Matt Clark- MIL- Rookie- Clark may have found himself in the right place at the right time. Last season he played in Japan, hitting .238 with 25 homers and 70 RBI for Chunichi. Clark signed with the Mets before this season, hitting .297 with 10 homers in 67 games at AA before they cut him loose. The Brewers then signed Clark to a minor league contract and he hit .313 with 16 homers in 53 games with AAA Nashville. The average was helped by a .354 BABIP but the power may be for real. Clark has slugged over 20 homers in each of his last 5 seasons, including his year in Japan. This is his age 27 season so the 3 homers in 9 games since being called up to the majors could be peaking at the right time. Milwaukee had real issues at 1B last year and has filled the position this season with Mark Reynolds and Lyle Overbay, both of whom are on 1-year contracts. They have been an improvement but there is a reason why Clark has been getting playing time the past few days as the Brewers struggle for their playoff lives. Going into 2015, Clark has to be considered as having at least a good shot to win the job.
Freddie Freeman- ATL- Hot- Before getting thrown out of last night's game, Freemen got a hit to extend his hitting streak to 11 games. Maybe he was frustrated because he struck out twice for the first time since the streak began. Freeman's average has dropped this year from .319 to .293 mainly because his BABIP is .355 instead of .371. Freeman's homer total is down to 18 from 23 last year despite 28 more PAs than he had in all of 2013. Still, Freemen's ISO is at .182, a point higher than his mark a year ago. This is primarily because he has increased his double total to 41 from 27. Freeman has also increased his Batting EYE from .55 to .62. He just turned 25 on Friday so he is still likely to improve in 2015.
Jarred Cosart- MIA- Hot- Cosart recorded his 7th consecutive quality start, allowing 2 runs on 5 this and 2 walks while striking out 5 in 6 IP. He has only failed to make a quality start once since joining the Marlins, his first outing for them. There may be some regression to the mean here. His ERA for Houston was 4.41 while his FIP was 4.01. Now his ERA stands at 3.67 and his FIP at 3.61.
Alfredo Simon- CIN- Hot- Simon has 4 quality starts in his last 5 outings. This may have put to rest the idea that he was fatiguing after being moved into a starting role for the first time in 3 seasons. It does, however, possibly indicate a streaky nature to Simon's performances. His ERA is now at 3.35 and his FIP at 4.32 so his streak may turn rough over the last few starts if regression to the mean kicks in to finish the season.
Eddie Butler- Col- Rookie- Butler will make his second major league start on Saturday. It is likely to be better than his major league debut, when he gave up 6 runs in 5.1 IP of work. Butler still might be a little rusty, as he had rotator cuff issues this season. In the long term he should put up better strikeout numbers than would be indicated by the 69 Ks in 117.1 minor league IP he threw this season. Butler is likely to nail down a rotation spot with Colorado next season and could be a worthwhile pickup in keeper leagues.
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