2014 Reds / Central Intelligence

Week 6: Focus on NL Central hitters

nl central standings

NL Central Power Rankings Week 6

This week will have a special focus on NL Central hitters, and their performances so far in 2014.  Next Monday, we will take a closer look at the pitchers.

*please note: all stats outside of team records only include games played through 5/10/14.

1. Milwaukee Brewers (last week 1): 24-14, 1st Place, 153 RS, 140 RA (+13)

Entering Saturday’s game against the Yankees, the Brewers were reeling.  They had lost 6 of 8 games, including three straight.  The Brewers were able to squeak by the Yankees in the final two games with 5-4 and 6-5 victories.  The Brewers remain 5.0 games ahead in the NL Central, exactly the same amount they lead last week.

Offensively, the man for the Brew Crew has once again been Carlos Gomez.  He is tied for 4th in the NL in WAR with Andrew McCutchen at 1.8, and is hitting .291/.357/.563 with a 154 wRC+.  Jonathan Lucroy continues to be one of the best offensive catchers in the NL, as he is hitting .298/.365/.444 with a 125 wRC+ and 1.0 WAR.  The big surprise for the Brewers has been Mark Reynolds.  His 227 AVG and .303 OBP might not look like much, but he has hit 8 HR with an impressive .505 SLG and 121 wRC+.  Jean Segura has been the only real disappointment thus far for the Brewers.  After bursting on the scene last year with a slash line of .294/.329/.423 and 107 wRC+, he is hitting just .242/.266/.339 with a 62 wRC+.

Despite the great start overall, the Brewers offense has been in the middle of the pack.  The Brewers entered Sunday tied for 15th in the MLB in Runs (147), 17th in AVG (.248), 24th in OBP (.302), and 21st in wRC+ (91).  Where the Brewers offense has been good is power.  They ranked 6th in the MLB in HR (40), and 10th in SLG (.399).

Brewers Pitchers this week

Name IP H SO ER BB WHIP ERA WAR
Wily Peralta 6.0 11 3 2 0 1.83 3.00 0.1
Matt Garza 6.0 8 5 3 2 1.67 4.50 0.1
Kyle Lohse 12.1 16 4 4 1 1.38 2.92 0.0
Yovani Gallardo 5.2 5 7 4 3 1.41 6.35 0.0
Marco Estrada 6.0 4 4 4 2 1.00 6.00 -0.1

Who’s Hot (last 7 days)

  • Carlos Gomez: .333/.429/.667, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 6 Runs, 203 wRC+, 0.5 WAR
  • Scooter Gennett: .368/.400/.684, 1 HR, 5 Runs, 201 wRC+, 0.4 WAR
  • Jonathan Lucroy: .294/.400/.529, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 161 wRC+, 0.2 WAR
  • Rodriguez/Duke/Smith/Wooten/Wang: 12.2 IP, 7 H, 0 ER, 15 K, 3 BB, 0.00 ERA, 0.82 WHIP

Who’s Cold (last 7 days)

  • Jean Segura: .208/.208/.333, 5 for 24, 43 wRC+, -0.1 WAR
  • Khris Davis: .150/.143/.350, 3 for 20, 21 wRC+, -0.2 WAR
  • Brandon Kintzler: 3.1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 13.50 ERA, 2.10 WHIP, -0.4 WAR

Injuries (click to expand)

brewers injuries

This Week’s Schedule

  • Tues (8:10), Wed (8:10), Thurs (1:10) vs. Pittsburgh
  • Fri (2:20), Sat (2:20), Sun (2:20) at Chicago Cubs

2. St. Louis Cardinals (last week: 2): 19-19, 2nd Place, 5.0 GB, 140 RS, 125 RA, (+15)

The Cardinals went 3-3 this week.  They started the week by taking two of three in Atlanta, but lost two of three in Pittsburgh over the weekend.  The Cardinals have really just been treading water for about a month now, as they are just 10-13 over their last 23 games.

Yadier Molina was off to a great start, hitting .350/.377/.540 with a 156 wRC+ through last week.  He cooled off quite a bit, hitting just .091/.130/.091 (2 for 22) with a -41 wRC+ over the last week.  The Cardinals did however get a few struggling bats going, as Peralta and Bourjos posted 170 and 210 wRC+ over the last week.

