When Jay Bruce Pulls the Ball Good Things Follow

Houston Astros v Cincinnati Reds

On May 7th the Cincinnati Reds slugging right fielder Jay Bruce was hitting a paltry .246/.296/.345 with a single home run in more than 150 plate appearances. His unintentional walk rate (after subtracting the two plate appearances) was 5.3% and he was striking out in nearly one-third of his plate appearances. Needless to say, Bruce was not off to a good start.

Luck is not to be blamed for Bruce’s poor start due to his .370 BABIP which is well above his sub-.300 career mark coming into the season. Bruce seemed to be too aggressive at the plate, seeing 3.79 pitches per plate appearance.

Bruce’s power outage was likely due to his “all-field” approach. Usually, when a player starts using the entire field, the result is a better triple-slash. In Bruce’s case, it appeared to only give him a few more singles and a higher BABIP. Take a look at his spray chart from Opening Day to May 7th: Continue reading

Could This Be a Career Year For Adam Wainwright?

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St. Louis Cardinals’ starting pitcher Adam Wainwright almost won the Cy Young Award in 2010 when he posted a 2.42 ERA and 2.86 FIP over 230.1 innings pitched. This was his follow-up to a very similar season in 2009 and marked the second straight season Wainwright topped 230 innings pitched. Then, in February of 2011, Wainwright had Tommy John surgery and missed the entire 2011 season. Continue reading

Happy April Fuld’s Day!

Two years ago today Sam Fuld was a mere human being when he woke up on April 11th, 2011. He was hitting a pedestrian .227/.320/.318 as the Rays headed into Boston with a 2-8 record. But when the game that started at 7:10pm EST ended a little before 11pm EST Sam Fuld had fully evolved and the Legend of Sam Fuld was in full swing.

Here is my story of how the Legend of Sam Fuld began and how the legend eventually planted its flag in the date of April 11th, 2011, a day that will forever be known as “April Fuld’s Day.”

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2013 Tampa Bay Rays Top 16 Prospects

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The Tampa Bay Rays continue to contend and continue to replenish their loaded farm system. The recent trade of James Shields and Wade Davis did just that as did their recent drafts.

Below are our top 16 prospects with 2013 opening day age, position, and comments on each player. Below the top 16 is a small list of additional notable names. Enjoy.

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Could Derrek Lee Actually Help the Yankees?

Derrek

When New York Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira went down with a wrist injury, that will likely keep him out of the lineup and off the field through May, the Yankees must have regretted letting Nick Swisher walk via free agency. Continue reading

A’s Trade Former Top Prospects for Jed Lowrie

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The Oakland Athletics, in a  move to bolster their major league roster, acquired shortstop Jed Lowrie and right-handed reliever Fernando Rodriguez from the Houston Astros in exchange for catching prospect Max Stassi and former top prospects Chris Carter and Brad Peacock.

The Oakland A’s signed Hiroyuki Nakajima to be their shortstop in 2013 but, before the trade, were slated to give second base duties to Scott Sizemore and third base duties to Josh Donaldson. With none of the three players mentioned above having a proven track record of success in the majors, adding someone like Lowrie, who can play all three positions, was something Billy Beane needed to do for his contending club.
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Bryan Shaw Overlooked in Indians-Reds-Diamondbacks Trade

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The Cleveland Indians, Cincinnati Reds, and Arizona Diamondbacks completed a three-way trade yesterday that sent Shin-Soo Choo to the Reds, Trevor Bauer, Drew Stubbs, and Bryan Shaw to the Indians, and Didi Gregorious to the Diamondbacks.

The key components of this trade were Choo, Bauer, Gregorious, and Stubbs, for obvious reasons. Choo is an All-Star caliber player, Bauer is a top pitching prospect, Gregorious was highly coveted by Kevin Towers, and Stubbs in a plus defender in center. But Bryan Shaw, who has been completely overlooked, may be a better part of this trade than many people realize. Continue reading