Showering you with stats at the end of April
As first full month of season comes to an end, many early trends stand out
April stats are often dangerous in their duplicity, treacherous in their trickery. At times, though, they've proven eerily instructive, too.
That's why we like to take a moment each year at the end of April to make mention of some of the more noteworthy numbers the first month has brought us. These are just a few of the odd, alarming, amazing or otherwise interesting stats that caught our eye. Feel free to add your own in the comments.
All stats are through Tuesday's play.
5: Number of American League East teams with a negative run differential.
4: Number of AL Central teams with a positive run differential (sorry, Cleveland).
Plus-48: The A's run differential, best in baseball. They're in first place in the AL West.
Plus-34: The Angels' run differential, second best in baseball. They're in third place.
11-1: The Brewers' road record.
2-15: The D-backs' home record.
8: Combined number of postponements and off-days for the Tigers in April's 30 days. They will begin May with -- you guessed it -- another off-day, before playing 50 games in 52 days (weather permitting). Come to think of it ...
22: Games played by the Tigers.
22: Games lost by the D-backs.
4-0: The Rays' record in one-run games.
7-16: Tampa Bay's record in all other games.
1-5: The Dodgers' record in extra-innings games.
13-7: The Dodgers' record in all other games.
51.89: Number of at-bats between home runs for the Giants last year, second worst in baseball.
27.12: Number of at-bats between home runs for San Francisco this year, second best in baseball.
21.2: At-bats per home run for Albert Pujols in his first two seasons with the Angels.
12.0: At-bats per home run for Pujols this year.
10: Home runs for Jose Abreu. He's on pace to become just the 12th rookie (and the first since Pujols) to hit 30 homers and drive in 100.
11: Home runs for the entire Royals team. No club in the Wild Card era has had a homer rate as low as Kansas City does now and has gone on to make the playoffs.
2: Ike Davis home runs.
2: Davis' grand slams.
2: Number of those grand slams that came against the Reds.
1: "Tonight Show" appearances for Robinson Cano.
1: Home runs for Cano. He has an .049 isolated power mark and a .366 slugging percentage at Safeco Field.
27: RBIs for the Twins' Chris Colabello, the 30-year-old undrafted outfielder signed by Minnesota out of independent ball two years ago.
.379: National League-best batting average for Charlie Blackmon, who went 6-for-6 on April 4.
.753: Troy Tulowitzki's slugging percentage, best in baseball by more than 100 points.
1.6: Home runs per nine innings given up last year by Aaron Harang, an extreme fly-ball pitcher.
0.0: Home runs per nine innings given up this year by Harang, who has the Majors' best ERA (0.85).
1.90: Atlanta's rotation ERA, after losing Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Mike Minor to injury.
6.04: Minnesota's rotation ERA, after gaining Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes in free agency.
4.29: Strikeout-to-walk ratio for the Brewers' bullpen, best in baseball by 0.81.
.136 The opposition's batting average off Johnny Cueto.
3.12: ERA for Tigers starters.
5.48: ERA for Detroit relievers.
5: The number of shutouts thrown by pitchers 25 or younger (Sonny Gray, Henderson Alvarez, Julio Teheran each threw one, and Martin Perez did it twice) already this season, the most in a March/April since 1989 (Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Bret Saberhagen, John Smiley, Bob Milacki), according to Elias.
Minus-0.6: Prince Fielder's offensive WAR (as calculated by Baseball-Reference.com).
Minus-0.3: Fielder's defensive WAR. So he's actually been slightly more valuable at first base than at the plate (and not very valuable at either).
95.9: Average fastball velocity for two starters -- the Royals' Yordano Ventura and the Angels' Garret Richards -- per FanGraphs.com.
17: Number of times Ventura has hit 100 mph or higher on the radar gun, per BrooksBaseball.net.
14.03: Strikeouts per nine innings for the Nationals' Stephen Strasburg, the highest such mark for a qualified pitcher in March/April since Kerry Wood (14.28) in 2001.
6: Three-hit games for Juan Uribe. He had just seven such games in 2013.
3: Strikeouts for Andrelton Simmons, in 91 plate appearances.
2.74: Average number of plate appearances Chris Carter goes between strikeouts.
4: Walks drawn by Mets pitcher Jonathan Niese, in nine plate appearances.
1: Walks drawn by Brewers left fielder Khris Davis, in 101 plate appearances.
19.2: Percentage of Yankees games in which Derek Jeter has been rested on the bench.
0.692: Jason Hammel's league-best WHIP for the last-place Cubs. Trade bait?
1.83: League-worst WHIP for the Orioles' $50 million man, Ubaldo Jimenez.
10: Major League pitchers who have had Tommy John surgery since Opening Day.
.994: Mike Trout's OPS.
.732: Miguel Cabrera's OPS.
1.95: Jose Fernandez's strangely specific, publicly stated goal for his ERA this season.
1.59: Fernandez's ERA so far.
.454: Allen Craig's batting average with runners in scoring position in 2013, third best in history.
.182: Craig's batting average with RISP this year. The Cardinals, as a team, have dropped from a best-in-history .330 to .220.
.500: Average with RISP for both the Indians' David Murphy (8-for-16) and the Brewers' Aramis Ramirez (12-for-24).
92.9: Dee Gordon's stolen-base success rate (he has 13 steals).
66.7: Billy Hamilton's stolen-base success rate (he has 10 steals).
7: Game-winning RBIs for Josh Donaldson.
22: Walks for Carlos Santana.
14: Hits for Santana. In a related development, he's already grounded into as many double plays (seven) as he did all of last season.
0-11: The Astros' record in games in which they didn't homer. They have the sixth-best homer rate in baseball.
6-0: The Mets' record when backup catcher Anthony Recker starts.
18-for-46: How Chris Denorfia has fared in two-strike counts.
1-for-46: How Pablo Sandoval has fared in two-strike counts.
41: Hits for Melky Cabrera. Only 12 players have finished March/April with more.
3: Wins by Pirates starting pitchers, through 26 games. The "win" is misleading, of course (see below). But to put that in perspective, the Buccos had seven starting pitching wins through 27 games in 2010. They lost 105 games that year.
3: Wins by CC Sabathia, who has a 5.11 ERA and is getting 6.17 runs of support per start.
0: Wins by the Cubs' Jeff Samardzija, who has a 1.98 ERA and is getting 2.33 runs of support per start.
16.2: Percentage of the season that has been played, making it quite possible all of the above will be rendered moot.
But thanks for reading, anyway.