Joe Nathan- TEX- Hot- Nathan picked up his 32nd save of the season with a perfect 9th inning. It was his 30th consecutive converted opportunity. After going through a stretch in August where he had retired every batter he faced in 6 opportunities, Nathan had looked a little less dominant, allowing baserunners in all 4 appearances before last night. He was back to his usual self against Cleveland.
Alex Rodriguez- NYY- Cold- Rodriguez fanned 3 times last night, continuing a negative trend he has had this season. Since returning from the DL, ARod has struck out 9 times in 8 games while drawing 3 walks. His Batting EYE for the season has dropped to .44, which would be his lowest of the millennium if he finishes there. It is his third straight year of decline and with injury concerns drops him down the value chart for 2013.
J. J. Hardy- BAL- Hot- Hardy went 4-for-5 with 2 homers, 3 runs scored and 5 RBI. That gives him 3 homers in his last 3 games and 21 for the season. Regression to the mean hasn't happened as his BABIP is still at .247. The late power surge, a Batting EYE of .80 in his last 10 games and a likelihood of more consistent luck next year bodes well for 2013.
Dan Straily- OAK- Hot- Straily threw a quality start stepping into the rotation spot of the injured Brandon McCarthy. Straily now has quality starts in 3 of his 4 major league outings. The 8 Ks in 6.2 IP is more in line with his minor league numbers than the 2 strikeouts in 6.1 IP in his last start on August 16th. With McCarthy done for the year it looks like Straily will get a chance to pitch regularly in a playoff hunt and prove his worth for 2013. Early indications are that the A's have found another solid young pitcher.
Brian Omogrosso- CHA- FYI- Since being called up when rosters expanded Omogrosso has filled a number of roles out of the bullpen. He has been a mopup guy, a long reliever with the game on the line and called on to get one tough out. In most instances he succeeded. Omogrosso hasn't shown the wildness he did in his first time with the club earlier this season. He has only walked one batter in 5.2 IP, compared to 3 walks in 6.1 IP before. Omogrosso also has 4 Ks in this latest stint after posting a K/9 of 11.22 at AAA this season. He is being called on in pressure situations. This probably won't result in a shot at a closer role but could be an indicator of a significant role in the 2013 Chicago bullpen.
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