Who's Hot/Not - Week 5 - 2021
Max Scherzer (SP, Washington Nationals)
1.10 ERA 0.49 WHIP
Mad Max had a strong week, only allowing two runs and striking out 23 over two starts. His first was a complete game against the Marlins only giving up five hits while striking out nine. His second game against the Yankees ended in a no decision. He only gave up two hits and struck out 12, but the Nats could only muster one run. Statcast favors the continued success of Scherzer with his Whiff rate and Walk rate both in the 91st percentile.
Yordan Alvarez (DH, Houston Astros)
This may be a bold statement, but Yordan is off this year. His career OPS is 1.051, but he’s hit a measly 1.006 this year. All jokes aside, the 23 year old is on fire with the leagues 5th best batting average at .347. This past week, he batted .480, hitting two of his home runs versus the Yankees earlier this week. As long as Yordan makes contact, it seems to be a bit. Beware of his low walk rate and higher than average strikeout rate as those could lead to some slumps.
(Note Gerrit Cole's reaction to giving up the second home run)
Avisaíl García (RF, Milwaukee Brewers)
Avi finally saw the batted balls fall this past week, giving him a .521 average. He’s been at the top of the leaderboards for xBA, but had an average under .250 for the longest time. Couple that with missing a couple of games due to injuries, García finally swung the numbers back into his favor. While fielding is his weak point, the defensive infield that the Brew Crew has outweighs the poor defense that he provides. I would deal with it too, given that García slugs .667 against fastballs this year. Statcast favors the continued rise of García’s average, seeing his Hard Hit percentage in the 94th percentile.
John Means (SP, Baltimore Orioles) AND Wade Miley (SP, Cincinnati Reds)
This past week we saw two no hitters. The first, John Means vs the Seattle Mariners. If you didn’t watch the game, you’d notice the WHIP of 0.00. How did he not throw a perfect game then? It’s up in the air whether the third inning dropped third strike was on the catcher or was a wild pitch, but that was the only blemish causing the game not to be “perfect”. By all accounts, Means was unhittable. 26 of his 27 batters he faced saw their first pitch resulting in strike one. 70% of his pitches were also strikes. Means finished with 12K’s and added a no hitter to this dominant 2021 run.
Scooting over to Cleveland, where Wade Miley captured the years fourth no-no. While Miley certainly isn’t a flamethrower, his Cutter/Changeup combo generates a fair amount of ground balls, not allowing the hitters to square up the ball. Miley didn’t start throwing that Cutter until 2017, and now it’s his most thrown pitch. Miley struck out 12 Clevelanders and only allowed a walk, while Amed Rosario reached on an error. Cleveland has been no hit for the second time this year, the first coming from Carlos Rodón.
Carlos Correa (SS, Houston Astros)
1 HR 3 RBI
Correa’s only hit this week was a two run homer versus the Blue Jays off of Ross Stripling on Friday. Other than that hit, it was a forgettable week. Although he’s hitting under his career numbers (.715 OPS compared to .827) this is certainly just a blip on the radar. He’s getting killed by Lady Luck with his xBA in the 90th percentile (batting .246 on the year, should be .307).
Aaron Judge (RF, New York Yankees)
What happens when you’re in the bottom third for strikeout and whiff percentage? You have weeks like this. Judge had 13 strikeouts including five in one game versus the Astros. The great news is he’s at least in the 91st percentile in every hitting metric, other than the aforementioned strikeout and whiff percentage. That means, Judge is due for a run.
Dylan Bundy (SP, Los Angeles Angels)
While Bundy had a decent start versus the Mariners earlier in the week (two earned over six innings), he got clobbered by the Dodgers last night. He only pitched 3.1 innings and gave up six earned. Bundy has actually had a decent year to his standards. Throwing out last years weird season, he’s got a career low in WHIP (1.14), even though his ERA doesn’t really reflect that (5.03).