Monday, April 23, 2012

Rox Talk - Week 3

The Week That Was
A 4-2 week against the Padres and Brewers. The Rox currently stand at 8-7.  Three and half games behind the Dodgers for the division lead in second place. Currently 5-4 at home and 3-3 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 77-72 (expected wins is 7 versus historical wins at 7). On pace for 86 wins with 778 runs scored and 832 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.94 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

After a rough first week, at least for the pitching staff, Rox have steadied the ship and are playing decent April baseball.  Nice to see for the most part the Rox have steered clear of any April headaches unlike some other surprise teams in baseball such as the Phillies (7-9), D-Backs (8-8), Angels (6-10), and Boston (4-10).  In the big scheme of things April winning percentages have as much ability to predict October baseball as Spring Training but I do think while you can't win a World Series in April, you can certainly put yourself on your heels and force to play catch up come late Summer.

With a three game set in Pittsburgh and then with Mets coming to town later this week, Rox could find themselves battling the Dodgers the week after next for first place (?) at home.  5-5 in the NL West, Rox could make a big statement by taking 2 games with LA.  Of course the bigger statement would be the gauntlet road trip in mid-May when Rox visit San Diego, LA, and San Fran (Fantasy stats death row for any Rox players...).  A .500 road trip through California should at least keep the Rox in the Division through the Summer.

With a perfect game thrown last week once again pitching is still dominating baseball talk.  As predicted the Rox haven't had a problem hitting.  Their batting average of 0.266 is 2nd in the NL but their team ERA of 4.50 is 14th.  Probably a bit early to declare this team a playoff contender if team pitching remains at the bottom of the league especially with LA at 5th, San Diego at 8th, San Fran at 9th, and Arizona at 13th.  Of course Philly and Pittsburgh are 2nd and 3rd respectively and their combined records are 13-18.  Baseball has so many moving pieces and parts.

Early Season Links
Quote of the Week, from "It's a Long Season" blog, "Baseball is a game of failure coached by negative people in an environment of misinformation."

Rob Neyer has an interesting take on the Three True Outcomes (I had never heard the term before in baseball speak). Strikeouts, Walks, and Home Runs.  Batter versus Pitcher with no fielding at play (although what about a dropped third strike?).  Rob references's Joe Lemire who writes that, "The 2012 season is in a dead heat with 200 and 2009 for king of defensive inaction with each team having an average of 11.4 plate appearances per game that result in one of the TTOs."  He continues with "Betwen the two teams there an average of 23 strikeouts, walks, and homers per game..."  I second Rob's concern with this trend because I like baseball with some action...For comparison sake in 2011 Rox had 6275 plate appearances and had 1201 K, 555 BB, and 163 HR or 31% of the outcomes in a TTO and in 2012 Rox have had 573 plate appearances and 105 K, 47 BB, and 14 HR or 29% of the outcomes.

Nice piece on the history of the Dodger, even if I do despise them although I think I despise the D-Backs and Giants more right now...

Fenway is what makes baseball magical sometimes...

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