Doug Davis- ARI- Cold- Davis was crushed yesterday, giving up 8 runs on 6 hits and 4 walks in just 2-1/3 IP. Since a run of 4 consecutive starts in which he threw 110 or more pitches he has gone just 6-1/3 IP in two outings, allowing 13 runs on 13 hits and 7 walks. He had a similar sudden downturn at the end of 2007 after another period of heavy usage. It’s hard to tell how much was the usage and how much may have been effects of the thyroid cancer that was discovered last spring. Keep a watch on Davis in his next start. He threw 67 pitches yesterday, so he may have gotten some relative rest.
Carlos Lee- HOU- Hot- Lee extended his current hitting streak to 6 games and has gotten hits in 13 of his last 14 games. In that span he has raised his batting average 13 points to .309. Loss of power is a distinct concern with Lee, who only has 2 homers this month and 14 for the season, far below the pace needed to reach the 35 projected for him before the season. Lee is 33 years old and his pattern may fit those of power hitters who have a sudden drop off.
Mark DeRosa- STL- Hot- Finally, DeRosa got a hit as a Cardinal. In fact, he got two of them. You knew he wasn’t going to go hitless for the rest of the season. Still, it wasn’t an entirely positive night. He struck out twice, giving him 6 Ks compared to only 2 walks since his return to the NL. DeRosa’s .105 average as a Cardinal will go up, but unless he recovers better command of the strike zone it might not be enough to make him valuable.
Prince Fielder- MIL- Cold- Fielder went 0-for-3 last night, the third time in 5 games since the All Star Game that the Home Run Derby winner has gone hitless. I always keep a close eye on the Derby victor because it seems like that contest can screw up players’ swings. Fielder has slugged two homers since the Break, so it doesn’t seem to have affected his power, but we’ll have to keep close tabs on him to see if he is a sell high candidate.
Shane Victorino- PHI- Hot- Victorino has tended to be a second half performer and this may continue. He had one 0-for-5 performance in the four games since the Break but has gone 4-for-10 with 2 walks in the other 3 games. For the month of July, Victorino is hitting .369 and has raised his average to .308, a gain of 14 points. Power and speed are still issues, with only one homer and 3 steals in the month. In the batting average category, though, Victorino is a plus and his history would indicate he will remain one.