Adam Wainwright has been the man on the mound for the Cardinals, posting a 2.02 ERA, with a 0.93 WHIP, 1.4 WAR, 52 K, and 14 BB.  He has also been great at the plate, hitting a remarkable .400/.429/.500 (8 for 20) with a 166 wRC+.  Wainwright has been so good that his 0.4 oWAR ranks 4th on his team.

The Cardinals offense entered Sundays as one of the worst in the MLB.  They ranked just 25th in Runs (.134), 18th in AVG (.247), 20th in OBP (.313), 24th in SLG (.368), and 20th in wRC+ (93).

Starting Pitchers this week

Name IP H SO ER BB WHIP ERA WAR
Adam Wainwright 8.0 6 6 1 1 0.88 1.13 0.2
Lance Lynn 12.0 12 10 6 6 1.50 4.50 0.2
Michael Wacha 5.0 7 7 3 1 1.60 5.40 0.2
Tyler Lyons 6.0 4 7 1 1 0.83 1.50 0.1
Shelby Miller 5.0 6 5 2 2 1.60 3.60 0.1

Who’s Hot (last 7 days)

  • Jhonny Peralta: .333/.407/.542, 1 HR, 4 Runs, 170 wRC+, 0.4 WAR
  • Peter Bourjos: .375/.412/.688, 1 HR, 210 wRC+, 0.4 WAR
  • Matt Carpenter: .400/.483/.520, 4 Runs, 306 wRC+, 0.4 WAR
  • Matt Holliday: .333/.429/.333, 5 RBI, 129 wRC+, 0.1 WAR
  • Adam Wainwright: 8.0 IP, 6 H, 6 K, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0.88 WHIP, 1.13 ERA, 0.2 WAR
  • Pat Neshek: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 2 K, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0.38 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 0.1 WAR

Who’s Cold (last 7 days)

  • Yadier Molina: .091/.130/.091, 2 for 22, -41 wRC+, -0.3 WAR
  • Matt Adams: 208/.240/.333, 5 for 24, 58 wRC+, 0.0 WAR
  • Carlos Martinez: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 1 K, 4 ER, 1 BB, 1.67 WHIP, 12.00 ERA, -0.2 WAR

Injuries (click to expand)

Cards injuries

This Week’s Schedule

  • Mon (8:00), Tues (8:15), Wed (8:15), Thurs (1:45) vs. Chicago Cubs
  • Fri (8:15), Sat (2:15), Sun (2:15) vs. Atlanta

3. Cincinnati Reds (last week: 3): 17-19, 3rd Place, 6.0 GB, 136 RS,  126 RA (+10)

The Reds had two tough, 1-run losses at Boston to start the week, but did manage to take two of three against the hot Rockies over the weekend.  While the injury bug has plagued the Reds thus far this season, they did get some good news.  Aroldis Chapman made his return on Sunday (and didn’t disappoint, as he struck out the side), Homer Bailey has drastically improved from a rough start to the season (has a 3.18 ERA over his last 5 starts), and Devin Mesoraco could return as soon as next weekend.

Johnny Cueto is the early season NL Cy Young favorite.  He leads the MLB with a 1.43 ERA and 0.73 WHIP.  The Reds rotation has been very good, posting a 3.10 ERA (5th in the MLB), and 1.12 WHIP (2nd in the MLB).  The bullpen however has been the major problem.  The Reds pen is 29th in the MLB in both ERA (4.80) and WHIP (1.60).  Aroldis Chapman returning should help that out a bit.

The Reds offense has really struggled so far in 2014.  They entered Sunday 26th in the MLB in Runs (132), 19th in AVG (.246), 16th in OBP (.317), 15th in SLG (.385), and 19th in wRC+ (94).  The main reason for this is that the Reds only have two above average offensive players in the lineup (using either wRC+ or OPS+ over the last two seasons) .  Here is what the typical Reds lineup looks like with each players wRC+ between 2013-2014 (remember, 100 is average):

  • CF Hamilton 85
  • 1B Votto 155
  • 2B Phillips 91
  • 3B Frazier 105
  • LF Ludwick 88
  • C Pena 98
  • RF Heisey 83 / Schumaker 94
  • SS Cozart 71

Starting Pitchers this week

Name IP H SO ER BB WHIP ERA WAR
Johnny Cueto 8.0 5 8 2 1 0.75 2.25 0.2
Mike Leake 7.0 8 4 2 2 1.43 2.57 0.1
Homer Bailey 6.0 5 5 3 5 1.67 4.50 0.0
Alfredo Simon 10.0 13 0 8 1 1.40 7.20 -0.4

