Matt Cain- SF- Cold- Cain’s control problems caught up with him yesterday as he had as many walks and runs allowed (5) as innings pitched. He also gave up 8 hits and struck out 3. Even with only 5 IP, the outing could not be called short, as he threw 111 pitches. Only twice since the beginning of July has Cain not thrown at least 110. There may be some fatigue going on to explain his wildness. In only one of Cain’s 6 starts this month did he walk fewer than 4 batters. Hopefully, fatigue will be the worst of it and the heavy workload will not result in injury to the young righthander.
Matt Kemp- LAN- Hot- Kemp only went 1-for-5 yesterday, but he scored twice and stole his second base in 2 games. This is a real breakout year for him, as he has helped across the board. Still, Kemp has been a beneficiary of abnormal luck, with a .310 BHIPx. His speed can’t account for all of that. Kemp’s .342 average in 2007 was largely a result of his .367 BHIPx. The effect has not been as extreme this season, but is still there. Don’t expect as much in the way of average next year, but his other contributions will still make him a worthwhile fantasy player.
Chris Ianetta- COL- Hot- Ianetta has become a walking machine lately, drawing 10 bases on balls in his last 7 games. Over that span he is hitting a robust .412 and, not surprisingly with that kind of a walk total, is posting a Batting EYE of 5.00. For the season, his EYE is at .59, an improvement over his .50 in 2007, and his batting average is significantly improved, from .218 to .275. Ianetta has raised his average 10 points during this walk streak.
Felix Pie- CHN- FYI- Pie will not be added to the Cubs’ roster until AAA Iowa is done with their playoffs, but when he is, it could be a source for late season stolen bases and maybe some power. In his 85 games for Iowa, Pie has 11 steals and 10 homers in 335 ABs. His .286 average is far better than his performance at the major league level this year, where he has hit .222. The time on the farm may have done Pie some good.
Josh Whitesell - ARI-Rookie- Josh Whitesell is one of the more intriguing callups for the Diamondbacks. He has murdered AAA Pacific Coast league pitching at Tucson, hitting .329 with 26 homers in 471 ABs. Whitesell’s plate discipline is good for a free swinging (136 Ks) slugger, with a .54 Batting EYE. The lefty has shown power at every stop in the minors since coming out of Loyola Marymount 5 years ago. Whitesell may not get a lot of playing time this month as Arizona is still in a pennant race and he will not be eligible to be added to the postseason roster, but he has put himself on the legitimate prospect radar.