Pinch Slugging Teams

This year’s Cardinals have already hit 10 pinch home runs, putting them on pace to smash the team record of 14 for a full season. In anticipation of this result, this post takes a look at the teams that St. Louis may pass on that team pinch-home run list.

More on pinch home runs after the jump. (more…)

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Quiz – Starting Fast (stumped)

Royals speedster Paulo Orlando has most recently joined this group of mainly obscure players. But, only these live ball era players started their careers in an unusual way. What distinguishes the starts of these players’ careers among those of all other live ball era players? (Click on MORE to see the full list of quiz players)

1. Hal Rice 7. Jack Merson 2. Paulo Orlando 8. Spike Owen 3. Dave Silvestri 9. Keith Miller 4. ...
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Killer Bees Strike Beantown

Those Bees are none other than youngsters Jackie Bradley Jr., Xander Bogaerts and Mookie Betts who, with help from Boston’s over-30 mainstays Hanley Ramirez, Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz,  have propelled the high-flying Red Sox to the top of the AL East standings.

More on Boston’s hot start after the jump.

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Game Notes: Cubs Sweep Nats

These Cubs and Nats squared off over the weekend, starting this series as division leaders who had both won five of their past six games. At 20-6 (Cubs) and 19-8 (Nats) both teams were off to franchise-best starts in the live ball era. After four games, the Cub juggernaut rolls on, leaving the Nationals to lick their wounds.

More on this series after the jump.

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Game Notes: Orioles and White Sox

Two division leaders in the early going squared off over the weekend, and halved a four game set in Baltimore. Chicago has undergone a wholesale makeover from the squad that placed fourth in the AL Central in 2015 with a 76-86 record. Baltimore has made fewer changes, hoping another year of experience for its younger players will result in an improvement on last year’s 81-81 record, good for third place in the AL East.

After the jump...

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Jacques arrêté les Rouges

Arrêté is French for stop, and that’s what Jake Arrieta did to the Reds on Thursday, holding Cincinnati hitless as the Cubs pounded their opponent by a 16-0 count. It’s the first no-hitter of the new season, the second of Arietta’s career, and his second in eleven regular season starts. The win pushes Arrieta’s record to a perfect 4-0 in four starts this season, with a microscopic 0.87 ERA.

More on Arrieta’s gem after the break...

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Run, Don’t Walk

MLB walk rates are at historic lows, another artifact of a declining run scoring environment. Rates below 8% of PAs have been recorded in both leagues for the past two seasons, levels not seen since the 1960s in the NL, and not seen previously in the AL in the live ball era.

More after the jump.

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