Ms 8, Rangers 1
how come the twinkies are having such an easier time a' this



One of two things will occur now:  (1) the Twinkies will hit a rough spot, in which case the M's are right there.  or (2) the Twinkies will play well and be in the playoffs.  The beane count:

  • Minny +7
  • LAA +3
  • Sea = and finish with a series vs LAA
  • KC -1
  • Tex -1
  • Balmer -2
  • Tampa -3

Counting our blessings here, would be that the M's don't have to maneuver the car through a pack around the turn.  We made it back to Felix and Zeus, chasing one non-Minny team (against whom we finish up).



Going to write a post about him later Thursday.  The Mainframe is "meh" with him as a #3 starter, but if you can get a solid .500 man going as your #4 guy then that is of course a plus for any team.  Leake does +3 things on the mound that Christian Bergman cannot, that Chase De Jong cannot, that Yovanni Gallardo cannot, for that matter.  On the other hand there is -1 thing that Mike Leake does WORSE than a good AAA pitcher.  Can you guess the +3 and -1?  Get all four right and we'll fix the ACTIVE THREADS button for you.  Oh, wait!  Somebody already got all 4!


Also, when Leake got here there was a lot made of his 1H and 2H splits the last two years.  They looked convincing at the time, but as it turns out it was just one of those things.  Check Leake's velocity graph from last night:



Which is a metaphor for his contribution to this team.  One more reminder that --- > when you're shown a convincing-looking stat, don't forget to check the action wit' yer eyes too.



Four True Outcomes baby.  He worked two walks.  Also, Martin Perez came into the game on a Paxton-like streak having 7 personal W's in his last 7 starts.  He threw Zunino a hard curve ball, knee high, you know how the ball splits the knee line on the tracer.  Zunino hit it 459 feet to give the M's the lead.

Later in the game, Zunino saw a 94 MPH fastball and hit it out to right-center on a line.  This video gives you both of 'em.  Would you believe that his slugging average is .507 on the season?!  You do realize that on May 22 of THIS season, he was batting .167/.250/.236 with 0 homers?  

Meaning that since his callup May 23, he had batted .262/.338/.553 -- before last night's 10 bases.  He's got 23 homers in those 87 games since his callup and even the HR scatterchart is gorgeous.

Stunningly, Mike Zunino's 2017 slugging average is #18 in the league, right behind Marwin Gonzalez and Miguel Sano, just ahead of Manny Machada and Edwin Encarnacion.



In the critical 7th inning Wednesday, Kyle Seager came up with the bases loaded and battled the count deep.  Then he got a low-away fastball, dipped his knees, and lined a shot over the shortstop.  A bad throw or two later, the runners were all in and K-Swag stood on third.  A giant phantom Ichiro cloud formation looked down from behind RF approvingly.



Mitch Haniger took one of those blurry-fast snap swings and lined a 4-iron off the very top of the 19-foot wall in left.  Robbed of a home run.

Jean Segura looks like he's starting to swing the bat well.

Here's an article on Shohei Otani:  he wants to be posted, his team says he'll post him, everybody bids $20M, he picks the team he wants, IceX says that means an AL team so he can hit.  Otani could make $250M if he waits two years; he'll make the league minimum or so if he comes right away.  I believe the contract language can make a free agent out of him after three, so ... point of the article, it's simply up to the Mariners to convince him Seattle is the nicest opportunity for him.  Very odd case.

The Astros moved up Verlander for Sunday's game against the M's.


Dr D




More and more, Doc, I am fascinated by his "power squat," the lowering of his CG that you have often written about.  I love that move.

Of course, almost all talented hitters do it, but his just seems so easy and  natural that it is almost as if he can't avoid hitting well.

Zunino's torrid streak is fairly weird.  Compared with last season, the season he is BB'ing less, K'ing more, but also running a career high BABIP of .350!  Nearly 100 pets higher than his previous best.

His fly ball % is 2 pts below his career average but his line drive % is up 3 pts.  His HR/FB is at 25%, 2 pts above last season and 9 pts above his career number.  Weirdly, his O-Swing and Z-Swing % are basically at career rates.

It seems that what he's really learned to do is simply hit the ball harder.  Much of that may be due to the fact that he uses the right side of the field now.  To tell you the truth, we're likely seeing the extension of last year's Zunino, with a bit more velocity.  

In his last 585 PA's, he's hit 35 HR's.  Boomstick Junior!  

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