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

NL Central Players To Watch

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Dan Marino continues his trek through each division in the major leagues and giving you one player he thinks is the: Rookie to Watch, Breakthrough Player, The Party’s Over, Non-Roster Invitee Most Likely to Stick, and Just Not Seeing it.

Now, in part four of six, he brings you the National League Central:

Part 1: AL East Players to Watch.

Part 2: NL East Players to Watch.

Part 3: AL Central Players to Watch.

Chicago Cubs Continue reading

Cincinnati Reds’ Pitching Prospect Dan Langfield Bursts on to the Scene

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The Cincinnati Reds have had success cultivating young pitchers in recent years, with Aroldis Chapman, Homer Bailey and Johnny Cueto all making major contributions to the big league team. This bodes well for one of the Reds’ most recent draft picks, right-hander Dan Langfield.

Langfield was a high school star in Somerset, Massachusetts. He was part of the 2006 Somerset High School team that won the 2006 Division II State title. He peaked as a senior, going 5-2 with a 0.85 ERA. He struck out a ridiculous 118 batters in 57.1 innings, earning a scholarship to the University of Memphis. Continue reading

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

The Reds Acquire Shin-Soo Choo in a Blockbuster Move

In an offseason that has saw the Tampa Bay Rays dump off frontline starters, Jeffery Loria selling anyone in a Miami Marlins jersey making any kind of money to the Toronto Blue Jays, the madness continued on Tuesday night.

According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Cleveland Indians, Cincinnati Reds and the Arizona Diamondbacks have completed a three team trade.

The Indians will acquire Trevor Bauer, Matt Albers and Bryan Shaw from the D-Backs and get Drew Stubbs from the Reds. The Reds receive Jason Donald and Shin-Soo Choo, and the Diamondbacks will get Tony SippDidi Gregorius, and Lars Anderson. Continue reading

Holliday’s Slide Was Far From Bush-League

Last night’s NLCS game was full of action including a leadoff homerun, both pitchers hitting doubles, and the slide that no one would shut up about.

In case you missed it or did not hear about it, in the top of the first inning Matt Holliday slid well over the second base bag in an attempt to try and break up a potential double-play. During his slide he took Giants infielder Marco Scutaro out at the knees and then Twitter and Giants fans everywhere blew up. Continue reading

Picking the 2012 MLB Award Winners

With the focus in baseball being on the fantastic matchups being waged in the playoffs, the intense debate about the end-of-season awards has been tempered for the time being. It’s a temporary lull that will heat up again once the announcement of the award winners near, as many will try to get in their opinions in the form of parting shots, in the attempt to support the various candidates. There have been some truly incredible performances this season, and there are literally no categories without multiple candidates having legitimate chances to have their name drawn from the proverbial envelope. That being said, here are my picks for the 2012 baseball awards. Continue reading