Who’s Hot (last 7 days)

  • Brandon Phillips: .333/.409/.722, 1 HR, 4 Runs, 199 wRC+, 0.4 WAR
  • Ryan Ludwick: .308/.474/.385, 149 wRC+, 0.1 WAR
  • Johnny Cueto: 8.0 IP, 5 H, 8 K, 2 ER, 1 BB, 0.75 WHIP, 2.25 ERA, 0.2 WAR

Who’s Cold (last 7 days)

  • Zack Cozart: .235/.278/.235, 4 for 17, 43 wRC+, 0.0 WAR
  • Chris Heisey: .167/.211/.222, 3 for 18, 16 wRC+, 0.0 WAR
  • Alfredo Simon: 10.0 IP, 13 H, 0 K, 8 ER, 1 BB, 1.40 WHIP, 7.20 ERA, -0.4 WAR
  • J.J. Hoover: 3.1 IP, 7 H, 3 K, 4 ER, 2 BB, 2.70 WHIP, 10.80 ERA, -0.3 WAR

Injuries (click to expand)

Reds Injuries

This Week’s Schedule

  • Tues (7:10), Wed (7:10), Thurs (12:35) vs. San Diego
  • Fri (7:05), Sat (7:05), Sun (1:35) at Philadelphia

4. Pittsburgh Pirates (last week: 4): 16-21, 4th Place, 7.5 GB, 149 RS, 161 RA (-12)

The Pirates have finally started to play some good baseball.  They entered Sunday winners of four straight games, before falling to the Cardinals 6-5 on Sunday night baseball.  During the Pirates four game winning streak, they only allowed a total of 11 runs.

The Pirates offense is once against lead by last year’s MVP, Andrew McCutchen.  He is tied with Carlos Gomez for 4th in the NL in WAR at 1.8, and is hitting .319/.427/.511 with a 165 wRC+.  The rest of the Pirates offense hasn’t been all that good, and they rank near the bottom in offense in the MLB (like the rest of the division).  The Pirates entered Sunday ranked 21st in the MLB in Runs (144), 20th in AVG (.245), 14th in OBP (.319), 20th in SLG (.374), and 16th in wRC+ (97).

Starting Pitchers this week

Name IP H SO ER BB WHIP ERA WAR
Jeff Locke 5.1 8 5 6 0 1.50 10.13 0.2
Charlie Morton 8.0 3 3 0 2 0.63 0.00 0.1
Gerrit Cole 8.0 7 7 3 1 1.00 3.38 0.1
Francisco Liriano 5.0 5 5 3 4 1.80 5.40 -0.1
Edinson Volquez 9.2 11 7 9 7 1.86 8.38 -0.2

Who’s Hot

  • Ike Davis: .450/.560/.600, 2 RBI, 227 wRC+, 0.3 WAR
  • Josh Harrison: .375/.412/.625, 1 SB, 188 wRC+, 0.3 WAR
  • Andrew McCutchen: .381/.391/.524, 2 RBI, 152 wRC+, 0.2 WAR
  • Charlie Morton: 8.0 IP, 3 H, 3 K, 0 ER, 2 BB, 0.63 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 0.1 WAR

Who’s Cold

  • Pedro Alvarez: .167/.259/.292, 4 for 24, 59 wRC+, -0.1 WAR
  • Gabby Sanchez: .143/.250/.143, 2 for 14, 22 wRC+, -0.1 WAR
  • Edinson Volquez: 9.2 IP, 11 H, 7 K, 9 ER, 7 BB, 1.86 WHIP, 8.38 WHIP, -0.2 WAR
  • Jeff Locke: 5.1 IP, 8 H, 5 K, 6 ER, 0 BB, 1.50 WHIP, 10.13 ERA

Injuries (click to expand)

Pirates Injuries

Upcoming Schedule

  • Tues (8:10), Wed (8:10), Thurs (1:10) at Milwaukee
  • Fri (7:05), Sat (4:05), Sun (1:05) at New York Yankees

5. Chicago Cubs (last week: 5): 12-24, 5th Place, 11.0 GB, 133 RS, 149 RA (-16)

The Cubs were outscored by 10 runs this week, and lost 6 of 7 games.  Their lone win was a 12-5 win over the White Sox, but in the Cubs other six games they scored 1, 1, 3, 2, 0, and 2 runs.  The Cubs season thus far can be summed up by their ace pitcher Jeff Samardzija, who is win-less this season despite posting a 1.45 ERA (2nd best in the MLB, only behind Johnny Cueto).

