Friday, April 27, 2012

Game 1 vs. Astros Preview

Jay Bruce's Day Off (I hope!)

Happy Friday everybody! Glad yesterday is over. And it pleases me to see the Astros in town, but I'd prefer not to have to face Wandy Rodriguez. I know Jay Bruce feels the same way. I've got a feeling Jay Bruce will have the night off tonight. Check out his career numbers vs. Wandy:

  • Jay Bruce: 1-26, 13 SO. That works out to an amazing .038/.038/.038 line. I think we'll see an outfield of Ludwick/Stubbs/Heisey tonight.
  • Ryan Ludwick: 11-32, .344/.400/.406
  • Chris Heisey: 3-8, 1 HR, .375/.444/.875
Mike Leake takes the bump for the Reds after one of the worst outings I've ever seen from him. I guess the good news for him is that Hunter Pence and Michael Bourne, who have had the most success against him over the past two seasons, are no longer in Houston. Leake needs to bounce back strong or he may find himself the odd man out once Chapman inevitably joins the rotation.

  • Speaking of Chapman, I know every time we see him pitch, and every time another starting pitcher struggles, fans start clamoring for Chapman to get in the rotation already. We have to remember that Jocketty and Co. pretty much know what they're doing. I don't know this for sure, but I would guess the plan all along was to start Chapman out in the bullpen and move him into the rotation mid-season. Why, you might ask? Actually its a pretty obvious reason that I would hope most fans would have realized by now: we need him in October. We don't want Chapman to reach his innings limit by early September and then shut him down. Starting him in the bullpen limits his innings, AND gives us an 8th inning hammer. Patience, my friends.
  • Billy Hamilton stole 4 more bases last night for Bakersfield. That gives him 23 in 20 games. At this pace he'll steal 161 bases by the end of the season. How is he doing this? Simple: he's getting on base more. His OBP is .116 points higher than last year. Oh yeah, and he's only been caught stealing 4 times. We must temper our excitement for 2 reasons: the California League is notorious for inflated offense, and small sample size. But I like the trend we're seeing.
  • Scott Rolen has now hit safely in 8 of his last 9 games, including each of the last 5. The one game he didn't get a hit he walked twice.  He also has 4 straight games with at least one RBI. Reports of his death have been greatly exaggerated.
  • The Reds collective team BABIP of .281 is still below the league average of .290.
  • Poor Willie Harris' BABIP is .120. That's what I call bad luck. Another reason people should give the guy a break.
  • The Reds have 10 HRs at GABP this year, only 4 on the road.
  • The Reds have 10 HRs in wins this year, only 4 in losses. Hmmm.
  • Team batting average in wins: .301
  • Team batting average in losses: .176
That's all I've got for you today. Don't hesitate to let me know if you guys have ideas or suggestions for the blog. Also, if you like the blog, make sure to tell your friends to read it, and follow me on Twitter. Here's a cool jam from my favorite band, Red Wanting Blue.

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