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Jun 04

Athletics and Giants have proven what?

Don't disrespect the Athletics... get em mad, and they get EVEN!

Don’t disrespect the Athletics… get em mad, and they get EVEN!

There's nothing better than placing this on your home field.

There’s nothing better than placing this on your home field.

 

The San Francisco Giants have not had the best record in the majors on June 4th since 1972, and once again in 2014, today, they do.  Guess what?  That was the year the Athletics started rolling MLB with 3 straight World Championships.

The Athletics have a run differential of +118.  That is 64 runs better than the next best MLB team, the Giants at 54.  This leads to a projected “Pythagorean Win Total” of 115.5 games.  The most the A’s have ever won was 107 games in 1931 as the Philadelphia A’s.  The most games ever won in an MLB season was 116, done twice.  First in 1906 by the Chicago Cubs and recently in 2001 by the Seattle Mariners.  Neither of those teams won a World Series.

Although the Giants do not own the run differential mark, they do hold the better record at 37-21 vs. 36-22 for the A’s.

The A’s have a great starting pitching staff, and a great bullpen, except their saves record.  Since Doolittle has been installed as Closer, the save issues have been cleaned up, but it still shows as their one pitching blemish.  The bullpen is second in the AL at a 2.73 ERA to Boston’s 2.71.  The A’s sport the 5th best bullpen ERA in all of MLB… It is normal for the top 3 MLB bullpen ERAs to be all NL teams, as they generally score less runs do to the lack of the DH.  Interestingly, the Giants have the second best bullpen ERA in MLB at 2.45.  Although the A’s sport a stellar bullpen ERA, their Save % is second to LAST in MLB at 55%.  Only the Colorado Rockies have a lower save % at 52%.  For comparison, the Giants save % is a respectable 10th in MLB at 71%.

Of course, much of the A’s issues with saves is the rare A’s GM Billy Beane mistake in bringing in Jim Johnson, a workhorse reliever the last two years, for around $!0 mil per year, 2 year contract.  Johnson saved 101 games over the past two years, and blew 12 saves.  That doesn’t sound terrible until you consider the guy blew 9 saves last year alone.  At 30 years old, he is one of those guys Beane will just not touch.  This year, Johnson only has 2 saves, only 1 blown, but with 2 losses already and an ERA of 6.55, it doesn’t look good for the 10 Million Dollar Man.,

Oh well, in the last couple weeks, the A’s have switched to Sean Doolittle as closer, and he is only improving from earlier this year.  He seemed to have a hiccup around the time he signed a contract extension of 5yrs/ $10.5 million, a much more reasonable value at just over $2 mil a year compared to Johnson’s deal.  Doolittle signed his deal in late April of this year.  His ERA in the month of April was 6.17, along with 2 losses, a save and a blown save.  Since the start of May, he has not allowed a run, pitching 14.1 innings and accumulating 5 saves.  His ERA is now 2.67 on the year.

The Giants have made additions to their team.  The most obvious are Michael Morse and Tim Hudson.  They have both been stellar additions so far.  Morse has 11 HRs, good for a tie for 7th in the NL, and sports an OPS of .906, 8th in the NL.  Both numbers lead the Giants, and he is hitting .289, not bad, only bested by Angel Pagan and Hunter Pence on the team.

Tim Hudson has been perfect,  with the exception of his minor injury to his hip which did not keep him out long.  His 1.75 ERA is only bested by Johnny Cueto in MLB qualified starting pitchers.  He is 6-2 over 11 games started.  He averages 7 innings a start.  He has an insane 50 Ks to 8 Walks ratio, and an equally amazing 0.87 WHIP.

I could go on and on, but the point is that both of our Bay Area teams have had great starts and that doesn’t mean anything.  What is interesting, Is that both of these teams have had great Post-All-Star Game runs in recent years.  If they are hot now, how hot can they get late in the season?

It’s been fun to watch so far, but they better keep it up, now that they’ve caught our attention.

The Fraz

 

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