Grisham and Ramirez had nice power/speed efforts this season. Just how good was Salvador Perez? Giles and Kimbrel updates in the bullpen. A look at commercials, Halloween, Babe Ruth and the playoffs.
POWER AND SPEED
Trent Grisham had 10 homers and 10 steals in just 59 games in a hell of a fantasy effort. Back in 2017 at High-A ball he hit eight homers with 37 steals. He’s a legit threat to go 20/20 next year as his power develops.
Jose Ramirez finished the year with 17 homers and 10 steals. He destroyed lefties with eight homers, a 1.407 OPS and a 1.00 BB/K ratio. The mark was a mere .787 in 2019 and he had seven homers… in 99 more at-bats compared to this season.
DID YOU MISS IT?
Salvador Perez hit .333 with a .353 OBP and .633 SLG for a .986 OPS. Sure it was only 37 games, but those numbers are simply massive. Perez is a career .233 hitter. His OBP the last five seasons was .285. He had never posted a SLG of .500 before. I mean, Mike Piazza’s career line was .307/.377/.545.
Ken Giles had Tommy John surgery Wednesday. It is possible he returns late next season, but the odds are just as good that he will miss the entire season. Giles had posted at least 23 saves each of the three seasons proceeding this one. He ended up with a save this year as he worked 3.2 innings.
Speaking of bullpens, can we please move on from saves. I’ll touch on the top-50 relievers in the coming weeks, but my goodness was it, or was it not, a disastrous 2020 when it came to closers? Let me answer that for you, without even needing to look it up. The answer was YES.
Over his last eight outings, Craig Kimbrel did not allow a run over 7.1 innings. Further, he allowed just three hits and didn’t walk a batter while striking out 13. Is it possible that he was “fixed”? Sure looked that way down the stretch.
Babe Ruth calling his shot?
How many times in the last 24-hours has MLB Network run that boat commercial for the new PlayStation? My conservative guess is 219 times. That might be conservative if we are being honest. I now hate PlayStation. Talk about massive overkill. It reminds me of when DraftKings and Fanduel had a commercial running every six seconds on TV a few years back.
Is it just me, or are batter swinging at every first pitch? Sure seems like most teams had a plan to attack the pitchers early in the count, and everyone has been hacking away.
I find it a bit of overkill. What do I mean? Every five minutes on these playoff broadcasts, someone is mentioning some advanced statistical number. It is like, all of a sudden, the world is getting every single Statcast data point stuffed in their face. You feel that way too? I like knowing about that stuff as much as the next person, but hearing the announcers constantly tossing out the exit velocity and launch angle of every extra base hit… or constantly hearing about “perceived velocity”… I don’t think we need to hear that every 4.1 minutes, do we?
Trevor Bauer became the first pitcher to have 12 Ks, no walks and no runs in a postseason game. The strikeouts were an all-time Reds postseason record.
Max Fried tossed seven scoreless innings against the Reds.
I didn’t care about Halloween a week ago. Now I’m getting back into it. I won’t let 2020 beat me!
Jake Lamb is hitting third for the Athletics Thursday. You know, the guy who hasn’t hit in years and was released by the D’backs. I can’t be the only one that thinks all this playoff maneuvering is wild. Have you checked out some of the starting lineups teams are using? Rookies. Crusty veterans. Odd lineups… Spreadsheet baseball is in full effect in the playoffs.
Chris Paddack was annihilated, again. Over his last eight starts in the regular season, Paddack had a 5.70 ERA and 1.35 WHIP as he allowed a monstrous 10 homers in 36.1 innings (2.48 per nine). In his first postseason start he was battered without mercy by the Cardinals who scored six runs off Paddack while allowing him to generate a mere seven outs. He allowed a homer to Paul Goldschmidt in the first inning as well (for more on Goldschmidt and all first basemen see the Top-50 Review of first base). Don’t know how Paddack will be viewed next season… he really wasn’t very good in 2020.
The Twins have lost 9-straight games while facing elimination. The bigger story though is that they have somehow, in this crazy world we live in, done something that is impossible. Their loss yesterday to the Astros was their 18th consecutive postseason loss. The streak began in 2004. It is utterly unthinkable that it is possible to lose 18-straight playoff games. They played games in 2004, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2017, 2019 and this season. So I ask you, how is it possible to lose 18-straight?
Devin Williams (shoulder) didn’t make the postseason roster. Arguably the most dominant pitcher in the world in 2020, Williams struck out 53 of the 100 batters he faced leading to a 17.67 K/9 rate. He also held batters off base at an insane clip, see the 0.63 WHIP, and though he allowed four runs only one was earned (27 innings). Massive loss for the Brewers.