surprisingly durable.
12

80

70

74.0

76.8

76.3

.512

.492

0.4%

0.5%

0.9%

0.3%

-1.5%

No, there wasn't an earthquake in the greater Denver area last night. That was Pablo Sandoval rumblin', bumblin', and stumblin' on his way to third base for the triple that completed his unlikely cycle.
13

75

74

73.5

70.9

73.1

.491

.511

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Colby Rasmus expects to return to the Blue Jays lineup on Friday. After what has been'on many levels'a disappointing season, Rasmus could use a hot streak to set himself up for 2012.
14

74

76

78.4

78.9

78.2

.516

.496

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Chris Heisey has 17 homers in 245 at-bats this year, yet the Reds may not have an everyday job for the 26-year-old in 2012. If they choose to stick with Yonder Alonso in left field, expect Walt Jocketty to work the phones and see if he can nab a solid pitcher for Heisey.
15

73

76

70.4

75.5

75.5

.494

.514

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

-0.8%

The Tigers embarrassed the White Sox, and now the Royals are sitting Ozzie's crew down? Yikes.
16

73

76

74.3

75.9

75.2

.501

.481

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Making his first plate appearance since September 6th, Eugenio Velez pinch-hit and struck out. He's now 0-for-32 this season, three hitless at-bats shy of the MLB record held by Hal Finney of the 1936 Pirates.
17

72

75

68.1

67.8

68.3

.470

.490

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

-0.0%

Since 2009, Cleveland is 4-21 against Texas. I guess Josh Hamilton is pretty intimidating.
18

71

77

70.5

70.4

70.6

.477

.457

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

The Nationals took all four games from the Mets, securing third place in the NL East, and they did it without even using Stephen Strasburg. The franchise hasn't finished third or higher since 2002, when it played in Montreal as the Expos.
19

71

79

71.8

73.2

73.5

.482

.462

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Terry Collins is all kinds of fired up about his sorry-looking Mets, who scored five runs in four games and got swept by the Nationals. How they rebound could be vital to the NL Wild Card; their next six games are against the Braves and Cardinals.
20

70

79

73.3

74.8

74.4

.491

.471

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Jhoulys Chacin had just two starts last season in which he walked more batters than he struck out. This year, though, he's already done that six times, perhaps in part because his swinging strike rate has plummeted from 10.8 percent to 8.3.
21

68

82

66.9

60.9

60.1

.426

.407

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Ross Ohlendorf, who had scarcely hit a ball out of the infield coming into last night's game, hit a three-run homer, becoming the first Ivy League pitcher to hit a home run since Chris Young in 2008.
22

68

82

71.3

71.2

72.6

.472

.492

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

The Athletics hope to see something from Trevor Cahill in his start on Friday. Cahill is 3-6 with a 6.86 ERA since the All-Star Break. That's coach pitch numbers.
23

67

83

67.2

74.0

73.4

.469

.449

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

With two losses on Thursday, the Marlins fell to 39-39 on the road this season. They're sixteen games under .500 at home. They want to get out of Sun Life Stadium as much as everyone else wants to see them leave.
24

65

85

64.0

64.4

63.9

.429

.409

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Randy Wells has served up 13 homers in 76 innings since the All-Star Break, yet he has a 3.79 ERA over that span. Thanks to last night's ninth-inning rally, Wells also retained a robust 6-1 record.
25

65

86

70.6

70.9

71.6

.460

.480

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Ned Yost is shutting down pitchers like Borders is shutting down stores. Danny Duffy, Luke Hochevar, and Jeff Francis are all done for the season, leaving the Royals with three starters and a lot of decision-making to do.
26

63

87

71.4

65.8

65.8

.443

.424

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Since the start of September, Chris Denorfia leads all players with at least 25 plate appearances with a .520 batting average (13-for-25), and Nick Hundley (.447) is fifth. Still, the Padres have scored just 41 runs in 13 games.
27

62

87

62.0

65.2

66.1

.428

.448

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Blake Beavan faces his old friends, the Rangers, for the second time on Friday. They beat him on July 17th, but Beavan now has a chance to get the last laugh and play spoiler for Texas.
28

60

88

59.2

57.5

58.3

.397

.416

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

The Orioles might want to try to listen to this conference realignment talk and change divisions. They're 23-42 against the AL East this season, and the teams above them are stocked for the future.
29

59

89

56.3

49.7

50.3

.364

.382

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

The Twins have a -168 run differential, the worst in baseball.
30

51

98

57.8

58.5

58.7

.379

.361

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

Friday's starter Wandy Rodriguez has logged a 28-to-7 K/BB ratio over his last three starts. Sadly, he's doing it for the Astros, and not a team that could legitimately use pitching help down the stretch.

Clark Goble is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Clark's other articles. You can contact Clark by clicking here
Daniel Rathman is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Daniel's other articles. You can contact Daniel by clicking here


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