Welcome to Ronnie’s Run Down! This column looks at some fascinating matchups and facts that might pique the interest of the reader as that day’s games are reviewed. This is just my attempt at creating come compelling thought on any given day. There are nine innings in baseball, and nine points in my daily run down.
- Ronald Acuna leads the Majors with 1.2 fWAR since 8/12. If you extrapolate that out for a full season, that’s 24.3 fWAR in 162 games. He’s also leading the Majors with 10.6 wRAA and an outstanding 70.8% HC. Tonight he faces Pittsburg hurler Chris Archer who has a 71 ERA+ since joining the Pirates 3 starts ago.
- Joe Mauer is making 60.0% HC and 0.0% SC in his last 20 PA. That HC has helped him hit an uncharacteristically high .444 ISO. Mauer has a prime matchup tonight as he faces anit-ace Lucas Giolito. The White Sox pitcher is last in the Majors in fWAR (-0.3), BB/9 (4.92), K/BB (1.26), and SIERA (5.57).
- Renato Nunez leads MLB with 28.6% walk rate over the last week; that’s 6 walks in 21 PA. He’s hitting .333/.525/.400 in that time with a 172 wRC+ and a .424 wOBA. Tonight Nunez faces Marco Estrada of the Toronto Blue Jays. Estrada has a 6.30 SIERA in his last 4 starts.
- In his last 5 starts, Gerrit Cole has a 12.09 K/BB and hasn’t allowed a single home run in 31.1 innings. He has a 4.0% walk rate and a 2.56 SIERA while allowing just 26.3% HC. Tonight he takes the hill against the Seattle Mariners. Over their last 7 game the Mariners rank 23rd in the league with a 74 wRC+
- Alex Wood throws three pitches, a sinker, slider, and changeup. In his last 4 starts, all three pitches have a positive wRAA. He’s the only pitcher in the Majors over the last month to have every pitch he throws over a 0.0 wRAA. Tonight he faces the Cardinals in a tough matchup. St Louis ranks 7th in the league with a .424 SLG against left handed pitching.
- Jose Ramirez is currently sitting with 7.8 rWAR on the season through 123 games. He is on pace for 10.2 rWAR which would be a Major League record for third baseman. The record for the hot corner has stood since 1953 when former Cleveland Indians Al Rosen finished the season with 10.1 rWAR. Rosen nearly won the triple crown that season when he led the league with 43 home runs and 145 RBI, but finished 2nd with a .336 batting average, just short of Mickey Vernon’s league leading .337. Just one more hit in his 599 AB would have put him over the top.
- Amed Rosario is killing fastballs right now; in the last two weeks he has 5.7 wFA. Derek Holland, his opponent this evening, uses his fastball more than any of his other pitches as 35.4%. His next most used pitch is his sinker at 20.4%. Rosario has been the best Met against the sinker at 0.7 wSI in the last two weeks. Holland has given up 5 runs on 16 hits and 5 walks in his last 11 innings.
- Zack Wheeler is undefeated in his last 5 starts. In that time he’s allowing 22.6% HC and he has a 3.52 SIERA. He hit the jackpot today as he faces the San Francisco Giants. Not team in the Majors has a worse offense over the last week than the Giants. They rank dead last in wRC+ (32), ISO (0.42), and oRAA (-18.6).
- On this day in 2005, little league pitcher Kalen Pimentel ties a record when he strikes out 18 batters in a six inning game to lead his team to victory in the Little League World Series pool play. Pimentel didn’t pitch in high school, but moved behind the dish. He played two varsity seasons for Rancho Buena Vista HS where he racked up a .290 career batting average with 1 home run in 114 PA.