Jay Bruce is at it again. He’s mashing. Over the past three weeks he’s hit .352 with eight homers, 19 RBIs and 16 runs scored. The recent rush has pushed his season marks to .265-32-93-80-7. Last season he produced a fantasy line of .256-32-97-84-8. It might look like nothing has changed but remember that he’s had 110 fewer at-bats this season.
Speaking of the Reds, Chris Heisey is hitting .469 over his last 32 at-bats for the club from Cincy. That’s 15 hits in 32 at-bats folks. He’s been a huge boost in NL-only leagues (check out his ownership rate over at Fleaflicker).
Josh Johnson has looked much better in the second half as he has a 3.45 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and 3.1 K/BB ratio over his last 11 starts. That’s more like it big fella.
Jed Lowrie hit 14 homers with a .799 OPS in 80 games this season. He’s joined Double-A Corpus Christi. Consider me nonplussed. The guy is a walking injury and his performance is always up and down, up and down. I’ve never been a huge fan despite the obvious skills.
Joe Nathan has been nails the past three weeks. In that time he has struck out 11 batters, without issuing a single free pass, as he’s picked up seven saves in eight outings. Actually, Nathan has been killing it all year long. Not only does he have a 2.48 ERA and 1.01 WHIP, but he’s also struck out 10.76 batters per nine innings this season while striking out 8.13 batters for every walk. Oh yeah, he’s also 30 for 31 in converting save chances. Obviously his arm is all the way back.
Chris Perez called out the Indians for being cheap. “They (the Tigers) are spending money. He (Mike Ilitch the Tigers owner) wants to win. Even when the economy was down (in Detroit), he spent money. He’s got a team to show for it. You get what you pay for in baseball. Sometimes you don’t. But most of the time you do.” Can’t disagree with the sentiment Mr. Perez, but it might be wise to put your house on the market because if I’m the owner of the Indians you’re on your way out this offseason since you clearly don’t want to be in Cleveland.
I know it’s hard to believe, but Kurt Suzuki has actually looked like a big league hitter since he joined the Nationals. He’s hit .266 with three homers, 13 RBIs an a .742 OPS over 22 games.
Mike Trout, and save the hate email people as I’m just pointing out a fact, is hitting .275 over his last 33 games. It would be advisable for you to spend a few moments reading Ron Shandler’s recent article on Trout as well.
Shane Victorino has not performed up to par with the Dodgers. He’s stolen eight bags in 32 games which is a fine pace of course, but he’s hitting just .254 with one homer and a .651 OPS in the blue and white. I’d expect him to perform better in the month of September.
Tom Wilhelmsen leads baseball with eight saves the past three weeks. Yet again we have proof that you don’t have to spend early draft picks or lost of cash on closers on draft day. On the year Tom has 24 saves in 27 opportunities for the Mariners. He’ also struck out 73 batters in 66.1 innings while posting solid ratios (2.58 ERA, 1.16 WHIP).
HITTERS – FRIDAY
Evan Longoria vs. Derek Holland: .421-2-6 in 19 at-bats
Juan Pierre vs. Jeff Francis: .429 with 18 hits in 42 at-bats
David Ross vs. Jonathon Niese: .462-1-8 in only 13 at-bats
HITTERS – SATURDAY
Andre Ethier vs. Matt Cain: .472 in 53 at-bats
Adam Jones vs. CC Sabathia: .342-3-10 in 38 at-bats
A.J. Pierzynski vs. Bruce Chen: .424-2-4 in 33 at-bats
PITCHERS – FRIDAY
A.J. Burnett vs. Cubs: .179/.256/.192 in 78 at-bats. 1 RBI allowed.
Francisco Liriano vs. Royals: .239/.302/.316 in 117 at-bats
Luis Mendoza vs. White Sox: .230/.312/.388 in 152 at-bats
PITCHERS – SATURDAY
Bronson Arroyo vs. Astros: .180/.198/.270 in 100 at-bats.
Jeff Samardzija vs. Pirates: .149/.231/.234 in 47 at-bats
C.J. Wilson vs. Tigers: .240/.324/.323 in 96 at-bats. Zero HRs.
DAILY JOUST CONTESTS
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By Ray Flowers