The Cubs offense has been one of the absolute worst in the MLB.  They entered Sunday ranked 27th in Runs (131), 27th in AVG (.227), 26th in OBP (.296), 28th in SLG (.352), and 29th in wRC+ (77).

The lone bright spot for the Cubs offensively has been Anthony Rizzo.  He is hitting with 283/.399/.488, with a 145 wRC+, 1.1 WAR, 7 HR and 18 RBI.  He is looking like a nice building block for the Cubs, but they are going to need a lot more talent around him if the want to contend in the near future.

Starting Pitchers this week

Name IP H SO ER BB WHIP ERA WAR
Jeff Samardzija 15.0 5 14 0 3 0.53 0.00 0.6
Edwin Jackson 7.0 6 9 1 0 0.86 1.29 0.4
Jason Hammel 13.0 14 10 5 3 1.31 3.46 0.4
Jake Arrieta 4.0 9 1 3 1 2.50 6.75 0.1
Travis Wood 4.0 8 3 8 5 3.25 18.00 -0.1

Who’s Hot (last 7 days)

  • Mike Olt: .294/.429/.824, 3 HR, 6 RBI, 236 wRC+, 0.4 WAR
  • Jeff Samardzija: 15.0 IP, 5 H, 14 K, 0 ER, 3 BB, 0.53 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 0.6 WAR
  • Edwin Jackson: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 9 K, 1 ER, 0 BB, 0.86 WHIP, 1.29 ERA, 0.4 WAR

Who’s Cold (last 7 days)

  • Starling Castro: .115/.258/.269, 3 for 26, 51 wRC+, 0.0 WAR
  • Emilio Bonifacio: .130/.200/.174, 3 for 23, 0 wRC+, -0.1 WAR
  • Nate Schierholtz: .100/.250/.200, 2 for 20, 30 wRC+, -0.1 WAR
  • Wellington Castillo: .053/.217/.053, 1 for 19, -11 wRC+, -0.2 WAR
  • Junior Lake: .211/.238/.211, 4 for 19, 18 wRC+, -0.1 WAR
  • Travis Wood: 4.0 IP, 8 H, 3 K, 8 ER, 5 BB, 3.25 WHIP, 18.00 ERA, -0.1 WAR

Injuries (click to expand)

Cubs Hurt

Upcoming Schedule

  • Mon (8:00), Tues (8:15), Wed (8:15), Thurs (1:45) at St. Louis
  • Fri (2:20), Sat (2:20), Sun (2:20) vs. Milwaukee

 

NL Central Players of the Week

  • Carlos Gomez: .333/.429/.667, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 6 Runs, 203 wRC+, 0.5 WAR

  • Jeff Samardzija: 15.0 IP, 5 H, 14 K, 0 ER, 3 BB, 0.53 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 0.6 WAR

See previous players of the week here.


 

9 thoughts on “Week 6: Focus on NL Central hitters

  1. Editing needing: “The entered Sunday 26th in the MLB in Runs (132), 19th in AVG (.246), 16th in OBP (.317), 15th in SLG (.385), and 19th in wRC+ (94). “

  2. The Cardinals are really proving the stats guys right with their drop off from the astronomical BA w/RISP from last year. Although it has fallen off so bad they are now below what should be expected. Let’s just hope they don’t bounce back too far.

    • They wont bounce back very much as, unlike some others w ho thought they had really improved themselves, taking Beltran out of the lineup and replacing him with a guy with a history of knee trouble was a real problem. They also took Freese out of that lineup. who though he is brutal defensively and did not hit all that well last year, gave them power. In addition, they used a lot of rookie pitchers who are not doing quite as well this year. The league has caught up to them.

  3. Regarding the Brewers… this is still the same Mark Reynolds that lit up the world in the first half for the Tribe and then got cut in the middle of a playoff chase. I smell the smoke, now we just have to figure out where the mirrors are.

    Although, the Brewers are a better collective offense than Cleveland was, so they can withstand his weaknesses a bit more… but still.

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