Spray Chart of the Week: Sticking with the Orioles for another second. Check out this beautiful spray chart by Manny Machado.
Game Of The Week That No One Paid Attention To: Dave Cameron may be a biased Mariners fan, but he is right when he says last Wednesday's game between the Mariners and Tigers was absolutely the game of the week and possibly the game of the year. Max Scherzer and Felix Hernandez both saw 29 batters and struck out 12 of them. Both of them also picked up the no-decision as the game went to extra innings and was ended with a play at the plate. I watched most of this game and will back up everything Cameron said in that piece. This was one of the best games you'll see all year.
Homerism of the Week: The Giants fucking suck. End of story.
The Tale of Two Uptons: Did you know both Justin and BJ Upton are brothers? Did you know both of them play for the Atlanta Braves? Did you know one of them is playing great and one of them is sucking the life out of the leadoff spot? It's all true. According to Baseball Analytics, Justin Upton is hitting less groundballs and more pop flies that are leaving the yard while BJ is hitting groundballs at an astounding 50% rate. You don't even need analytics though to see how big a difference both of them are playing. Justin is amazing to watch right now and BJ well he's not amazing.
When are Batters at Their Most Aggressive?: Hardball Times has a great piece on when batters are at their most aggressive. The author concluded which shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that batters are at their most aggressive when there is people on base. When the bases are loaded a batter will swing the bat almost 50% of the time while when there is no one one they'll swing the bat 44% of the time.
The Greinke-Quentin Brawl Won't Die: Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports reported a recording of the Padres CEO saying Greinke "threw at Quentin on purpose" and called him "Rain Man" because he was confused between what is anxiety and what is autism. Needless to say he apologized quickly.
AJ Burnett Had Himself a Night: AJ Burnett of the Pittsburgh Pirates not only recorded his 2000th strikeout on Wednesday night, he also took a no hitter into the 7th inning before giving up his first hit. Burnett would leave after the seventh and the Pirates would win the game. Here is Burnett's strikeout plot that night. Notice the lone lightly shaded blue square at the bottom of the strikezone. That's the lone hit he gave up.
Friday, Kansas City at Boston, Shields vs. Buchholz: The Red Sox make their emotional return to Boston in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing with a terrific matchup of Shields vs. Buchholz. Buchholz looks like the pitcher again that can carry the Red Sox while Shields has had some tough luck in his first few starts with Kansas City. I just hope they can play this game in lieu of the manhunt that is taking place right now for one of the bombers.
Saturday, Los Angeles at Baltimore, Beckett vs. Chen: When I think of rivalries I think of the Orioles vs. Dodgers. I think of Palmer vs Koufax and Beckett vs Chen. I think of Robinson vs Wills and Machado vs Uribe. Ah that great Orioles-Dodgers rivalry.
Sunday, Atlanta at Pittsburgh, Medlen vs. Sanchez: Not that many great games or pitching matchups this weekend but this one interested me because of how big of gap there is between Medlen's ERA and Sanchez's ERA. Sanchez has an ERA that is a full 11 points higher than Medlen's. I can already see Justin Upton taking Sanchez deep a couple of times in this game.