Alejandro De Aza- CHA- Cold- De Aza has gone back to his whiffing ways, striking out 6 times in 15 ABs in his last five games. He had seemed to be making progress, only striking out 3 times in 22 ABs in his 7 games prior to that. De Aza has more strikeouts than any other leadoff man in the major leagues this year, with 54. That is the main reason for his .286 OBP. De Aza says the problem is mechanical. If he doesn't fix it if the White Sox can get any other leadoff alternatives De Aza will be replaced.
Nate Jones- CHA- FYI- Manager Robin Ventura has given a vote of confidence to Jones and said he is not in imminent danger of demotion to the minors. Jones' FIP of 3.54 is only slightly above his 3.39 of 2012 although his ERA has ballooned from 2.39 to 7.04. A LOB% of 43.4% accounts for most of his bad luck. Jones' velocity hasn't dropped so waiting for regression to the mean to kick in is probably Ventura's best route.
Troy Patton- BAL- Cold- Patton has absolutely imploded. He has allowed runs in each of his last 4 appearances, with multiple runs allowed in 3 of them. Patton's K/9 has dropped from 7.92 last year to 4.37 this season which would be his lowest in his career as a pro. He has walked more than he has struck out, with a BB/9 of 4.76 climbing from 1.94 last year. Patton has already given up 4 homers in 22.2 IP after allowing 5 in 55.2 IP last year. He isn't suffering from bad luck, as his 5.16 ERA is almost a full run lower than his FIP of 6.11. It looks like every facet of Patton's game has suddenly vanished. He had been a solid setup man but doesn't have any value right now. Such a sudden drop that has been sustained this long in the season might be the result of some sort of undisclosed injury. That makes the most sense at this point.
Alex Wilson- BOS- Drop Value- The Red Sox decided to add another bat for their series in Philadelphia and sent Wilson down to AAA Pawtucket. He was Boston's Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2011 before being converted from starter to reliever. He has performed well this season for the Red Sox, posting a 2.50 ERA in 18 IP. He is likely to resurface as a middle reliever for the big league team later this season and should eventually nail down a prominent bullpen slot.
Nick Franklin- SEA- Rookie- Franklin started his first major league game and went 0-for-4. He is still looking for his first major league hit after 5 PAs. Franklin will get more playing time and should start to deliver. He had improved his Batting EYE to an astounding 1.50 at AAA Tacoma and projects to be a middle infielder with double digit steals and homers at the major league level. If he gets off to a hot start he could move from a player of the future to one of the present.
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