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Good morning baseball fans!
The Mets have lost yet another starting pitcher, with Jacob deGrom needing surgery on his pitching elbow.
A look at what happened during the 2016 season for the Oakland Athletics.
While we are at it, a look at what went wrong for the Twins this season.
Jose Abreu has fixed a major flaw in his swing.
Then there’s Jose Abreu. Lauded as possibly the most MLB-ready Cuban defector we have seen over the past five years, Abreu steamrolled his American League competition in 2014 en route to the AL Rookie of the Year Award. He hit .317/.383/.581, good enough for a 167 wRC+ that ranked third among qualified MLB hitters. Like Puig and Cespedes before him, Abreu’s six-year, $68 million contract looked like a bargain just months after it was signed.
Things tailed off a bit in 2015, though. Abreu still hit a respectable .290/.347/.502 with 30 home runs and 101 RBI, but his rate stats were not as impressive. His walk rate dropped from 8.2 percent in 2014 to 5.8 percent in 2015, and his ISO declined from .264 to .212. While these numbers aren’t bad — his 129 wRC+ was still 29th among qualified MLB hitters — they were a bit concerning for the White Sox and their fans, especially considering the success he had previously. This was especially true as Abreu’s decline continued into 2016. He hit just .272/.326/.430 in the first half, a 97 wRC+.
The American League playoff picture is a revolving door of outfielders, for all the teams involved.
Here is a roundup of news from around the National League West.
Tanner Roark is the Nationals version of Kyle Kendricks.
Tough to say. Is Roark probably pitching above his head right now? Yeah, probably. But each time he throws seven innings of shutout ball, the weight of importance from peripherals to process seems to shift. Having the five above-average pitches, and the command of them all, and the deception or whatever it is that gets batters to take strike after strike, and the ability to keep batters off-balance or whatever it is that gets all that soft contact, it all adds up to quell some of the concerns that come with the lack of plus stuff.
Who could’ve thought at the start of the year that a comparison to Kyle Hendricks, Cy Young candidate (frontrunner?) would come as such a compliment? Who could’ve thought that the Nationals might be heading into October with Tanner Roark as their No. 2 starter, and felt perfectly fine about it?
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Today in Baseball History: In 1987, Darryl Strawberry and Howard Johnson become the first teammates to ever have 30 home runs and 30 steals in a season.