More evidence Strasburg is actually hurt

After regularly hitting the high 90’s with his fastball early in the game, Strasburg immediately dropped in velocity.

He had seven straight fastballs in the mid 90’s.

He then gave up on the fastball throwing three straight off-speed pitches to end the inning.

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How Strasburg hurt himself

Stephen Strasburg hurt himself on the last pitch thrown to Evan Gattis, a curveball. See below.

Last fastball to Gattis. 98 mph.

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Then the curve.

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The next three fastballs showed immediate drop in velocity. 96, 94, and 93 mph.

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What you can’t see in the images is the shaking uncomfortable body language, but if you watch the video it’s there.

The last moment before the Gattis pitch was the last healthy one for Stras tonight.

Why is Danny Espinosa still playing Major League Baseball?

It’s painful to watch Danny Espinosa play baseball.  It’s even more painful to look at his stats.

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With 41 games played, about one quarter of an MLB season, Danny Espinosa has a -0.7 WAR and a -0.8 Offensive WAR.

Even more alarming is the defensive WAR of only 0.2.  Espinosa has been banking on his reputation as a quality defensive player leading Nationals fans to say things like “well, at least he plays good defense.”

The numbers suggest someone–anyone–would be an improvement over this automatic out.

I ask: why is Danny Espinosa still playing Major League Baseball?  It’s almost June.  Shut him down.  Demote him.  Frame him for murder.  Do something, Nationals.  This guy is killing the team.

Bryce Harper Is Ranked 241 in AB with Runners In Scoring Position

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Here is a strategy to turn this season around.

Step 1:  Get Harper healthy

Step 2: Get people in scoring position in front of him.  This might mean moving him to 4 or 2nd in the order.  3rd seems to get him up to bat with no one on base a lot.

Seems obvious right?  Here are the players who have more at bats with runners in scoring position than Harper:

Suzuki, Espinosa, Werth, Tyler Moore, Lombo, LaRoche, Span, Desmond, Zimmerman

That is everyone , in case you couldn’t tell.

Here are Harper’s stats this year with runners in scoring position.

AVG OBP SLG OPS
.280 .441 .640 1.081

Pretty good.

Review: Ty Cobb Museum

20130420-090712.jpgIt is impossible in our modern world to talk about Ty Cobb without the specter of racism being present. It is similar to bringing up the topic of Berry Bonds without mentioning steroids. The difference is, nobody doubts Cobb’s authentic achievements on the diamond, but Bonds accomplishments leave more to the interpretation.

Cobb’s achievements are truly remarkable. At his retirement he owned 70 or so records and received the highest percentages of votes in the inaugural Hall of Fame class. He was recognized in his time as being the greatest living baseball player. The Ty Cobb Museum is located in Royston, Georgia, the closest town to the small farm area where Ty Cobb was born. At one time, I am sure this was really the middle of nowhere, Ga.  Now, it is a little less than an hour from the suburban sprawl that is Atlanta.  The museum tells the story of Cobb from the perspective of his family and neighbors and friends.

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The museum exists in a paradox of independent sports museums. You don’t make a museum for someone Continue reading “Review: Ty Cobb Museum”

Is OPACY A Band Box? Yes

Judging by Wednesday’s game I would say so. There is a way to judge a parks propensity to allow home runs. Based on the calculated park factors the O’s play in a very attractive wiffle ball field. Love the Warehouse, Love Boogs, Love Eutaw Street, Love the Location near the Inner Harbor. Greatly dislike the unfairness of the field.

http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/parkfactor/_/year/2012/sort/HRFactor

This is how OPACY played over the last 6 years.

OPACY Nats Park
Year Rank Factor Rank Factor
8 1 1.359 16 0.942
9 5 1.185 19 0.97
10 5 1.162 15 1
11 8 1.114 9 1.11
12 5 1.314 13 1.044
4.8 1.2268 14.4 1.0132

Interesting to note in 08, OPCY was the most HR friendly park and tends to be top 5. Even more of a band box than Citizens Bank and Great American.

Nats Park in 10, was exactly even with a rate of 1 and tends to play it even for the pitcher and hitters