Kyle Gibson (SP-MIN)- Gibson endured another tough outing on Monday, as the rookie right-hander saw his record fall to 2-4 for the year. He allowed four runs on ten hits and two walks while striking out two in 3.2 innings pitched, and was sent back to triple-A following the loss. After posting strong numbers in triple-A, Gibson has not been as fortunate in his brief stint in the majors. He has a 6.53 ERA in 51 innings pitched, but his 5.18 FIP and 4.78 xFIP indicate he has pitched a little better than his ERA would indicate. Gibson's .350 BABIP has hurt his overall numbers even though he has been successful at generating ground balls (over 51 percent). His line drive rate is a little high (21.9 percent), but not high enough to suggest his BABIP is all performance based. One of Gibson's other problems has been below average control (3.53 BB/9). Gibson should be back with the club once rosters expand in September.
Fernando Rodney (RP-TB)- Rodney recorded his twenty-ninth save of the year on Monday night to help preserve a 4-3 win for the Rays against the Orioles. He allowed a hit and a walk while recording a strikeout in his shutout inning, as his ERA dropped to 3.91 for the season. Rodney has struggled a little more often this season, but his 3.06 FIP and 3.11 xFIP indicate that he has pitched better than his ERA would indicate. He has seen his strikeout rate increase to a career best 11.90 K/9, and his walk rate has regressed to 5.51 BB/9. Rodney is throwing fewer pitches in the strike zone this season (42 percent), and his first pitch strike percentage dropped from 60.6 to 55.6 percent. Rodney has been somewhat unlucky in terms of his BABIP (.331) but he did enter last night's game with a 26.8 percent line drive rate. Rodney has regressed as expected, and he has been one of the more disappointing closers who have stayed in the role for the entire season.
Leonys Martin (CF-TEX)- Martin went 3-for-4 with a walk, two RBI and three runs scored to help lead the Rangers to a 16-5 win over the Astros last night. In his first full season, Martin has produced a .280/.331/.402 line while hitting six home runs and stealing twenty-seven bases. Martin continues to serve in a platoon with Craig Gentry, and has produced an OPS above .780 against RHP this year. Considering Martin's speed, his .341 BABIP is not out of the ordinary. However, his plate discipline could use some work (39 percent chase rate) and he still needs to improve his swinging strike rate (11 percent). Additionally, his numbers against left-handed pitching have been poor (.257 wOBA). With that said, his ability to steal bases and provide a solid batting average has allowed him to be one of the top 40 outfielders this season.
Josh Hamilton (LF-LAA)- A day after putting up one of his more impressive games of the year, Hamilton struggled at the plate in the Angels loss to the Indians on Monday night. He did get on base during his four plate appearances, and struck out twice. Hamilton has 19 home runs this season, but his slash line dropped to .228/.282/.421. Owners know about Hamilton's problems consistently making contact, but his 2013 batted ball profile is nearly identically to last season, except for HR/FB ratio. Some bad luck has affected his overall batting average, as his BABIP is down almost 60 points compared to last season. The more surprising decline is in his power numbers. Hamilton's 13.3 percent HR/FB ratio is the second lowest rate of his career, and his average fly ball distance is down 20 feet compared to last season. Injuries and a move away from Arlington have all contributed, but it is unlikely he finishes the season with more than 25 home runs.
Jarrod Parker (SP-OAK)- Parker delivered an excellent performance of Monday night in the A's win over the Mariners. He recorded his first career complete game allowing just one run on eight hits while striking out eight and not allowing a walk. Parker lowered his ERA to 3.71 in the process, but his FIP (4.25) and xFIP (4.39) do not have him ranked as highly. His DIPS are taking into account his below average BABIP (.260), but his 17 percent line drive rate indicates that his BABIP is not just being affected by luck. Additionally, his numbers have been affected by a slight drop his strikeout rate (6.37 K/9). Despite the drop, Parker is actually posting the highest swinging strike rate of his career (12.7 percent). Throw in the improved walk rate (2.95 BB/9) and first pitch strike percentage (61.6 percent), one can make the argument that Parker has actually improved this season. Parker keeps trending upward, and I think he will finish the season with his ERA just above his 2012 mark.
Follow me on Twitter for baseball info and other miscellaneous ramblings.