Jake Odorizzi continued his breakout season Saturday with six shutout innings. He ranks tenth in the league in strikeout percentage. Going by Fangraphs’ pitch classifications he is throwing his changeup more often. Brooks believes he ditched the change for a splitter. Whatever the pitch is, it has a 14.23% whiff rate, well above what his off-speed stuff accomplished in the past.
Michael Brantley has as many home runs as Miguel Cabrera. His HR/FB rate is up from 6.8% to 15.0%. While his pace has slowed since mid-May, his last seven homers have rated “plenty” or “no doubt” by Hittracker.
The Dodgers are not taking Pittsburgh’s route, placing Hanley Ramirez on the DL with an oblique strain. Miguel Rojas started at shortstop Saturday and Sunday. In 2639 minor league plate appearances his line is .238/.305/.297. He has a 49 wRC+ with Los Angeles.
Despite losing Matt Wieters the Orioles received better production from their catchers this year than last. Caleb Joseph is the sparkplug, he entered Sunday’s action with a home run in five consecutive games. That brings him to eight for the year, he hit 22 at Double-A in 2013.
Tuesday’s Pitch or Ditch is getting some revisions. Jacob deGrom is not making a start, his shoulder is sore. Matt Shoemaker pitched three innings in the Angels’ marathon victory over Boston Saturday. Also, LHP Robbie Ray takes Anibal Sanchez’ place Wednesday.
Jake Petricka allowed one run in his last ten appearances, temporarily stabilizing the White Sox bullpen. With a 6.83 K/9, 1.69 K/BB, and an xFIP nearly double his ERA he should not be counted on long-term.
Devin Mesoraco’s ISO was .124 in 2013. After Sunday’s game it is .286. His fly ball rate jumped from 33.8% to 41.6% and his HR/FB has more than doubled. He will probably be a top five catcher next year, the smart move is to count on a bit of a slide from this year’s final numbers.
The Padres came into Sunday a respectable seventh in team OPS since the All Star Break, and that was before they hung eight runs on Pittsburgh. The Mets and Reds are collectively under .600 in the second half.
Future Philadelphia closer Ken Giles has a 2.39 xFIP and 41.2% strikeout rate.
Johnny Cueto is one of ten SPs since 2010 to have an ERA more than a run under his FIP. Chris Young and Alfredo Simon are also experiencing great fortune this year. Of the other seven only Jeremy Hellickson maintained his ERA the next season. All the others (including Hellickson again) shot up, four by more than a run.