Saturday, May 7, 2011

Stat Line of the Day: May 7th

J. Garcia (StL): 9 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 8 Ks vs. MIL
Garcia dominated the Brewers in a
complete-game shutout on Friday night
There are quite a few pitchers having outstanding starts to the 2011 season, and St. Louis' 24-year-old righthanded placed himself among that group with his complete-game shutout of the Milwaukee Brewers last night. Garcia threw 66 of his 102 pitches for strikes--not a great strike-to-ball ratio, but he struck out eight while walking only one Brewer. Garcia's start was the fifth start this year with a gamescore of 90 or higher, and the first gamescore over 90 of Garcia's young career. He's now 4-0 with a 1.99 ERA, good enough for the 6th-best ERA in all of Major League Baseball. The only problem with Garcia's season thus far has been his non-complete game starts: in the four games prior to last night, he'd been throwing to a 3.80 ERA and a 1.41 WHIP, averaging just over five innings per start with an average gamescore of 48.3. Garcia has talent, but he needs to become more consistent pitcher on a start-to-start basis if he's going to be taken more seriously as an "ace" in the National League. Still, he's only 24, and hitters are batting just .205 against him--even with a .270 BABIP, not too much below the league average. He's avoiding the dreaded "sophomore slump" thus far, and starts like these help the future look bright in St. Louis.

Honorable Mention(s)

C. Lee (PHI): 7 IP, 9 H, 3 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 16 K vs. Braves
Well, it's pretty obvious why this one jumped out at us. 16 strikeouts in any start is quite impressive, but to do so in just seven innings shows domination of the Braves lineup. Yet, Lee still managed to give up nine hits and three runs, taking the loss against Derek Lowe (6 innings, 2 hits, 0 runs). This seems like one of those starts where Lee was around the strike zone too much--87 of his 117 pitches, or 74%--but really he got killed by BABIP. Only 14 balls were put in play against Lee, and on an average night one would expect around four hits and nine outs to result from those batted balls--but instead, the numbers were reversed. On a different night this could have been the most dominant start in the majors this year, but the luck just didn't hold up for Lee.

D. Rose (CHI): 44 points , 5 rebounds, 7 assists vs. Hawks
D-Rose put the Bulls on his back yet again as Chicago got home-court advantage back with the win in Atlanta last night. He shot the ball really well from the floor (16-27 FG, 4-7 3PT) and went 8-9 from the free-throw line to finish off his scoring line. The five boards and seven dimes are nice, but that's what you come to expect from Rose, which is why he only merits the honorable mention.

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